Project Crown: A Long Overdue Update
Slow, But Not Forgotten

In recent weeks I’ve been quite busy getting my 2015 Mustang EcoBoost project car off the ground, but you’ll likely remember that the Ford isn’t the only vehicle in my project car garage. I also have a 1969 Toyota Crown Custom Wagon that I bought about two years ago – and my two project cars couldn’t be more different.


The Mustang is brand new, and with a ton of interest from companies looking to manufacture parts for it, has a rapidly-developing aftermarket. New powerplant or not – it’s still a Mustang and that means the aftermarket support will be as strong as ever.


My Crown? Well that’s a much different story. Here in the United States an MS53 Crown Wagon is about as obscure as a car gets. There is no aftermarket whatsoever, and even finding simple replacement parts is close to impossible. Now, I knew all this when I bought the Toyota, and the uniqueness is a big part of the car’s appeal to me – but it’s also the reason why progress has been slow.


But with the Wagon Week theme in full swing, I figured now was the perfect time to revisit my old Toyota and hopefully find the spark to really get going on this thing. Updates have been long overdue, and making some real progress on this car is one of my goals for 2015.


But before I do anything, I still have to decide exactly what sort of motor is going to power this thing. And that’s been the primary hold-up so far. When I purchased the Crown it did come with the original 2M inline six, but the engine was dissembled and would likely need a full rebuild to be of use, and even then I’d still have to go through the trouble of tracking down necessary parts for an ancient Toyota motor.


So I knew pretty early on that the car would need some sort of engine swap as the main point of the build.

Celica-Supra-5 copy

You might remember that a little over a year ago I picked up a cheap ’82 Toyota Celica Supra with the idea that I might be able to use its 5M-GE engine in the Crown. The motor actually comes from the same family as the original 2M, meaning it would be one of the most straightforward swap choices.

Celica-Supra copy

But after thinking about it for a while, I decided not to pull the motor from the Supra. For one thing, it would still be a 30-something-year-old engine with a couple hundred thousand miles on it, but more importantly I would have felt bad tearing into what was still a very saveable Supra.


I drove the Supra for a bit and considered keeping it and fixing it up, but the last I thing I needed was another big project, so I ended up selling to a guy last summer who was going to give it the attention it deserved. Back to square one for the Crown.

Choices, Choices

While I’ve entertained the idea of doing something crazy in the engine department, budget and limited mechanical ability have led me to focus on two primary engine options: a Toyota straight six or a GM V8.


You might be wondering about the option of a Toyota 1UZ-FE V8, and while that would be both a fantastic and affordable option, the dimensions of the motor do not make for an easy swap. I’ve talked to a couple of people who have tried swapping a 1UZ into an early Crown, and it sounds extremely involved. Damn.

Celica-Supra-19 copy

So that brings me to the option of a Toyota inline six. There are a few options available, including the aforementioned 5M-GE and the newer 7M motors which also share basic dimensions and mounts with the original 2M. I do like the idea of a motor that more or less bolts in, but both motors are still quite old and neither is particularly inspiring in stock form. What I do like is the idea of carbureted 5M/7M, but again that would require a custom manifold and carbs etc. Anybody want to fab something up?


That leads me to the next option: a 2JZ-GE. Sure a turbo 2J would be cool, but my plan is to make a fun and reliable cruiser rather a race car, so I’m thinking natural aspiration is the way to go for now. Non-turbo 2JZs can be found relatively easily; make more than enough power for a car like this, and there would be plenty of potential for the future too. I’m sure I could even find a complete Lexus donor car relatively cheaply. From there it would be a matter of having mounts made and doing the wiring etc.


The next option is a V8, or more specifically a Chevrolet small block. While I do appreciate the idea of sticking with a Toyota powerplant, there’s also something appealing about going with an American V8. The easiest and the cheapest option would be carb’d small block. It wouldn’t need to be anything fancy, and there’s something nice about getting parts easily and cheaply. The swap would be a matter of finding a motor, having mounts made and then getting it running without having to deal with computers. Sure, the SBC swap is a very common one, but there’s something old school and simple about it.


