BEE-CEE-WHAT NOW?

4 x 4 Australia - - Custom -

IN YEARS gone past, the hard­est part about an en­gine con­ver­sion was phys­i­cally fit­ting it in. In some cir­cum­stances you’d need an adap­tor, which added ex­pense and an ex­tra step but wasn’t an in­sur­mount­able prob­lem. When en­gines be­came elec­tron­i­cally con­trolled things got a lit­tle more com­pli­cated and re­quired ex­ten­sive wiring, but they could es­sen­tially be stand­alone units – yank out the ex­ist­ing en­gine wiring and ECU (en­gine con­trol unit) and put the new stuff in.

Things are now a lit­tle more chal­leng­ing. The orig­i­nal of­fender was elec­tron­i­cally con­trolled trans­mis­sions run­ning their own ECU and need­ing to com­mu­ni­cate with the en­gine’s ECU. In short, some trans­mis­sions sim­ply couldn’t be paired with some en­gines, even if you could phys­i­cally con­nect them.

To make things even more com­pli­cated, most cur­rent­gen­er­a­tion 4x4s run what’s known as a BCM, or Body Con­trol Mod­ule. They’re es­sen­tially an ECU that con­trols any­thing that needs con­trol­ling. Head­lights, air-con, win­dows… even shift­ing the trans­fer case from high to low range. Con­ver­sions into mod­ern 4x4s need to not only power them­selves but trick the stock setup into work­ing as well. It’s the main rea­son mod­ern en­gine con­ver­sions are get­ting harder and harder.

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