By on August 23, 2018

Let’s face it — things get stale. Sliding into the same old heap every day, fiddling with the ignition, trying to get the motor running. Sometimes, just when you think you’ve got the spark… nothing happens. Then you’re left with your hood up, searching through your phone for the right contact.

Enterprise, perhaps, or maybe your local dealer.

That’s the reality for many old car owners. Sometimes, as is expected in our disposable society, a car’s time comes. We build obsolescence into our vehicles — parts dry up, metal gives way to rust, maintenance costs rise, and suddenly, keeping a classic (or “classic”) on the road just isn’t worth it anymore. But there’s always the option of bringing on a new partner to keep those combustion chamber fires burning.

With yourself as one of the points of the triangle, which automotive three-way do you have in mind?

I think of this as the 24 Hours of LeMons kicks off during Monterey Car Weeeeeaak. This tweet provided the inspiration. Yes, a 1954 Nash — the Statesman model, apparently — with a 2.3-liter Ford EcoBoost under the hood.

We’ve talked about the potential heresy of engine swaps before, but today we spin the practice in a more positive light. Diluting a car’s purity with an engine from another brand (or another era) doesn’t mean the car ceases to exist. Maybe it’s hard sourcing a pristine Dual Powerflyte Six these days; who knows?

If it keeps a classic body on the road for just a little while longer, can we really complain? How many 1970s MGBs now contain a 60-degree GM V6? A former co-worker once dropped the powertrain from a 1993 Mustang GT into his 1982 Thunderbird Town Landau and loved every minute of it. (The car, as well as its resale value, no doubt thanked him, too.)

So, using this ’54 Nash as a starting point, let’s list our top engine swap visions. Practical or outlandish; it doesn’t matter. We can talk about 350/Hydramatic applications for days, but I’ve always thought an old British Ford with a 1.0-liter EcoBoost would be fun. A gutless Prefect or Zodiac Mk. II, perhaps, though an American Fairmont with a three-pot seems like an amusing possibility. Certainly a better choice than the original base Fairmont motor.

What say you, B&B?

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83 Comments on “QOTD: In the Mood for a Swap?...”


  • avatar
    Lie2me

    LS1 crate engine in a Tesla, just because ;-)

    Actually, maybe some type of diesel in a Prius so it can roll coal

  • avatar
    87 Morgan

    I am an advocate of the LS swap into anything your heart desires.

    Many of the B&B have posted on here how todays cars are bland bubbles that all blend together.
    The powertrain swap solves this if you want to have something that everyone else doesnt. Or if you have something unique and are just tired od dealing with brain damage of keeping it running.

    So, I vote for the Morgan LS swap. Allows the car to be usable, remive all the Rover and Lucas stuff and suddenly you have a reliable, unique, and very fun car that can be used for more than a monthly C&C.

    • 0 avatar
      raph

      “I am an advocate of the LS swap into anything your heart desires.”

      I don’t even know you yet I can already tell we couldn’t be neighbors.

      Not that I don’t think the LS/LT engines aren’t great engines but LS swaps are so ubiquitous they are like bedbugs in a flop house. I haven’t looked at say “Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords” in years if it even exists in print but I fully expect these days it probably goes by the moniker “LS swapped Muscle Mustangs & Fast LS Swapped Fords” with tech articles like “Ditch your pricey overhead cams for this cool pushrod conversion” or “Make your LS Rev like a Coyote” or conversely “Scared of Swinging the tach past 6,000 RPM? Secret Tuning Revealed! How to lower the rev limit on your GT350!”.

      Christ its like the 80’s where every magazine not dedicated to a brand endlessly ran stories and photo shoots on ’69 Camaros and even worse pro street 69 Camaros.

  • avatar
    4drSedan

    Funny I was just thinking about this yesterday.

    My answer is Mercedes 560SL with LS6 or other Chevy Small Block crate engine.

    I think that could totally work.

  • avatar
    dividebytube

    I once saw a V8 Mazda RX7 convertible – street racing a Pontiac Grand Prix GTP. That RX7 had a nice rumble, that’s for sure.

