LJ78 2LTE to ?________? Engine Swap (2 Viewers)

Joined
Sep 3, 2014
Messages
22
Location
Kamloops, BC
Hey Cruiser Community!

Since I've bought my LJ78 with the dreaded 2LTE engine I have been bouncing the idea around of swapping my engine out with a more powerful engine (97hp just wasn't cutting it).

Just before Christmas, I blew my Turbo. So the question was: Do I sell the truck for a fraction of what I paid for it and start out with a better truck whenever I'd be able to save up enough money for one (we're not talking a couple months either...)? Or do I source a more powerful engine with higher durability (no major common issues like the 2LTE head)?

I decided it was in my best interest to look at replacing the engine. I have done some research into engines that could be swapped (fits in the engine bay, transmission bolt pattern, and ECU considerations).

This is what I've come up with so far,
1KZT: Seems like the best option so far. Hits 125hp which I've read is enough of a difference; however I am skeptical seeing as how it's only 28hp more... The bolt pattern for the transmission seems to match from what I've read, and the ECU already in my LJ78 should work for this engine.
Estimate engine price $3500

3L: This has been considered as I've seen that some people have already done the swap for the reliability. However, I don't see the point in doing all the work for an engine swap for no hp increase (also 97hp).

1KD-FTV: I know significantly less about this engine. I've only seen rumor that this engine has had successful swaps into an LJ78. This engine sports a much larger 170hp making this engine a much flashier pick. I'm really not sure yet what would have to be done to be able to swap in this engine. Because of that, I'm not sure if it's going to be way to big of a job...
Estimate engine price $5500​

I'm a novice wrencher for sure, but I've got a lot of support from a fellow wrencher that has a lot of experience and access to professional tools and wants in on my swap.


I'm very new to the world of Cruisers and any help and/or advice would be really appreciated!
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2012
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Canary Islands (Spain)
What sort of mileage and condition of a 1KZT does $3500 (assume CDN?) buy?

I'm interested how the 2LTE ECU will work with the mechanically injected 1KZT. Do you need to keep the old ECU for something else? auto box?
 
Joined
Sep 3, 2014
Messages
22
Location
Kamloops, BC
Sorry I wrote this in a rush.
The ECU works with the 1KZTE. The 1KZT doesn't need the ECU as far as I've read.
And I can no longer find the link for the 1KZT but I remember finding it for around that price.
 

GTSSportCoupe

2LTE abuser
Joined
Mar 23, 2012
Messages
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Victoria, BC, Canada
One important question: Is your LJ78 manual or automatic? If automatic, you have to consider what to do about the electronic control of the transmission when you swap to a different engine.

Here is how I see it:

1KZTE - Fairly easy upgrade, as this engine came in the later KZJ78 anyhow. The 1KZTE ECU can control Prado transmission. Still risk of head problems.

1KZT - very desirable because of the mechanical injection system, but would require some creativity to keep the auto transmission working properly. However it would be perfect with a manual transmission. Still risk head problems.

3L - Again, will require creativity to run the auto trans. Less power than what you have. If you turbo it to regain power, you can still run into the same head problems you already face with the 2TLE. And in fact, the 2LTE is better built for boost with stronger pistons and a lower compression ratio. So really there is no point IMHO.

1KD-FTV - Will be very expensive to obtain. Is a newer electronic engine, so you will need to consider there will be wiring challenges. Will be a pretty unique swap, so you will be breaking trail on it. Hard to get parts for. Also, has a CRD injection system which I've heard can be failure prone and expensive to repair.

If my 2LTE blew up tomorrow, I think hands down I would install a Lexus 1UZ-FE 4.0l V8 engine. This swap is well proven into Prados. It's almost like the engine belongs in there. Fuel economy will be the same as the 2LTE, but it makes three times as much power. It is one of the most over engineered long lasting engines Toyota has ever made. It can be obtained for less than $1500 by simply purchasing a running Lexus LS400.

