NZ Performance Car - - Super Score -

In typ­i­cal Toy­ota fash­ion, the JZ fam­ily of en­gines is well and truly over-en­gi­neered — es­pe­cially when you take into ac­count the rel­a­tively mun­dane tasks they were given in­side big fam­ily sedans and the oc­ca­sional sports coupe. Although, some 30 years on, we’ve all but clicked to what that over-engi­neer­ing can mean in terms of per­for­mance, and they’re touted for their eas­ily made power and bul­let­proof rep­u­ta­tion for achiev­ing it. They’re prob­a­bly the only Ja­panese en­gine that can ri­val the pop­u­lar­ity of an SR for be­ing shoe­horned into chas­sis they were never des­tined to be in, and have sur­prised even the harsh­est of anti-turbo crit­ics.

Jim Liem­burg in Ti­maru tells that, af­ter buy­ing an RX-8 with a blown Re­n­e­sis back in 2010, with in­ten­tions of turning it into a hill-climb car, “I was keen to fit a V8, be­ing old, but my son talked me into a putting in a 2JZ in in­stead.”

De­spite its height and length, Jim tells us that that JZ didn’t re­quire any fire­wall cut­ting or mod­i­fi­ca­tion of the cross mem­ber — the ben­e­fit of it be­ing of­fered in rear-sump op­tion in the Toy­ota Aristo, with in­ter­change­able mid and front sumps. He also notes that the hot side is on the same side as the ro­tary, which made dump-pipe and ex­haust chan­nelling an easy task.

“The big­gest hur­dle was the RX-8’s elec­tric steer­ing rack,” ex­plains Jim. “We chose to ditch it and re­place it with a hy­draulic rack from a Mitsi L200. This was mounted lower for clear­ance, although it played a merry hell with the steer­ing ge­om­e­try, which was some­thing I never re­ally got on top of — there’s prob­a­bly bet­ter op­tions out there.”

The 2JZ is backed by a new R154–and–Quar­ter­mas­ter twin-plate combo, which re­quired the fac­tory torque brace to the diff to be short­ened and a cus­tom two-piece drive­shaft to be used. Af­ter four years of abuse and two log­books filled, the worst that Jim has en­coun­tered is a stripped third gear, a rear CV break­ing, and the hel­i­cal diff blow­ing, which has been re­placed with a clutchtype LSD.

He ad­mits that the bal­ance has been af­fected by the larger and heav­ier mo­tor but says that, as he be­came more fa­mil­iar with the car, this fac­tor was eas­ily off­set by the gain in power, which al­lowed him to cut good times in the street sprints and hill climbs that it was built for.

2JZ-GTE (non-VVTi) ORI­GIN CHAS­SIS: Toy­ota Aristo (JZS147) CA­PAC­ITY: 2997cc CON­FIG­U­RA­TION: Straight-six turbo BORE/STROKE: 86x86mm COM­PRES­SION: 8.6:1 FAC­TORY POWER: 205kW WEIGHT: 270kg (com­plete) NOTES: Power ma­nip­u­lated for the now de­funct Gen­tle­men’s Agree­ment, sump avail­able in front, mid and rear op­tions;

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