Then there’s the option of stepping up to an LS-based motor. It wouldn’t necessarily need to be a big-power variant – even an iron block 4.8 or 5.3 from a truck would more than suffice in this application I think. While the intital costs would be bit higher and installation a little more involved, I love the idea of having both modern reliability and the massive availability of parts that come with the LS platform.


Again, the biggest drawback of going with a GM V8 would be not having a Toyota motor in a Toyota car, but the Crown is so unusual it might not matter what kind of motor is in it. If it’s reliable, sounds good and can cruise on the highway with ease I’ll be very satisfied.


What about a transmission? Well, if I were to go with a 5M or 7M then I think a manual gearbox conversion would make the most out of everything. If I were to go 2JZ or V8 however, then I think an automatic setup would be more suited to the cruising character, and much easier in terms of installation.


As I mentioned a moment ago, deciding on a motor has been the biggest hurdle so far and I think it’s finally time to just do it. Once I have the motor I can actually start prepping the thing, locating the additional parts I’ll need and talking to fabricators. Once the car is running, I can then move on to the body, suspension and interior.


Whatever the case, I’m hoping to have things decided this spring so I can start acquiring parts and getting down and dirty.


But before I do settle on a motor, I thought I’d ask you guys for your thoughts on my engine swap candidates. Should I stick with Toyota power or go V8 all the way?

Mike Garrett
Instagram: speedhunters_mike



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Put some effort in it yo


You should go with a conventional cruiser and put a nice reliable 4 cylinder motor in it


The 2jz-ge and a automatic would suit this car perfect. Enough power, nice sound, good reliability and as close to the cars original drivetrain as possible, just up to date. That would be my choice anyway!


DO NOT PUT ANYTHING AMERICAN IN IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I'd recommend to keep it in the Toyota family. How about a V6 swap instead? Like a 2GR, for example.


Auto 2JZ-GE for sure. sound & reliable


I would say go with the Toyota lump.
I would also say get as many parts as you possibly can, and then take a weekend off, put a shout out over SH's platforms and document all the people that turn up and get stuck in giving you a hand.
Instant progress and probably a couple of cool features out of it.


Mike, go 2jz.
Toyota in a Toyota. Just how it has to be.


3RZFE or2 2RZFE, or basically any tacoma engine would be reasonable and a little different. the four cylinders all provide plenty of power especially for that little car and they have huge aftermarket potential.


I don't know about you , but 2JZ-GE + Automatic Transmission from the source of 2JZ-GE should be a good way to be (maybe) cheap , (maybe) reliable , (maybe) easy to source parts , and then keep Toyota lump .


Boxer from a Toyobaru! Exotic + rare swap + toyota engine. (Well, sort of)


rx7 motor, seen a few in features from new zealand


Auto 2JZ seems like the ideal swap for a real cruisy car like this!


My vote is straight 6, but with a manual trans


Glad to see that you didn't tear apart that Celica Supra, that car had a lot of potential. It's really hard to argue against an LS motor for a cheap, reliable, easy to work on, powerful engine.


Keep it Toyota, 1jzs are cheap and easy to wire. Not only that, 2nd hand big single kits are easy to find, big cams etc.

Did it in my 260z and never looked back.


1/2JZ-FSE for a cruiser? Something different...


I came in here thinking, "if he's scrapped this I'm going to kill him," but I am happy to realise that is not the case ;)

I'd say an M series would be great.  I know they don't hold a candle to their JZ little brothers but if done right, the 7MGTE has serious potential.  Having said that, hows about a 5M with ITBs?  Of course, a 1JZ is tempting, but I think this is the perfect platform for an M-series build to keep the M engines alive and perhaps add a few modern touches to an older drivetrain.  If you go for a 7M, as long as you get hold of one that had the major issues sorted early on in it's life (as most still around will have done), I don't see any reason why it should be an excellent choice for Project Crown :)

Well, you know all this anyway, but I wanted to put my case forward briefly for an M motor :)


ae70 teehee
Except good ol' 75RON watered-down American pissgas, am I right? ;)


Do the 2jz with itbs


1jz man keep it in the fam and its reliable


Hey Mike! I think you should choose the toyota 2JZ because you would keep the swap "in the family" and there's nothing more satisfying than driving a manual car! Good luck with your project!


