Engine Questions

Dewolf

Daily Driver
Hi Guys,

Firstly...hope everyone and their families are safe and well. Not sure about the direction I'm going to take with the X. I currently have a perfect Golf 1.2T motor with DSG box and all the associated hardware etc. Some preliminary measurement show this little SOHC unit will fit. There will need to be minor mods to the LH (viewed from rear) inner guard for the box to fit. Actually I have the whole car, so all the computers etc are intact. The DSG had failed and VW were quoting AU$5K plus to replace. Not worth it on a $6k car. I stripped the mechatronics unit to find a piece of a broken clip. It's a shift fork slide bearing. $30 part. Still have to take the box out to replace it, but that's no big deal. So that's option 1.
I have also been told that the Alfa Giulietta 1.4T is the same basic engine as used in the Punto etc. These engines are cheap and plentiful here. Not sure about the gearbox though, so could use some enlightenment. So that's option 2.
Or, given the rarity of these cars in original condition here, I just rebuild the car to a high standard and leave it stock. Option 3.

So any info / advice will be more than welcome.

Cheers
Scott
 
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fiatfactory

Steve Cecchele
I'm always going to go for option 3, but when you say "stock" do you actually mean standard 63hp australian spec 1300 engine? or retain the original engine type (1300 / 1500 / 1600) and improve it? 100hp at the wheels can be had with the use of a modified original intake manifold and an original twin out exhaust manifold, so the engine will "look" stock...

The other thing to remember is option 3 will give you a NEW motor, any other swap (and this is the point ALL swappers seem to conveniently forget) is that a used engine is USED, it's not new....

so to compare the cost of a greasy used unknown used engine, to the cost of one that is properly and fully rebuilt simply isn't a fair comparison...start adding up numbers to rebuild the K20 or the B series used engine and things look very very different, very quickly.

SteveC
 

carl

True Classic
Depends on what you want out of this project. Some guys just want to tinker and the idea of a motor swap makes them salivate with anticipation. Just looking at all the work needed to put a Honda motor in an X, even with a "kit" from MWB, indicates a motor swap is much much more than making your donor motor and gear box work properly.

I'd love to have a 200hp X but it's not going to happen with my skills and budget so I'm happy with the 1500 motor I have with dual Webers, header and turbo muffler.

As is clear from this forum, everyone here seems to be looking for something different out of their X.
 
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kmead

Old enough to know better
Depends on what you want out of this project. Some guys just want to tinker and the idea of a motor swap makes them salivate with anticipation. Just looking at all the work needed to put a Honda motor in an X, even with a "kit" from MWB, indicates a motor swap is much much more than making your donor motor and gear box work properly.

I'd love to have a 200hp X but it's not going to happen with my skills and budget so I'm happy with the 1500 motor I have with dual Webers, header and turbo muffler.

As is clear from this forum, everyone here seems to be looking for something different out of their X.
Definitely hearing what you are saying.

Yes there are clearly a few camps on this (like many forums). There are those of us maintaining or bringing our cars back into use our X’s with no mods, there are those who want to upgrade them based on the parts and approaches that have been available over the last forty years and then there are those that want to take the car into territory far beyond the level of where the car stopped in 1988.

You fall into the second camp, even a bit extreme within that group in that you are sublimating it to a near race car level of asceticism if not the be all end all level of development of the car within that envelope.

When you look at the forum and see what people are doing most, even it isn’t obvious, are in the first camp just trying to bring the cars up to the level or maintain it at the level it was at when it was produced. In the forum the posts for these folks are the least obvious but are the backbone of why we are all here. The second group of which you are a part, used to be the performance threads we all read and yearned to be part of and were likely the high traffic threads of the time. The third group are by and large newer members who have been enabled by MWB making the K20 kit available or have come to the X as a result of the K20 engine change and desire to be able to enjoy what is an amazing chassis with the power it can back up. This group also likely drives a pedestrian modern car which makes tons of power and can keep up or lead modern traffic.

Take if from me, a member with a car with no mods or any substantive modifications, driving it in normal traffic requires really pushing the drivetrain, which as you know is fun to do but it means I am just barely keeping up with the soccer mom driving a minivan much less the loon driving a Charger. I drive mine pretty much as a daily, happily in a fairly low stress environment but one where I am driving my car rather hard nonetheless.

