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LordTurbonia
LordTurbonia New Reader
11/18/10 5:53 p.m.

I haven't made it back to the shop to check compression on the XR's 2.3, but I am not looking forward to what I find. I've made a decision.

This weekend I begin my powertrain shopping.

Here's my engineering parameters:

Low end torque in a street/auto-x friendly range Less weight is good Junkyard parts are good Daily driver reliability (can I do without the brave little toaster?)

So I want opinions on how silly each of the following is:

1) Explorer 5.0 with GT40p heads. Good power, ridonkulous torques, inexpensive. Cons are that it is an iron-headed pig that will throw an extra 40-50 pounds over my front axle. Also requires extra beef in my drivetrain.

2) 5.0 shortblock with streetish AL heads. 400+ hp and enough torque to break everything. Almost too much power. Cons are cost (planning spreadsheet says $1500 min on engine with aluminum aftermarket heads) and cost (my diff will probably poop itself, I'll swap in an 8.8, and then that will poop itself) and cost (my back wheels will become a lovely rubber to smoke conversion device) and cost (hello, Mr. Officer, I swear my foot fell off the clutch in front of those hot girls)

3) 3.8 V6 from Mustang: 190 hp/220tq in a lighter, aluminum-headed engine that sits further back in the chassis. Bonus: Super Coupe blower! Cons are lack of stonkedness (no 300tq without the puffer) and a general aversion to pushrods. (They're OK in a big V8 because I can rationalize the OHV's packaging advantages etc. but something just rubs me wrong about a sweet Euro car with a pushrod 6.)

4) The SHO V6. 3.2 preferrably. Awesomeness. What should have been in the 1990 XR4Ti (or XR6i if you will) if they made one. Cons? I'll have to gear for the powerband . . . but it has more powerband than anything else on this list. Can't they spin to 8K w/underdrive acc. pulleys? A 3.2 with 3.0 cams and dual exhaust sounds really sweet at this point.

5) Duratec V6. Less preferrable. NS orientation may prove troublesome. All aluminum though!

6) Upgrades to the 2.3 turbo. Problem is, almost everything about the 2.3 aside from the short block is ass. The head doesn't flow, the intake manifold sucks, the exhaust manifold sucks, the Folvo swap is more of a curiousity than a viable solution, Esslinger want the same money for one 2.3 head that AFR and Trick Flow charge for two 4.6/5.4 mod heads, the factory turbo setup is an on/off proposition for power, and the whole setup in the Merkur is a botched implementation of the engine. I'd throw boost at it, but it'd just make the engine more bipolar. BB turbos, headers, new intakes, etc all get WAY more involved $$$ than I can go at present, and even getting it to act like a modern engine will take about the same money that a built 5.0 would.

7) This is one I'm curious about. Super Coupe M90 in place of the T3 on the turbo 2.3. Has anyone done this? I'd still have to get around the head/intake, but then I could run mini stock Pinto headers on the exhaust side and get my underhood temps way down without throwing away the benefits of forced induction.

I'll admit, I'm probabaly going 5.0 unless the right SHO setup comes along or I get a smoking deal on an Esslinger head. I'd just like to see what the Ford guy's take is on the different powerplants. I also want to know which swaps have easily purchased or easily fabricated mounts/crossmembers.

Knurled
Knurled HalfDork
11/18/10 6:04 p.m.

XR what? XR3? XR2? XR4?

m4ff3w
m4ff3w SuperDork
11/18/10 6:28 p.m.
Knurled wrote: XR what? XR3? XR2? XR4?

XR4ti.

Knurled
Knurled HalfDork
11/18/10 6:29 p.m.

Oh that's easy then: MZR engine.

m4ff3w
m4ff3w SuperDork
11/18/10 6:34 p.m.

As much as I love the SHO V6 (I had a '90) , I just can't get past how heavy it is.

How about a Duratec 6 or SHO V8?

Does the Lincoln LS/S-type 5spd Getrag 221 bellhousing mate up to the transverse Duratec 6/8?

triumph5
triumph5 HalfDork
11/18/10 6:37 p.m.

EDIT:Option 7 is not the easiest, but a nice challenge.The 5.0 would by heavy and upset the balance more than you want. As much as you dislike it, If it were mine, I'd massage the engine you have, esp if this is a DD and a track toy. Track toy only, strip it and make it RWD.

LordTurbonia
LordTurbonia New Reader
11/18/10 6:43 p.m.
Knurled wrote: Oh that's easy then: MZR engine.

This is beyond my wildest dreams. Is there one of these in the wild?

Knurled
Knurled HalfDork
11/18/10 6:45 p.m.

I don't know if that's the official name or anything.

Find a '02-up Ranger and bring wrenches.

