700R4 Vehicle Compatibility – Makes & Models
|CAPRICE||3.8L / 5.0L||1982-1992|
|CAMARO||2.8L / 5.0L||1983-1992|
|S10 PICKUP||2.5L / 2.8L||1989-1991|
|S10 BLAZER||2.5L / 2.8L||1989-1992|
|GMC||JIMMY||2.0L / 2.8L||1982-1993|
|S10 / S15 SONOMA||2.5L / 2.8L||1983-1991|
|S15 PICKUP||2.5L / 2.8L||1983-1991|
About the 700r4 & Common Problems
The GM 700r4 is a 4-speed automatic transmission with overdrive. It was introduced in the early 1980’s, as way to make their V8 powered cars and trucks more efficient. In a world filled with rising gas prices, the General needed to keep its product line relevant.
Adding a 4th overdrive gear allowed them to make their sports cars and pickup trucks more affordable to drive. The 700r4 transmission replaced the 3-speed TH350, and became a popular upgrade for older rear wheel drive GM vehicles.
Broken Input Shaft
Early versions of the 700r4 featured a 27 spline input shaft, which wasn’t really capable of handling much torque. 30 spline shafts were standard issue after 1987, and greatly improved the reliability of this otherwise sturdy gearbox.
Another common issue with the 700r4 is overheating. Given the high power output, and extreme use that most vehicles equipped with this transmission see, overheating is fairly easy. As the ATF temperature rises, significant internal damage can start to occur. To avoid this problem, simply install an auxiliary transmission cooler.
3-4 Clutch Pack Failure
Slipping between 3rd-4th gears can signal a problem with the clutch pack that engages those gears. Overheating can weaken the metal used to make the 700r4 3-4 clutch pack discs. If this happens, the ends can shear off, and you’ll eventually have a serious problem.
Warped Valve Body
Due to overheating, the valve body can become warped, which can significantly hamper gear changes. If this happens, you’ll be on the hook for an expensive repair.
Dirty transmission fluid can cause the gears or springs in the governor to become inoperable, which will lead to delayed shifts. So have your 700r4 serviced on a regular basis.
700r4 vs 4L60 – Are they the same?
In 1990, GM changed the name of the 700r4 transmission to 4L60, which stood for 4-speed Longitudinal 6,000 lb gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR). For 1993, the hydraulic shifting system was replaced with electronic controls (4L60E). A Vehicle Speed Sensor told the engine computer how fast the vehicle was going, that way it could decide when to change gears. Shifts were then executed by sending a signal to the appropriate shift solenoid.