I can easily understand an owner wanting to get to a drivetrain whose capabilities are far beyond what Bertone or Fiat offered in the car new, particularly in a toy car a category which these cars definitely fall deeply into. Add to that the ease of finding a higher performance motor in a similar size and the relatively easy access to custom fabrication with lasering for steel and on demand fabrication of a digital file through the internet, someone with knowledge, money and interest can do nearly what a development engineer at a manufacturer could have achieved back in the day.

There is a lot of interest in changing the car from what it is, however that likely translates into a minute number of actual swaps, it ends up being a lot of talk. Talk which is definitely enjoyable and for those actually making good on doing a swap in some cases benefits the swapper.

I understand your frustration with this but the reality there are many more like you or I who are wandering around in the original envelope of the OE spec of the car than those actually following through with a swap.
 

Dr.Jeff

True Classic
While I certainly do not disagree with any of the opinions made, my vote is option 1. Given you are considering it, I'm assuming you have the required skills and equipment to do a swap. Since you already have the complete donor car then it may actually be less expensive and not much more effort than trying to turn the stock drivetrain into something good. And I'd love to see a VW based swap into a X. Just my view. ;)
 

Dewolf

Daily Driver
While I certainly do not disagree with any of the opinions made, my vote is option 1. Given you are considering it, I'm assuming you have the required skills and equipment to do a swap. Since you already have the complete donor car then it may actually be less expensive and not much more effort than trying to turn the stock drivetrain into something good. And I'd love to see a VW based swap into a X. Just my view. ;)
The VW route is very tempting for me. If I use all the VW electronics I see no reason why I couldn't have it with traction control and abs. I'm sure there'd be no easy way, but machining adapters for sensors etc is not beyond a friends skills. I don't take a job like this lightly. If I do decide to go this way, I'm going to allow at least a few years for completion. There are several performance options for these little engines. I think with the DSG, 150Hp+ would be ample. I've also thought that swapping the DSG for a regular manual might also be fun, and easier I'm sure, but the DSG 'fart' between changes I like.
The other thing I like is, it's the same basic format as the Fiat. Small capacity and 8V SOHC. It's also light. It's an all alloy engine with a forged steel crank. Stock they run around 23psi! There's also a water cooled intercooler built into the inlet manifold. While not ideal, there are larger units available, apparently.
Jeez....I think I've just talked myself into it.
 

Dr.Jeff

True Classic
I think any "modern" drivetrain with lots of electronics will be a challenge to swap into anything, as far as retaining all of the electronic controls, etc. At least for someone like me that's old school and not as experienced in working on those newer systems (I still don't fully understand how CAN-BUS works). That would be different for others that have lots of first hand experience with such systems. But if you kept everything as it was in the donor car and are able to transfer it all over to the new vehicle "as is" then it might no be too bad. Possibly the most difficult task would be transferring the wire harness - keeping it intact as you remove and reinstall it across the two platforms. However retaining everything stock would make for a very reliable vehicle that drives like a modern car.

We never got that particular VW drivetrain so I'm not familiar with it. But I have driven similar vehicles with very small engines that are turbocharged and they are quite amazing. By the way, 23psi is kind of a lot of boost for a factory system so it must have some nice robust internals in the engine. ;)
 

Bjorn Nilson

True Classic
I have a little experience in VW and DSG. I have a BSR-tune on my 4WD Golf R with DSG. Previously I had the same tune in a VW Scirocco R with the same engine, but FWD and manual. In some way the DSG reduce the torque. The Scirocco was much faster and accelerated much quicker (once I got grip) than the Golf. The Golf is just 150kg heavier than the Scirocco but the difference is huge. For sure the DSG ECU restricts torque.
If having a VW engine in the X, also go for an aftermarket ECU to be able to remove non engine and gearbox related functions from ECU. This will also make it easier and cheaper to tune. -If engine is tuned also DSG should be "tuned" to make fully use of the engine output. I have a Maxx ECU Race that I know also handle the DSG and CAN BUS, but I assume there are other brands that can do this as well. Existing VW sensors etc (Bosch) would most likely work also with an aftermarket ECU.
 

Dr.Jeff

True Classic
In some way the DSG reduce the torque.
I'm not sure which models or years it pertained to, but I recall reading something about that. Apparently there were some issues with the DSG so they changed the program to limit the torque that goes through it as a measure to help preserve the gearbox. I don't remember any of the specific details though.
 
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