One of your easiest and most affordable options is to fix your turbo, sell your Prado, and buy a more suitable land cruiser. If you wanted to stick with a PRado, you could buy this one that already has a 3B-turbo in it: http://www.kijiji.ca/v-cars-trucks/...er/1044501848?enableSearchNavigationFlag=true Or you could look at other cruisers like the HDJ81, HJ61 etc.

Incidentally, I am upgrading to a Mitsubishi TD04L-13T turbo and will be selling my OEM turbo. My OEM turbo is in great shape and was rebuilt about 20,000kms ago. I'll be selling my OEM turbo soonish, so if you interested, let me know.

Here is what a Lexus V8 looks like in a PRado:
lj703-jpg.948327

lj702-jpg.948328
 
Last edited:
Joined
Mar 16, 2007
Messages
974
Location
New Zealand
if you want more powerful engine the easy fix is a gas engine so 2x on the lexus 1UZ swap if its legal to do so in your country, although they are getting a bit older now they have been a common easy swap over the years and as GTSSportCoupe said they were just about made to fit in there, I've driven a few they go really well in a LJ cruiser :)
 

GTSSportCoupe

2LTE abuser
Joined
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If you are interested in learning more about the 1uz swap, here is a wiring manual for doing 1uz swaps:

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B0WE7dVhvJd_UFRKeEptSTVqaTg/edit?pli=1

And here are some pictures from a guy in NZ that does the 1uz Prado swaps for clients:

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10152403815424118.1073741871.233919699117&type=3

Here is some general info on the 1uz engines:

http://www.lextreme.com/1uzfe_info.html

They do bolt up to our transmissions. LS400 1uz headers fit between our frame rails just fine. As you can see from the pictures, a lot of stuff such as the rad and air filter etc. line up quite well. I've researched it quite a bit, so if you consider the swap and have questions, shoot me a pm. There is a Prado owner who is a mechanic that lives in the lower mainland who is also considering this swap in the near future. If he does it, I'm sure he'll be able to provide a lot of direction to others of us that are thinking of it.
 

Josie'sLandCruiser

Stop calling it a "FJ."
Joined
Feb 4, 2005
Messages
5,215
Location
Seattle, USA
Hi all,

I have a friend that swapped-out the dead 2L-TE in his LJ73 for the 3.4L V-6 gasser from an early Tacoma pickup.
Lots more power, fuel mileage is fair. The H151 manual transmission in the LJ can easily be adapted to this engine using the bell housing from the earlier 3.0L V-6 engine.

Regards,

Alan

EDIT:

Adding a TRD supercharger to the 3.4L V-6 makes my friend even more happy! :doh:
 
Last edited:
Joined
Sep 3, 2014
Messages
22
Location
Kamloops, BC
Sorry I left this hanging so long. I work long hours at work and don't usually have much time to reply. Thanks everyone for the great replies!
I've only got a few minutes to type right now.
I have decided to do the 1UZ swap and have found four LS400's in the Lower mainland area (unfortunately none up north) that I am strongly considering picking up one this weekend.

http://vancouver.craigslist.ca/pml/ctd/4930716331.html
http://www.kijiji.ca/v-cars-trucks/nanaimo/1992-lexus-ls-sedan/1059746975
http://vancouver.craigslist.ca/rds/cto/4935560641.html
http://vancouver.craigslist.ca/nvn/cto/4874554107.html

I am leaning strongly towards the '92 Nanaimo vehicle because I am concerned about the mileage on the '91s and I'd rather not spend more than $2k. I am aware of the power steering pump failure of the 1UZ that causes the alternator to fail and aware that I will be most likely replacing the water pump when i replace the timing belt.

Just wondering if anyone had any thoughts on mileage and/or other typical 1UZ problems.
GTSSportCoupe I will be contacting you soon hahaha

Thanks for all the help so far Everyone!
 

