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  • engine thoughts....

    Contemplating a build ...What I need is a flat bed work truck to plow snow and haul fire wood, tow a trailer full of rover junk, etc....It will have power steering, AC, but keep the metal dash. For strength and durability most likely little mechanically will be rover. Need a truck type 4 or 5 spd, Probably Dana 44/60 axle combo and NP205 transfercase....
    On the engines...cant afford a cummins 2.8 and am not sure I want a diesel with current fuel prices...... Im looking for something in the 3 to 4 liter range- 200 to 250 Cu inch...

    Dont laugh at the first- Dodge 225 slant 6- With a 2bbl carb intake and Sniper efi, headers and a mild cam it will produce 175-200 hp and >200ft/lb torque. Its short enough at 27 inches to fit well and came from the factory mated to NP435 gearboxes with hydraulic clutches, Rear sump oil pan, etc. Known for their longevity and simplicity, moderate aftermarket support. No 5 speed option unless I can mate the 4spd bell to the dodge NV4500 from a gas First Gen .

    Next is a GM 90 Vortec headed V6. Its larger then I want at 4.3L ....but power and torque are higher. Harder to mate to the NP435 without expensive AA bellhousings. But could source an NV4500...The wideness of the block make exhaust tricky and tight. (First hand experience from my 283 V8 install on my 65) I just cant get excited though about a GM V6...its short enough, cheap enough to source new, tons of aftermarket support...

    Ive not ruled out the ford small block if you will inline 6's -177-250 cu in "maverick" engines- like the GM 6's or Ford truck 6's-they are just too long to fit in the engine bay without a lot of bulkhead work...The ford would be easy to mate to an NP435 (with early bronco bellhousing) and they tuck the starter up nice and high. Downside is the length, Log style intake really reduces HP potential...but should be able to achieve 150Hp with headers, EFI...

    Rover 4's gas and diesel just will not make the power for daily highway use, Gearboxes simply too fragile for the work this truck will have to do- Plow snow, haul fire wood, etc. Have thought of a Perentie which tics all the boxes but its not like they come up for sale very often...


    Would appreciate input - Ive ruled out LS swaps/Gas V8 and am not a fan of Rover V8's- Thoughts please...- J
    John Dorr
    Delhi,NY 13753

    In progress...
    1959 ser 2 109 truck cab- 283 V8//t18 4 spd

  • #2
    I used to have an 1988 Ford Ranger. It had a 3.9, 6 cyl V. I always thought it would be a great engine for a Rover. Here's a blurb from some website.

    2.8L/2.9L/4.0L OHV/SOHC 2V “COLOGNE” ENGINE Ford of Germany developed a 1961 1.2L OHV 60-degree V-4 to a 2.8L/2.9L V6 for North American Capri, Bronco II, Mustang II, Ranger, and Merkur
    gene
    1960 109 w/ 200TDI
    rebuild blog; http://poppageno.blogspot.com/



    "We are prisoners of the Present, forever transitioning between our inaccessible Past and our unknowable Future." Neil DeGrasse-Tyson

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    • #3
      Hey John, I'm in the same boat on engine options for my 61 109". I was initially sold on the R2.8, but due to the cost of the engine, the cost of fuel, and the size of the motor in the Rover engine bay, I'm reconsidering. I took a good look at the Atlas engines. I really like them. They come in straight 6, 5, or 4cyl versions. The 6 may be a wee bit long, but the 5 or 4 would be ideal and with plenty of power. Not a ton of aftermarket support, but they seem to be pretty good as is. General Motors Atlas engine - Wikipedia
      THE JUNKYARD AMERI-BARRA ATLAS 4200 (MORE THAN THE 4.8L LS?) - YouTube

      But what I really, really want to put in it is an old Chevy 327. But I've never done a V8 swap and not sure how well it will fit. And the width is probably the issue with all V swaps in Rovers...

