Modern V8’s are getting smaller and more powerful. The Lexus V8 is growing in popularity among builders and with the good old fashioned Rover V8 getting a little long in the tooth, is it a serious contender?
Rover V8 Dimensions
I’ve done a previous blog, on Rover V8 dimensions and I’ve added the following drawing as an update to include the exhaust manifolds.
The early Rover V8’s produce less power than modern 4 cylinder diesels. Later ones suffer overheating and slipped liners. You’ll also need custom engine management. By throwing buckets of money at them you can get over 300BHP.
Yes I know I haven’t drawn up the block yet!
Lexus V8 Dimensions
I’ve found these drawings of the 1uzfe 4.0 litre Lexus V8 engine. I’ve seen them on several forums, so I apologise to the originator for not putting a link back to that site.
These are great engines, you don’t need custom engine management and the power output shame the elderly Rover lump.
You’ll have to trust me on this, when standing next to the Lexus V8, it looks a brute. It looks really BIG!
Rover V8 Dimensions vs Lexus V8 Dimensions
The Rover V8 basic dimensions:
- Length : 708 mm
- Height : 707 mm
- Width: 770 mm
- Weight: 220Kg (minus starter & flywheel)
- Power: 150 – 230BHP (ignoring the TVR 5.0 version)
Lexus V8 4.0 quad cam 32 valve V8 basic dimensions:
- Length : 655 mm
- Height : 610 mm
- Width: 620 mm
- Weight : 177Kg (minus starter & flywheel)
- Power : 256BHP -305BHP
Huh! This doesn’t make sense! The Rover looks tiny in comparison but yet the figures clearly say the complete opposite.
The answer is very simple, your eyes look at the 2 rocker boxes, then tell you that’s how big the engine is. However, with the Rover V8, the water pump protrudes a long way out the front, the exhausts hang way out the side and the injection system stands high above everything.
The Lexus engine has everything tucked in tight. The large rocker boxes span pretty much the whole length and width of the engine, nothing stands above them (apart from a few wires), only the cam belts stick out the front and the exhausts are tucked so far underneath, from the top they are invisible.
The Lexus motor is quite tune-able. I’ve seen a supercharged / twin turbo Supra conversion claiming over 1200HP – even if that’s exaggerated, I’m guessing the power output is still healthy.
The Lexus V8 wiring isn’t too scary either. Simply make sure you take the whole ECU and wiring loom, then add a handful of simple wiring; job done.
So, it weighs less than a 2lt Ford Pinto and it’s smaller than a Rover V8; how long will it be before one is fitted to a Haynes Roadster? The Lexus / Toyota V8 is good for over 200,000 miles; even when abused. How many times would you have to rebuild the same Rover?
Even with the catalytic converters still in the system, this engine sounds very similar to the Chevy LZ1 engine. That’s a pretty good rumble I can tell you!
The Kit Car industry needs to open its eyes to this engine! Personally, I think the days of the Rover V8 are sadly over. It’s a shame I’m so far into this development, as otherwise I’d be looking for a Lexus.