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Engine Conversion:

Toyota 1VD-FTV Turbo-Diesel V8 into
Land Cruiser 100/105-series

Back in 2009, I was doing a fair bit of tough weekend four-wheel-driving in my 1Hz-turbo powered HZJ-105. I wanted a vehicle with a more powerful, modern turbo-diesel engine, but I wanted to keep the live axles.

Having done a few engine conversions before, I decided the 105 was the perfect candidate for a transplant, and with the availability of Toyota's then-new 1VD-FTV 4.5L common-rail V8, a plan was born!

The below article was written back in 2010, just after finishing the conversion. I've made a few updates to the text since then, but the vehicle has now been sold and replaced by a 200-series. With a growing family and more touring, the 200 was just a better vehicle than the 105.

*** IMPORTANT ***

The information provided on these pages should NOT be taken as instructions. It is simply my own experience, published for the information of those interested in how I completed the conversion on my vehicle. It should be read in conjuction with obtaining independent expert advice from a qualified mechanic, auto electrician, automotive engineer and your relevant State or country motoring authority. The conversion MUST be checked and approved by an engineer prior to driving the vehicle.

Any engine conversion is potentially dangerous. Vehicles, engines and gearboxes are large and heavy. There is a high risk that a failed lifting rig, stand, ramp, weld or other failure could cause serious injury or death. This conversion must only be undertaken by someone suitably qualified, and all equipment used must be approved for the purpose by the relevant authority and used only by qualified persons and in an approved manner.

The conversion as described may not suit your abilities or circumstances, and may not be legal in your jurisdiction. Your vehicle and/or engine could vary, making the observations and measurements shown on these pages not-applicable.

If you choose to perform this or a similar conversion, you do so ENTIRELY AT YOUR OWN RISK. The author takes no responsibility for any incident, failure, loss, injury or death which occurs as a result of using any of the information provided on these pages, whether such information is later shown to be correct or not.

Once again, only attempt an engine conversion if you have the training, knowledge, skill and equipment to do so. Check with your local motoring authority, and always have an approved automotive engineer check and approve the conversion before your drive the vehicle.

Above all, be careful and make safety your first priority.

Before the Conversion

Be warned: This is a difficult conversion!

As you read through, you'll see that this is a complex engine conversion. I knew that going in, but wanted to create something a bit different. If you can't afford to be without the vehicle for an extended period, but are looking for an easier option to get more power from your 100/105 series LandCruiser, there are several simpler engine conversions available. Including:

  • 1HD-FTE engine (Toyota's 4.2L factory turbo-diesel from the HDJ-100), which is by far the simplest option.
  • Chev Duramax (6.6L V8 turbo-diesel).

Both of these engines have wiring loom and gearbox adaptors available, making the conversion simpler than the 1VD. Contact Marks 4WD Adaptors for more details.

Still keen? Choosing a 1VD version
The 200 and 70-series engines are very similar, but there is more than an additional turbo to consider. Both are 4.5 litre, common-rail, intercooled turbo-diesel V8 engines. The 70's engine is a single turbo design, with 151kW and 430Nm. While the 200 series is twin turbo for over 200kW and over 600Nm.

Both can be upgraded with performance chips if desired.

I opted for the 70-series engine primarily for three reasons: Firstly, it's much easier and cheaper to get hold of. There are more of them around, and the vehicle they reside in is cheaper. The second reason is that the 200-series has a far more complex electrical system, making the conversion much more complicated. Finally, the 200-series only comes in automatic, and I wanted a manual transmission.

Any measurements given on these pages relate to the 70-series version of the engine.

Other key decisions

Gearbox:
I decided to use the 70's gearbox in place of the 100 series 'box. This decision was made due to the 70's box being considerably larger, stronger and having a lower 1st gear ratio.

Transfer Case:
Originally, I had planned to retain the 100's full-time 4WD transfer case rather than the 70's part time version. However, this wasn't possible due to the different gearbox output shaft sizes between the 100 and the 70. While I could have pulled down both transfer cases and swapped the input shaft receiver, I decided against it due to time constraints and a desire to get as much new driveline into my vehicle as possible. A key problem with going part-time though is that the 100's ABS system front wheel sensors are located in the inner hubs, not on the brake discs. So in order to retain ABS I cannot fit free-wheeling hubs, as the front inner-axles must continue to turn when driving.

