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24/06/2005 12:32:21   Richard   Anyone thought about fitting a straight four engine in the front of the V4? The Vauxhall engine is about 22" long which is shorter than a v6 due to the smaller bores. If you dont have to stick to competition rules, I carnt see the point in keeping to ford v lump. Tuned Vauxhall 16v and Zetecs are plentyfull and lighter. You can get going up for 280bhp from a 2 ltr Vaux.  
24/06/2005 13:41:25   Steve H   But where would the rad go?  
24/06/2005 21:12:57   ian   blimey richard you need to get out more....just buy a mk1 escort and put a 2litre valver in that...saab are either 2 stroke or cant change history  
24/06/2005 22:02:27   Rens   One of the main reason's i bought the 96-V4 was because of the V4... it's some honest mechanic's... if i wanted the power i would have bought a MAZDA... (no cursing is aloud)  
27/06/2005 08:16:15   Richard   I just carnt see the point in spending thousands on the v4 by sticking turbos etc on it when you can lump in a zetec which will probably bolt straight in with some work on the the clutch and flywheel. You will get a V4 with more of the handling balance of the two stroke and a lot more power.
The rad can go behind or a modern slim rad will probably fit in front. I would mount it in the boot with rear window vents and two fans pulling the air through and passing it out through a boot lid vent. The fuel tank goes under the rear seat in a sealed box.
If you want to stick to Saabs plans try a Lancia V4, which was evaluated by Saab at the time. 140bhp from 1300cc can be sort from that and its light.
The V4 engine although I do like it loads is really a poor design, sorry but it is.  
27/06/2005 08:51:38   Rens   Well, i've seen some engine conversion where you even get a normal shifter, instead of the steering wheel shifter. But i think that's illegal here in holland, or you'll be needing to go and recheck your car. The same is if you want to go from a V4 to a V6, you have to pay big bucks to get it done, and even then it isn't always legal...

But i've got a 1600 cc lying around from my brothers Peugot cabrio. I'll take a look at that, see if i can fit that in the saab... If that fit's... then a 2.0 16v Turbo would fit.. that's around 280 BHP

But Richard, why do you think a Zetec would bolt right on? don't you think someone would already tried that?
The advantace of a Zetec is that it's a kit car engine, so there is a lot of info about it!
I know of a sierra 2.0 i could buy for a few bucks.. maybey it's worth it if the engine is ok. But then, if it's illegal to drive it...

Good luck if your going to do it.. i'll be looking at some peugot and citroen engines.  
27/06/2005 12:38:13   Richard   Ford used std bolt fixings on their engines and gearboxes so they could mix and match, someone said the Zetec still used the same bolt fixings and Rens link seems to show that.
I would stick with the Saab box, I would imagine that all the ford fwd gearboxes are transverse not longitudinal like the Saab. You could probably get a Hewland in there with some bulkhead mods, but I was thinking of just using the Saab box and a set of comp gears and a LSD.  
27/06/2005 16:54:59   Richard   But the Westfield is rwd so the box is behind the engine then it drives one single output to a propshaft, then on to the rear diff. For the Saab you need a very short gearbox with its out-drives as close to the flywheel end of the engine as possible. You would have to look at other FWD cars that might have used a longitudinal engine design or a rear engine car like a Porsche. You can put the diff to the other side of the pinion and reverse the drive. The problem is most rear engine boxes only have two gear shafts therefore they are long and thin.  
27/06/2005 17:21:19   Rens   Aha, off course yes... I totally forgot about that...
Well... then you make a rear wheel drive 96 :)

But you think you can fit the Zetec engine to a saab 96 gearbox? but would it take all that punishment? and if you are going to upgrade the gearbox wouldn't it still cost thousands of pounds, just to upgrade the box? The weak link in the 96 is the gearbox...  
27/06/2005 17:22:00   Rens   Aha, off course yes... I totally forgot about that...
Well... then you make a rear wheel drive 96 :)

But you think you can fit the Zetec engine to a saab 96 gearbox? but would it take all that punishment? and if you are going to upgrade the gearbox wouldn't it still cost thousands of pounds, just to upgrade the box? The weak link in the 96 is the gearbox...  
28/06/2005 08:07:26   Richard   Well I have a few rally spec lsd boxes and the Zetec will not have the torque of a modified V4.  
28/06/2005 10:57:52   Alistair   Zetec seems the natural way to go, but the old (pre-Ecotec) VX 16V was a blinder of an engine, just a bit heavy. IIRC when they first put it in the Caterham, they dumped the EFI in favour of twin carbs and got a huge power hike to around 175bhp.

