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TH425 used in Vector W8?

Old March 7th, 2019, 06:43 AM
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TH425 used in Vector W8?

So, I just got my latest issue of the Hagerty magazine yesterday. Usually I just flip through them and put them in the break room at work. This month they had an article about the Vector W8. Has anyone else read it?



The article mentions that the Vector W8 used a "slushbox" TH425 out of an Olds Toronado with upgraded internals. Apparently, the TH425 wasn't a good choice for the Vector and resulted in high failure rates. Frankly, I was surprised to read this about the most durable automatic transaxle GM made (maybe I'm a biased reader). True, the TH425 was probably a poor choice for a supercar, but I thought it would be easy to build a TH400/TH425 to survive 600+ HP... I guess the problem was due to spinning the TH425 fast enough to move the car to 150+ mph. I doubt there are many Oldsmobiles that ACTUALLY drive that fast.
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Old March 7th, 2019, 07:05 AM
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The real problem (well aside from the fact that Gerry Weigert was more of a huckster than Delorean...) is that they modified the TH425 to mount the engine transversely. This required a custom right angle drive between the trans output shaft and the differential. You can see the cover for the TH425 chain drive in this drawing.

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Old March 7th, 2019, 08:08 AM
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I was surprised that a TH425 and small block Chevy engine were used in the Vector. The article indicated that Weigert wanted the Vector to be hi-tech and groundbreaking. A TH425 and SBC engine are neither. I would expect them to be used in an episode of Roakill Garage not in a $200k+ supercar.
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Old March 7th, 2019, 08:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Olds64 View Post
I was surprised that a TH425 and small block Chevy engine were used in the Vector. The article indicated that Weigert wanted the Vector to be hi-tech and groundbreaking. A TH425 and SBC engine are neither. I would expect them to be used in an episode of Roakill Garage not in a $200k+ supercar.
Keep in mind that this car was developed in the 1980s. It was intended to be all US-built. There were no "higher tech" options then.
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Old March 7th, 2019, 10:42 AM
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the Vector W2 "concept car" dates from '78 - the W8 production cars finally came out for the '90 model year
for '78 it would've been groundbreaking for a US car, by comparison Countach debuted in 1974 and was in production thru '89

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vector_W2
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Old March 7th, 2019, 10:48 AM
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since it was mentioned - DeLorean
prototype was around in 1976 & made production 1981-'83
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Old March 7th, 2019, 10:53 AM
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Period magazine articles claim that Vector development started in 1971.
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Old March 7th, 2019, 11:07 AM
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so, the Ford engined - Italian built Panteras were in Lincoln-Mercury showrooms when the thought process was conceived
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Old March 7th, 2019, 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by hurst68olds View Post
so, the Ford engined - Italian built Panteras were in Lincoln-Mercury showrooms when the thought process was conceived
More likely the transverse-engined Lamborghini Miura, first seen in 1966, was the real inspiration.




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Old March 7th, 2019, 11:28 AM
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this should've been part of the mindset, instead of the Chevy, then it would've been "SUPER"
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Old March 7th, 2019, 11:54 AM
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Originally Posted by hurst68olds View Post

this should've been part of the mindset, instead of the Chevy, then it would've been "SUPER"
Yeah, but unfortunately by the time the Vector actually made it to a running, driving vehicle, the Olds 455 was out of production.
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Old March 7th, 2019, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by hurst68olds View Post
this should've been part of the mindset, instead of the Chevy, then it would've been "SUPER"
I agree. Even if it hadn't been an Oldsmobile engine there were plenty of "experimental" engines developed by the big 3 before the 80s that would have been much more fitting for a supercar than a run-of-the-mill SBC. Also, a 3 speed automatic is about as "UNsuper" as you can get. Why do you think everybody and his brother wants a 4 speed manual in their Cutlass?
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Old March 7th, 2019, 04:08 PM
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Are those giant silver things out front blowoff valves?
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Old March 12th, 2019, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Olds64 View Post
there were plenty of "experimental" engines developed by the big 3 before the 80s that would have been much more fitting for a supercar than a run-of-the-mill SBC.
Which of the Big 3 companies had investment money in the Vector?

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Old March 12th, 2019, 11:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Koda View Post
Are those giant silver things out front blowoff valves?
I think they are external waste gates.
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