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Metropolitan engine/trans swap

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by belair, Jul 30, 2007.

  1. belair
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    belair Member
    1. H.A.M.B. Chapel

    • What is the easiest 4-banger/auto trans to swap into a Metro? Thanks.
  2. HEATHEN
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    SIDNEY, NY

    HEATHEN Member

    Since the engine compartment is so small, how about a Chevette? The engines were pretty bulletproof.
  3. belair
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    belair Member
    1. H.A.M.B. Chapel

    I looked for one, have had no luck. Thanks.
  4. rixrex
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    Jun 25, 2006
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    Austin Texas

    rixrex Member

    I have Metropolitans, all with stock Austin engines, buddy of mine did well with Toyota four and standard trans, he just had to make the floor tunnel a leetle larger..the poor underappreciated Metropolitan, takes guts on the HAMB to admit you have one, much less putting a Japanese engine innit..good luck.....
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  5. Jet Doc
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2004
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    Woodstock, IL

    Jet Doc Member

    My old man raced one in the 60's with a 327 and a power glide. I'll post some pics if I can find them.
  6. rixrex
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    rixrex Member

    Pleeeez...I asked on some Gasser threads about Metros but never saw any pics......
  7. Harrison
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    Harrison Member
    1. 1959-1960 El Camino Owners
    2. The Airbag Connection

    What about a late '80's/early '90's Madza RX-7 Rotary engine?

    I know nothing about them except the one a high school friend would absolutely fly & was damn-near indestructible.

    JH
  8. Frosty21
    Joined:
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    KY

    Frosty21 Member

    Chevette?

    There a compact engine, about 70 horsepower, parts are kinda easy to locate.

    I think it was originally an Opel engine (unless its diesel, then its Isuzu).

    They made a HO version that had a header like exhaust manifold with two outlets that went down into one. I've got one, but I've never got it running.

    The earlier Chevettes had one barell carbs, and a better flowing intake, while the latter ones had 2-bbls but some kind of swirl port intake on them. Dirt trackers will usually convert the 1-bbl intake over to the 2-bbl carb and pick up a few horsepower.

    I'm pretty sure S-10 manual transmissions will bolt up to them pretty easy.

    They've got a funky looking rear axle with a torque tube looking thing that extends about a foot out of it to meet the driveshaft, not really sure why this thing even exists, but the rear ends are geared pretty low, so their still usable.

    In a stock chevette with a automatic transmission, they get about 30 something miles to the gallon. I'd imagine in the lighter metro with an manual transmission and hopped up a bit, it'd get a little better.
  9. happy hoppy
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    Los Angeles Ca.

    happy hoppy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I have one, well its my wifes car.
    stock motor with a 1500 head and I use a 1980's Nissan over drive auto trans. and MG pumpkin ( higher gears )
    it will cruze at 70 on the freeway, but its slow off the start.
    MG disk brakes and a VW duel master cylinder.

    its ahoot to drive!

    [​IMG]
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 1, 2014
  10. 1950ChevySuburban
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    Tucson AZ

    1950ChevySuburban Member Emeritus

    We put a Ford 2.3 Ranger engine in my daughter's 57 Metro. With the AOD behind it. Stock, enough horsepower for AC. Not driven yet, still in progress.
  11. Super88
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    K-town, (Kenosha)WI

    Super88 Member

    Here's a Met with a V6 from a Good Guys show a couple of years ago.

    Attached Files:

  12. 36-3window
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    36-3window Member

    i looked at one last saturday night with the Ford 2.3 , it seamed to be a nice fit and nothing appeared to be cut to get it in..there was a stock one right next to it to compare

    of course , anything can be put in if you do enough modifying...but i think you are looking for a simple swap without changing the front sheet metal , suspension and firewall?
  13. Bib Overalls
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    Bib Overalls
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    If you stretch the wheel base and add some filler panels to the hood and front fenders you can run anything your heart desires.

    Attached Files:

  14. Juztyn00
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    Mount Vernon, IL

    Juztyn00 Member

    One of the instructors at WyoTech in Laramie shoehorned a Caddy 500 in one.... backed by a turbo 400 and a Fab 9" that was something like 18" wide hub to hub. I was told it was a 4 hour chore to remove the rear wheels..
  15. hiboy
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    3 miles form the center of arkansas

    hiboy Member


    That metro ran a big block chevy before the Hemi but it wasn't stretched. :eek:
  16. oktr6r
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    oktr6r Member

    How old are those pics? That car looks very familiar. I think it may have been at the ABATE of Arkansas Bike and Car show a few years ago. Would have been after it was completed. We spent some time looking at it and were impressed with the quality of the work.
  17. Bib Overalls
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    Bib Overalls
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Took the Metro pictures at the Searcy show in 04. I was also impressed with the workmanship.
  18. oktr6r
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    Tulsa

    oktr6r Member

    It was a few years before that when I saw it. Had a blown 454 in it at that time, if it's the same car. I'm thinking it might have been 2000 2001 at the latest.
  19. brjnelson
    Joined:
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    Land of 10,000 Methlabs

    brjnelson Member

    There have been many engine swaps in a Met. I have a buddy with the Chevette in his. I have seen the guys from Canada that make the T-Bird type roof have a GM 60 degree V-6 in theirs. The Pinto 36 threewindow talked about is Bill Hoyts car He had to put the front suspension in also. The big hurdle is the steering in goes ABOVE the bellhousing. Fat mans has a Must II for the Met.
    I think a Toyota or Nissan mini truck engine would be the ticket.
    With the stock 4.22 gears an overdrive would be good.
    I have a blown MGB engine in my wifes car.
    Here is a photo of Rick's car an old gasser from FL.
    [​IMG]
  20. rustynewyorker
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    rustynewyorker Member

    I was surprised how much room is underhood on one of these the last time I looked at one. Maybe it's because the motor is so small. But I think I'd try a small V6 - GM 2.8, 3.4, or Ford 2.8 or 3.8 - before anything else. I know the 2.8 could be had with a carb on it, if you don't feel like swapping in the stuff to run a fuel injection setup.

