Woodsport - Engine Conversion Specialists

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Toyota MR2 Mk2 V6 Engine Conversions

MK2 with V6 powerplant (1mz-fe)

So why go V6?

A question thats asked a lot and a good one too,the V6 is toyotas best kept engine secret.They tucked it away in the big cruiser of the range the toyota camry,if only they had the foresight to use this unit in the mk2 like we are doing today! It really doesnt serve its full purpose in the heavyweight camry and is further strangled to death on a horrible auto gearbox.Having said that it still hauls the camry to 60 fairly quickly.But its in the mk2 Mr2 where it comes into its own.The V6 in stock form,simply transplanted from camry to mr2 with no mods,will give you stock mr2 turbo performance but with big differences. (this performance claim is proven)

The differences being driveability,bottom end torque,silky smooth power delivery,an engine that purrs at idle and then roars like thunder on full throttle like only a v6 can.Quite simply the noise these things make is to die for but by far the best advantage is the throttle response....no lag with these fellas! The torque curve from 2000rpm to 2500rpm is practically vertical.

What are they like to drive?

The V6 in a mk2 totally transforms its behaviour on the road.Mr2 engines in general need plenty of revs to get them off the mark,this leads to clutches burning out quicker than in other cars,blame yamaha's engine design for that one! With the V6 you can drop the clutch in 2nd gear and still pull away with minimal revs.On the road its very civilised,will happily cruise all day without you even knowing its got an engine in there at all (Mr2 owners that have test driven our V6 demo car have commented they couldnt hear the engine running at junctions).But when opened up it will pick up from 4th gear at 20mph and launch hard as the revs rise,no need to change down to get power out of this engine,it throws you back hard and keeps you there.

On top of that theres total reliability,just look at any mr2 forum's mechanical section,littered with engine problems and in particular turbo engine problems.I love the 3s-gte but it does have its reliability issues,theres exceptions to every rule of course but they do seem to have problem areas.O2 sensors,AFM's, underboosting , overboosting , turbos blowing up,knock sensors failing the list goes on.....none of that nonsense with the V6 . What you get is a bulletproof (that word's used a lot for some engines but this one really is) engine that will go on for 300k no problem,no issues at all with cranks/rods/pistons or rings...indeed we have seen a 200k+ engine with perfect bores and still with the factory honing marks!

If theres a weak point with the V6 its head gaskets, they are known to fail from 100k+ but we replace these as routine on every conversion so its not an issue.

So thats a little insight into why people go v6,it transforms your mk2 into a silky smooth cruiser and into a snarling beast when opened up.Turbo performance with NA response and reliability.

What levels of performance can i expect?

Theres been a lot of debate about this recently so i thought it best to clear it up.Simply put a stock v6 will perform to stock rev1/2 turbo levels,i believe the stock turbo does the 1/4 mile in 14.6 secs...here is a video of one of our TB members returning a 14.2 sec 1/4 mile.

MK2 V6 over the 1/4 mile (youtube link)

Can my car be converted?

Yes,any mk2 mr2 either NA or Turbo, 5s-fe,3s-ge or 3s-gte can be converted,it will simply use your existing gearbox and driveshafts.Both NA and Turbo gearboxes will handle the power of the V6 easily.With each conversion a new clutch is also fitted.We are currently looking into wether the V6 can be fitted onto the mk2 auto gearbox too although this is a limited market and unlikely to be popular.

Can i keep my air con system with the v6 swap?

Yes,the camry v6 has an air con pump fitted as standard,but it will mean custom pipes being made to connect it up and will need recharging so it will add £190 to the cost of the conversion if you want to keep it (£115 for re-gassing and £75 labour/pipe modification).Most v6 owners are opting to ditch the air con as it costs a few bhp,but retaining the air con is not a problem.

If i have a turbo or NA mk2 exhaust fitted with the conversion will any future exhaust still fit?

Yes,we modify the v6 downpipes so that whatever silencer system is first fitted it has the same attachment point....meaning if we do a v6 conversion and use an NA rear silencer then any NA rear silencer will bolt straight up afterwards from then on.

Likewise with a turbo exhaust,if i fit a turbo mongoose for example,that could be removed in future and ANY other turbo rear silencer replaced,its part of the swap that i insist on doing so that v6'ers arent constantly needing custom made exhausts in the future.

If an NA exhaust was first used and you wanted to convert to a turbo one the v6 downpipe would only require minor modifying.

Does anything need cutting? firewalls etc?

No,the V6 will fit in the mk2 bay without modifying any firewalls or chassis rails,apart from the drivers side engine mount on the engine that needs fabricating nothing is altered on the car itself.In fact once fitted they look like they belong in a mk2 engine bay.

Theres about 10-15 more man hours involved in getting the TRD charger to work on this engine and as a result will require around £300 more in labour to go down this route.Power will be in the 280bhp region at 4psi.

