Drivetrain Swap

THE TOP 15 POSTS OF 2015: Starting with #15- 1972 BMW 2002 tii “M2” Build with 2.5 Liter E30 M3 Engine Swap

December 31, 2015 in Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / German / Restoration

1What’s not to love about the combination of meshing a ’72 BMW 2002 tii roundie with a bored out 2.5 liter S14 engine from an E30 M3? This “M2” can be found on, a site that any lightweight vintage car enthusiast can easily find themselves getting lost in for quite a while. It wasn’t easy to choose just one to feature here out of the bunch, but there was just something about this particular example with its…

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THE TOP 15 POSTS OF 2015: #13- 1985 Mercedes Benz 500 SEC AMG Restoration

December 31, 2015 in Build In Progress / Drivetrain Swap / German / Home Garage Build / Modification Thread / Restoration / Shared Feature Story

1 1If this Mercedes Benz 500 SEC AMG wide body were on the market for sale today, then it’s current owner/restorer would be exactly the kind of guy we would want to buy it from, and this would be the car. As a “pre-merger” AMG enthusiast and expert (the period of time before Daimler Chrysler purchased AMG in 1999 and moved them in-house to Mercedes Benz), Henric shares his 115 page-and-counting build story with us that was originally featured on The project begins with just a skeleton plucked out of an Arizona junk yard and ends with it fully complete back to the custom condition that it was in when first delivered…

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THE TOP 15 POSTS OF 2015: #8- UPDATED: Monster Lotus Exige Build with BMW M5 V10 Engine Swap

December 31, 2015 in Build In Progress / Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / English / German / Home Garage Build / Modification Thread / Video

155Latest Update October 22nd, 2015:
Since last reporting on this Lotus Exige with BMW M5 V10 engine swap build almost a year ago exactly, it seems Johan has been busy with a lot of progress on his car. Now complete, this little rocket looks like a 3/4 scale McLaren F1. With both being English cars with BMW M Power engines, they do actually have a bit in common. In case you missed it the first time around, check out the original post below, then find all of the latest updates since on the next page following the jump…
Original feature story from October 30th, 2014:
As promised in the previous M3 feature story, we’re back again with another build from Swedish BMW V10 engine swap maniac “JohanZ”, although this time around he is installing it in an extended wheelbase Lotus Exige S2. The 33 page current build-in-progress is nearing completion on, where it outlines in detail all of the modifications and custom fabrication necessary to complete such a complex project of this nature, the first time the combination has ever been embarked upon before. Sure, most car aficionados will point out its similarity in design concept to the Hennessey Venom GT which uses a 1244 hp supercharged Corvette V8 engine, but that car was ultimately built more as a top speed bullet than this one that has curvy circuits on its agenda. See the mad genius’s home garage project unfold on the next page as the car nears its finish…

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And, drumroll please…the #1Top 15 Posts of 2015 IS -Gargantuan Resto-Mod Project: Classic BMW E9 CS Body Fitted Over E39 M5 Drivetrain

December 31, 2015 in Drivetrain Swap / German / Modification Thread / Sleeper

2Everyone is going to have a differing opinion on what they would have done different to individualize this BMW CS/M5 resto mod build by MKO GmbH to their own personal taste, but surely all those vested in the dialog will have to agree that the overall end result is absolutely lethal. In a good way. Sure, some would have opted to leave the original vintage interior in it, and/or have chosen more sedate period correct looking wheels, however it might help to know some vital facts before drawing your own conclusion…

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1987 BMW E28 Alpina B7 Turbo Restoration

November 24, 2015 in Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / German / Home Garage Build / Modification Thread / Restoration

80This 1987 BMW Alpina B7 Turbo was the subject of a full restoration on by its owner/builder, forum member “Pedi”. Living in Norway, he bought the rare but beat up car in 2008 to renovate back from the dead, but the chassis was apparently just too far gone with rust to save. Since the turbocharged inline 6’s have 320 hp and 520 Nm of torque when operating properly, he decided the best thing to do was buy a 518 to strip down and use for its chassis since the lower horsepower model was the least likely to be abused. 2 years later the build began…

