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Nickp1

Loxus Eclat V8

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Great project!  Look forward to seeing your progress.  The weakest part will be the diff. - any plans to change it, or just run it and see?

Pete

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Yeah I've heard the diffs aren't the best but I'm hoping the lack of grip from the std size choice of tyres will give it a fighting chance 😉

I'll have enough on my plate restoring the car and doing the engine conversion to consider re-engineering the rear end, so it'll just have to man up for now 💪

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Goodluck with the project, look forward to seeing the pictures 

You could get the diff rebuilt with Quaife lsd internals + there’s a poster on here who has fitted wilwood discs inboard at the back. I’ve been thinking about a brake upgrade using similar callipers to the PNM esprit kit (they look suspiciously like vag ones...)

is there an adapter plate available for the BMW gearbox?

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Yeah, was considering the Quaife LSD at some point down the road but tbh I think it'd probably put more strain on the diff as it'll increase grip.

I was wondering about VAG calipers with electric handbrake. Would be interesting.

Yeah there are several adapter plates for the Lexus V8 to BMW gearbox. I need to go for the 6spd diesel option for it's 'overdrive' 6th gear. I'm hoping I have a 3.7 diff as this will give a theoretical 160mph top speed but more importantly a sensible cruising rpm 😉 Here's the full kit that includes adapter, flywheel, clutch, bolts etc - https://pmcmotorsport.com/gearbox-adapter-kit-toyota-1uz-3uz-bmw-m57n-gs6-53dz-240.html

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This looks like a really interesting thread to follow. It will be really nice to drive once done. Will it all fit?

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Only one way to find out 😉

I'm pretty confident the engine will but I need to dangle it in the hole and see how much gearbox room is left. Luckily a mate is doing the same engine conversion into a Reliant Kitten so I can get measurements from him before committing to buying the gearbox and adapter kit.

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In a reliant kitten! That should be entertaining.... is it on a forum? 

there are versions of the vag rear callipers with manual handbrakes on some of the Skodas, I think these are the ones pnm use

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No, he just puts stuff on FB really. It's been through various engine evoultions, mid/rear bike engine (TL1000), twin engine TL1000, rear engine Saab Turbo (450bhp) and now it's been completely re-engineered to take a front mounted Lexus V8. TBH there's not much Kitten left 🤣

 

kitten.jpg.7165f6fa3d7de3636ac0afa94661c6dc.jpg

v8.jpg.2c426264ca724cd08c5d703f9562692a.jpg

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I fitted a 490hp Chevy LS1 + Tremec gearbox in my trackday Excel so I'm sure it can be done!  I'm currently restoring an Elite and building a 2.5 engine for it - I'm making some mods to my diff in the hope it will survive a good thrashing!  I can post details if you're interested.

Pete

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Looks like a fantastic project, cheers for posting up the pics,  a blank canvas with an empty engine bay,  the lexus lump is a good choice for factory bhp and used engines are very reasonably priced.   As for the adaptor plate for the gearbox, a polish company advertise on ebay and seem very popular with some good feedback..:)

Looking forward to your updates on this one. 


A

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Cheers 😀 I got a very good deal on an engine off a mate from his project that never even got started due to work commitments. It's coming with a plug n play loom so all the hard work is done there. I intend to get the full kit from PMC Motorsport in Poland. There are other ways to do it but by the time you've messed about you've spent nearly as much tbh.

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A quick measure up suggests that it is going to be very tight to fit the longer 6 speed BMW box and if it does fit it is going to push the engine forward meaning the crossmember will need to be cut. So, using the shorter 5spd box is looking like a better option. However, this means that I will need to change the diff ratio. I see that JB engineering do a 3.08 cwp which would be the easiest option https://jb-engineering.co.uk/?page_id=80 but I'd still have the inherently weak Salisbury axle. I see some have shortened an Atlas axle with the same ratio to fit, but I can't seem to find any info on here. Can anyone point me in the right direction please?

 

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if you stick with the existing arrangement you might consider a plate type lsd as that’s probably more suited to spirited driving.(if that’s you plan).. than the Quaife. You could beef up the casing but it’s more likely that drive shafts and ujs will be the weak points.....

There’s always the nuclear option..... fit an excel chassis retain the Toyota sourced box.....the chassis swap is a well trodden route

 

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Cheers. So if the driveshafts and UJs are the weakpoint then there doesn't seem much point in going the Atlas route then. Is this the case or do the diffs fail with big power / torque?

