When it comes to selecting a valvebody there are a number of choices.

The 4L80E features electronic solenoids built into the valvebody. These solenoids control the shift functions, regulate the line pressure generated by the front pump, and regulate the torque converter lockup clutch function. A stand-alone computer is normally required, however many modern aftermarket EFI controllers will operate this transmission as well, which means a separate TCU would not be necessary.

Another option is a full manual valvebody. It features a forward shift pattern (P-R-N-4-3-2-1), and requires the driver to manually upshift and downshift the transmission. This valvebody option will not shift automatically, and eliminates the necessity of an electronic transmission control unit. The torque converter lockup function can still be retained and operated via a simple toggle switch or push button that will have to be manually activated by the driver. The full manual valvebody option is a great choice for the enthusiast who wants to save a few dollars on a 4L80E package and does not mind shifting the transmission manually.

The third valvebody option is a full manual transbrake valvebody. It features a forward shift pattern (P-R-N-4-3-2-1) and requires the driver to manually upshift and downshift the transmission. The transbrake feature allows the transmission to essentially be “locked up” in low gear so that wide-open throttle can be applied without experiencing any vehicle movement. When the transbrake is released via an electric button the transmission unlocks and allows the vehicle to launch under maximum power. This option is very popular for street/strip enthusiasts who want the benefits of an overdrive transmission on the street, maximum performance potential at the dragstrip, while eliminating the necessity of a TCU.

Our fourth valvebody option is an automatic transbrake valvebody. This valvebody option requires the use of a special electronic transmission control unit. This very unique valvebody option allows the driver to place the shifter in “drive” (Third gear), activate the transmission, launch the car, and the transmission will then automatically upshift based on the settings programmed into the electronic transmission control unit. This valvebody option is ideal for the enthusiast who wants the comfort and ease of automatic shifting, along with maximum performance potential at the dragstrip.


When designing a torque converter Hughes gathers as much data about the customer's combination as possible, such as crankshaft stroke length, camshaft duration, camshaft lobe separation angle, torque production, vehicle weight, rear gear ratio, and rear tire height. Use of power-adders will also influence how the converter will be built.

Hughes offers 9-, 10.5-, and 13-inch torque converters for our 4L80E transmission packages, with stall speeds ranging anywhere from 1,800 to 5,500-plus rpm, depending on what the combination requires. The majority of Hughes 4L80E converters feature a billet steel front cover and billet steel lockup piston with extra-wide heavy-duty clutch lining for maximum durability. They also offer triple lockup disc options for those customers wanting the absolute strongest torque converter that money can buy.


When it comes to transmission coolers, it is very difficult to over cool an automatic transmission. Hughes recommends that the customer install the largest external transmission cooler they can fit in the car and their budget.

8. To ensure true and flat sealing surface, prevent cross leaks between pump stator and pump body, and eliminate cavitation of the pump gear set and/or torque converter, Hughes machines the mating surfaces.

9. The cleaned, refurbished, and painted transmission case is ready to receive its internal components.

10. Here Gutierrez installs the gear train into the transmission case. The gear train includes the intermediate shaft, sun shaft, center support, reaction carrier, output carrier, ring gear, and output shaft.

11. Next comes the installation of upper valvebody, internal wiring harness, and the case connector.

12. The last internal parts to go in place are valvebody and filter assembly.

13. The last step before going on the dyno is the installation of deep cast aluminum transmission pan. It's equipped with a drain plug for easy servicing and holds 4 extra quarts of fluid for additional cooling capacity.

14. Dynotech offers factory replacements along with custom driveshafts in steel, aluminum, composite, and hybrid (carbon-fiber wrapped aluminum).