I think for a 96 your best bet would be to go for lightness over power/tunability.

If you wanted to go even more extreme, is there room to mount either engine transverse & use a modern 5 speed box too?!  
28/06/2005 11:06:05   Rens   Well, the problem is that the engine bay of the saab is long but not really wide. So it has to be in the length of the car.. and using the saab box has some other good advantage like the wheels, otherwhise you also have to change the back axle. And with the saab box you don't have to think about the width of your wheels, most modern car's are a litle bit wider then the saab..  
28/06/2005 12:57:09   Richard   K series is a light engine and there should be some adaptors to ford gearbox for that.
I was only really suggesting it, I might in the future have a go at doing the conversion. If I was to build up a car to compete in modern events I would be looking into doing this.  
30/06/2005 11:32:21   erik   Nice topic ! I was considering putting a v6 2.8 or 2.9 in mine. Even the v6 2.9 cosworth engine from the scorpio seems to be related to the old cologne v6 and thus to our v4. I know it would be a bit heavy on the front so not for rallying but for dragraces maybe ?? A real woolf in sheepsclothes !!
30/06/2005 16:04:12   Rens   Wel if your going to put in a beast of an engine then you might think about making it rearwheel driven...
make an tube cage to fit the engine and only use the external body panels of the nose. Just cut away everything infront of the driver weld the cage instead of the engine bay, and put a giant V8 inside of it with a shortend driveshaft to a rear axle of something like a mustang. then you might have a really cool dragster!

only not streetlegal offcourse :D  
30/06/2005 17:35:40   Alex   Not street legal unless you go to Finland; bear in mind the black V6 Turbo that is (if I'm not mistaking) in the photo section.  
01/07/2005 10:22:20   Jon   I had once thought of putting the Renault Clio V6 engine and box into a 96 - being a mid engine layout.  
01/07/2005 10:25:04   Jon   but I think its transverse so no good then??  
01/07/2005 12:02:19   Rens   well, i've you want to build a new engine bay it's no problem. But if you want to fit it quite orignally, then you'll be needing a longitudinal, cause the engine will be in lenght. Cause the engine will only fit in length. The engine bay of the saab is really long (it's a long nose :D not a bull nose). but isn't that wide.
If you want to put in a transverse engine and box you'll probably need to cut the wheel arches and weld some new in. The wheels have really got a lot of space inside of the wheel arch, so it can be done...  
04/07/2005 08:08:06   Richard   All you need to do is have the box rebuilt, 130bhp is tractable without a lsd on the road. The comp parts are really no stronger than the std box.  
04/07/2005 10:36:56   Rens   So, i only need a box rebuild? that sounds cheap. you get a 130 bhp for not a lot of money.
Where can i get a rebuilt here in Holland? or on the main land of europe? Not that little island in the sea they call England.

So I maybey buy a second hand Gearbox (25 pounds) and a ford sierra 2.0 (found one for 50 pounds). 75 pounds ain't a lot of money. I'll let you know about the progress and maybey i'll even make an article about it!  
04/07/2005 11:47:01   erik   Rens,
if you pull this one off, you're a hero !! Credits to Richard too because he started this whole idea. It looks like a reasonable thing to do and i bet it would influence a lot of V4 owners to follow your footsteps. Include me for that matter !!  
04/07/2005 12:31:27   Richard   It makes more sense than a v6 and look at the fuel consumption. You would get better performance, fuel consumption and a reduction in weight at the front which should make the car handle more like the two stroke. Ok it is not a V4 engine, but I am sure the conversion would be of interest to owners that have a bent for performace and use their cars as everyday transport.
I dont do just modified 96's I have a std car that I hope to bring down to the SOC meet at Stafford.  
04/07/2005 16:09:11   Rens   Well.. i'm working on the interior at the moment, just got the seats in (they rubb the windows)and the new steering wheel. At the end of the week i'm welding the rollcage. Then making a new dashboard, with tacho! and a lot of switches...
I hope that will be ready at the end of the month, and then i'm starting to work on the engine!