mike i face this problem when i got my ra29 celica and i end up staying with my 20r but i know the 2m is near impossible to keep but the engine i always considered that i would do the 5m its toyota, can make plenty of power but the main thing is with a set of carbs the motor look like simuler to a vintage race motor with the wide style head they are beautiful motor and although its new it leaves a classic taste to the engine bay but hey what ever you do as much as i dis like the idea of a chey in a toyota the crown will still be driving again.


i'd go for the naturally aspirated six cylinder 2jz from another toyota, for me the best option is this, but form comfort you could go to japan and find a good toyota century v12 engine, but its waaaay to expensive and difficuclt to find and maintanin, i think, and please manual transmission will be always better than auto


SR20DETT or a Rotary would be my choice.. You should keep it JDM.

hash the toyota man

Why not use a 1g, at 210 hp new its not powerfull but still a good twin turbo toyota engine. Or a 2gr v6......


Piss everyone off, put an American straight six in. 

Seriously though, you'll never please all the fanbois, and either a straight six or a V8 will work great. If the stars align and an engine falls in your lap, use that. An old fuel injected LT1 from a C4 Corvette or similar era GM would be ideal IMO. Cheap, torquey, available, and you can slot an auto or manual behind it. A six might be a better fit for the character, but good luck finding a naturally aspirated one to make as much torque as a big V8.


What about a 1fz from a 70 series landcruiser. 4.5 litres Toyota straight six carbs from the factory


3S-GTE, when did u last see one?


If your gonna go toyota I reckon a 1jz. Its just a bit different to the classic 2jz swap everyone does. And the crown is just a bit different isnt it?


I would go 2JZ + manual transmission. 5M or 7M would be alright too.
Really though, I say the engine choice is of secondary importance; stick shift is the most important thing.
Automatic wagons are a dime a dozen, y'know? A wagon with three pedals is something truly special.


A 1/2JZ with Carbs would be a perfect swap and look great in that bay, a SBC is just not a great looking engine unless it's in a hot rod and you can see the headers. The LS/LT are just plain ugly engines and do not suite the personality of the car, IMO. Someone else suggested a 1FZ or 1FZ-FE which would be a totally bad-ass engine in that car!

Overall, I prefer manuals, but nothing wrong with a full 2JZ/auto swap and start enjoy your car your way


Go totally another way. Get the current Toyota Crown engine and make it sports injection with the funnels. 4.6 L 1UR-FSE V8 TRD version


as much as i would like to see a 2jz or 7m, when i actually took the time to just look at the car the sbc appealed more to me. I honestly think a sbc would perfectly match the persona of the car. But at the end of the day it's not my car, so do as u wish mike :)


Do a V8 and be happy.  You can't beat torque for a street driven vehicle.  Something simple and basic would be best but......


From personal experience, the 7M is a good choice for this swap. I have a 1973 Corona MKII that also came with the 2M, and it now has a 7M-GTE.  

The 7M is a big torquey engine, and cheap. Smooth and comfortable for around town and highway cruising, but still has some old engine "character" to help keep the feel of that old Crown intact.  

Every 3rd Speedhunters article features a 2JZ or LSx swap. Snore city.

Hotrodders are ditching the SBC swap and looking for flatheads. Why? Because originality and character. Those factors never go out of style.


Don't be silly get a 1jz gte, the new wagons come out with them, start auto, go manual later if you want. Front cuts are plentiful so are aftermarket parts and knowledge.


Hey Mike 

Luke here that had the MS53 featured in #iamspeedhunter  'show us your wagons"

I bought my Wagon with the intention of going 1UZFE, but the don't fit without a lot of work in the 50 series. They fit in the 40 series and 60 onwards because the chassis are wider. Even with UZS131, 1UZ headers there is about an inch from the heads to the upper arms. There is a 1UZ in a 50 series ute (pick up)  on the west coast of Australia that I have only seen photos of and heard a few rumors. I believe that it is on a MS112 chassis. I have seen another MS55 in japan 1UZ but not sure how that was done or even if it was running.

