Adding Overdrive to a vehicle




An overdrive will give you an additional gear above the normal high gear in a transmission. Its most common application is to reduce engine RPM on the highway, allowing less wear and tear, noise and improved fuel mileage. Overdrives mostly come one of two two ways:  built into the transmission, (usually as a fourth gear in an automatic or a fifth gear in a stick trans) or as an external, additional gear box. The external overdrive can act as a gear splitter as well as an overdrive. In adding an overdrive to an existing vehicle, there are pros and cons to each method. 


Automatic Transmission Vehicles

(click this link for general auto trans product info)


If you have an auto trans, and want to stay with an auto trans, usually, the easiest and best way to get overdrive into a vehicle with a 3 speed auto trans to swap in an auto trans that has an overdrive in it. (WHY?)

  • What parts will I need? ---

  • How much does it cost? ---

--- The answers to these question are beyond the scope of this website due to wide variables of application. Cost to do such a swap starts around $2000. Give us a a call or send an email with the details of your project vehicle and we will be glad to quote a package for you


Note: NV4500 and NV3550 5speed stick-shift conversions are alternatives



Manual Trans Vehicles

Conversion to a 5 speed is the general 1st choice.  If you have a 4speed Ford or Chevy, and do not mind having a second shift lever sticking out of the floor, in many cases the Ranger Overdrive is a lower cost alternative. 


Convert to an NV4500 5 speed manual trans

HD trans for Toyota, GM, Ford,  Chrysler AMC or Toyota powered pickup trucks/offroad vehicles


Convert to an NV3550 5 speed manual trans

Light and medium duty GM, Ford, AMC or Chrysler powered 4x4 vehicles


"Ranger" Add-on Overdrive/Gear splitter

Lower cost alternative for GM and Ford powered pickup trucks, Broncos, Blazers, Land Cruisers, etc.



...and for early Jeeps using the Dana 18 transfer case...

     Saturn Overdrive