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Why do you need a Transmission Cross Member

Why do you need a Transmission Cross Member

Transmission Cross Member

G Force Performance Products is the exclusive manufacturer of a patented line of transmission Cross Members or cross member bar. From our first patent, we focused on supporting the car enthusiast by producing reliable and durable parts that support performance objectives. We engineered each Cross Member for your vehicle's specific make, model, year, and transmission.

Buy a G Force Crossmember now

Today, our Cross Member line supports various car and truck transmissions. In addition, we are continuously expanding our line of transmission adapters, engine swap kits, flywheels, suspension components, motor mounts, mock up blocks, and other automotive parts for the performance enthusiast. As a result, we bring creativity to the automotive aftermarket through our transmission Cross Member and conversion products.

To fully understand the purpose of a Cross Member, take a closer look at a transmission swap.

Defining a Transmission Swap

At its core, a transmission swap entails replacing the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) transmission with an aftermarket version. The substitute transmission was often not available for the vehicle when it was manufactured. Generally, the word "swap" indicates the most conventional type, a switch from an automatic to a manual transmission. But, swap can also mean any change for performance advantages—automatic to automatic, automatic to manual, manual to manual, or manual to automatic. Any combination is workable and has advantages and challenges.

Why Would You Swap?

There are lots of reasons to complete a transmission swap—

  • Better fuel efficiency
  • Remove OEM vulnerabilities
  • Rebuild an old vehicle
  • Improve performance
  • Better handling for heavy loads
  • Include as part of an engine conversion

There are options

For any swap scenario, there are usually multiple transmission options. The alternatives can overwhelm the beginner. For example, 4-speed automatic transmission options include a choice between the 4L60, 4L60E, and 700R4. However, these are really modifications GM made from 1982 to 2013 to the same transmission used in rear-wheel-drive cars and trucks.

A closer look at each transmission reveals the differences. In 1982, GM started replacing the TH350 3-speed transmission with the 700R4. By 1987, GM had resolved its original design flaws, and the 700R4 was much more reliable.
By 1990, GM changed its naming conventions and started calling the 700R4 transmission the 4L60. In 1993, GM changed this transmission to electronic controls from the standard mechanical controls, and the transmission name became 4L60E.

That switch made certain adjustments like torque converter lockup, and altering shift points more clear-cut because they could now be accomplished using a software program. Before that, making the same adjustments meant taking the transmission apart to make the same changes mechanically, which was a tedious procedure.

Expert Opinions

Many automotive transmission authorities regard the 700R4, 4L60, or 4L80E as among the best 4-speed automatic transmissions ever produced. Therefore, it's not a surprise that this is a familiar transmission swap. The 4L60 became popular among performance enthusiasts because of its first gear ratio of 3.06:1, which delivers better acceleration and superior off-road while still offering improved fuel economy. Its popularity and longevity on the market appeal to novice and experienced car enthusiasts.

Other Options

However, there are other options besides the 700R4. Examples include the TKO-500, TKO-600, GM-T5, and GM Tremec. Investigating the available options is a must for anyone completing a swap. In particular, the inexperienced should research their transmission options carefully. 

For truck enthusiasts, the Chevy S10 is a popular swap. Please find out more about an S10 conversion on our blog. You can learn more about an LS swap by checking our FAQ page.

Where does the Cross Member come in?

Buy Your G Force Cross Member with mounting hardware

Transmission swaps have become so popular that aftermarket manufacturers started engineering parts to make these conversions easier. G Force found a niche in the market by specializing in design engineering and manufacturing components for the transmission swap market. Our product line includes related components for a swap, such as transmission mounts, adapter kits, motor mounts, engine stands, and other parts. G Force offers a comprehensive transmission car Cross Member and truck Cross Member bar line for a variety of year, make, model, and transmission combinations.

How is a Transmission Cross Member used?

