free hit
Elise Engine conversion options - Engine Conversion Projects - The Lotus Forums Jump to content

Elise Engine conversion options

Recommended Posts

Hi all,


First post so be gentle with me :).

Over the next year I am planning on building my next race car. The series I compete in gives me pretty much unlimited options.

The Elise has for sometime been on my mind as the best car for the job albeit underpowered.

Usual google search brings many different options for engine convrsions, but most posts are many years old so thought I would see the current consensous.

What I need from the engine is around 300bhp and a decent whack of torque from relatively low down the rev range so that may influence opinions.

As far as I can see I have the following options:

1. Ford Duratec - There seem to be a couple of specialist on this, one is near me.

2. Civic Type R SC - Seems to be a popular choice

3. Audi BAM engine (20vt) - Very little on the interweb on this, but other than weight could tick all the boxes.

There a lots of other options V6, V8 etc etc, but they almost certainly need chassis mods etc so want toa void that as much as possible.

What are the pros and cons of the above?

Although I am far from a millionaire, budget should not influence the choice.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.
  • Replies 9
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Note that this power can also be achieved from the OEM Toyota 2ZZ engine, if you wanted to avoid all the extra hassle of an engine swap.

We've just finished building and mapping one with a big charger that has a silly torque curve.


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Mark,

There is a fair bit on other lotus forums about these conversions, and yes you have the 3 main contenders. Have a look on the playground (Garages section), Most seem to have gone Honda route.

I'm in the process of building a VAG 20v Turbo conversion. A main consideration for me was the gearbox, the VAG 6 speed 0M2 box is supposed to be bullet proof, whereas the gearbox on the 2ZZ has had some problems with bigger power. The VAG is similar weight to 2ZZ.

My conversion is chargecooled, with large Garrett turbo, stronger driveshafts and lsd fitted to gearbox. - I have a build thread on Scottishelises (S1 elise motorsport replica project - under Gallery section). Aiming for 500bhp.

good luck with whichever way you go.




On ‎11‎/‎01‎/‎2019 at 10:35, Mongo81 said:

What I need from the engine is around 300bhp and a decent whack of torque from relatively low down the rev range so that may influence opinions.

Just re-read your first post and would add that Honda may not be best option if above is what you're looking for the Honda conversion is much more a case of needing higher rev range for big power.

The VAG (Audi) conversion is more torquey much lower down the rev range, and acceleration is then brutal.

That's just fine

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 6 months later...
  • 11 months later...
On 31/07/2019 at 18:13, stratosboy said:

where I'm up to with conversion:



Which fasteners have you used for your rear clam dzus type?


thanks Cor

Link to post
Share on other sites

I originally used these:

but | didn't trsut that they'd be strong enough - so replaced them with countersunk M5 screws, with washers and nyloc nuts on the back. I still retained the Dzus retaining clips on the bodywork.

You doing a similar project?


That's just fine

Link to post
Share on other sites

thank you Dave,

built an elise with motorsport bodywork. I am still bolting the rear bodywork but it is a lot of hassle to remove it.

Engine is an audi 2.0 16V  


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great work Cor, looks like a very good quality build. - did you notice the rear clam quick release system I've put onto mine...the runners bolted onto the longerons, and the ally panels bonded under the rear clam with runners on that slip into the runners? - it does make it easier to put it on/off.

That's just fine

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...