LS mated to stock 40 series drive-train (1 Viewer)

Oct 24, 2019
Kitchener Ontario Canada
Hey Guys i'm interested in getting an 40 series but I want it to be a bit more functional for daily driving and the occasional offloading/camping as well as be able to tow an 18ft fishing boat. I've been seriously considering many options of various price points and difficulty levels. I have access to a welder, oxy cutting torch, Solidworks engineering design software and a small 2 car garage, I'm no professional fabricator or mechanic but I have a good understanding of vehicle dynamics and mechanical systems. and no experience working on a 40 series

Budget = $15k- $25k CAD

Option 1

Simple 5.3L LS mated to stock tranny and TC

Advance adapters Marks 4wd Land Cruiser stock 4 & 5 SP to Chevy LS V8 Conversion kit (#713027-EK)

$500 for 5.3
$3200 for conversion kit
$800 for wiring

with this option I'm assuming it will be mostly plug and play but my concerns are whether the stock transmission and TC can hold up against 'MAX' 350hp 400ftlbs or even just the stock 285hp and 325ftlbs. Are there certain year trannys or models that are stronger than others?

Option 2

LS (5.3/6.0) mated to an NV4500 to an NP205 or stock transfer case

Advance Adapters GM NV4500 4WD to GM 32 spline NP205 with figure 8 front bolt pattern. Transfer Case Adapter (repl.TH400). (#50-0206)

$800 for adapter
$800 for engine
$1800 for NV4500
$1800 for NP205
$800 for wiring
$100 for self fabricated engine and Tranny mounts
$2000 for unexpected complications

with this option I'm not sure how much extra $$ and complications will arise with making custom length drive shafts, shaft angles, differential locations, shift linkage mounting, speed sensor readings etc.

Option 3

This one is a bit of a long shot but its my IDEAL dream set up

5.9 12v 6BT cummins mated to an NV4500 to an Atlas or Orion Transfer case

$2000 for cummins
$1800 for NV4500
$4000 for transfer case
$2000 for misc. u-joints, Drive shafts
$10000 for Axle upgrades/strengthening

I've heard many people advise against the 5.9 because of all the extra weight, height, length, too much power for the frame ect. and I cant find many other people who have done the swap, it might be a huge job but I still want to try it eventually. The dream is to have a bulletproof reliable and powerful rig, I want to be able to run 35's+ on an overland rig, I want all the power id need but also 25+ mpg with all the extra weight of multiple gas tanks, rooftop tent, tools, recovery gear.. etc. if anyone has any easier alternatives to a cummins I'm all ears

other than drive train I plan on doing a 4" lift and locking diffs which I haven't looked into yet but any recommendations would be helpful!



Aug 20, 2015
Maine and New Hampshire
Having done an LS swap in the last couple of years, granted on a Jeep LJ, the costs will be higher than you are predicting for any of the variants you list. Everything will cost more than you think. Exhaust needs to be fabbed. Truck manifolds probably won't work, need to source new. Do you really want to put in a $500 motor with 180K miles without an alternator or starter refresh? Wiring is a pita, even with a new harness. Gauges will need to be swapped and are expensive. If you can weld, you're ahead of the game because that adds up. You'll need a new radiator, you'll need to source hoses that fit. Air intake fab, etc. I'm not trying to shut down your plan, but realistically you need to double all of your cost estimates above, and triple the time expected.

I have a Cummins 4bt with H55 and split in one of my 40s. I've grown to like it. I think the 6bt, nv4500 and case would be too long for a 40, there wouldn't be any driveshaft left. The 4bt is fun, but the Cummins requires a SOA to fit, so that's another big project. At that height and short wheelbase, I wouldn't want to tow anything.

Research A LOT before you jump in. Its a bigger project than it seems. In hindsight, I wouldn't do the swap in my Jeep again, and a lot of the shakedown pain contributed to my selling it shortly after it was sorted. I'm happy I made the jump to land cruisers, but there were some hard and expensive lessons there.
Jan 6, 2012
I would say with your circumstances I would do option 1. However I would consider a split case transfercase out of a fj60 since they are quieter and make for a nicer driver of a land cruiser and they are also very strong. I thing a toyota 4 speed or 5 speed would hold up to the power fine. I would probably figure about closer to 8k for the swap. A 6bt is doable-Ive seen it done-but I think would be far more involved and likely much more expensive. It also would not be a great driver in a 40. In a 60 or a 80 a 6bt would be great. My experience in fabrication has told me that while going the fancier route is cool, its rarely worth it. I rather would take the easier route to get the rig on the road faster and go have fun.

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