GTSSportCoupe

2LTE abuser
Joined
Mar 23, 2012
Messages
7,402
Location
Victoria, BC, Canada
Sorry I left this hanging so long. I work long hours at work and don't usually have much time to reply. Thanks everyone for the great replies!
I've only got a few minutes to type right now.
I have decided to do the 1UZ swap and have found four LS400's in the Lower mainland area (unfortunately none up north) that I am strongly considering picking up one this weekend.

http://vancouver.craigslist.ca/pml/ctd/4930716331.html
http://www.kijiji.ca/v-cars-trucks/nanaimo/1992-lexus-ls-sedan/1059746975
http://vancouver.craigslist.ca/rds/cto/4935560641.html
http://vancouver.craigslist.ca/nvn/cto/4874554107.html

I am leaning strongly towards the '92 Nanaimo vehicle because I am concerned about the mileage on the '91s and I'd rather not spend more than $2k. I am aware of the power steering pump failure of the 1UZ that causes the alternator to fail and aware that I will be most likely replacing the water pump when i replace the timing belt.

Just wondering if anyone had any thoughts on mileage and/or other typical 1UZ problems.
GTSSportCoupe I will be contacting you soon hahaha

Thanks for all the help so far Everyone!

Congrats on the decision! You have lots of work ahead of you. If I were you I'd see how low you can get the guy in White Rock. Much less of a drive than coming over the the Island.

Pradocruzer is also doing this swap and is a professional auto mechanic living in the lower mainland. Keep an eye out, as he may start a project thread on his 1UZ LJ78. He'll be the guy to learn from.
 
Joined
Sep 3, 2014
Messages
22
Location
Kamloops, BC
Update on what you’ve missed:

LJ78: I have drained the oil and coolant and everything is removed from the engine except for the exhaust, engine mounts, and the bell-housing. Essentially the engine is ready to be removed.

LS400: Picked the one up in White Rock. The alternator failed right on my way out of Vancouver. My luck… I’ve read that the power steering pumps in these vehicles are prone to leaking on (and failing) the alternator. The alternator came out dry and the power steering pump showed no signs of leaking, so it must’ve just failed from age?... Put a new alternator in and drove it home. No more problems were had on the 1500km trip home!

What’s coming up:

LJ78: I’m going to pull the engine and begin on removing all the wiring in the truck (as I will be doing a complete rewire as part of this swap). I’ve got to actually remove the existing A/C, power steering, and alternator from the vehicle. And remove the existing ECU.

LS400: Time to take this running car and tear it apart! I’m going to start by removing the battery then all the wiring from the engine (labelling and taking lots of pictures of course). I won’t be sure what order I’ll do the next steps in until I pull the plastic covers off the engine this weekend; but my next steps will be: remove fuel lines, remove connections from AC/power steering/alternator off the vehicle (I’d like to keep these on the engine during the transfer if possible).

LS400 New Parts: I plan on replacing a few things on the engine that are prone to failure or just realistically should be changed after 200k. The grocery list so far is as follows,

· Full Gasket Set: I doubt I’ll get deep enough to replace all the gaskets, but I figure this will save me some time in the long run if I have any that need replacing.

· Ignition Tune-up Kit (includes iridium spark plugs, distributor rotor, distributor cap, and new plug wires): Figured if I’m ripping it out, I might as well give ‘er a tune up.

· Timing Belt Component Kit (includes a water pump, idler bearing, tensioner bearing, timing belt, and water pump gasket/o-rings): Don’t really think this needs explaining.

· Serpentine Belt, Belt Tensioner, and Idler Pulley: Seems like the right thing to do after 200k?...

· Temp Sender/Sensor for the Coolant: I really want to make sure the cooling system works well after my 2LTE nightmare…

· Oil Pressure Sender/Switch: Seems easier to do now then after the engine is in.

· Oil Filter: Self Explanatory…

· Fuel Filter: Self Explanatory…

· Power Steering Pump: If these are prone to leaking on the alternator and causing it to fail, I think it’s a good idea to put a new one in to try and mitigate the issue.

· 180f Thermostat with Gasket: If I’m draining the coolant, I might as well replace the thermostat.