A Cross Member, made from reinforced steel, bolts across a vehicle to support the transmission. A cross member frame is critical to proper handling and body panel positioning. A G Force cross member fits without cutting or welding, providing a better fit and more durable support. A G Force Cross Member has the strength to resist deflection and twisting. That's why we make our Cross Members for specific body types, transmissions, and motor combinations.

Installed G Force Cross Member

Whether you chose a G Force Performance car Cross Member or truck Cross Member, it's guaranteed to fit your vehicle like a factory-installed transmission Cross Member. Reworking the mounting locations is rarely needed. We engineered our bolt-to-frame design for a perfect fit.

G Force Performance instituted rigorous standards to make sure every transmission Cross Member frame withstands the stress of even the most demanding load. Installation instructions come with each G Force transmission Cross Member, including mounting hardware. The installation instructions are also available on each Cross Member's product page. Additionally, the double-hump design allows plenty of space for even the largest exhaust system.

Sometimes Weight Is Important

For race car drivers and car buffs, weight is an important factor in part selection. Weight affects every adjustment made to their cars. Lowering the car's total weight without a driver, also known as curb weight, potentially has significant advantages for acceleration, deceleration, and fuel economy. One of many aftermarket alternatives that can ease the load is a lighter-weight transmission Cross Member. However, the front Cross Member not only supports the transmission but helps maintain suspension system stability meaning a lightweight Cross Member frame still must be strong and durable. Because weight sometimes matters to our customers, G Force offers a lighter weight version of our four most popular Cross Members.

More Reasons Why Weight Matters

Weight also matters because it has a bearing on performance. Weight deducted or added to the vehicle must precisely balance the load. Carefully reduced curb weight allows for faster braking, more rapid acceleration, and smoother handling. Generally speaking, the force needed to slow down or speed up an object is equivalent to the percentage of the weight reduction. Also, because the engine doesn't have to work as hard to move the car, less weight helps the environment by reducing fuel usage and emissions.

Four Lightweight Transmission Cross Members

Buy a G Force lightweight cross member for improved performance

Since our standard Cross Members enjoy an extensive reputation for reliability, durability, and strength based on their fit and design, a lighter weight option to help balance curb weight was a natural evolution. Our engineers redesigned four bestselling car Cross Members and cut their weight by a minimum of 15%.
Then, an independent lab tested the lightweight version for Load vs. Deflection to ensure the next generation of Cross Members met our high standards. Compared to the legacy product, the tests indicated only a slight difference in strength. 

Most importantly, the lighter-weight transmission Cross Member frames preserved the qualities that make G Force a leader in the transmission and suspension aftermarket. Not surprisingly, part enhancement is about more than fitment. Our manufacturing requirements safeguard every next generation Cross Member holds up under the challenges of the road or racecourse.

As an example, compared to the RCG-700, the lightweight version (RCGNG-700) indicated only a minimal change during the Load vs. Deflection testing. The difference was too small to be seen by the naked eye. At the average load of 200 lbs. for an installed transmission, the deflection for the lighter weight version was 0.089" (up), 0.111" (down). whereas the original Cross Member deflection measured 0.075" (up), 0.096" (down). See the graph below. Tests of the other Next Gen Cross Members revealed similar outcomes.

  1. Load Vs Deflection Test Lightweight Cross Member G Force

More About G Force Lightweight Transmission Cross Members

Each next-generation Cross Member fits the most popular year, make, model, and transmission combinations in our lineup.