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Fiat 128 Build with Rear Wheel Drive and Mid Engine Swap

November 9, 2015 in Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / Home Garage Build / Italian / Modification Thread / Video

(Editor: In case you missed it the first time around in December of last year, we thought we’d bring this impressive build back and ask if anyone wants to share their own project here on CarBuildIndex. Send them in to [email protected])
Wow, a lot of Italian cars on the site recently, one might get the impression that we might actually have a preference here at CBI. You gotta love the ingenuity and creative spirit of this scrappy little home garage brewed ragamuffin, a Fiat 128 Rally that is the subject of a 2 liter Beta Volumex supercharged mid engine swap and rear wheel drive build thread on by its owner, forum member “Nick”. A definite mouthful but it checks all of the right boxes for us and since we’ve been talking about nothing but heavy hitters lately, it’s about time to get our heads out of the clouds and look at something that’s within the confines our of own imaginary budget. Not to suggest or imply that this New Zealander’s project is anything less than brilliant, of course. In fact, we look forward to the completion of his other project too that’s underway with a kit by his pals at, a company that builds incredibly near accurate replicas of Lancia 037’s. Until then, though, come check out this little supercharged Fiat’s build on the following page…

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1976 International Scout Traveler “Ultimate Expedition Build”

October 23, 2015 in American / Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / Modification Thread / Restoration

This 1976 International Scout Traveler is the subject of a build thread on by its owner, forum member “rube bonet”. A tremendous amount of impressive custom fabrication is going into this rig, converting it from 2wd into an all wheeler that will provide reliable transportation for excursions with his family into the Rubicon, Moab and remote areas of Arizona. We can thank for bringing this current project-in-progress to our attention and look forward to seeing it once complete and roaming trails free in the wild. Check it out on the next page, where you will find a link to the full build after the pictures…

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Lancia Fulvia Receiving a Ferrari 348 Engine Swap and Rear Wheel Drive

August 28, 2015 in Build In Progress / Build Thread / Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / Home Garage Build / Italian


How’s this for a build thread? Over on, forum member “Speedmade” is taking a Ferrari 348 engine and sticking it into the front engine bay of a Lancia Fulvia. The current build-in-progress started 2 years ago and is making slow progress, but we can’t wait to see the finished outcome whenever that is. Hopefully sooner than later. It will be rear wheel drive and tube framed, using a Ford bell housing to adapt a Borg-Warner T5 transmission. The engine was picked up over 10 years ago on eBay for just $4,000, we’re wondering how much a 355 or 360 engine can be picked up for now from a wreck. Not surprisingly, this project has got our spun brain doing donuts and rockfords inside our heads! Check the build out on the following page for more details…
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“Corvarado” -MainlyMuscle’s 1969 Corvair with a 500 CID Cadillac V8 Engine Swap

March 30, 2015 in American / Build In Progress / Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / Race Car / Restoration / Shop

Ever wonder what the patrons of drive themselves, the commenters who share their never ending wealth of knowledge with the vintage car community? One of them there who goes by the user name “MainlyMuscle” shared his website with us, appropriately enough called Of the multitude of heavy hitter American iron that can be found there, one in particular that stood out for me was this “Corvardo”. It’s a 1969 Corvair with a Cadillac V8 engine swapped in place of the original flat 6, punching out enough grunt to punt it down the drag strip in the 12’s (although they still want to knock a few seconds off that elapsed time). Feelings of being dragged into the force field of a cliche ubiquitous Ralph Nader reference…fighting temptation…struggling…must…move…on….

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Photos of the Renault R5 Turbo During Production

January 7, 2015 in Build In Progress / Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / Factory Photos / French / Homologation

And just for shits and giggles, how about some pictures of the flared and wild, mid engine Renault R5 Turbo taken during their various stages of production? To comply with Group 4 rallying homologation, the first 400 were made at the Alpine factory before the lower cost Turbo 2 versions were released in 1983 to meet customer demand. Built with steel instead of aluminum on the roof, doors and hatch to keep costs down, as well as using much of the standard front wheel drive and front engine’d Renault 5’s stock interior bits, we wouldn’t kick either out of bed for eating a croissant.