Answers/Questions:

The LJ78 has a standard transmission so I won’t have to worry about figuring out the auto junk.

I’ve read a bit into the 1UZ article by Phil Bradshaw, and I got the impression that the bell-housing from the vehicles won’t be able to merge the transmission from the LJ78 to the 1UZ… Am I misguided in this?
 
Joined
May 21, 2006
Messages
433
Location
Rotoiti, New Zealand
Hi mate, good luck with the swap. You'll like the power. Don't expect the same mileage though. Mine used about 12L/100km with the 2L-TE & about 16L/100km with the 1UZ.

Cheers
Clint
 

GTSSportCoupe

2LTE abuser
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Victoria, BC, Canada
The LJ78 has a standard transmission so I won’t have to worry about figuring out the auto junk.

I’ve read a bit into the 1UZ article by Phil Bradshaw, and I got the impression that the bell-housing from the vehicles won’t be able to merge the transmission from the LJ78 to the 1UZ… Am I misguided in this?

Wow, good progress. The fact that you have a manual trans will make things a lot harder for you. If you do a google search for "1uz to r154 adapter" you'll find the part you need. Something like this: http://www.xcessivemanufacturing.com/ONLINESTORE.html?cid=50&step=4&pid=285 There are lots of manufacturers; you'll need to do your research to figure out what is best for you.

The other part that makes the manual trans tricky is the electrical part. The 1UZ never came with a manual trans. So you'll have to figure out how to deal with this if the 1UZ computer you have is designed to also run the auto trans. You may have to pick-up a mega squirt kit or something like that.

Also, Pradocruzer messaged me that he has the 1uz mounted and bolted into his LJ78. So he is also making progress in parallel to you. He has an auto trans though, so doesn't have to deal with the manual trans challenges.

Anyhow, luckly all the guys who use the 1uz in the sports car world use manual transmission. So you just need to read and do your research on the best way to proceed.

Good luck!
 
Joined
Apr 24, 2015
Messages
5
One important question: Is your LJ78 manual or automatic? If automatic, you have to consider what to do about the electronic control of the transmission when you swap to a different engine.

Here is how I see it:

1KZTE - Fairly easy upgrade, as this engine came in the later KZJ78 anyhow. The 1KZTE ECU can control Prado transmission. Still risk of head problems.

1KZT - very desirable because of the mechanical injection system, but would require some creativity to keep the auto transmission working properly. However it would be perfect with a manual transmission. Still risk head problems.

3L - Again, will require creativity to run the auto trans. Less power than what you have. If you turbo it to regain power, you can still run into the same head problems you already face with the 2TLE. And in fact, the 2LTE is better built for boost with stronger pistons and a lower compression ratio. So really there is no point IMHO.

1KD-FTV - Will be very expensive to obtain. Is a newer electronic engine, so you will need to consider there will be wiring challenges. Will be a pretty unique swap, so you will be breaking trail on it. Hard to get parts for. Also, has a CRD injection system which I've heard can be failure prone and expensive to repair.

If my 2LTE blew up tomorrow, I think hands down I would install a Lexus 1UZ-FE 4.0l V8 engine. This swap is well proven into Prados. It's almost like the engine belongs in there. Fuel economy will be the same as the 2LTE, but it makes three times as much power. It is one of the most over engineered long lasting engines Toyota has ever made. It can be obtained for less than $1500 by simply purchasing a running Lexus LS400.

One of your easiest and most affordable options is to fix your turbo, sell your Prado, and buy a more suitable land cruiser. If you wanted to stick with a PRado, you could buy this one that already has a 3B-turbo in it: http://www.kijiji.ca/v-cars-trucks/...er/1044501848?enableSearchNavigationFlag=true Or you could look at other cruisers like the HDJ81, HJ61 etc.

Incidentally, I am upgrading to a Mitsubishi TD04L-13T turbo and will be selling my OEM turbo. My OEM turbo is in great shape and was rebuilt about 20,000kms ago. I'll be selling my OEM turbo soonish, so if you interested, let me know.