Or, more betterfully, find a CX-7. Same engine as Mazdaspeed 3/6 but probably cheaper since it's not a performance car.

Supposedly (IE haven't verified it myself) the turbo block is a lot stronger than the non-turbo, but the Ranger engines will bolt up to the 2.3l transmission with stepped dowels. Unsure if the FWD engines will.

Alternatively, it was the base engine for pretty much everything Mazda or Ford since 2003. One circle track firm was seeing 250hp from stock head and cams, from 5500 to 8000rpm. 12:1 compression, rods that won't break (hint), independent throttles and a good header. With cams (still untouched heads) power went to near 300.

The ports in these heads are ginormous by huge.

grimmelshanks
grimmelshanks HalfDork
11/18/10 6:54 p.m.
triumph5 wrote: ...and make it RWD.

im preeeettty sure merkur already took care of that

triumph5
triumph5 HalfDork
11/18/10 6:59 p.m.
grimmelshanks wrote:
triumph5 wrote: ...and make it RWD.

im preeeettty sure merkur already took care of that

Yes, yes, massive brain fade on that one. Stressful phone call prior to posting, with half the brain elsewhere.

Junkyard_Dog
Junkyard_Dog Dork
11/18/10 7:22 p.m.
LordTurbonia wrote: Folvo swap is more of a curiousity than a viable solution

Skip the conversion and use the whole Volvo engine?

Javelin
Javelin SuperDork
11/18/10 8:34 p.m.

5.0 with aluminum heads or 5.3 truck LS1.

LordTurbonia wrote: 3) 3.8 V6 from Mustang: 190 hp/220tq in a lighter, aluminum-headed engine that sits further back in the chassis. Bonus: Super Coupe blower! Cons are lack of stonkedness (no 300tq without the puffer) and a general aversion to pushrods. (They're OK in a big V8 because I can rationalize the OHV's packaging advantages etc. but something just rubs me wrong about a sweet Euro car with a pushrod 6.)

You are close... 4.2L truck bottom end, Morana cam, worked split port heads, port matched lower intake, box upper, 24lb injectors, 65mm tb, 94-95 Mustang headers, dual 2.5" pipes, 157t alloy flywheel and a Liberty built T5 will make it nice.

ScottRA21
ScottRA21 Reader
11/19/10 1:51 a.m.

Okay, wait....all of this sounds pretty bloody conventional if ya ask me!

5.0L V6s? Mustang 6s? Original 2.3Turbo?

Where's the suggestions for electric?

MST? (Magic Spinning Triangles)

Dimythium Hydrogenated Turbo-Fusion Reactors?

Rover V8?

Inserting my rather blind fanboi'ing of the Suzuki H27A for the fun of it....?

MrBenjamonkey
MrBenjamonkey HalfDork
11/19/10 2:09 a.m.

Uh, this.

Cheap, bulletproof, turbo and if you keep the tranny you've solved most of your drivetrain problems.

RossD
RossD Dork
11/19/10 7:09 a.m.

I dont think a nissan v6 was ever mated to a Ford Type 9 transmission... (edit: oh you meant the Nissan tranny. doh! )The T-9 are not known for taking a lot of torque. What's their upper torque limit?

My thought would be to get a Zetec and turbo that. Its lighter, DOHC, and ally head. And it practically bolts up to the T-9 the way it sits.

pres589
pres589 HalfDork
11/19/10 8:04 a.m.

I don't think I'd want to funnel more than 200 to 225 horsepower through a Type-9. This is based on experiences with it's uncle the Rocket box four speed in my Capri.

LordTurbonia
LordTurbonia New Reader
11/19/10 9:07 a.m.
RossD wrote: I dont think a nissan v6 was ever mated to a Ford Type 9 transmission... (edit: oh you meant the Nissan tranny. doh! )The T-9 are not known for taking a lot of torque. What's their upper torque limit? My thought would be to get a Zetec and turbo that. Its lighter, DOHC, and ally head. And it practically bolts up to the T-9 the way it sits.

That would be intriguing if I had a T9. Unfortunately I have a C3, so I am swapping to a T5 trans. Maybe. Swap options for engine and trans are pretty unlimited at this point as long as it can be done for challenge-ish money. Wiring is not a problem, but mounts might be, so I'm only really looking at swaps that have been done.

The MZR: what does it bolt up to? I can MIG weld up some mounts, but I don't have a proper machine shop. Mounts I can accept as the cost of doing business, but bellhousing adapters will be money I can spend on other stuff. I didn't think the MZR engine worked directly with any trans that would work in the XR4Ti.

I've got an interesting line on a 3.8 V6, and making a GNX-style turbo monster out of a Super Coupe long block is starting to appeal to me. Lighter and better-breathing than the 2.3 with more displacement, plus twin turbos for better spool-up. (The supercharged engine is a beast, but it's all out of power at 4500 RPM.)

