Another high-tech engine
that can be fitted in a Mini is the Suzuki. There are several variants
ranging from 1,000cc to 1,300cc. There's even a turbo-charged version!
Read on for examples of how Suzuki engines have been used to replace the
to see Chris's car match a 5 litre V8 Ford Mustang 5.0 GT at the
drag-strip? Click here for the video
complete with sound...
originally put the engine in the car by accident, I really wanted
the turbo of the engine to put on the mini lump, but after that
was done the engine was not up to the job so out came the minis
and in went the Sprint's.
The first time I put the engine in I underestimated the power of
the 3 cylinder power plant, see I didn't have any specs on the engine,
and I didn't known what I was in for. Well, in went the engine,
and really after many days or was it weeks of just staring at both
pieces I managed to get the assembly into the Mini's sub-frame The
thing is I didn't really know much about this sort of conversion
in the beginning. The problem was that I started cutting before
adding metal in key places, so I actually weakened the frame instead
of making it stronger, lesson learned, measure twice, cut once!
cut away part of the right side tower which was a no no, in order
to keep the alternator at the back of the engine, eventually I located
it at the top next to the intake that worked out well. the other
problem was I did not take angles on the engine the first time so
things were out of whack.
the engine fits well, I put 1 inch box tubing along the side of
the frame and welded that into place, then put a 2 inch piece across
the front of the frame, the two sides were angled, and space was
left on each side to to allow the frame to be secured at the front,
the small cutout at the right front is for the oil filter. The other
thing that has to be done is to cut away a portion of the sub-frame
where the Minis axles pass through.
So the part where
the bolt goes through the frame to hold the lower arm was also cut
away and a new part was put in and a new bolt reinstalled, gussets
were also added throughout the frame as extra stress points. The
holes on the back side of the frame were also enlarged to allow
the back of the gearbox to clear the frame. mounts from a Geo Metro
were modified slightly and were fitted at the back and the right
side by the timing belt for better isolation and strength
engine is now at the proper angle, axles are now straight and the
whole conversion feels so much better. By the way the engine is
rated at 70 BHP, and 106 ft lbs of torque and the engine assembly
only weighs 120 lbs that's with the transmission but does not include
starter, alternator, intake manifold or exhaust manifold.
The rest of it I would guess is about another 50lbs maybe, I should
be taking the car to the drag strip next week to see how fast it
is in the qtr mile. I'll keep you posted!
can be contacted by email: CBur225267@aol.com
following account is taken from a magazine article and describes
Tony Yager's Suzuki Swift engined, 1300cc, turbo-charged, 16 valve,
twin cam Mini Clubman.
Turning the engine over results in a modern purr from the 2.5" mandrel
bent exhaust that says "I'm not an A-series". Shoe-horned into the
standard Clubman engine bay is a turbo-charged G13B Suzuki Swift
GTi engine and 5 speed box. Delivers 150BHP at 6,500 rpm and about
320 ft/lb of torque at 4,500 rpm (surely this
should be 120). Tony is pleased to tell me that the car has
clocked a 14.1 second standing quarter mile reaching 108mph.
Pressing the go-fast pedal results in the most awesome, white knuckle
Mini experience I have ever had. The torque steer takes some work
to master as the engine tries to climb out of the car. We pass 100mph
in a few seconds and I do a quick calculation to ensure my life
insurance is still adequate. Tony finally eases off the throttle,
probably due to the lack of colour in my face and the fact that
I have gone very quiet. Thankfully, Tony assures me that the upgraded
Cooper S discs are up to the task and the suspension has been tricked
up with Hi-Los all round and adjustable caster and camber in front
and rear. I start to relax and actually enjoy watching the world
blur past at warp 10.
Tony said the initial conversion to Suzuki Swift running gear was
fairly straight-forward, once a few technical problems were sorted
out, and an engineer's certificate was obtained without much trouble.
Tony says "The whole engine is fitted to line up the drive shafts.
Drive shaft angle is everything, once you get the angle right, that
is where the engine is and you can't change it!
A brace was fitted to the right side to take the Suzuki engine mounts
and to stiffen the front of the car. "Mini engine mounts are very
close to the suspension tower, which gives good stability, but the
mounts on the Suzuki engine are further forward and load up the
front of the car too much. I fitted the bracing on the driver's
side to avoid having to change the mount position on the engine.
