I have a 93 gmc 4x4 pickup with an automatic 4L80E transmission. The transmission has gone out can I replace it with a 4L60E and if I can do I have to change the transfer case and drive shafts

Matthew Call

Asked by May 01, 2014 at 12:39 AM about the GMC C/K 2500 Series

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

9 Answers


You could but it is not worth the work. First the 60e is a substantially weaker than the 80e. Second the 60e 4x4 usually costs more than a 80e 4x4 tranny (used, less 60e's out there that are not blown up). And the computer controller is different between the two (it's not plug and play). For the rest I believe you are correct the 80e output shaft and T-case input/output are larger than the 60e, so you would need the correct T-case and rear yoke. The mounting bracket/adaptor between the 60e and T-case is also longer to make up for the length difference between the 60 and 80. The 60e (especially pre '96 trannies) are just electric shift versions of the 700r4 with minor changes/upgrades. These trannies are weak and prone to failure in stock form. I would stay away from them, personally. I have just purchased a '94 80e with 241 for my '92 1/2 ton. I could verify the differences between the output/input shafts on the 60e and 80e for you when I get home on the 6th.

Best Answer

If you still want to put the 60e in I need to know what engine do have. Gas or diesel, what size. The PCM for the 6.5 diesel controls the tranny and motor, the TBI gas trucks will have a ECM for the motor and a TCU under the hood for the tranny. The swap in a gas truck will be a lot easier than a diesel. Let me know what you think???

Matthew Call

I have a 5.7 liter gas engine I can buy a new 60 trany for 1000 cheaper than the 80 I can even buy a transfer case and still be money ahead


Personally I would bite the bullet. The average life of a new/stock built 4L60e in a 1/2 ton is 150 k miles, if you haul or tow it drops. I would get the 80 but if your set on the 60e get a built one for towing, I was looking at one of the B&M ones until I found my 80e.


Ok here is what I can give you for pointers for the install. Your truck will not run the 4L60e (the 80e has an input speed sensor and the wiring is different). There should be a TCU on your drivers side inner fender. There are two options due to the fact that the 4L60e changed in '96. 1.) If you are looking at the older tranny '93 to '95 it has a regular on/off torque converter lock-up. You need to find a donor truck that had the 4L60e and grab that TCU and wiring harness back to the transmission. Get the T-Case, spacer/mounting bracket and output yoke and you should be good. 2.) When GM went OBD2 they upgraded the 60e with progressive lock-up, they also swapped some shift solenoids. To run this tranny in your truck you will require an aftermarket tranny controller, because by that time the tranny was controlled by the vortec PCM. I have used my TCI TCU (made by FAST) on a 4L60e and it worked good. It's what I will use to run the 80e. They make a newer model called EZ-TCU, that you can setup without a laptop. It's just under 600.00. ( You can also get a paddle shift setup with a small steering wheel screen to show you what gear your in.) You will need to tie into the engine RPM and TPS for the TCU to work.


Finally started my swap. There are few more differences to add. You were right in the question about drive shafts. The 80e/241 is 3.5" longer than the 60e/241 combo. Your cross member will need to be moved forward. You will need both driveshafts from a 60e equiped truck of the same wheel base. If you have the manual shift T-case you will need the shorter shift linkage and you may need the shift lever as yours is offset to clear the tranny. Also the aluminum flywheel cover is different and the drivers side gusset bar running up to the motor mount. The output shaft on the 80e is alot bigger than the 60e but the transfer case output shaft was the same (My donor truck is a '94 1/2 ton diesel but the yoke should be the same as a 3/4 ton gas!!). Also I noticed on the trucks with a PCM (computer controls the motor and tranny 6.5 diesels and Vortec gas) the transfer case is different. The low range switch is a 3 wire and the older ones are two wire and they do not interchange so just be careful if you swap to the 60e and are looking for a T-case. I will cut and spice to make the switch work but I need driveshafts first!! Let me know if you need more info.


I have a 93 gmc pick up with a 44l60e 4x4 and want to replace it with a 80e 4x4 what do I have to change and what is a price range of changes and conversion kits

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Read my posts above. You will need to do the opposite. We would have no idea of the price as we don't know what you want. New tranny, used tranny or rebuilt. Factory TCU from a donor gas 80e truck with harness or aftermarket. Used T-case from a 80e with spacer? Used driveshafts? Is it an e-shift T-case or floor. Will you do your own work? Also the best we can do is a rough guess as we do not now the shop rates or price of used parts in your area. Just read the above info and make a list and start making choices and get pricing. I can help you but I won't list it all again.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
Giulio Moro

If you plan to tow or haul then stick with the 4L80. If you just drive the truck around, or plan to sell it, then put in the 4L60 and save yourself some cash. Just don't expect the next owner to thank you for any headaches in the future when he starts having tranny issues when he starts hauling with it. Sometimes you have to bite the bullet buddy. If it perform work for you or you rely on it, then the choice is crystal clear.

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