7MGTE or 7MGE, 5MGE are easy options as they use the same mounts, pans oil dip sticks and as such. The gear boxes that are bolted to these engine are easy to make a mount for from your existing gear box x member. I've had a 7MGE and W58 in my car many moons ago with about 140rwhp and it was great, kept up with traffic and was a real yoot to drive. Now with the 7MGTE and a bit of boost the thing is great to drive. The manualised auto is the best thing I have to done to my car as it is a cruiser it skids real well and is easy to drive. 

1JZ/2JZ Awesome engines and alot better for turbo applications then 7MGTE's only issue if you want ease of fabrication is finding the right true mid sump from toyota off a later model crown. There are plenty of 1J's and 1JZGTE in cars in Aus and Japan I'm not sure if they have found the right sump or have modified something else to suit the car.
other V8's would fit as they are narrower than the 1UZ. I haven't played with them as I did the 7MGTE conversion. At a guess It would just be finding the right sump to fit and the custom engine and gearbox mounts plus wiring and radiators. if you want a good cruiser anything with over 200rwhp and a nice rumble or a woosh will bring a smile to your face.

Good luck with the decision and get cracking I've been waiting for an update for ages.


Do it kiwi style, NA 13B


Garret, if you want to look into going triple weber on the 7m or 1jz, feel free to message me.  I might be able to help.


Do a diesel swap.



just because


Carbed 5/7m! Have something to stick it to the old school Nismo/Datsun crowd


Definitely a 2JZ-GE, they sound amazing with ITB's.


I would deffinately staw away from high boost turbo monster engine if I want a comfortable cruiser. Get the UZ engine from the LS430 Lexus with it's transmission, and you have a comfortable cruiser, and an easy over 300 horses, and you stay away from bran mix


@Daniel i agree.  get the 3.0D from the hilux :)


If it fits, Coyote 5.0


I think the best joice is a Chevrolet Big Block ZZ572/720R DELUXE and when this not will fit then a LSX454R.


How about a Toyota tundra motor. A 3UR. You would get stay with a Toyota motor but get v8 reliability. They are a little pricey though. But they sound fantastic with a simple exaust and it would be a very unique swap as you don't see many around.


Toyota :) 
That said, i respect a GM V8 for all the reasons listed above.


Whichever engine you choose, don't go carburated. Pain in the ass to tune, finnicky, and bad on gas mileage.


This project isn't going anywhere. Only saw 100 + pictures this YeAr of the same car. You could've already cleaned the chassis, remplaced the bushings, bearings, brake lines and upgrade the Brakel/diffs to 110 serie Crown spec. With your engine upgrade you need those parts anyway. And One suggestion, go for a 5mge. 40 Year old chassis doesnt like 200+ hp engines, only of you go for serious suspension work. I've had a 7mgte 110 serie, It drove like crap. Also the 5mge has a very Nice Calvé cover/head design and is the better engine vs a 7mge.


Hey Mike,
as someone that's recently done this out of a basic garage, a JZ in line 6 will be the easiest option. Just my 2 cents.
I went down the 2JZ-GE VVTI route, which caused a few wiring problems associated with the factory immobiliser built into the ECU. But, we got it working. I've seen a lot of 1JZ's in Crown's in Japan. And I'm guessing that's because they're more electrically straight forward than a 2J. 
Another reason is that Toyota in line 6's are very similar in block dimensions. I went from a ('73) 4M, 3 speed auto. To a ('01) 2JZ, 5 speed auto without cutting firewalls on transmission tunnels. With a little linkage modification I could even keep the original shifter.


CollinBrown Not really, sounds like you just weren't very good at tuning to be blunt.  If you understand how, it's actually a pretty rewarding experience.


Toyota 1GZ-FE : the only production V12 ever made in Japan, I believe


Go Toyota.


zziro I think you don't understand about the car it comes out of . Toyota Century is not a cheap car by any means. Dignitaries are driven in that car. They have chauffeurs. That car is the price of a very high end Mercedes. Put it this way. When you go to a dealership of a regular car place you get car brochures. The Toyota Century's car brochure is a expensive hard back book. So 1GZ is very out of the question.