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XCAR VIDEO: “Meet The King Of Cobras”

December 4, 2014 in American / Barn Find / Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / English / Patina / Race Car / Survivor / Video

The man behind our previous story about this survivor Cobra, Lynn Park, talks about his life long fascination and collection of Shelby Cobras in this latest video by XCar Films. Say what you may about his “cluttered” garage, we prefer it this way with all of the character that it speaks in volumes to any hands-off surgery room type that most collectors prefer. And if you’re here, we think you probably do too…



Renault Clio Build with Rear Mounted VW VR6 and Rear Wheel Drive

September 5, 2014 in Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / French / German / Home Garage Build / Modification Thread / Sleeper / Video

This Renault Clio is the subject of a build thread on by its talented owner/builder, Andy Bloxsome. His appreciation for everything-VR6-powered led him to buy the lightweight economy car specifically to strip down and rebuild with a custom turbocharged 3 liter VW Corrado engine, although the German’s newly transplanted home is now in the rear of the little French car behind the front seats. With 430 hp and 430 ft lb of torque driven to its rear wheels to handle, the chassis was modified by cutting the floor out and fabricating the front subframe from a Corrado VR6 to fit in back, along with the wishbones, sway bars and hubs from a Mk2 Golf 16 Valve. If that’s not enough to pique your car enthusiast bone right to the marrow, just check out the 50+ pictures of the build on the next page, along with a dyno run video thrown in to back up the stupendous power claim. This is just the type of stealthy build we like best here at CBI, as the Clio looks like it could have been factory built in house by Renault’s own skunk works race department and its wolf in sheep’s clothing appearance would be the perfect tool to hunt down unsuspecting R5 Turbos to play with, too. Enjoy the top quality build here…
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1974 MGB-GT Build with Ford 302 V8 Engine Swap

September 4, 2014 in American / Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / English / Restoration

This 1974 MGB-GT project was featured on and is worth checking out if you have even the slightest bit of interest in American V8 engines being stuffed into pint-sized English cars. If you’re anything like us, then you’ll appreciate what’s going on here. While we could nitpick here and there about a few personal preference details that we would have done differently, who really cares, just look at it! The overall package and its execution look absolutely jaw dropping stunning and we are sure a chance to hop behind the wheel would provide the same result.

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1987 BMW 325 to Alpina B6 3.5 Turbo Tribute Build

September 3, 2014 in Build In Progress / Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / German / Home Garage Build / Modification Thread / Replica/Tribute Build / Restoration

This 1987 BMW 325 is currently the subject of a build thread on by its builder/owner, forum member “e30m3s54turbo”. He is creating an Alpina B6 3.5 Turbo Tribute using a virtual plethora of authentic period correct Alpina parts that he’s been collecting for years, along with an engine swap from an m30b35 (decoded from BMW-talk as a late 80’s to early 90’s 535, 635 and 735 model engine), plus turbocharger. Impressively, at the same time he has 2 other e30 build threads going simultaneously to cover the gamete of aftermarket German tuners during that epic pre-Bangle era in BMW history. Those include an AC Schnitzer project and an ’88 M3 being built as a tribute to a Harge H35-24, helping earn him cred in our books as an e30 3 Series authoritarian…

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Video Interview of James Glickenhaus Reveals A Look At What’s In His Garage and His Future

July 7, 2014 in Build In Progress / Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / Homologation / Italian / prototype / Race Car / Video

The following Fast Lane Daily video on the next page interviews car collector extraordinaire James Glickenhaus. You might remember his outrageous automotive-related exploits from our previous feature detailing the build and creation of P4/5 Competizione, the race version of his Enzo-based P4 supercar. I’ll leave the details of the video to viewing it yourself, but towards the end he talks about the creation of his next project called SCG (Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus) 003, a bespoke car expected to be ready to race by the 2015 24 Hours of Nurburgring. An additional teaser video of it is attached after, so please enjoy it and be sure not to miss seeing Steve McQueen’s ex Baja Boot in the background of his garage in the first video, which otherwise would go unmentioned…

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