Here is what a Lexus V8 looks like in a PRado:
lj703-jpg.948327

lj702-jpg.948328
A question on removal of throttle butterfly; Of the 2 I saw I am sure it is the larger one opened by the accelerator, how then do you accelerate?
 

GTSSportCoupe

2LTE abuser
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Victoria, BC, Canada
A question on removal of throttle butterfly; Of the 2 I saw I am sure it is the larger one opened by the accelerator, how then do you accelerate?

Diesels are controlled by injected volume of diesel, not by limiting air volume. You are getting mixed up with the fundamentals of gasoline vs diesel engine operation. Many diesels don't even have a throttle.
 
Joined
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Messages
5
Ok then. Wish i could see a pic. I have seen trucks with the accl. cable at the diesel pump. But on this efi, accl. cable goes to this butterfly.
 

GTSSportCoupe

2LTE abuser
Joined
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Messages
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Victoria, BC, Canada
Ok then. Wish i could see a pic. I have seen trucks with the accl. cable at the diesel pump. But on this efi, accl. cable goes to this butterfly.

You're right. When removing the throttle plate, you must still leave the throttle shaft and throttle sensor for the computer to read - basically drive by wire. Anyhow, this is getting off topic from the original post. PM me for more info, or start a new thread.
 
Joined
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Messages
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Kamloops, BC
Hey! I'm Back. It's been a busy few months with work and personal things but I'm back and working on the swap again.

I've bought the Lexus LS400. So far I've pulled the battery, drained the fluids, removed the rad, and removed the air intake piping (covered it up though).

I plan this weekend on carefully removing the wiring loom (and marking the wires) and the ECU. If that all goes well I plan on pulling the 1UZ this weekend as well. Luckily I have access to an overhead crane as well as a vehicle lift through work. I'm not sure if it would be easier to drop the engine or to pull it out...? Any thoughts?

I plan on leaving the transmission in the vehicle as I will not need it for the swap into the truck (the LJ78 already has the R151F Transmission in it).
Silly question: when I pull the engine is it okay to leave it sitting on a large block of wood on the ground? Will I have trouble keeping it upright?

Anyways, I'll be taking lots of pictures this weekend but I don't have the best internet connection up here so they might not see the forum until I move to Vancouver in August.

Wish me luck!
 

GTSSportCoupe

2LTE abuser
Joined
Mar 23, 2012
Messages
7,402
Location
Victoria, BC, Canada
Hey! I'm Back. It's been a busy few months with work and personal things but I'm back and working on the swap again.

I've bought the Lexus LS400. So far I've pulled the battery, drained the fluids, removed the rad, and removed the air intake piping (covered it up though).

I plan this weekend on carefully removing the wiring loom (and marking the wires) and the ECU. If that all goes well I plan on pulling the 1UZ this weekend as well. Luckily I have access to an overhead crane as well as a vehicle lift through work. I'm not sure if it would be easier to drop the engine or to pull it out...? Any thoughts?

I plan on leaving the transmission in the vehicle as I will not need it for the swap into the truck (the LJ78 already has the R151F Transmission in it).
Silly question: when I pull the engine is it okay to leave it sitting on a large block of wood on the ground? Will I have trouble keeping it upright?

Anyways, I'll be taking lots of pictures this weekend but I don't have the best internet connection up here so they might not see the forum until I move to Vancouver in August.

Wish me luck!

Good work man!

Pallets work great for holding engines. You can use a couple tie down straps to hold the motor in place on the pallet. If you can't find a pallet, old tires work well too, just set the oil pan into the old tire. I suppose wood blocks could work too if setup right. Even a sheet of plywood in combination with the wood blocks could work. If you want to work on the motor, an engine stand is nice though.

Keep up the good work. I know Pradocruzer is loving his V8 Prado now that his transmission is shifting right. He say's it's such a sweet combo he can't even put into words how good it is. One day I'll have to head over and check his rig out.
 

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