  • avatar
    Flipper35

    Most I would do have already been done. Mid-90s Cummins in a 1st gen Power Wagon. Crate LS in a Humvee. Demon powered Prius. 800hp 1987 GN motor in a Cobra replica.

    It would be interesting to see an Ecoboost 4 in a Lotus Elan/26.

  • avatar
    bullnuke

    My now-deceased brother-in-law made and interesting swap back in the late ’60s. He put a Chevy 302 with tri-power into his Triumph TR-3A. It appeared totally stock but close inspection would see a modified Pontiac radiator peeking down under the front bumper and 3″ dump tubes under each side between the front wheel and door. A rather unique double U-joint in the steering column to clear the headers, a very short driveshaft (basically a couple U-joints end-to-end). He left the stock wire wheels on it ’till he spun the centers out of ’em at the drags at KilKare Raceway. Ran pretty well without many problems and may still exist somewhere in Northwest Ohio.

    • 0 avatar
      geozinger

      When I was a child in the late 1960’s, we had a neighbor who had three sons, between the ages of 14 and 18 or so. The family had a double lot and on that was an old barn that the brothers used to “experiment” on their cars. One of them had the great idea to obtain a MG Midget and proceed to stuff a 283? 327? Chevy in it.

      Even though I was very young, they knew I liked cars and would sometimes take me on a test drive (around the block at 10 MPH or so). I don’t remember a lot about this particular car except that it was really small and incredibly noisy. The one brother literally took me for a quick blast down the street and then back to the barn. Apparently, I was quite upset by all of the noise, but it didn’t completely scare me away.

      I wish I had more info on the Monster MG, but no such luck. I don’t know what became of it. The three brothers went through cars like some folks go through socks, so it was probably replaced shortly after with another “experiment”…

  • avatar
    Ermel

    Seriously considering a 2.0 TCT (inline four soft-turbo) instead of the NA 1.9 injection for my Citroen BX GTi. No big difference otherwise, since the TCT comes from the BX’s successor Xantia and is based on the same engine block.

    I know several people who converted their air-cooled VW Buses (T2, 1968-79) to Diesel engines from the successor T3 (1980-92), with excellent results. Other engine swap options for air-cooled Volkswagen include Subaru boxers, Volkswagen/Audi I4, I5, and V6 in both petrol and diesel form, Ford V6, and of course Porsche boxer-6.

    I used to fantasize about an Audi 80 (your Audi Fox) with the 1.4 inline-3 TDI from the Lupo, just to pulverize modern cars’ mpg figures with. A 700 kg Audi must be able to beat a 1000 kg Lupo, must it not?

    All told, engine swaps within one car-makers portfolio and reasonably within the same age bracket are not that uncommon in Germany. It’s all a labour of love, obviously, and I gather it’s more common in America, but we do it too.

    Total pipe dream? Bentley Continental GT with the V10 TDI from the VW Phaeton/Touareg. Or Citroen DS with the air-cooled boxer six it originally was meant to have (one would source a replacement for that never-built engine from Porsche, obviously).

  • avatar
    jack4x

    I think it would be amusing to swap pretty much anything else into a space that originally held an LS engine, just for the reactions.

    Don’t know if it fits, but a new 4 cylinder Cayman engine into an old VW might be entertaining.

    I’d love a Viper V10 in a Charger.

  • avatar
    ajla

    Any RWD Cadillac from 1982 to 1992 with the Rolls/Bentley 6.75L.

  • avatar
    Maymar

    I mostly like my Mazda2, but the powerband is pretty awful (I can deal with the 100hp, I can’t deal with having nothing below 3k RPM). I might have considered a Fiesta with the Ecoboost triple when I was buying, but they were thin on the ground. On the other hand, the 2 and Fiesta are related enough (I have the FoMoCo stamped parts to prove it) that it could be a feasible swap?

    Otherwise, the 2.0 out of an infinite number of rusted out old Mazda3’s in Southern Ontario might also be viable (since they might also be related enough to the 1.5 I have now).

