The Dynaflow transmission was developed by Buick, which was a division of General Motors, in the late 1940s. At the time, automatic transmissions were still a relatively new technology, and most vehicles were equipped with manual transmissions.
The Dynaflow transmission was designed to provide a more comfortable and effortless driving experience. It used a hydraulic torque converter to transmit power from the engine to the transmission. The torque converter allowed the engine to continue running even when the vehicle was stopped, which made it easier to start moving from a standstill.
The Dynaflow transmission did not have a traditional set of gears like a manual or traditional automatic transmission. Instead, it used a hydraulic coupling and a variable-pitch stator to provide a continuously variable transmission ratio. The stator changed the shape of the fluid flow within the torque converter to match the driving conditions, which provided smooth and seamless acceleration and deceleration.
One of the benefits of the Dynaflow transmission was its smoothness. The lack of gear changes meant that there were no noticeable shifts in power delivery, which provided a more comfortable ride. The Dynaflow also had a reputation for being reliable, which was important for drivers who wanted a trouble-free driving experience.
However, the Dynaflow did have some drawbacks. Because it did not have fixed gear ratios, it was not as fuel-efficient as newer transmission technologies. It also had a reputation for being slow to respond to driver inputs, which made it less sporty and engaging to drive.
The Dynaflow transmission was eventually phased out in the 1960s in favor of newer transmission technologies, such as the Turbo-Hydramatic transmission. However, it remains an important part of automotive history and is still remembered for its pioneering use of hydraulic technology in automatic transmissions.