Go 1JZ or... find a smashed Prius!


if you are not going to stay with Toyota then you should stay away from a SBC of any type. that's been done to death. You should go with something crazy like a volvo engine, that would be sick


TOYOTA POWER! non turbo 2jz


As much as I love LS swaps (I really do mean that) maybe a fuel injected 7M would be the best for this kind of project. Drop in and a bit of wiring, quick and simple. 200hp is plenty for this kind of car and if you need more; you could always slap a T3 turbo on it down the line. The last thing you need is to make an already difficult project an arduous one, else the car will be, three years down the line, a rusting hulk of 'could have been achieved' dreams taking up space in the yard.


b230ft cheap and unusual


Prius hybrid system would be cool for a cruiser


Mike, I really love your cars man!


A 2JZ would be sweet, reliable engine, nice sound and still Toyota branded


First of all, I would choose a Toyota engine. The car is too cool and rare to put an ordinary engine in there. Don't get me wrong, when I say ordinary I think of a common engine in USA and I don't say anything bad about performance or reliability of the engine.
If this would be my car I would choose a 2JZ-GE with A340E/A341E gearbox. And modify it to make 280 bhp N/A.


This thing needs to stick to its roots, go for a Toyota engine swap. 2JZ or some UZ engine...


Don't worry about what anyone thinks - just go with your gut!

I think you should go for something really different just to ruffle some feathers. Volvo 5cylinder turbo, Toyota Century V12, Mazda 20B rotary, supercharged K20A or what about a torquey turbo diesel? The possibilies are endless :p

To be serious though I've seen quite a few with a SBC but I'd love to see a LS in one of these. A v8 burble with an auto would make a cool and reliable cruiser :) Alternatively if you want to make this a bit of a sporty sleeper I'd go something compact maybe a Toyota 3S GTE mounted as far back in the bay as I could with a 5 speed, tight suspension and a locked diff = good times!!!


I side with the "do something a bit mental" crowd. I reckon that a lightly breathed on Audi AAN 2.2 I5 Turbo up front would be a good shout.


ugh as tired of the LS swaps as i am id say pull the trigger on it EFI compact lightweight but almost stupid to not put it in.... just my 2 though...


i would go N/A 2j automatic


smithadamb Nice! This the kind of feedback that really helps. I'm assuming you had custom mounts made? What about the sump location?


zziro As cool as that would be, don't think it's doable at the moment hehe.


Trentworth Agree completely. That's why I'm not too concerned about having something "exotic" under there.


greenroadster Thank you sir! Hopefully this one will be something more than a sideyard ornament soon. Haha.


day_old_tofu I've actually looked into BEAMS 3SGE as they can be had pretty cheap, but I'm not sure if the install would be any tougher or easier than an I6.


sivis Hmm. I get where you are coming from, but my feeling is this car is already so rare that it doesn't need a real groundbreaking powerplant. Of course if I had a huge budget and resources to work with, IS-F V8 would be my top choice.


Hoon13 It'd be cool but you'd run into all the same aforementioned issues as doing a 1UZ swap.


D4k0t4 Love it but don't think it'd fit without some very serious fabrication going on.


@vogsta I'd like that very much. I'm not even sure where to start looking for custom manifolds though! It hasn't been done a whole lot.


AceAndrew2 Will do! Thanks for the help.


Being that I'm not a purist I really like the idea of a small block Chevrolet V8, I think it would compliment the classic looks of the Crown (and would turn heads at the same time), while offering reasonable power numbers to hav fun with. As you mentioned parts would be a dime a dozen as well. I also liked the idea of a N/A 2JZ if you are looking for the reliability/cruiseability.

Are those Ford Ranger rims I see on the Crown now? Couldn't help but notice them as I have a Ranger as a commuter (not much Speedhunting going on in that thing :P)


TheStitt Thanks a lot Luke. I really appreciate getting insight from people who have experience with these cars. I'll be sure to hit you up if I have any questions. 7MGE/W58 sounds like a decent choice for the time being :)


@Matches That's a good point. It's all about cost/power/rarity factor I guess. 7M seems to fit well though.