The V6 has been done XR4TiSC and I am having a hard time justifying my anti-pushrod snobbery when the price/weight/performance ratios are so nice. Plus, I can get the wiring and mounts down with an N/A installation for peanuts and then drop in an SC engine

m4ff3w
m4ff3w SuperDork
11/19/10 9:55 a.m.
LordTurbonia wrote: The MZR: what does it bolt up to? I can MIG weld up some mounts, but I don't have a proper machine shop. Mounts I can accept as the cost of doing business, but bellhousing adapters will be money I can spend on other stuff. I didn't think the MZR engine worked directly with any trans that would work in the XR4Ti.

Why wouldn't a MZR bolt up to a Ford Ranger/Mazda B2300 5spd?

RossD
RossD Dork
11/19/10 10:07 a.m.

MZR is the 2.3 Duratec. Miata and Ranger both have rwd trans. The miata will have a better shifter location but I think the shifter on the Ranger might be relocatable. Duratec in a Sunbeam Link

Lots more 2.3 Duratec info at the locost site. Duratec .pdf

-For the Zetec and C3: IIRC, the C3 uses the two lower bolt holes on the top of the 2.3 Lima's bellhousing pattern. If so, it's even closer to the Zetec's bellhousing then, but you'd probably want to get rid of it.

Adrian_Thompson
Adrian_Thompson HalfDork
11/19/10 10:30 a.m.
LordTurbonia wrote: 3) 3.8 V6 from Mustang: 190 hp/220tq in a lighter, aluminum-headed engine that sits further back in the chassis. Bonus: Super Coupe blower! Cons are lack of stonkedness (no 300tq without the puffer) and a general aversion to pushrods. (They're OK in a big V8 because I can rationalize the OHV's packaging advantages etc. but something just rubs me wrong about a sweet Euro car with a pushrod 6.)

Why the issue with the pushrod V6? In Europe the car was the XR4i and original came with the Cologne V6 which was a tadaaaa Pushrod design. The 4 in XR4 didn't refer to the number of cyl's, it was the size of car. The XR2 was the Fiesta, The XR3(i) was the Escort and the XR4 was the Sierra.

If you want a V6 what about an Expolorer 4.0L SOHC derivative of the Cologne? 216hp and 269lb/ft mated to a T5? Sounds yummy to me.

Knurled
Knurled HalfDork
11/19/10 1:42 p.m.
LordTurbonia wrote: The MZR: what does it bolt up to? I can MIG weld up some mounts, but I don't have a proper machine shop. Mounts I can accept as the cost of doing business, but bellhousing adapters will be money I can spend on other stuff. I didn't think the MZR engine worked directly with any trans that would work in the XR4Ti. (...) I am having a hard time justifying my anti-pushrod snobbery when the price/weight/performance ratios are so nice.

I... an unsure. Some of the guys at Rally Anarchy have stuffed Duratecs (Ford name for engine) in early Capris, so it's gotta bolt up to something.

RA is XR4Ti heaven, by the way.

I find your reservations against pushrod V6s in an XR4Ti to be amusing, because the European version of the car (the XR4i) had a pushrod V6. By the time it could be made to pass US smog regs, it would have been, well, a Ranger engine. So some guy named Bob Lutz had the idea of shipping the 2.3 Turbo engines from Ohio to Germany so they could be sent right back to us.

BowtieBandit
BowtieBandit New Reader
11/19/10 6:11 p.m.

LordTurbonia, you haven't been around here long.

The obvious answer with ANY RWD engine swap is always LSX. Preferably an aluminum one, it'll be as light or lighter than your current setup, crazy power potential, and they are pretty common. Truck motor have iron blocks and are heavier, but still not bad.

If you're determined to stay ford, I say SBF. Yes, they are a bit heavier than the 2.3, which is a pig for its size, but parts are way common, and they are more reliable than the tide.

But my vote, is LSX.

erohslc
erohslc Reader
11/19/10 6:55 p.m.

Triton V-10?

MadScientistMatt
MadScientistMatt Dork
11/19/10 8:08 p.m.
Adrian_Thompson wrote: Why the issue with the pushrod V6? In Europe the car was the XR4i and original came with the Cologne V6 which was a tadaaaa Pushrod design. The 4 in XR4 didn't refer to the number of cyl's, it was the size of car. The XR2 was the Fiesta, The XR3(i) was the Escort and the XR4 was the Sierra. If you want a V6 what about an Expolorer 4.0L SOHC derivative of the Cologne? 216hp and 269lb/ft mated to a T5? Sounds yummy to me.

That's what I was thinking too: Take the engine the car was originally designed around, and equip it with the final incarnation of that motor.

I hadn't picked up on that one about XR's. That also puts the Cougar XR7 in context.

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