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Dodge Repair/Dodge Ram Van: Transmission Swap?


QUESTION: I have a 2000 Dodge Ram van 1500 w/v6 engine w/automatic transmission. I want to swap w/automatic w/overdrive. What else will I need to change to make it operate properly???

I have the '00 Ram truck manual but not the van manual. There are 4 automatic transmissions shown (42, 44, 46, 47 RE) for the trucks and all those get the 4th gear by means of an overdrive unit. I am not knowledgeable as to what trans you might have in the van but if it is a 3 speed non-electronic type then it will be quite different from any of the ones used in the trucks. Were that the case you would need a transmission control module appropriate for the selected unit. Ideally, it would be much more likely to be a successful swap if the transmission chosen was also used in the '00 van. Then you could compare the differences in the parts that were used with the original vs. the replacement trans at the dealer parts counter. You might also want to buy a Dodge service manual for the Ram van wherein you could see the wiring diagrams for the alternative transmissions that were offered.
I wish a had more information to share with you.
Thanks for the rating and nomination.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Do you think the computer box will need to be swapped out as well. Where is the control module located?
Thank you sir for this information.

Again, I only have the truck manual to reference and interestingly there shows to be only one module for both the engine and the transmission (so-called "combined" module). It is located on the right rear of the engine compartment on the firewall.
I still don't know which transmission you currently have in your van, so that would need to be considered along with which transmission you want to swap it with to determine what control module would be needed. If you have a 3-speed non-electronic transmission (32RE) now, then you would definitely need to change out the powertrain control module to accomplish the switch to an electronic transmission with overdrive (46RE) , and then there would be the issue of non-compatible wiring harnesses/plugs change needed also. I suspect this swap will be more than you want to consider doing unless you find a wrecked van with a good transmission that you can cannibalize. The three speed transmission also if it is working good now will probably be less expensive to keep running than if you switch to the electronic transmission.
I have an '89 sedan with a three-speed automatic which I would be very reluctant to want to replace it with a 4-speed electronic transmission.

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Roland Finston


Get a Free Fast answer to your repair question about a Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth car, minivan, SUV, or truck. Problems with electronically controlled engines and transmissions as well as body wiring problems are my specialty. This free troubleshoot advice forum helps you diagnose faults, minimize repair costs or do-it-yourself.

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