Originally Posted by Jkuti13
Let me ask this way.
What would you build/swap in for the motor and trans excluding axles, differential, etc to support it, for $15,000
Ok, here's what I would do if this was my car and I had a $15K budget and wanted a high-HP, engine swapped, manual trans RWD G35.
Like I said before, if money was no object, i'd go with the newer Ford 5.0L Coyote out of a Boss 302 with the matching MT-82 6-spd. 444HP. however, that's a pricey driveline, so i'd stick with a (relatively) cheaper LSx/T56 combo that has been done, with swap kits available, and tech help available as well.
Now, my HP goals would be in the 400-500HP range. I think this is perfect for a street car that you just want to take out and have fun with. When you start going past this number, things get interesting. Reliability is a concern, as you want a car you can idle in traffic, and not overheat, and not break the drivetrain when you jump on the throttle. Plus, I don't know if you've ever driven a 500+ HP RWD car on the street, but it can be a handful. I've driven a few and was downright afraid. My friend had a 1000HP turbo Mustang that ran 9's and it was tempermental on the street, overheated, blew automatic trans all the time, and spent more time being worked on than driven. Sure it was amazingly fast, but the end result didn't justify the work and $$ that went into it.
Anyway, back to the LSx. I'd prob grab a new crate motor, or get a used LS3 out of many of the GM vehicles that were equipped with it.
new LS3 can be had for $7500 with 420HP, or you can spend $1K more and get an LS376 with 480HP.
other higher HP engines, but more cost. These are factory built, 400+HP engine that won't overheat, will idle smooth and just make gobs of reliable power.
For trans, T-56. Can be had for $3K new and take the power of the above engine
Swap kit $2500
Plus you need misc items such as clutch, exhaust, shifter, wiring, etc etc. These are the items that would nickel and dime such a project. For this reason I'd probably try and pick up a used LS motor out of a Corvette with attached T-56. Can prob be had for $5-6K giving you more budget for other items.
But, that's the route i'd go. I'd target 400-500HP, LSx motor with T-56 trans, and know that it's been done so I can ask questions, google, etc whenever I get stuck or need help with something. That alone is worth something to me.
Plus a V8 G35 would sound awesome.
That's exactly what I would do here. I'd more than likely look for the used drivetrain to save costs for supporting hardware