First I have to confince the parents (yes i'm THAT young) that it ain't a bad idea to buy a second car for scraps...
If i get to it i'll take a lot of notes and even more pictures, so everybody can copy it...  
04/07/2005 17:14:36   Richard   Well I am only 26, but my father a car nut, so that helps!  
04/07/2005 18:59:59   Rens   well, i'm only 20, but the father and the brother are car nuts and that's why moms probably doesn't want another car in the lot!  
05/07/2005 11:12:20   erik   Had a look in the engine bay yesterday : I wouldn't think a 4cyl inline engine would fit in front of the original Saab gearbox !?
To keep this thing going : didn't Mazda have a very narrow v6 engine with FWD gearbox ?  
05/07/2005 12:50:31   Rens   the Zetec engine is only 500mm long, the saab engine is 400mm long, and with the radiator its also 500mm, you'll need to move the radiator to the back where the fan was (going to remove that) and use somekind of hose to take cold air from the front to the back of the engine bay  
06/07/2005 08:08:43   Richard   You might be able to fit a thin modern rad up front with a fan between the grill and rad on the outside as such.
I think Saab made the engine bay so it could take a inline four, they tested some inline fours before deciding on the v engine.  
06/07/2005 19:12:59   Alex   A Ford V6 barely fits in and then you have to relocate the radiator backwards as was done on the 2-stroke bullnoses, or even to the back of the car. An inline four will always be longer than a V6 unless you have an engine with a tiny bore. It might work in a Sonett III where there is more space in the nose but you'll end up with a very nose-heavy car. I don't believe for one minute that Saab ever had an inline four in mind. They looked at the Lancia V4 but that is such a weird contraption that we all may be glad they never went for that. I read on Saabnet that in that community Subaru boxers and Mazda rotaries have been thought of and that adapter plates for the rotaries are even in scarce existence.

Rens, if you want to have your gearbox overhauled call Rein van de Pol in Rhenen. His phone nr is 0317-612901. If you make an appointment you can bring it in the weekend and collect it the next. He did my Sonett gearbox two weeks ago. Costing very much depends on how much needs to be replaced. He has all components in stock. If you want special things it may take longer but it wouldn't surprise me if he knows the channels to obtain specialties.  
07/07/2005 08:07:29   Richard   The std engine V4 is 450mm from gearbox face to fan mount at the front, zetec is 500mm to the same point. That's 50mm longer (2"), so it will go in with a mod to the floor and front valance so it will slip in.
I think Saab tested a Imp climax engine at one point to replace the two stroke which is even shorter than the zetec (great engine, but it needs to be serviced correctly). The problem with the Lancia engine was its durability, but for power it would eat a ford engine for dead. Using group 1 parts on a 1300cc unit will give you 130-140bhp. I have though about preparing one for rallying as they fit in the historic class and should be usefull for top 10 finishes, cost, parts and good shells are the bad points.  
07/07/2005 12:49:25   Richard   I look like ford have widened the bolt spacing at the top along with a few extra fixings, so it wont go straight on.
An adaptor plate would need to be made out of steel to pick up the bolts in the box and the fixings on the engine. The problem is that this will lengthen the assembly by about 40mm or so. The other problem is getting the alignment correct. Its what people have to do with the Vaux engine in Escorts, it just complicates the matter.  
07/07/2005 13:31:15   Rens   you could just get the front piece of both boxes and swap them and weld them thight...