  • avatar
    JohnTaurus

    I’m seriously considering swapping a Cummins 4BT TurboDiesel into my 1969 F-100, and in turn, putting the 1977 vintage 351 currently in it into a early Ranger. I found a 4BT with a 5 speed Eaton manual transmission on eBay for $3500 including shopping. Not bad IMO.

    Is it ironic that I’d be putting a 4 cylinder into a V-8 truck and q V-8 into a 4 cylinder truck? LOL

    The F-100 isn’t original, really, over the years, everybody has done what they wanted to it, now its my turn. The 1980s step side bed is going away, replaced by a flatbed. The column shift 3 speed is also not long for this world, even if I kept the 351.

    I prefer to “keep it in the family” with engine swaps, usually. But a Cummins isn’t the same as if I were putting an LS engine in this Ford. That, I don’t care for. To each, his own.

    • 0 avatar
      gearhead77

      My uncle has a ’56 Sedan Delivery ( think Nomad but no windows) that he restored in the early 80’s. I vaguely remember him shifting it with the column shift 3 speed, but it’s had a 4 spd on the floor for as long as I can remember. He kept it a 3 speed as long as he could, but the linkage was just too worn and he was done with shifting it that way!

      • 0 avatar
        JohnTaurus

        I’ve avoided them in the past, but this is a family pass-me-down, but like I said, keeping it “original” is impossible at this point, since the original engine, bed, seat, etc are long gone. So, I don’t feel bad about doing away with the column shifter.

        My cousin has an early 2000s Super Duty parts truck, I’m thinking about seeing if the front bucket seats and console will fit in the F-100. And no matter what engine ends up in it, the in-cab fuel tank is going to go away, too.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      My neighbour has a 1979 F250 Extended cab long box 4×4. Wheel base and overall length is around an inch different than my 2010 Supercrew. That got me thinking as to how one could swap out the entire ’79 body onto a newer truck frame and drivetrain.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    A “modern” inline 6 into anything with a classic inline 6.

    GM Atlas 6 into a classic Jaguar – more in keeping with the character than a SBC.

    GM’s soon to be released 3.0 I-6 diesel into any old 1/2 ton with a I-6.

    A de-smogged Slant 6 into a flathead 6 Plymouth or Dodge.

    • 0 avatar
      Jagboi

      Rather than a GM Atlas, do what I’m doing: Replace the XK engine with the Supercharged XJR straight 6. Still all Jaguar, just a few generations newer.

    • 0 avatar
      JohnTaurus

      I have long wanted to build an older RWD FoMoCo product using the 250 Inline six with a head from Australia (circa 1980s/90s). MPFI, still an old school Inline 6. I have love for the Mercury Zephyr, so that’s one candidate but would also consider a Falcon or mid-60s or older full-size Ford car, particularly one with an Inline 6 originally.

      I would also love to get a hold of the South American (Brazilian) Chevy Vortec head/etc that they designed for the old I-6 we got here until the early 1980s. Would be a great engine for a 1990s K5 Blazer/Yukon.

    • 0 avatar
      MoparRocker74

      Maybe the Jeep 4.0L hot-rodded and swapped into an AMC Eagle?

  • avatar
    gearhead77

    I would have loved to swap a Gen 3 3.8 S/C into my first car, an 81 Regal with a 3.8. From 110hp to 260hp, “wake-up” wouldn’t have been the term. It would have kept the Buick a Buick under the hood. I get that the LS is a versatile and can-do motor that’s inexpensive. But it doesn’t have to appear in everything. In my head, Ford’s should be Ford powered, etc.

    Funny this popped up as a topic. There’s a late 80’s Mustang up the street from me. Liftback, 4 cylinder and it hasn’t moved in the 7 years I’ve lived here, PA inspection stickers are over 10 years old. Older gentleman owns it (there’s a derelict Ranger of nearly the same vintage also in the driveway of a small ranch).