      -John

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      • #4
        For what it's worth, I'm trying to squeeze a Chevy 305 into a SIII 109" build-up from a parts pile. The PO had already bought all the fancy adapters to mate it to an SM465 trans with a rover transfer case. To say it's interesting would be an understatement. The fit is VERY close, leading to the radiator being pushed forward, a mandatory right hand drive with a Defender PS box, and an enlarged tranny tunnel. All custom-placed engine and tranny mounts, as you can imagine. And we haven't really sorted out the exhaust yet, but it will be fairly tight tolerance as well.

        Had it not come with all the adapters, I don't think I'd have gone this direction. My friend was up for the challenge of making it work, but it's involving a bit more custom fabrication than either of us anticipated. When it's done, though, it will crank a lot of low end torque.

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        • #5
          I always thought the slant six would be perfect for a Rover. I owned and drove a bunch of them back in the day and never had an issue.

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          • #6
            Jopa, maybe just buy a nice survivor tdi 110 and be done.

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            • #7
              Bud is probably right....buy something already working...but when did I ever listen to logic...
              John Dorr
              Delhi,NY 13753

              In progress...
              1959 ser 2 109 truck cab- 283 V8//t18 4 spd

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              • #8
                What about the 90's Jeep 4.0 six and associated 5 speed? Find the right Comanche (Big Ton) and it will have the HD Dana axles. We've put 300k miles on them without mechanical problems, and the '91 up 4.0 'High Output' has 200hp. Not sure about the length in the engine bay. One thing I don't like is the crank sensor located in the bellhousing as it can overheat. There used to be a relocation kit to move the sensor to near the front pulley.

                We've the 3.9 Rover V8 - R380 in one 109 and a 300TDI in the other, so no stranger to swaps.

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                • #9
                  I did the SBC in a 2a 109 mated to an NP435. Super tight around the exhaust manifolds. Block huggers might have helped. LHD and used p38 power steering. Should have kept it but the fun for me is the build. The jeep 250 and later derivatives like the GM I6 and ford truck block I6's are pretty long, don't think it will fit well. AX15 is not a bad gearbox but its kinda wimpy for my needs...-J
                  John Dorr
                  Delhi,NY 13753

                  In progress...
                  1959 ser 2 109 truck cab- 283 V8//t18 4 spd

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                  • #10
                    I always wanted a Ford I6 in a 109, but as you say it's awfully long.

                    I've personally been interested in that Atlas 5-cylinder because they were pretty reliable GM stuff, gives more power and is shorter than the I-6's.

                    The one that really surprises me people don't use more is the Buick/GM 3.8 V-6. They were in everything in the 1990's-early '00's and at least in my experience are bullet proof with fuel injection and plenty of power. Seems to me a compact package with available adapters.
                    1969 Marine Blue Bugeye

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                    • #11
                      You can get so many affordable utes from Australia I would consider that route. My friend bought a Isuzu 4bd1T powered 120” tray back and it was sub $10k landed stateside. Really hard to beat that.

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                      • #12
                        Why dismiss the LS
                        ive just swallowed the “cheap chevy junk pill”

                        I always wanted to do a 90s Jeep straight six… but the length for the power just didn’t make sense

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by rejeep View Post
                          Why dismiss the LS
                          I agree. I'm not a fan but an LS could be the easy answer for the power you're looking for.

                          What about a Chevy 230 inline six, like this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDjP...nnel=KevinMoss It looks tight but obviously it can be fit. They're ubiquitous, cheap, easy to find parts, parts are cheap, power is good.

                          Sound like you want to build but there is a nice Perentie with the Isuzu 3.9 for sale in CT on facebook right now. A bit expensive it seems to me.

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                          • #14
                            Ive been playing around with pre 75 engines my entire life..

                            the plug and play, set it and forget it concept of an LS swap was just too good to not try at least once.

                            Currently building a 6.0L, 4l80 for a 109 build... well see how it goes..

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                            • #15
                              I'm planning on a Chevy V6 4.3 swap on my 109 this spring. Going to mate it with an NV3550. Riverport Rovers has a pretty good video series on it here. https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...wpNMWrTpNnll1-

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