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Old 11-20-2003, 04:54   #1 (permalink)
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biggrin Whats the best small v8 for small car conversions?

Has anyone thought about all types of V8s for small car conversions?

I am trying to decide on what V8 to use in my TR7.

Many people use rover 3.5 alloy v8s from range rovers or other rovers. They are light, have bout 150hp and ~300nm torque. Newer 3.9s from discoverys are pricey but have bout 150kw.

Theres some pretty small ford v8's too, 289's and 302's(windsor?) seem tiny in mustangs and falcons etc! What power do these put out? Theyr iron blockd though? and iron headed too i think? How heavy compared to a rover V8?

Theres 4.0 DOHC toyota v8's from Japan with 200kw! and they are all alloy. I think would cost a bit to set up with computers etc?

What i'm leaning toward is a 4.4 leyland p76 V8(which is a rover derivative), these are all alloy, standard have 143kw and 386nm!!, and just with minor tweaks, ie a 4 barrel carbie, extractors, big exhaust have 186kw!
Anyone know about these V8s? What do you think?

I really want to keep the car as light as possible. With a 4.4 P76 V8, the car would way around 1040kg!! (i've heard of a 1980 cortina with this motor and it flew!)

Oh! what about a Gen3!!(bit big maybe, and expensive!)

I want the car to handle, not just go straight.
There was a TR7 v8 with just 200hp at the wheels and with bad traction still did a 13.5 at the Geelong speed trials!!

any ideas?
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Old 11-20-2003, 04:59   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Whats the best small v8 small car conversions?

Get a front end cut from Japan of either toyota's 4.0L (probably the best for parts out here from Lexus/Toyota) or a nissan 4.5L v8. Front end cut will probably cost about $3500 for these engines, prob done about 50,000km, maybe more.

Bullet cars up on the gold cosat put the toyota 4.0L v8s in mazda mx-5 - and they bloody hammer!

If you go for the old stuff, you might find a few consumption issues and inefficiency of the kw/L side of things compared to whats around now.
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Old 11-20-2003, 05:00   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Whats the best small v8 small car conversions?

The 4 litre toyota engine would be good. 195KW stock. Im pretty sure you can get front cuts for under $3000 with trans, complete engine and computer and loom.
They have 6 bolt mains too i have read and are apparantly a very good engine.
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Old 11-20-2003, 13:52   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Whats the best small v8 for small car conversions?

The Lexus engine is a work of art, quite a few going into hot rods etc now. Apparently they can handle forced induction with no major modifications. The old Leyland 4.4 is a great motor too though and can be stroked to 4.9 and put out some serious power. Either way your TR7 is going to fly. Make sure you post some photos when it's done.
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Old 11-20-2003, 14:16   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Whats the best small v8 for small car conversions?

One of the Japs (Toyota or Nissan) also did an old 4 litre pushrod V8 engine that should be quite cheap.

You do know that Triumph did their own TR8 convertible (3.5 litre V8, manual gearbox) just before they went under? There is a black one in the Victorian Triumph club that used to turn up at MSCA sprints. A lot of TR7 owners have done the conversion (both here and in the UK).

There is a "TVR" spec block that can be taken out to 5.0 litres. If you want to see really developed ones have a look at the ones running around in the MSCA race series where the MGB GT's are very fast.

I would stick to the Rover V8 as there shouldn't be any mysteries to the conversion and things like exhausts, etc should be readily available.
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Old 11-20-2003, 21:02   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Whats the best small v8 for small car conversions?

Nissan made a VH (or VQ) 45 which was a 4.5L DOHC v8, puts out more power than the toyota engine and costs less, however it is not as refined (toyota spent 1Billon on that engine, and sold the design to BMW for use on the M5) and connot handle as much power through it when modified.
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Old 11-20-2003, 21:07   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Whats the best small v8 for small car conversions?

I got some prices on lexus/toyota 4.0 V8s, yep, they are just under $3000 for a half cut incl auto gearbox, computer etc, however i asked about a manual and they didnt make manuals for this engine, there are kits though for the bellhousing, gearbox, clutch etc that are around $2000, so thats $5000 already.
3.5 rover v8's are pretty cheap, but expensive to upgrade, ie to get a diff crank etc to make it a 4.0 is $2000!Yeah, there are TR8's around and theres lots of converted cars around, just 150hp though isnt really enough, and upgradesand rebuilds are expensive.

I got some advice and get some really strange answers! often this is the answer would you belive! "you dont want any more power than a 3.5 V8 as you will spin on corners" (if you keep it floored of course!duh!) "you dont want too much power or you will have wheel spin"....!!
One actually talked about one of my freinds who is doing a twin turbo 4.0 rover V8 in his and said how stupid he is wanting so much power(500hp!)(it is for circuit racing but road reg'd and he wants to be different)
What the!! I want my car to do burnouts in 3rd!
What's with these people? they cant control their acelerator?
More power is never enough!!

The leyland is a little wider than the rover but the engine bay on a TR is huge and could fit anything.
I'm pretty keen on a leyland 4.4 :-D!!
Someone i talked to said the Leyland wont fit, but its just 1 inch wider than the rover 3.5 and theres tonnes of room, someone else says it does fit.
Some people think a Holden V6 would be good, but er, no thanks, has to be alloy and V8.

Ive seen TR7 V8s(obviously very hot ones!) beating race prepped 360 Ferraris and GT2 and 3 Porches on the circuit track at calder!

Ill post pics for sure! Im pretty excited about my car, lol :-) I just got 4 piston AP brakes and cross drilled disks!! and 15 inch Simmons wheels, they look beaut!
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Old 11-21-2003, 03:38   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Whats the best small v8 for small car conversions?

I just found out I can put a Rover V8 and upgrade to my new 4 piston APs with NO engineers certificate from a 4 cyl! (as they came with these as options) hmm, thats swaying me a bit towards the rover now. Is the P76 V8 close enough to a rover 3.5 to trick em and say its a rover? as the rover rocker covers and everything rover fits straight on. That'd be great if I could put that in with no certificate.
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Old 11-21-2003, 04:09   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Whats the best small v8 for small car conversions?

I think the 3.5 Rover has way better valve gear.Than P76...
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Old 11-21-2003, 06:24   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Whats the best small v8 for small car conversions?

7.0L Stroked LS1 would be my choice.
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