    I’ve been pondering a “project car” for cheap, so that if I mess it up, it won’t be painful to send it to the crusher. I’m sure $500 would take it. A brief search of engine options in the Summit catalog shows a Ford crate engine EcoBoost 2.0., albeit at an eye-watering $7000 (all engine control stuff, etc. is included)

    250hp 4 cylinder in a 4 cylinder Fox Mustang is my kind of sleeper and my kind of engine swap.

  • avatar
    JMII

    I always thought the boosted engine from my ’96 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS-T would have been awesome stuffed in my ’89 Honda Prelude Si. The Prelude like most Hondas had no torque while the Diamond Star powerplant was full of shove once the boost built up. Just for entertainment a mid-engine swap from an MR2 into a CRX would be fun.

  • avatar
    Funky D

    The one I would really want to do is drop a Coyote 5.0 motor into a Mercury Marauder. That would make it the car it should have been in the first place.

    Another one that would be fun is to drop a VR6 into a VW Cabrio.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    In the realm of greater possibility I’d love to have the coin to swap the tired old two-barrel 289 out of my 67 Mustang. I’d be happy with a late 80s 5.0 in Mustang GT tune or even a rebuilt Modular 4.6, not even a performance model – it could come straight out of a late build Crown Victoria.

    I’m not drag racing, I just want it to be more pleasant to drive on the highway and easier to start in almost any conditions.

    • 0 avatar
      bullnuke

      Many folks have never had the experience of driving vehicles that, even when new, required depressing the go-pedal fully to the floor to set the choke (or pull the little handle) and hopefully start the vehicle on the first key twist. Then the joys of carburetors that would bog when turning left in front of oncoming traffic, the fun of loaded/misfiring plugs, the ecstasy of burnt distributor points and setting the dwell, engine running, without electrocution. Just typing this has made me start to twitch, swallow my tongue, and look for my bottle of Jameson Black Barrel…

      • 0 avatar
        PrincipalDan

        lol my mechanic finally got the timing properly adjusted on my Mustang (there were no timing marks on the balancer so he had to “do it by ear” – his words) and got the inoperable choke working on the old Carter 2-barrel.

        You must remember the vehicle was in my Dad’s possession for roughly 30 years and he did almost no maintenance unless he had a “no start” condition.

        Pushing the pedal to the floor and cranking is a great way to let the whole neighborhood know what is going on. Especially when you’ve got true dual exhaust with Flomaster knock-offs as your only muffling.

        • 0 avatar
          BoogerROTN

          When I rebuilt the 289 in my ’66 Mustang, I added an electric choke ($10) and Pertronix Ignitor kit ($70); it’s made all the difference in the world inre timing and fuel management. I haven’t had the timing gun out in five years now…

          • 0 avatar
            MRF 95 T-Bird

            When I owned a 70 Mustang in the late 70’s when I rebuilt the 302 I installed an electric choke from JC Whitney replacing the broken manifold tube. Pertronix did not exist then so I kept the points in good shape. With a carburetor rebuild it ran fine for years.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        That’s actually funny because 20 years ago, I had a friend driving a late ’70s Chevy wagon and always complained about it not starting in cold weather. He was about to call a mechanic friend of his one time when I asked if I could try it.

        Well, first off he’d flooded it, so all I did was put the pedal to the floor and hold it… turn the key and a few seconds of cranking had it fire right up. All to his amazement.

        The next day he tried again. And again I started it on the first try.

        Third day he asked me to start it from cold… put my foot down, eased off slowly, then cranked… It fired right up.

        He’d never learned how to use the automatic choke and ALWAYS pumped the pedal hard and fast while trying to start…

        • 0 avatar
          PrincipalDan

          @Vulpine – you remind me of my 87 Cutlass Supreme with the eQuadraJet 307 V8. The official starting procedure was “Depress accelerator pedal to floor and release, setting the choke. Turn key.”

          Since I had never been taught that I spent the first few years of ownership cranking the $hit out of it and wondering why it was so damn hard to start. Finally the mechanic who rebuilt the carb clued me in.

          Life suddenly got much easier.

