Why would you want to convert to a V8?
V8 conversions offer more power, better fuel economy, and in most cases, more reliability with factory and after-market fuel injection systems. Not too long ago V8 conversions were rather simple and straight forward due to the fact there were fewer choices and options. The kits were pretty much designed to mate a small block Chevy V8 to the original transmission in your Land Cruiser and get it mounted into the frame rails. That was in the past. Now there are numerous adapter choices using a number of different transmissions. Automatic transmission adapter kits are available using GM’s T350, 700R4, 4L60E, 4L80E, and others. When it comes to manual transmissions, there are even more choices. Some of the more popular transmission choices are the NV4500, SM465, and the SM420. All of these GM transmissions offer a low first gear with the NV4500 being a 5-speed with an over-drive 5th gear. Toyota factory five speed overdrive transmissions are also a newer preferred option for Land Cruiser purist. Still another option, is to use a Ranger Torque Splitter (overdrive) in conjunction with your original transmission. Because of this wide range of possibilities, we highly suggest you talk to one of our technical advisers before starting to order parts. This will save you time, help you get a clear picture of what is involved in doing a conversion and will help keep you from buying something you may not end up being happy with.
Our main adapter kits are manufactured by Advance Adapters. Advance Adapters has been manufacturing engine and transmission adapter kits for Four Wheel Drive vehicles for over 30 years and are world renowned for their quality of manufacture and expertise in this field When buying adapter kits from Man A Fre, you benefit from over 60 years of Land Cruiser only experience, coupled with Advance Adapters leadership in the conversion field.
One of the most common problems associated with V-8 engine conversions is overheating due to the extra heat produced by V8’s and improper alignment of the radiator to the engine fan. To eliminate these problems, we suggest the combination of the larger engine fan and fan clutch with space permitting. We also recommend the use of a high volume water pump with matching high volume thermostat. Conversions using automatic transmissions will need a transmission oil cooler and an engine oil cooler is a good idea for any application.
Specifically to FJ60,62 V8 Engine/Transmission conversions
The FJ60,62 Land Cruisers are substantially longer and roomier in the engine compartment than our little buddy the venerable FJ40. This extra length lends itself very nicely to some of the more desirable conversions available for V8’s, by making drive shaft modifications unnecessary in most cases. The Chevy motor mount kit can either be bolted or welded into place. On conversions that retain the stock 4 speed or 5 speed transmission the original transmission mount will be able to be retained in it’s stock location. On automatic conversions the original transmission mount will be relocated under the transfer to transmission adapter housing and new transfer shifter mounting bracket is provided. The radiator will be approximately 2 inch off center of the new V8 engine position, but should not require relocation, especially if the cooling system is beefed up per our recommendations in the V8 introduction. The exhaust manifold should be late model Chevy units or automatics can use Advance Adapters Slick-Fit headers with a slight firewall modification on the passenger side.
Before beginning your conversion project we highly suggest researching your local state agency regarding smog compliance. When doing a V8 conversion it is usually easy to comply with emission laws if you know in advance what they are.