Volkswagen Air-Cooled 1970-1981 Repair Guide



A fully automatic transaxle is available on Type 3 models, available on all 1971-74 Type 4 models, and 1973 and later Type 2 models. 1976-81 Type 2's are equipped with a different transaxle which is basically the same as the one used in the VW Rabbit, although the final drive section is the same as the one used on all other models in this guide. Both units consist of an automatically shifted three speed planetary transaxle and torque converter.

The torque converter is a conventional three-element design. The three elements are an impeller (driving member), a stator (reaction member), and the turbine (driven member). Maximum torque multiplication, with the vehicle starting from rest, is two and one-half to one. Maximum converter efficiency is about 96 percent.

The automatic transaxle is a planetary unit with three forward speeds, which engage automatically depending on engine loading and road speed. The converter, planetary unit, and control system are incorporated together with the final drive in a single housing. The final drive is located between the converter and the planetary gearbox.

The transaxle control system includes a gear type oil pump, a centrifugal governor, which regulates shift points, a throttle modulator valve, which evaluates engine loading according to intake manifold pressure, and numerous other regulating components assembled in the transaxle valve body.

Power flow passes through the torque converter to the turbine shaft, then to the clutch drum attached to the turbine shaft, through a clutch to a sungear. The output planet carrier then drives the rear axle shafts via the final drive.

Transaxle ranges are Park, Reverse, Neutral, Drive (3), Second (2), and First (1).