        • 0 avatar
          Lie2me

          Lol, it took me a long time to unlearn pumping the brakes and gas pedal. Even now in winter there are times I still want to do both

          • 0 avatar
            gearhead77

            It’s funny, but you’ll still occasionally hear people who push on the accelerator to start a modern car (i.e. anything in the last 20-25 years).

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @Lie2me – I still see people “pumping” the brakes in the winter and often it isn’t older farts like me doing it. The myth of its effectiveness continues on to new generations.

      • 0 avatar
        JohnTaurus

        Bullnuke, you’re spot on. I hate carbs, dealing with points, etc. The greatest three letters in my car-obsessed life are E F I….

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        Or you could just not buy crap cars in the first place. And admittedly, nearly everything with a carb made past about 1969 was crap.

        My Spitfire with dual-SUs and ZERO emissions controls starts first time, every time, with a pull of the choke and a twist of the key. And runs beautifully. It does have modern(ish) electronic ignition though – a Crane XR. But of course it also pollutes like an entire highway of modern cars just sitting still with the engine off.

        I see not much point in engine swaps when a little modern tech can make the old engines run just fine.

        • 0 avatar
          JohnTaurus

          “nearly everything with a carb made past about 1969 was crap.”

          Are those rose-tinted glasses prescription?

          You think having points was a good thing? Stuck floats, leaky gaskets/seals, requiring a rebuild if it sat for a few years, needing adjustments (especially when changing altitudes), wet weather sluggishness/stalling, extended warm-up times, poor starting in the cold/wet, flooding out, all that crap was non-existent before 1969? Yes, cars got worse with emissions add-ons, but they were still a pain to deal with beforehand compared to an EFI setup. Doesn’t matter the name on the grille, that stuff was par for the course with any carburetor.

    • 0 avatar
      87 Morgan

      That would be a smooth ride, 5.0 hooked to an AOD. You could turn the old lady back in to a daily.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    Ford 1.0 Ecoboost 3-cylinder in a Saab 93/95 replacing the 2-cycle 3-cylinder.

    GM Ecotec 2.0 or a Quad/4 in a Vega or Monza.

  • avatar
    lunosalpha

    I’ve long thought about getting a Mazda RX-8 and swapping in either a WRX motor or a LSx. Such a beautiful car and the last time I sat in one it fit like a glove. The only issue is that unreliable boat anchor under the hood. What a waste of an otherwise great car. The LSx would sound great but the WRX motor would probably be a better fit. Sorry rotary fans, no offense intended.

    • 0 avatar
      Ermel

      Another of my pipe dreams is going the other way: Citroen CX Trirotor. There was a short-lived Birotor (2-chamber Wankel, 105 hp) version of the smaller GS, but the CX never saw a Wankel (although it was planned — oil crisis killed it in the womb). 3-chamber Wankel engine from the Eunos Cosmo (by Mazda). 280 hp and no vibration sounds great for a comfortable big fastback sedan … I wonder how the stock transmission would react to the higher revs though.

    • 0 avatar
      MoparRocker74

      I agree on the RX-8…LOVE that bodystyle, with the clamshell doors. Better looking than any sedan, more practical than a 2 door coupe without sacrificing the style. Since Mazda and Ford are tight, it deserves the Focus RS motor.

  • avatar
    Vulpine

    Potential heresy? Anybody take a look a Cuba lately? Nearly every one of those antique automobiles they’re driving has be re-engined however they could get away with it. Some of those cars have surprisingly clean bodies for their age, too.

    Personally, it’s a good idea. We already see several customizing shops that perform “Resto-mods” where they take an old body and give it a new suspension and engine, effectively making a new car out of an old one that is notably better in almost every way (except, maybe, crashworthiness.)