The Excel chassis route sounds very expensive once you factor in all the extra parts, like toyota gearbox and diff. These can be £1K each from what I've seen!! 😮

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A rolling excel chassis with would be my suggested starting point as gearbox (w59) and dif are Toyota supra parts, as are brakes almost  all bits are straight from the Toyota parts bin. You could recoup lots of the costs by selling on your old chassis (if not rotten) especially if it’s been galvanised.

People mention difs failing but I’ve not seen any evidence, ujs fail through lack of maintenance and that they are a suspension link. There are articles on Lotusbits web site on how to make ujs last + a good guide on drive train and chassis upgrades.

recommend looking at the ‘winter project’ thread as the v8 one there has a Jag rear dif (it was an after market chassis that used to be available)

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Agreed, the Eclat rear suspension stresses the driveshaft UJs and can distort the diff casing, which is one reason they went to the top link arrangement found on the Excel - and that was to handle the extra torque of the 2.2 litre engine!

Regarding the point about the tyres limiting the torque the drivetrain has to sustain, you could always fit 195 section multiseason tyres as this is the Lotus approved winter tyre section!

Richard

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Welcome Nick - I see that you are a mate of Froggie of crazy reliant kitten fame. I am a schoolmate/general mucker of Faero (Phil) of ridiculous SAAB 9K fame..

The Toyota V8 engine will fit in the elite/eclat as it's been done before, as has the rover V8. You might find that the chassis space on an S1 is a bit tight for the 6 speed BMW box (unless the box is very small). The eclat S2 chassis and excel chassis can accomodate the toyota supra box (w57/w58?) box which was standard fit on the excel, but I believe it doesn't fit in an S1 chassis without some butchering.

Whilst the diff probably would end up being the weakest part of the architecture, I have yet to break my one (running a modded 4.6 V8) and there are crown wheel and pinion options available (allbeit rare in Scimitar 3.53:1 form and expensive in custom Billy Bellinger form). A powerlok or quaife is also available for the salisbury 7HA diff which is in the back of your car.

Have a look to see which variant you have - the Salisbury 7HA came in 3.73:1 and 4.1:1 variants. The 4.1 is a bit short on a V8 conversion but makes for hilarious fun. The 3.73 is an altogether more sensible option (particularly with a decent overdriven gearbox box) and easily obtainable.

As far as brakes go...the 3 pot Jaguar calipers are actually pretty decent - they were good enough to stop an XJ12. It is the discs themselves that are the limiting factor. I've looked at alternatives and was pursuing a line of equiry on a PSA vented disc of very similar dimensions, which would need re-drilled. I honestly wouldnt bother uprating the calipers to something else with the standard discs asI dont think you would see much improvement. You might also want to look at front wishbone location, as the standard arrangement of controlling the fore-aft movement with little bushes off the end of the ARB is a bit meeeh... Some guys in the states were racing an elite (allbeit one with a much heavier chrysler V8) and they had issues in this department.

Drive shaft UJ's will become a consumable....

Lots of fun to be had!

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I've been looking at the location of the front lower links as well.  I'm converting to trunnion-less uprights and was considering a setup similar to the Esprit lower arms.  You then need an alternative location for the anti-roll bar on the chassis.  This is an ongoing project so I'll let you know of any progress (usually very slow with me!).  I've also found a brake disc that can (probably) be converted into a "rotor", using an aluminium bell and spaced calipers (the last of the E-types used ventilated discs).  I agree with Dunc - the Girling 3-pot is a good strong caliper;  it is the disc itself that is the problem with heat dissipation.  If you want to reduce un-sprung weight you could change to an aluminium hub.  I'm also going to fit an all-electric power steering system.  I had an electric/hydraulic set-up on the Excel and it worked really well,  but still got fed up with the hydraulic side of it.

Pete

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Lads,

Just loving this thread and the tuning options. I have an Elite that is engine less at the moment. I had 2 options in mind, all electric or Lexus V8. Watching this thread with much interest.

Michael

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Do the electric thing!  Probably more expensive than the V8 but rarer/unique?

Pete

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It's been done before.... :-)

There is a chap in California I think who is a member on here. Yellow elite with electrics.

Personally I'd go for octane, but each to their own!

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There was a part elect converted car on fleabay last year , in South Wales if I recall correctly....

 

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Plenty of options for these cars,  they are cheap at the moment due to many been left in a state of decay and neglected for restoration projects for years as the car prices sat to low,  The prices are sadly rising for folks who do not own one,  me included.  But for a project base they are a dream,  grp, classic 70/80s wedge design. 

And now plenty of folks fully restoring them or converting them,  all electric sounds a good idea,  not my cup of tea for a car like this but i like the idea of so many different transplant idea. 

I so need to bag an Elite it hurts lol.


A

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