Over the past couple of generations, automatics have gone from the “boring, sluggish” transmission choice to the obvious choice if you want you car to be faster. Modern electronic controls and torque converter tech have all but eliminated the manual transmission from existence in today’s modern vehicle lineup. Despite being the favored choice when it comes to transmission, there’s never been anybody touting the automatic itself as exciting, especially when it comes to choosing gears.
This 2006 GTO just might change that. For years, the transmission of choice for drag racers running a manual trans was the Lenco, a style of trans that used individual levers to shift to each gear. Pro Stock, Pro Mod, and several other classed featured these setups and they made for some great in-car videos, as well as being the quickest style of manual tranny available at the time. What you’re looking at is a modern take on that setup, adapted to give automatic-equipped cars that same feeling, as well as some control over the shifting.
This shifter setup is made by Kilduff and features the best of both worlds: full automatic functionality with the option to shift manually as well using the awesome individual levers. You can drop the shifter into drive and it works just like your typical automatic, since it is actually mated to a 4L65. However, pull the left lever down into first gear, then each lever to the right is used to “pull” the next gear, just like a Lenco or similar setup. When you’re slowing, just push the levers forward to drop back down a gear until you’re back to low.
The system also retains all of the accessory functions, such as the converter lock up and the power door locks working when shifting into and out of park. This is definitely a cool setup that I would love to see in action and maybe even drive sometime!
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