    Now, get me a ’59 Impala upgraded to modern driving characteristics. An air dam under the nose will eliminate the worse of the lift the cars experienced at high speeds because of the bumper design while the wings will keep the tail on the ground.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @Vulpine – Cuba isn’t a good comparison since the choices made out of necessity are different than those dictated by luxury. I personally prefer to be “brand loyal” with modifications. If the car has collectible value then any modification that isn’t easily reversible would be wrong. I’m all for restomod’s on “lesser” cars.
      An example would be an “R” code Galaxie 500 versus a 223 I-6.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        If you’ve got to keep an old car alive, you’ll do anything you can to do so. Heck, if I weren’t buying a new Colorado (on order) I would do my damndest to have the Cherokee or Renegade drivetrain dropped into my old Ranger. The Ranger is a good truck but I need at least an AWD if not straight 4×4 and I don’t want it sitting a mile high as a result. The Renegade drivetrain should fit nicely, with only the driveshafts themselves being the real issue. Of course, that means installing the complete Renegade ECM/BCM package so it’d be a full custom rig, but that little Ranger would certainly run better than the stock 2.3 under the hood as far as acceleration and top speed. Amazing how just 20 years can add 80 horses or more to a similarly-sized engine… without adding a turbo.

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      I seriously wonder sometimes if the folks that provide a complete “body in white,” e.g. Dynacorn and the like, have ever attempted to engineer some sort of crush zones into the structures? Not expecting a five-star rating in an IIHS small-offset, but at least you might have a little better chance at survival if you get hit coming home from Cars & Coffee. (Maybe even develop an airbag system for the driver.)

      Obviously, this wouldn’t be for a frame-offf resto, but I thought that if you’re willing to spend the money, between the bodies, reproduction parts for the interior and other pieces, and crate motors, you can practically build an entire “new” 1967 Mustang with better fit and finish than the originals. For those folks, a little extra safety might be worth the extra coin.

      • 0 avatar
        JohnTaurus

        From my limited knowledge, you retrofit a driver airbag into an old car. I believe I heard or read of someone doing it when they did a Cummins swap into an old school crew cab Ford, I think they used the steering wheel, sensors and module from the 90s Dodge donor truck.

  • avatar
    Truckducken

    Oval Taurus wagon + 3.5TT.

    • 0 avatar
      gearhead77

      Another appreciator of the oval Taurus wagon!

    • 0 avatar
      oldworntruck

      Ha! I just picked up a 2003 Taurus wagon.
      I really like the car with every option box checked. Only problem is it’s a 3.ol Vulcan for power.
      I was just thinking how sweet it would be with a sho conversion.

      • 0 avatar
        JohnTaurus

        Do your self a favor and change the fluid, FILTER and pan gasket on the transaxle. I stress filter because doing a trans “flush” is worse than doing nothing at all. Use quality trans fluid, I’ve used Valvoline Max Life with good results in a number of cars.

        What the Vulcan lacks in power (especially for a heavy 4th gen wagon), it makes up for in durability.

  • avatar
    slavuta

    Looking at that picture, I thought, question would be if we want to swap wife for a beauty on the hood….

    I was thinking, it would be nice to have my 240sx back but this time with that 500HP quadrifoglio engine. wooof

  • avatar
    cognoscenti

    I’ve seen a lot of swaps, done ’em, and had friends that did them. Some were not so great (4.6 modular Ford into a Fox-body T-Bird – sounds like a good idea but was not) and others were awesome (Viper V10 in a 1970 Challenger).

    This was my last personal swap, the commonly performed swap of an E36 BMW 24V engine into the E30 chassis: tinyurl.com/E30-Swap-on-BFC

    But hands down, my favorite swap of all time belongs to Kevin Byrd of MAD TV’s Two Guys’ Garage. He used his Ford Powertrain R&D engineering experience to swap a warmed-over LS3 into his BMW E30 M3. I’ve seen this car in person, and the work is absolutely top notch. Article and pictures may be found at tinyurl.com/kevin-byrds-ls-swapped-bmw-e30

    • 0 avatar
      gearhead77

      That 4.6 didn’t like to be factory-shoved into the MN12 (89-97) Cougar/T-bird, I can only imagine swapping it to a Fox car. Oh, the pain of the oil change in a 4.6 MN12 car!

      • 0 avatar
        MRF 95 T-Bird

        Over the years I’ve figured out the oil change method in my 4.6 MN12. I use a flexible strap filter wrench and manage to wrangle it away from the frame. There are years of crusty oil embedded in the cross member under the filter that I have to have steam cleaned.