    As for not finding the Chevette 4, look in your S10s 1983-1988 or so. They didn't get injection on those right away and seems to me it's the exact same motor. You could try a Tech 4 or Quad 4, too. Any of those with a T5 and you should easily be able to overdrive the car -
  21. nexxussian
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    nexxussian
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    If you decide to do the 2.8 get one after '85 as the earlier ones had oiling problems. It really is a light and compact little engine, should get decent economy in something as light as a met.
  22. 18n57
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    18n57 Member

    I saw one with the chevette/auto trans combo. Owner said it was an easy? swap. He talked about sheet metal reinforcements that he plug welded to the Metro's inner panels, then attached motor mounts to these points. It looked very nice. I said the car cruised well enough, but thought the Chevette was never a smooth idling engine and that he'd use something else if he did it again.
    I'm about to do an engine swap in the wife's Met and I'm planning to use a Ford 2300 and C4 with MG Midget third member ..3.70 vs stock 4.55. The 2.3 is still used in some racing and there are loads of hop up parts around. I'm putting MG Midget disc brakes on the front as well. I'll post progress reports, maybe you do same. Good Luck
  23. knotheads
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    knotheads Member

    you mean to tell me ...Searcy Arkansas still exists?
  24. Crazy Backyard Builder
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    Studio City, CA.

    Crazy Backyard Builder Member

    If you want to do a swap and make it look somewhat stock, I saw one with a 70's Datsun engine in it. It was a pushrod 4 cyl. motor out of a 1970 to like 1978 1200 or B210. It looked like the stock engine and is bullet proof . They made them from 1200cc to 1500cc, automatic, or a 4 or 5 speed trans. and on the later motors a electronic ign. that wired up with only 2 wires.

    I was told it is a very popular motor to use in a lot of british cars because they are small in size, cheap and they look like the stock motors.



    CBB
  25. no55mad
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    nipomo, ca

    no55mad
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    A popular swap for Morris Minors are the Datsun B210's - nice with the 5 speed. I believe the MM's originally had a similar motor to the Metropolitan.
  26. knotheads
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    boulder city nevada

    knotheads Member

    the president of the metro club in long beach ca. has a 1957 met convertable that he built and used everything off a 1977 pinto ... engine (including radiator and air conditioning),trans and differential . he even swapped the pinto disc brakes in front .with the hood closed you absolutely couldnt tell the metro wasnt a stocker .
  27. timothale
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    near yellowstone park

    timothale Member

    20 years ago we put a pinto 1600 in one had to move the shifter foreward on the trans cut and heli arc 'ed the case and cut and welded the shift rod
  28. El-Cid
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    Anaconda, MT

    El-Cid Member

    I'll second the Quad 4, they run pretty well and look good when done right. Here's some pics of one in a T roadster. Disregard the chees-o misspelled Offy tag on the valve cover (no it's not my car either).

    Attached Files:

  29. Frosty21
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    KY

    Frosty21 Member

    S-10 used a 2.5 "Iron Duke" that was a tough little motor. Chevette was a 1.4 and 1.6 liter Opel banger.

    Most 'vettes idle a little rough because of the funky carb that they used, and their electric choked, with plenty of random wires and vaccum lines hanging everywhere.

    If I was going to seriously build one, I'd use the earlier (1.4 liter) one barrel intake on the later 1.6 liter engine, convert it over to any other 2-bbl than what it used, manual choke, H.O. header with dual exhaust, and just whatever I could do to free up a little bit more of the motor.

    But stock and in decent shape, they run fine.

    The 2.5 would also be a four banger I'd consider, parts are easy to find, they have a good bit of power for what they are, and get good mileage.

    We had one in a CJ-7 jeep, never used any gas hardly, and would get along pretty damn good off-road and would pull about 50 or so on the highway.

    My cousin had one in his S-10, that outlasted the cab and bed, he rebuilt it once and couldn't find a gasket for the oil-pan, so he just glued it on and drove it for a couple of thousand more miles before he traded it to a 2.8/4x4.

    There isn't too many readily available hop-up parts for them, other than some headers I saw in a Jeep catalog once, but there is a bit of a following for them in the Citation community or something like that I think.
  30. 49ratfink
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    California

    49ratfink Member

    lots of good suggestions here. I like the Datsun L series overhead cam engines myself 1600 - 1800 - 2000... I think they even made a 2200 with a different head. 5 speeds are still plentiful for those motors too. get the motor, trans, hydralic clutch, and pedals all out of the same car and your in business.

    I had a 73 pickup with a 1600, then I got a deal on a 79 2000 with a 5 speed. had a weber 32/36 and an offy intake. I drove the hell out of that truck for 10 years.

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