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LANSING HISTORY: America’s 1st Commercial Automatic Transmission; 1941 Oldsmobile

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The automatic transmission was invented as far back as 1931 and tinkered with up through the 1930’s.

Then, the prototype and plans were sold to General Motors, who built this new gizmo in Lansing in 1940 for the 1941 Oldsmobile  – billed as a  “Hydramatic” system….woo-hoo!

The above 1940 film clip  – “Motoring’s Magic Carpet” – and the photo gallery below – show how simple it is to drive an auto transmission, other than a standard. It’s only a minute long but interesting. Hope all you Lansing history buffs enjoy ’em!

 

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