The majority of drag racing and high performance vehicles are equipped with an automatic transmission, but with the addition of an aftermarket torque converter, the car owner can enjoy the peak level of performance from the vehicle. Choosing the best torque converter has a number of benefits for the vehicle and its performance including better speed and acceleration.
A torque converter is essentially a fluid coupler that allows power to be transferred from the engine to the transmission. With the use of a torque converter, the vehicle has the ability to idle without actually moving forward.
Factors to Consider When Choosing Higher Performance Torque Converters
When selecting a torque converter, the first factor to assess is the weight of a vehicle. In general, guidelines for selecting a torque converter specify that the heavier the vehicle, the higher the stall that is required.
The second consideration is the amount of torque produced by the vehicle’s engine. Bigger cubic engines, such as diesel engines generally create more torque than engines that have a smaller cubic size. Before selecting a torque converter, the RPM made by the motor at its torque should be examined. Larger cubic engines will generally make more torque at a lower level of RPM, as compared to smaller engines.
The final important factor to be considered in the selection of a torque converter is the use of the vehicle in which the converter will be in—for example, will the vehicle be used for drag racing, as a street car or for towing? Additionally, it’s wise to consider whether maximum performance or maximum mileage is most important with the use of the vehicle. Each of these considerations will play an important role in the torque converter that is chosen. With regard to torque converters, a one-size-fits-all mentality is not the best way to approach the decision, because vehicles have unique and specific requirements.
As well as the primary factors of engine size, vehicle weight and applications, there are other ways that vehicle owners can determine what torque converter is going to be most appropriate for their unique purposes.
The gear ratio also plays a pivotal role. The gear ratios of a vehicle are required in order to calculate output gear ratios, engine RPM and vehicle RPM.
Custom vs. Off-the-Shelf Converters
The best course of action when selecting a torque converter is to work with a professional manufacturer in order to ensure all calculations and specifications are properly addressed. Because of the specific nature of the design process required to ensure that a torque converter matches the needs of a vehicle and its applications, most people opt to have custom torque converters built, rather than choosing an off-the-shelf torque converter that may not provide the maximum level of performance.