Looking for a 200-4R, what to look for


New Member
I came across a junk yard recently that has a ton of cars in there with 200-4R transmissions. Unfortunately, no Turbo Regals or Grand Nationals, 442s, or Monte Carlo SS's that I've seen yet. Probably going back this weekend to look around some more. There are plenty of Buick Regals, Olds 88s, Caddys, and other models that have the transmissions still in them. The great thing is that they will sell the transmissions for next to nothing. Now, I've only built one 200-4R before and it was just a stock rebuild for a guy's 87 Monte Carlo SS. What I would like to know, is there any certain 200-4R that I should look for, if I can't get one out of a turbo car? I need one for a fairly heavy car, a 1970 Monte Carlo, that's running a built 355 that is pushing around 400 hp at the flywheel. My wife is wanting a 200-4R put in this car so that she can have an overdrive, and not have to make too many modifications to switch from the TH350 that is currently being run. Just wondering if there is any certain car I should keep my eye open for to grab the tranny out of. I may just go ahead and grab a few of them with the price that they are offering them for.
I have had good luck with the Caddy AA valvebody, they are all over. I had one in my 81 Malibu wagon, and I really like the shift spacing. Also the Chevy`s with a CR, or CQ. I never thought I would find a CQ in anything but a MonteSS, I found one in a 83 Caprice. All the cars are worth looking under. :)
Thanks Brian. Is there any identifying features on the casing, or are the letters stamped only on the valve body? Also, one more question, did the 200-4R come with two different looking pans? I saw a couple Caddys that I thought had 200-4Rs in them, and the pan appeared to be the same shape as the 200-4R, but it was totally flat, and did not have the divided, or two sumps, like what I'm used to seeing with a 200-4R. Is this just an older model or is this just something that Caddillac did?
Also, any recommendation on where to purchase the rebuild kits from. I've seen a couple places online that I can get them, just wondering if you or anyone else knows of any other links?
The model code is on a small plate on the end of the trans just before the rear main seal. Location here:"F-Body+tech"+200&hl=en&client=firefox-a

Now, the paint on these tags does come off, so the next thing to look at is the casting code on the servo, also on the Passenger side of the case. If the last 3 digits are 694, it's at least a TR/GN servo. BUT, valve bodies & governors do get swapped around at some transmission shops & rebuilders. So, you will need to look at both of those item, which may be a problem at a wrecking yard.

The codes list:

The ones that stand out are:

BQ/BR/TA: Reguarded as the best 200-4R. Unique valve bodies, governor, & the largest servo. The TA model was only on the V6 Turbo Trans Am. TR & GN had BQ '84-85, & BR '86-'87.

CQ/CZ -Monte Carlo/SS & OZ/KZ Hurst Olds/442: Higher rpm shifts than normal 200-4R's. Valvebody & governor are why.

Yes, there was some variations in the pan metals I understand. You can get bigger servos from several vendors, but performance valvebodies & governors are not cheap, even used.
Thanks for the information Hacksaw, I really appreciate that. I had found a few pages that the last link has links to, but that should really come in handy. There is a lot to do to these transmissions to make them last from what I'm reading, and from the looks of the parts, it is pretty expensive to build them as well. Oh well, that's what my wife wants, so that's what she'll get.

Not to cause any controversy, but why stick with a 200-4R when they cost so much to build, when you can build a 700R4 for less? Just curious on what y'all think. This is one of the big reasons I'm building a 700R4 to go behind a mildly built Olds 455, because I can build it to handle the 500 ft-lbs of torque cheaper then I could build a 200-4R. Heck, until now, I could get 700R4 cores cheaper then 200-4R cores. Actually, I've now got a guy that runs an F-body salvage yard, and he'll give me rebuildable 700R4 cores so I can still get them cheaper. To me, it just seems easier and cheaper to go the 700R4 route then to go the 200-4R. I realize the gear ratio differences between the two, and the interchangability between the 200-4R and TH350, but from the looks of it I'll be able to build the 700R4, make the necessary changes, have the driveshaft shortened and still have less in it then what I'll have in the 200-4R for my wife.
i think the 700R4 are just as exspensive to build as the 200R4. plus i have seen more 200R4 handle more power than the 700. the ls1 guys are swaping the 4l60E for the 200R4 for a reason. just my opinion
Maybe they cost about the same for a shop to build. From what I have read on the 200-4R and from what I have read on the 700R4, it seems they can both be built to handle about the same amount of power, and that the 700R4 requires less modification to have a more reliable overdrive clutch assembly. I do give the upperhand in weight to the 200-4R, it is a lighter transmission. As far as building either one to handle 500 ft-lbs + of torque, from what I've read it seems the 200-4R requires a lot more modifications. The different valve bodies also baffles me as to why GM would even do this. Oh well, I'm not trying to argue that one is better then the other, I think they both have their strong points, and both have their weak points. I guess I'm looking at it more from a swappers standpoint, when you are starting off with a vehicle that has neither. I have been quoted anywhere from $200 to $300 for a rebuildable 200-4R, and at the time I could pick up rebuildable 700R4s for $50 to $100 just about all day. Now, I can get a 200-4R for between $50 and $60, but I can get 700R4s for free. I've got three sitting in my garage right now waiting to find a home, one is of course for my 78 TA.

Hmmm....maybe the more I research this to figure out what will need to be done to have a 200-4R live in the 70 Monte Carlo the more I'll understand. Anyway, thanks for everyone's help. I have a good idea on what to look for now.
One big problem with the 700/4L60 is that it won't bolt to the true BOP engines. You have to use an adapter plate. Yet, you can find 200-4R's with the universal (both sets of paterns) case.

Yes, the valve bodies & governors varied on the 200-4R, but the 700 also had different governors. Plus, the '86 & earlier 700's had the poorer lube to the planets, and they changed the input shaft size around '85.

So, how ARE you getting 700's for free? Sounds like quite a deal!
A freind of mine that doesn't live too far from me has an F-body salvage yard. Sort of. He has a bunch of 3rd gen F-bodies that he parts out, and if the transmission is no good, then noone will buy it from him. He doesn't rebuild his own transmissions, and he knows that I do rebuild transmissions, so if he gets any in with slipping or non-working transmissions, he'll give them to me if I want them. He gave me a big bin of 700R4 parts, it was pretty much all the internals out of a 700R4. Then, the next time I was over there taking some clothes to him for his daughter, from a mutaul friend, he gave me two 700R4s. One is slipping, and the other had a broken tail housing.

He has a 200-4R sitting out there, that he is wanting to put in his Chevelle one of these days. Plus, since he is hooking me up with transmissions, I told him that I would build the transmission for him when he was ready for it.
Thanks Look Quick. That is actually one of the places that I have purchased parts from before. Good service and some really nice prices.
Yep, their wharehouse, or at least one of them, is located across Charlotte from where I'm at. I've run down there during lunch before to pick up parts. Thanks again!