  1. 1964-1967 & 1968-1972 A-Body Hardtop Crossmember Next Gen | RCAE-NG-BLK
    Transmissions: 1964-1967 -TH350, Muncie, Powerglide, T-10, Super-T-10, Saginaw, TH200, TH250, 700R4, 4L60, 4L60E, GM T-5, TREMEC TKO-500, and TKO-600. 
  2. 1978-1988 Next Gen G-Body Crossmember TH350 | RCG-350NG-BLK
    Transmssions: TH350, Muncie, Powerglide, T-10, Super T-10, Saginaw, TH200
  3. 1978-1988 Next Gen G-Body Crossmember 700R4 | RCG-700NG-BLK
    Transmissions: 700R4, 4L60, 4L60E
  4. 1984-1988 G-Body Next Gen Crossmember TH400, 2004R | RCG-400NG-BLK
    Transmissions: TH400, 2004R
  5. 1978-1983 Next Gen G-Body Crossmember -TH400 with frame extension | RCG-400KNG-BLK
    Transmissions: TH400, 2004R 
  6. 1968-1972 A-Body Hardtop Crossmember | RCAE-NG-BLK-T56
    Transmissions: T-56, T56 MAGNUM, T-56 MAGNUM XL, TR6060 Tail
  7. 1968-1972 A-Body Hardtop Crossmember Next Gen | RCAENG-8L90BLK
    Transmission: 8L90E Slip Yoke
  8. 1964-1967 A-Body Hardtop Next Gen Crossmember | RCAE-NG-BLK-6L80
    Transmissions: 6L60E (SLIP YOKE), 6L90E (SLIP YOKE)
  9. 1978-1983 G-Body Crossmember | RCG-8L90NGK with frame extension
    Transmission: 8L90E Slip Yoke
  10. 1984-1988 G-Body Crossmember | RCG-8L90NG
    Transmission: 8L90E Slip Yoke

Complete information about each legacy and Next Generation Cross Member is available in the details shown on the product page.

Why Choose a G Force Cross Member?

Our customers choose a G Force Cross Member for many reasons.

1. Bolt-to-Frame Installation

G Force purposely created each Cross Member for a specific Year, Make, Model, and transmission combination. Therefore, we guarantee it fits the same as your factory transmission Cross Member.

Choosing G Force means you can use the factory mounting locations without modification. Our bolt-to-frame design means cutting, and welding are not required and greatly simplifies installation. And detailed installation instructions come with each transmission Cross Member. Finally, most of our Cross Members include installation hardware.

2. Strength Tested

G Force is known for its high standards. You can be sure a G Force Cross Member will hold up to the toughest road challenges and loads.

3. Made in the USA

Made in the USA G Force Cross Members

A G Force Cross Member is manufactured in the USA using high-quality reinforced steel.

Made and packaged in the United States, guarantees each of our customers receives the highest quality product for their needs.

4. New Hardware Included

In addition to being automotive manufacturers, our team of performance enthusiasts knows that working on vehicles means encountering old, rusty, sometimes frozen bolts. To make installation easier, G Force includes installation hardware with almost all of our Cross Members. It's a little thing that can make a big difference in how smoothly a project goes.

5. Double-Hump for large-diameter dual exhaust

At G Force, a Cross Member that doesn't maintain its full usefulness isn't worth installing. We take the extra step to deliver our "Double-Hump" design. This innovative design ensures enough room for your factory or aftermarket exhaust system.

6. A Cross Member Engineered for Performance

Our passionate engineers focus on developing choice parts for our customers and rigorously test each component for proper fitment, durability, and strength. G Force Cross Members continue to transform the suspension and transmission industry.

7. Remarkable Customer Service

Even though a G Force Cross Member is easy to install, we understand that every project has challenges to overcome. Our Customer Service Team has the knowledge and experience to help you choose the right transmission swap kit or front Cross Member for your project. Plus, we can assist you with purchasing the correct transmission Cross Member for your build. The Make, Model, Year search at the top of our home page is a great place to begin.

Curious about a transmission swap or a transmission Cross Member? These blog articles from G Force may be helpful.

Technical Information and Specifications

See the G Force difference for yourself. Check out our specialty Cross Members, LS swaps, transmission mounts, motor mounts, and Cummins Conversion Kits.

The G Force Commitment

A G Force, a happy customer, is our highest priority. As a leader in the transmission and suspension industry, we carefully test and design our products for strength, weight, and fitment without compromise.

Questions about one of our Cross Members?

Give us a call at 330-753-5300 or Live Chat

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