Lotus Elan

Modern Engine And Gearbox

PostPost by: markn79 » Wed Apr 13, 2005 9:57 pm

Hi all,

I'm the owner of a +2 with a damaged 5speed box. I am considering a modern engine (Zetec?) and gearbox for the car, so I can use it daily with no worries. I know there's a Zetec kit from Spydercars, but it's awfull expensive (for me). Wouldn't it be possible to use and modify the existing/original frame to use a Zetec engine and gearbox?

I can't do the above myself, so I'm curious what a Lotus shop/person will charge for the work and parts.


Many thanks in advance,

Mark
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Wed Apr 13, 2005 10:40 pm

Mark
Damaged five speed box?

John
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PostPost by: storrar54 » Wed Apr 13, 2005 10:47 pm

When I spoke to Spyder about their conversion they said that the only way to get the engine and Ford gearbox in was to move it forward several inches which is why the front crossmember (tubular on a spyder) is modified to a D section allowing the assembly to move forward, with a standard Lotus or Spyder chassis the engine fouls the cross member, this is why a straight swop for a Ford 5 speed box is difficult without this mod.
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PostPost by: Foxie » Wed Apr 13, 2005 11:02 pm

Mark,

Speaking from 20 years experience, the standard twin cam can be a remarkably reliable engine if it is not bodged.

Mating a Zetec with a standard transmission/rotoflexes will not make the car more reliable, much more likely less.

Having travelled to England to see the Zetec demonstration model, I very much doubt if someone could reliably design and build a once-off conversion cheaper than Spyder's factory produced product. It is not a straight forward swap, they have put a lot of work and experience into it. The brakes, differential, drive shafts, and wheel bearings have all been replaced with heavier duty items, and the chassis designed to accept these.

Your cheapest option is to rebuild your 5 speed. Try Graham Boulton in Norfolk or Alan Voigts in Liverpool. I would recommend a Luminition kit to replace your points if you don't already have one.

Hope this helps,

Sean Murray
68 Elan +2, 70 Elan +2s
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PostPost by: markn79 » Thu Apr 14, 2005 5:38 am

Hi all,

Thank you for all your answers. I guess it's either the full spyder-kit or fixing my gearbox. I have emailed Andy from Spyder and asked what a complete conversion will cost me. I guess I could sell some of my own working parts in the process. If it's too expensive I will have to get the gearbox repaired. It would be nice with the extra tourque and power from the Zetec though :)

- Mark
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PostPost by: storrar54 » Thu Apr 14, 2005 8:39 am

Why not put fuel injection onto the twincam, if you use a lumenition optical distributor you can use this to trigger an Emerald ECU and even have sequential injection with Jenvey bolt-on throttle bodies. All the advantages of starting, tuning and power of about 150bhp as standard. Who needs a Zetec?
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PostPost by: lotuselanman » Sat Apr 16, 2005 10:07 am

:angry: :angry: :D :D :D
Giday Mark,
My name is Les and I live in South East Queensland Australia. From here on known as Godzone.
I am the owner of a +2 with an ORIGINAL Lotus chassis, over a drawn out period I am fitting a Zetec engine up against the Ford 4 speed 2000E gearbox. I have done the physical research to fit a TYPE 9 Ford gearbox, it will fit. I will use a 3.55 diff and when thry monryallows a step up to 14" wheels. The disavantage with the Type 9 5 speed is that 1st gear is a crawler compared with the 2000E. Now if you had the Lotus 5 speed which uses the gear train from a Austin Maxi or some other crap the Type 9 would possibley be a good move up. When did BMC ever do anything propperly ?
The Zetec will bolt up to a standard Ford gearbox bolt pattern that included the 2000E, 5 speed and the Type 9 Ford unit.
Now the Zetec engine. The reason for the Spyder and other conversion 30mm spacer is used retain the Zetec flywheel. Believe me it is large enough and heavey enough to keep a Mack Truck rolling. Buy or have machined a flywheel or have aX-flow flywheel adapted and you eliminate the need to move the engine foreward. Moving it foreward it a major backward step.
Engine mounts are very simple to fabricate and othe items like water rails can be purchased ex UK.
How much power do you want ?, at present you have the very questionable 130HP that Lotus claimed, is that adequate? If so you can use a completely bog standard 2Ltr Zetec with all the original ECU and EFI and if fitted properly 100 0/0 reliability.
What else do you need ?
See ya, Les
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PostPost by: berni29 » Wed Apr 27, 2005 2:25 am

Hiya Les

I was under the impression that there are too many sensors without homes to get the standard zetec ecu and efi working properly in a plus 2. How about getting it under the bonnet as well? I am itching to have a go at putting one in a standard chassis. Good idea with the flywheel. I heard about an article that described how to convert some 40DCOE's into throttle bodies to take injectors. Anyone seen that? Sounds like a great idea!

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