Put A GM 700R4 Behind Your Ford 4.0L V6

(GM 700R4 Automatic Transmission)

The Ford automatic transmissions used in the Ford Ranger haven’t been known to very strong. The Ford C5 is similar to the C4, but was only used in 1983-1984. It’s also only a 3-speed automatic.

The A4LD is probably the weakest of the Ford automatics, and definitely struggles to survive in an offroad application. The 4R44E and 4R55E were an improvement in the Ranger 4-speed automatics, with the 4R55E being the stronger of the two. And finally, the 5R55E 5-speed automatic was probably the strongest automatic used in the Ranger.

With the exception of the C5, the Ford Ranger automatics were electronically controlled, and that can come with it’s own problems that can cause the transmission to not function properly.

Adding an automatic that’s not electronically controlled has its benefits, and if you want a Ford 4-speed automatic, your only option is the AOD (The Ford C4 is a 3-speed automatic.). The AOD can be used with an adapter from Advance Adapters.

However, Bendtsen’s Transmission Adapters offers a kit to put a GM automatic behind a Ford 4.0. This opens up the option to add a GM 700R4 non-computer controlled 4-speed behind your Ford Rangers 4.0L.

Here is a comparison:

 

4-Speed Automatic Transmission Comparisons

Transmission

Ford A4LD 4R44E / 4R55E

Ford AOD

Gm 700R4

Controlled Computer Hydraulically Hydraulically
1st Gear 2.47 2.40 3.06
2nd Gear 1.47 1.47 1.63
3rd Gear 1.00 1.00 1.00
4th Gear 0.75 0.67 0.70
Length 28.687″ (A4LD)

20.500″

23.400″

Note the lower 3.06 1st gear ratio in the 700R4 versus your Ranger’s stock 2.47. That’s 0.59 lower. That would be like taking your stock 3.73 rear gears, and updating to 4.32 gears.

How Do I Install a GM 700R4:

If you’re replacing the automatic in your Ford Ranger, then you’re going to have an issue with the connections that go to the transmission. The GM 700R4 is going to need to be used with a computer from a manual transmission Ford Ranger. That means you can either mount this in place of your existing manual, or if it was already equipped with an automatic, you’ll have to swap to a computer from the same year Ford Ranger with a manual transmission.

(Bendtsen’s Transmission Adapters – Chevy Transmission to Ford 4.0 Adapter)

What Bendtsen’s Transmission Adapters Says About This Adapter:

 

We assume that the person installing this kit has a certain amount of mechanical aptitude and ability. It is not for the beginner. Make sure you clean all surfaces when mating these parts together. Always check bolt clearances. We try to make everything as simple as possible to help you, but the ultimate responsibility as to the assembly of the kit is up to the installer. Check and recheck as you go. We can’t foresee every change or modification that could possibly occur in the building of a custom vehicle.

A few common sense installation tips:

1. Install all bolts before tightening in any sequence.

2. Use Loctite and torque bolts where applicable.

3. Don’t over tighten bolts. There is NO warranty on stripped threads.

4. Be careful and don’t assume. Check everything and be sure.

Kit contents:

Adapter plate

Torque converter adapter

Bolt kit

Clean the back of the block before installing the adapter plate. Remove the exhaust manifolds, they will be in the way. Cut the Ford alignment dowels down to .330 (about 5/16 to 3/8 of an inch.)

Install the adapter plate using the supplied socket head cap screws.

Install the converter adapter onto the torque converter you will be using and then trial fit it onto the stock Ford flexplate.

You will be using the stock Ford 4.0 liter starter, but you will need to grind a flat spot on the end. Bolt the starter onto the adapter plate then trial fit the converter and converter adapter as an assembly.

You should be able to see where you need to grind the flat spot. Once this is done and everything clears, remove the starter. The torque converter nuts are installed through the starter access hole. Spin the converter assembly into the transmission and install the transmission onto the engine just like you would if you were installing a Ford trans. Make sure the converter is spun in all the way or you won’t have enough clearance and you could damage the trans.

 

Links:

Bendtsen’s Transmission Adapters – Chevy Transmission to Ford 4.0 Adapter

Advance Adapters (For AOD Swaps)