Can the cambelt be changed easily with a v6 in an mr2?

Yes,there is more room to change the belt than when the v6 was in the camry it came from.There is about the same space to change the timing belt as a normal 3s-ge engined car.

What other supporting mods will i need ?

None really....but upgrading the brakes to late spec is always better with an engine upgrade.Also running wider tyres on the rear might be wise! I use 225's but 235 or 245 would be ideal.

Will my gauges and warning lights work as before?

Yes,all of your gauges and lights will work,even the check engine light.The tacho signal is getting a 6 pulse signal instead of 4 so it reads higher than normal but we swap the camry tacho circuit board into the mk2 clocks to rectify this.On turbo models having the conversion done your turbo boost gauge will no longer work for obvious reasons.

What level of finish can i expect?

Each engine is fully degreased and jetwash blasted clean,then repainted and detailed to whatever colour scheme you like.Its a full nut and bolt detailing job and all major components are done.....heres the typical level of finish on a v6 prior to install.

How will it affect my insurance ?

Not as much as you'd think,we have received quotes that are only £50-£100 more than a 3s-ge NA mk2 model and actually cheaper than insuring a tubby as the engine isnt rated that high (200bhp/200lbs/ft).

All of the packages come with the following.

• V6 engine degreased,engine detailed,both head gaskets replaced (wether they are gone or not),cam belt changed,new oils,filters,antifreeze etc.
• A new clutch kit,either NA or turbo depending on what model mk2 you have,supplied and fitted,if you are happy with your current clutch then the job is cheaper by the cost of a clutch,but of course its always better to fit new on a job like this.
• A custom flywheel supplied and fitted
• A bespoke drivers engine mount supplied
• Mk2 engine bay cleaned and if need be repainted in stock colour or colour of your choice
• Induction kit and AFM adapter ,or if you want to use your current one?
• Exhaust downpipes modified to fit your current exhaust system or any other exhaust system you may wish to have installed.
• Tacho modified and calibrated to accurately read the v6 engine speed.

  • All engines now have fully rebuilt bottom ends with every conversion. 

What is the cost of conversion ?

Cost wise we offer a few packages. For your conversion i need to buy a complete camry and then overhaul its engine with fresh head gaskets/timing belt as above etc.

1mz-fe (from Camry) supplied and fitted with everything above - £3950

1mz-fe with VVti (from Lexus Rx300) - £4950

 

Some completed conversion pics

Just a handful of the Mk2 Mr2 V6 engine conversions we have completed, they total over 180 successful conversions to date.

A Woodsport Mk2 V6 at Harewood Hillclimb

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Testimonials

Marks 2zz-ge Mk1 Mr2 testimonial

 Just thought I’d write a long overdue update to his project.


So how does it drive?…I decided early on that I wanted the closest ratios available in the gearbox (apart from 6th) with the torsen LSD and I’m very pleased I went for this setup. The traction on take off is great with both wheels digging into the tarmac. When the engine hits 6200rpm the second cam kicks in and the car just lets rip singing around to the 8500rpm cut out. Due to the close ratio box there is a momentary pause after the change to second gear then it hits 6200rpm cam change-over point and it takes off again. 3rd to 4th, 4th to 5th and 5th to 6th are all really close so from 2nd gear on the car never drops out of the high lift cam if all the revs are used. It is very addictive and amazingly fun. There is nothing better than taking it for a blast along known country roads on a quiet Sunday morning, with the engine on the high lift cam the noise is like a group A normally aspirated rally car 
The engine makes more power and torque at all points in the rev range than the standard 4AGE but it still retains and even enhances the high revving nature that makes the Mk1 MR2 so much fun in the first place. As Paul put it it’s like a Mk1 plus. Since this is my everyday car I also wanted it to cruise well on the motorway, be quiet and return decent mpg. I’m pleased to say due to the standard MK2 backbox, standard Mk1 intake and 6th gear it does indeed cruise more quietly than the standard Mk1 and returns about 40mpg at a steady 70 - 80mph. Handling wise due to the LSD this has improved immensely and in the wet I’m now able to hang the rear out around roundabouts and hold it there on the power in a lovely drift. The 2ZZ engine is very light being all alloy and is lighter than the original iron block 4AGE, this has cancelled out the weight of the extra (6th) gear and has maintained the great balance of the standard Mk1 MR2. Paul fitted a full set of poly bushes for me so next week I’ll have the car fully aligned to the TRD settings which should hopefully sharpen the initial turn in a little. Other than that I may experiment with drilling out the poly engine mounts slightly since at the moment there is a little too much vibration at tick-over due to the ridged nature of the mounts.
Overall though as you’ve probably guessed I’m delighted with this conversion… hats off to Paul at Woodsport for not only creating it but also the backup he’s given me since.