The engineer didn't like that very much but it stopped the grille
rattling under power which I used to hate."
Engine Bay showing
the Suzuki Swift 16v turbo-charged 1,300cc engine.
14.1 quarter mile
time, 150BHP and 120lb/ft torque!
While no body
modifications were necessary, Tony did a few mods for logical reasons.
"I originally wanted a fibreglass front end, to be able to remove
it for easy access to the engine, but I didn't really like the look
of them. The engineer was not fond of the idea either so I played
with the existing panels a bit. The front beaver panel (!) is held
in with just 6 bolts and the whole front section is easily removable"
The inner guard has also been removed to gain access to the right
side of the engine, easing the frustration of trying to change drive
belts in such a tight space. "It took me every weekend for twelve
months but to do this one now would only take three to four weekends
because I've already done all the hard work figuring it out. The
engineer was happy with the result and the RTA is happy as long
as the engineer is, so it has all worked out well".
The engine was normally aspirated for about 18 months providing
the standard 100BHP, about the same power as a well worked Cooper
S unit. This was all well and good but everyone wants more sooner
or later, "Changing to the turbo was not really a lot of work. The
exhaust had to be modified to fit the extra plumbing for the turbo,
and a standard 13 row oil cooler was added. The turbo is an
Air Research (Garret) T25, which puts out about 7 to 14 psi
and the injectors are from a Japanese Turbo Corolla controlled by
EM3. Ignition is via a pair of direct line coils which means
there is no distributor."
Other under-bonnet modifications include a Datsun twin brake master
cylinder, a power isolation switch and a modified Morris 1100 radiator.
"The radiator lies on its side across the top of the gearbox. The
inlet and outlet were modified and the cap was moved to the side
which is now the top.
years after the conversion, Tony Yaegar's Mini is now owned by Con
Torrisi. Here's some additional information he sent me recently
and a few pictures, but Con also details the car on his own web site
Worth a visit to see the latest pictures of the car and details of
his excellent 1968 Mini Cooper S restoration project and I believe
the featured Turbo-charged Suzuki-powered Clubman is for sale!
I'm still in the
process of making it fully Queensland legal and until then I'm on
limited use. Local laws say I must comply with later Australian
Design Rules (ADR's) than the actual vehicle because of the modifications.
Some are reasonable, like dual circuit brakes etc, some are silly
like the need for a carbon canister. Exhaust emissions have been
measured and comply and engineers certificates and modification
compliance plates fitted. Now
the final step, local registration and I can drive it as much as
I like. It's been a long process and frustrating because it was
legal in New South Wales where it was originally built and registered.
Here we are very strict on what you can do and how you do it. But
it will be worth it in the end.
On the trip to and from the MINI-40 last weekend I averaged 35 MPG
for fuel over the 150 miles covered. There is a small fault with
in electrics that causes the computer to shut down over bumpy roads.
Annoying but its just a bad connection if I can find
it. Apart from that I think it will be very reliable. I posted a
message on the Mini-Mania site under the Suzuki engine swap thread
describing a "full power" run. Awesome power!!!
Even in 4th gear (its a 5 speed) when the turbo comes on full boost
(10 psi) and the cams come on at around 3500rpm the power is so
sudden that the first time I did it I thought we had been rear-ended
by a truck doing twice the speed.
conditions there is some torque steer but its controllable and
only a surprise the first few times it happens. The engine is
lighter than a mini setup and its lower in the car so handling
is actually improved. Although I think the weight is a little
more forward and I'm not sure how that effects it. It's so much
quieter than any mini I have ever driven. Exhaust note is clear
and crisp but not like a mini. More like a modern
engine. Cooper S brakes are just not up to the job with this much
power. Brake upgrade on the way and booster to be fitted.
As I get a few more miles up on it I'll do a full analysis and
compare it to my '68 Cooper S with worked mini engine. Not a fair
comparison I know but an interesting one (I still love my Cooper).
If the mini had been developed far enough I think this is where
it would probably be now, maybe minus the turbo.
Meanwhile I have attached a few photos of the engine bay. You
still don't see much of how its been fitted. Its low and there
is very good clearance all around for working on it. Actually
its easier to work on than the mini engine. I'll try to get some
photos of the sub-frame and mounting points and other modifications
to help out where possible.
5 years on, more
refined, even more power and 35 mpg!
More recent engine
Love this view
- looks like a factory-fitted unit!