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    Honda 3.5 V6 in an old Miata. With some wide sticky tires and a good suspension I’d be set.

  • avatar
    threeer

    Fiat X 1/9 with Toyota running gear….maybe the supercharged engine out if the Mk1 MR2? Love the style of the targa Fiat, but always worried about the less than stellar reliability and performance of the stock engine and trans.

  • avatar
    relton

    I’ve done lots of engine swaps over the years. Perhaps the most difficult was the Ford 2.8L V6 into a Citroen SM. It required the Ford engine to rotate backwards, and a complex adapter to the Citroen transaxle. Brakes were inboard, and had to mount to the adapter. Main hydraulic pump needed to be driven, and an entire auxiliary belt drive had to be engineered. Made a nice car though, ca 1976.

    About the same time, I put a Ford 5.0 L engine in a Peugeot 504. I first swapped in a 2.8 L V6, and that was nice. But there was enough room so I thought, “I could’a had a V8”. So I took out mthe V6 and put in the V8. Only tricky part was modifying the Peugeot trans to fit to the Ford V8. The poweertrain in the Peugeot was more than adequate for the Ford, since the Peugeot was a diesel.

    Subsequently I put the Ford 2.8L V6 in my Vega, and that was a pretty nice car also.

    I put a Chrysler 440 and Torqueflite in a Hudson. Hardest part of that swap was getting shorter and softer front srings, because the Chrysler engine was half the weight of the Hudson 6.

    I have an E92 coupe in the driveway, with a tired set of turbos. Been thinking about an LS swap, especially since others have done it, and a kit is even available. I’d have t mate it to teh ZF automatic myself, though. Everyone else is fixated on sticks.

    Back in the 80s, Ford V8s int rear drive Volvos were common, and i did a few of those myself. As were Chevys into Jag XJs. I made a ncie oneof those, and sold it. Probably a mistake (selling it, that is).

    In my racingdays, I put a 426 Hemi in a 62 Valiant, and passed it off as more or less stiock. Took a lot of work, including making the front of the car 3 inches wider. A successful drag racer, a lousy street car.

    Another racer was a big block Chevy in a Corvair sedan, mounted amidship. Again, good racer, lousy street car.

    Cars have the engines they have for lots of reasons, including marketing and the industrial histpry of the company. Almost any car can be improved with a good engine swap, unless, of course, they are Chevies and already have a Chevy V8.

  • avatar
    Featherston

    I’ll take a cue from my father regarding his E28, “If it had an American engine and Japanese wiring, it’d be perfect.” Since his wants were entirely reliability-focused, I’ll spec out a seemingly very realistic swap of the M20B27 for a GM LB8 out of a late ’80s Camaro or Firebird. Power (+14 hp)and torque (-5 lb-ft) would be almost unchanged, so presumably the driving experience (which we found quite pleasant for the early and mid-’80s) would be unaffected.

    Less realistically, I’d spec:
    – GM HVAC, though looking completely stock ’82 BMW.
    – Wiring and electronics from whatever Toyota’s peak was to control it all – again, looking completely stock ’82 BWM.

  • avatar
    Land Ark

    How about yanking a still badly running 350 out of a 1967 Chevy Impala and putting in an LS2?

    Heck, I’d be perfectly happy with an LS1 or any variant of truck LS if it meant it could be back on the road. All the nothing I’ve been trying hasn’t worked.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    I wouldn’t do it to mine but apparently, you can shoehorn in an LS engine into a JR Isuzu Impulse.

  • avatar
    geozinger

    My oldest nephew just started work at an exotic car dealership in Jacksonville, FL. I was tempted to have him call me when he got a Porsche 928 with a SBC in inventory…

    On a more realistic note, I’ve always wanted about another 20 HP and 20 ft./lbs of torque in my daily driver, my Ecotec powered Pontiac G6. I didn’t want the weight and fuel efficiency penalties of the V6. I’ve long dreamt of shoving in a LSJ 2.0L supercharged Ecotec out of a Cobalt SS.