_mostcommon Yeah, like I said I'm not opposed to having a SBC at all. Just need to figure out what suits the car (and my budget) best.


ryukyustriker That would be amazing if I had a giant pile of money to throw at this thing haha.




Slappy Pistons Don't worry it won't be getting scrapped. Progress may be slow, but I'm determined to see this thing through. :)


NicholasDixon I'd actually like to pick up another Mk.2 Supra sometime, although hopefully something that's in a bit better shape than the one I had. That thing was a blast to drive.


CharlieZard Agreed.


Mike Garrett smithadamb I made the mounts myself with the input of a certifier. Who oversees and signs off on the work, making it road legal. Not sure how it's done in the States though. You could easily get something fabricated from a shop if needed.
If you can find a true 'mid sump' for a JZ block then it'll fit straight in. Otherwise, I cut the back end off of a mid/rear sump and welded a notch into it to fit the steering rack. Of course bare in mind that my Crown is an MS65, and yours is an MS50? Maybe? Not sure.


I would go smallblock or even 4.3 Chevy v6 if you want a simple economical setup. I'ddrive it looking ratty for a couple of years too :)


Coyote 5.0L :D lol seriously though, 2jz with ITBs would be cool and sound killer.


Well, there are about a zillion GS/SC300 Lexus out there. Seems like the logical, cheap, on-brand choice. This is coming from a guy who has an old carb'd SBC in a '36 Ford pickup ;)

And hey, the 2JZ was available in the 9/10/11th generation Crowns, which I think is kind of a cool link too.


2J All Day!


Plus it seems a little boring to open the bonnet & find just a plain ol' LS or Chev smallblock. At least with the 1J or 2J I feel it retains the charm & uniqueness.


Just pretend you were asking this question from NZ or Australia. Chuck in a 20B triple rotor!


Vittorio Jano  That's a new one, I give you that! Make the car a hybrid......hmmmmm....


AM81  Like

101 about tracking an M family engine (2M like the original would be great) and make him everything that you want from him - power and reliability together and a manual transmission? Lowrider but with coilovers not airlifts, wide steelies and stock and clean body. Hydraulic hand brake and welded diff.  :))) Not a cruiser, just a sporty old wagon :))))


I vote for a 7mgte. There is still quite a large aftermarket for them, parts are dirt cheap, and with a metal head gasket you could put down an easy 350rwhp with the stock CT26 upgraded to a 57 trim and bolt-ons. Plus, they are as reliable as just about any other toyota engine(assuming that you torque the headbolts down properly).


Glad to see you kept the Crown :) I was beginning to think you sold it after the Supra was sold. However, on to the engine, I would go with either the 7mgte or 2jzge. But living in California, I would go with the 2jzge. This is mainly because you can have a good reliable engine with A/C and power steering. The 7mgte can provide the same with some kick to it. After you have done what MA70 mention below me, you have a very strong and reliable engine. I have one :)


being a sc owner I am biased towards the 2j but if you want a nice cruiser with some fun the 2j auto is the perfect candidate. Not to mention you can get a working donor car here in CA for less than 1000 bucks.


@chrisfalcon11 Yeah I've seen a few early GS and SC cars for sale for cheap, but it sounds like there might be some issues with the oil pan location.


demzo_BRG MA70 Been to Toyotafest the past few years but I think I'll actually be in Japan when this year's show happens. Looking forward to JCCS though!


matthewyaa Yeah I actually bought those wheels for 30 bucks at the swap meet a couple years ago just so I could have something to roll the car around on.


A Toyota beams engine would be perfect of the fabrication and money would be there. Would please the eye with that turbo there, Wires CSN be hidden too give it a clean look. It's light weight and powerful enough to give you enough horsepower to cruise around, while still getting great MPG compared to all other otions.