But ain't there any newwer engines that are smaller? or have the V shape so it's shorter?  
07/07/2005 16:53:30   Richard   Other conversions have a totally new bell housing on the box to adapt the engine. Where there is a will there is a way. The v6 is still around but the new item is something like 200lb heavier than a std v4 engine. The old v6 was over 100lb heavier.
There are a few flat fours around, but I would think that there is a lack of width in the engine bay for such a layout. I have heard of people using Alfa engines, but never seen one in a v4.
See if you can find the dimensions for a rover K series engine.  
08/07/2005 10:02:21   Rens   But that rover KV6 is a V6 (duh) but then you have those two extra cilinders that make the engine bigger... aint there a small V4 engine in more modern cars? or what about the 1.3 GTI from a suzuki? thats got a lot of power and is small... even fits a mini.  
08/07/2005 11:10:26   erik   How about the peugeot 205 gti engine? Transverse design but with the gearbox underneath. Track seems to be +/- 10cm wider than ours so a snug fit could be possible?
Anyway, I think that if you need to cut the sills etc., one could as well take a saab 1985cc unit. Toad-replica !!  
08/07/2005 12:32:49   Rens   i thought off the 205 gti engine, i've got one lying around here, but that would be crazy stuff, you'll need the saab gearbox, otherwise you need to cut inside of the car in the bottom to make room, and you don't have enough space for a gearstick and the handbrake in the middel (and i think it's illegal to make a hole in your car). but i'm looking at the gti engine to fit the saab gearbox, if your going to make a new bell you'd better make it a good one. If i make one can i then duplicate it? You know with a iron caster or something? think i could become filthy rich :D  
08/07/2005 13:09:04   Richard   But its all alloy so lighter, a lot lighter than the ford lump of lead. Its the weight I would be looking at, the V4 is too heavy as it is, drive a stroker on a slippy road at full chat and a v4. What I was on about was reducing the weight and gaining power, this would make the car alot quicker and more forgiving, if you brake a few meters too late with a v4 on a slippy forest track you are visiting a ditch.
Go on QED's site (knock off the end bit of my link) and you will see the K series and other straight 4 engines that they do.
I can pick a Imp engine up fully assembled on my own, that is an all alloy straight 4 engine, try that with your V4 (ok dont because I dont want you with a back injury). That is how much lighter a alloy engine is and the v4 is heavy even in its day for a 4 cylinder.
Imp units produced 100-120bhp from 1 litre in period.  
09/07/2005 10:00:44   ian f  
I imagine that you'd find it much easier to graft in an Alfa 33 engine and 5-speed 'box. There's plenty of engine variants to choose including a 1.7 16v putting out a claimed 137bhp, which could no doubt be tuned to give a bit more and being a flat four it would have a lower centre of gravity than the V4.
11/07/2005 08:13:02   Richard   I have a garage full of imp 998 and wills ringed heads. I was not saying to use one, but just giving an example. The imp lot have used bike engines in the back of Clan Crusaders and G15's we also know of a guy with a Ginetta G12 with a bike engine in the back. The problem there is the torque and the weight of the car. There are a few rally Mini's and I have seen a pug 205 with a single bike engine, but the car was too heavy, in rallying you need torque as well as BHP.
The autocross people have been making twin bike engined 205's for years before the kit car guy's started to fit them. In fact you will find Vincent black shadow engines in very old race cars, so its not a new idea.
I would be looking for big power for the capacity, nobody uses a Alfa engine over here, so you carnt get the parts to tune it. Based on this and experience a Alfa would cost me more than a Rover to tune.  
16/07/2005 13:31:28   Erik   Retro cars featured a midget with Yam R1 engine not so long ago. Problem n1 to overcome is the fact that bikes don't have a reverse gear (except Goldwing etc but to me that's no longer a bike !! ).
On the plus side : weight, sequential (often close ratio)gearbox, dimensions.  
16/07/2005 15:39:20   Rens   Reverse is for sissies...  
23/11/2005 01:06:26   tom   well if u drive it thro the saab gearbox like rens mentioned, as well as the bike gearbox u could use it in reverse so u could go backwards! Is an imp engine viable? are they easy to get hold off?  
23/11/2005 20:51:37   Rich   You are looking at a lot of money for the tuned bhp figures stated earlier. A Imp sport in std for gives 58bhp from 875cc and 65 from a std 998, but not as much torque as a V4.  

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