    But, the reality would be a lot of wiring harness silliness and things I don’t have time for. I think I’d be better off with a 50 or 75 shot of nitrous, instead.

  • avatar
    tonyola

    I’ve wondered whether a B16B 1.6-liter Honda engine with 185 hp can be put into a first-generation CRX. 8400 rpm redline! Would the torque-steer be deadly? Zounds!

  • avatar
    hpycamper

    A BMW naturally aspirated 6 into a Triumph GT6.

  • avatar
    Numbers_Matching

    VW VR6 into a Mk 1 MR2 (should drop right in..)
    6V53 Detroit Diesel into a Dodge M37 Power Wagon
    MB M-100 6.9L or 6.3L V8 into a ’70-’71 280 SE Coupe

  • avatar
    stingray65

    Cummins inline 6 turbo-diesel in a Hudson Hornet.
    BMW 3.0 liter turbo-six in an Austin Healey 3000.
    BMW 2.0 liter turbo-four in a Triumph TR3.
    BMW 2.0 liter turbo-four in a BMW 2002.
    BMW V-12 in a Rolls Royce Silver Cloud.
    Mustang GT-350 (new one) 5.2 V-8 in a 1965 Lincoln Continental.
    Porsche turbo-4 (new) in a Porsche 356a Coupe.
    AMG V-8 in a 280SL Pagoda.

  • avatar
    MoparRocker74

    I want to build a franken-truck using the body of a first gen open top Dodge Ramcharger/Trailduster mounted to the the frame/suspension of a 2nd gen Ram 1500 powered by a 3gen Hemi. That would be my ultimate rig.

    ’84-’86 4eyed Dodge Daytona with Neon SRT-4 engine/transmission. Hell, most ANY K car or OmniRizon variant with the SRT power unit.

    3gen Hemi/TR-6060 swapped into pretty much any Mopar A/B body, or a ’65 Sport Fury 2 door hardtop.

    Id like to see the Pentastar V6 with T5 5spd in a late 60s Valiant 2 door.

  • avatar
    Syke

    I’d love to see an Iron Duke 4 in any model Corvette, the flashier the better. Just for the reaction when you open the hood.

    Favorite swap is a guy at the local Cars and Coffee who has an immaculate Ferrari 400i, with an (Australian) GTO engine and transmission in it. He normally won’t open the hood, and the Ferrari guys get incredibly pissed on the rare occasions he does. He bought the car minus engine and transmission.

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    88 Corvette with 86 SVO turbo-4 and 5-speed. Normally I prefer V8s but the Corvette is too fine a sports car (chassis) for just 50/50 weight dist.

    The stock 2.3 turbo 4, also in XR4Tis and T-Bird T-Coupes can easily take 400 hp worth of boost, double that with the right set of mods, Cummins turbo, Volvo head, etc. It’s no Pinto engine.

    It’s a needlessly overbuilt engine, (Ford’s 1st turbo car attempt) routinely harvested for hot rods, open wheel racers and sand rails, and really outclassed the Foxes etc they came in.

  • avatar
    ktm

    Unlike most here, I have a swap. I own a 1972 240z with an LS1 that I swapped 8 years ago. It has been the best setup of all engines I’ve had in the car and its faster than 99.5% of the cars on the road today. I love the sound of the Ford engines (particularly the Coyote’s), but with their OHC setup they are too tall.

    My car is FAR from stock so I don’t need “advice” about brakes, transmission, differential, halfshafts (btw, I am running Porsche 930 CVs), etc. I drive it around 8,000 miles a year, each mile with a smile.

  • avatar
    Erikstrawn

    I have an ’87 Jaguar XJ6 that I put a 500cid Cadillac motor into for 24 Hours of Lemons purposes. The car has never failed to fail me. Sounds awesome, but can’t stay on track.

    My second project is putting a half-bridgeported Mazda 12A rotary into a ’58 Sunbeam Alpine.

  • avatar
    WildcatMatt

    Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve wondered what the largest engine was that could be stuffed into a Beetle…


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