I can imagine the frustration you're going through because I own a MS52 with a 5M that was completed eight years ago. It was my second engine swap with the first being a M-U. The concept was same as yours, a fun and reliable cruiser but, the M-U didn't cut it. After about a year or so of contemplating what motor to install next, I stumbled across a garage kept MS110 equipped with a 5M with only 20,000km. It was missing all the paper work, so the first thing that popped in my mind was, "parts car." Lucky find! I swapped everything from the engine, transmission, front and rear brakes and all the suspension work, then went off and sold the rest of the car and got more than what I paid for. It was an easy swap because they essentially share the same chassis.
Knowing that you're coming to Japan, why not buy a later model Crown with a 5M, 7M, or even a 1JZ and ship it back to Cali? I'm sure you can find a good deal plus, you can use other parts on the car like I did.
Figuring out which motor to put in was one of the fun aspects of the build but realistically, Classic Crowns are a pain in the ass to find parts, even in Japan! I love the car but not sure if I'd do it again.
Maybe we should chat when you get here:)


Hey Mike, whats up? Here`s my 2 cents.
Some time ago, when you presented the project to everybody out here, you mentioned that the costs would be of concern. I am guessing you opened up your engine choices based on some funds acquired by 1) selling the supra and 2) the time gap that passed and allowed you to "breathe" financially.

Considering this, i would go for some simple thoughts.
First: A toyota Straight Six ( the NA 2J) would be a fitting engine since we know there`s room, and as nice as it would seem to be with an auto gearbox, a manual would give it character. Cruising in a manual isn`t a pain (if you aren`t on traffic or racing, when you reach 5th/6th gear you really dont have to worry about the gearbox anymore...) and it would allow you for occasional sideways fun. I dont know what would be the running costs (considering a proper japanese engine isn`t manitenance prone...) but i believe they`re low in NA form. My concern with this kind of engine is getting the newest one possible (since i dont know when they ended production).

For the v8: talking to a drifting friend we discussed how the LS series is such a great engine considering affordability because it makes safe good power. An original LS v8 ( haters gonna hate)  packs a good number of horses, delivers them smoothly and costs low on the long run (please, you`re keeping the wagon, right?), especially if you are in the US (hell we are seriously considering building a drift car in engine-forsaken-brazil with it! and it would cost us almost 5 times what it costs you , considering taxes, shipping, etc). Almost double the power of the NA 2J for not-double the price (checked quickly online and found a suposedly low mileage LS with transmission and harness on ebay for around 5000, not bad?)
About electric/wiring: an EMS isn`t exactly that expensive (even garage builds around here run one...) or overcomplex. You have access to lots of partners, i am certain you can be easily hooked up with good professionals who can explain the process and install it for you.

Comparing the two engines with simple statistics (average manitenance cost, average power, power to weight ratio , avaliability of parts) makes them very alike, but being the v8 far easier to source, i think it would be a good choice.
Unless you`re looking for style, then go 2J NA with ITBs and a fancy EFI and shaved engine bay, because that would look banana-balls-crazy! 8D

anyway, i`m calling shotgun first!


Mike Garrett sivis
The L5 audi makes me think a L5 volvo out of a S60 or XC70 would be awesome too lol


While i agree that the crown is an unusual car in the U.S., i feel that putting a Toyota mill in it would be the best way to go. I am very much on board with a multiple carb/ITB set up on an M-series engine. I believe there may be some companies making manifolds for them IRCC......a V8 is too overused in the world of imports now. This is coming from someone who grew up on the American side of the pond, its always "Want more power? put a V8 in it" and then you see it on craigslist for way more than anyone is willing to pay for it due to a shit-ily swapped small block.


Definitely go with the 7m or 5m. I honestly hate the thought of ANOTHER great car just having a 2J/350/LS dropped into it. I know they're great engines, but everybody and their arthritic grandmother has done that swap to something. I know I'd like something you don't see every day.


Ford vehicles are still my choice
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Get a 1GGE!


Triple Weber 2JZ...fits like it was made for it. That's what we chose for our MS51 since the 2M was shot when we imported it. If by some chance you do decide to stick with a 2M, I've got the dual carb setup from our car, as it was a SuperDeluxe model.


2jz on itbs.


The carbie 2J looks the goods.
If a modern Toyota engine appeals to you go straight to the top with a BEAMS maybe?




1UZ-FE !


As I was reading I though "A naturally aspirated 2JZ would be awesome" and then you mentioned it as a primary potential choice. I say go with that. It's a modern version of the same motor but better.