Diffs:
I decided to swap the crown wheels and pinions between the 70 and the 100. I did this as the 70 has much higher diff ratios than the 100, giving greatly improved highway cruising revs. This tall gearing is overcome offroad by the lower 1st gear ratio of the 70's gearbox. I swapped the crownwheel and pinions between the centres, as I had air lockers in the 100. However, the entire diff centre carriers are interchangeable so if I didn't have lockers, I could have simply swapped the entire diff carriers between the vehicles, eliminating the expense of having the centres rebuilt.

So what else did I need, other than the engine?

Apart from the engine itself, I needed the following components from the 70-series:

  • The ancillaries: The power steering and vacuum pumps are gear driven, and so are really part of the engine. The serpentine-belt driven A/C and alternator are required, as it's not possible to use the existing ones from the 100-series.
  • The gearbox: See info above.
  • The transfer case: See info above.
  • The diff ratios: See info above.
  • The Engine Control Module (ECM): The brains behind the engine. Without it, there's no way to get the engine to operate.
  • The wiring loom: The 70-series engine has a large and complex wiring loom, electric throttle and immobiliser. It integrates with the ECM and other related computers. While it may be possible for an auto electrician to build a loom for the conversion, the easiest way is undoubtedly to integrate the 70's existing loom into the 100-series. Note that there are many vital 'modules' attached to the loom, which are required. Eg: the injector controllers and immobiliser computer/amplifier.
  • An orginal (black) ignition key from the doner 70-series.
  • The clutch master-cyliner and accumulator: The 100-series combines these two items together, which is problematic due to limited clearance between the cylinder and engine rocker-cover. The 70's cylinder is more compact due to the remote accumulator, so I swapped the units.
  • A/C gas lines between compressor/condensor and compressor/evaporator. These lines were required so new lines could be fabricated from both the 100 and 70-series lines.

I also needed:

  • I had to build a gear linkage system for the main gearlever. This was required due to the engine/gearbox placement and the location of the dash and centre-console.
  • A Ford BA Falcon electric engine fan module, with 2x Davies-Craig controllers. Required due to insufficient space between the engine and radiator to use the 70-series cooling fan.
  • Engine/Gearbox mounts: I had to move the engine and gearbox mounts on the 100-series to fit the new engine/gearbox.
  • Body lift: The new V8 sits quite high in the engine bay. I had two choices to fit it under the bonnet. Either do a 50mm body lift, or fit some sort of a bonnet bulge (like on a Falcon XR8). I decided to go with the bodylift and then use a bolt-on intercooler scoop.

Where did I get it?

There are three ways to get hold of an engine and the other 70-series parts:

1. Buy new from Toyota:

I didn't even look at the prices, but I'd be amazed if you could get away with spending under $40,000 for the parts required. The advantage of this option would be that the parts are all brand new.

2. Buy the parts from a wrecker:

I investigated this option. There are several wreckers in NSW, QLD and SA with the engine etc available for purchase. The going rate seems to be about $15,000 for the engine alone. But as you really need the wiring loom, ECM and gearbox etc it would probably cost over $20,000 for this option. You might be able to negotiate a good price on the whole lot if you try. The advantage of this option is that you get a guarantee on all the parts, but it's certainly more expensive than option #3.

3. Buy an entire vehicle from a salvage auction:

I ended up buying an entire 79-series GXL ute from the Manheim-Fowles Sydney salvage auction for $10,750. The vehicle I chose was a statutory write-off with 15,000km on the odometer and severe rollover damage. I also had to spend $2,000 for some engine parts damaged in the crash. The risk with this option is that the engine may be mechanically damaged, but for the saving I was willing to take the risk. The advantage of this option (apart from the cost), was that I knew I had everything I needed for the conversion (Engine, gearbox, diff ratios, wiring, ECM, immobiliser). Using this option, I also have many other parts from the vehicle which I can sell to help recoup the cost of the conversion. You can set up auto-email notifications at Pickles and Manheim-Fowles that will let you know if a vehicle you're looking for comes up at a salvage auction. You can then bid online at most auctions.

What did it cost?

After buying all the required components, repairing the engine (it had impact damage), and selling off what was left of the wreck, the total cost was around the $15,000 mark. But I got most of that back when I sold the vehicle a few years later, compared to the going price of a standard HZJ-105.

How long did it take?

From start to (almost) finished it took me about 6 months. This time included removing both engines and gearboxes, stripping the 70-series of all required parts, swapping the diff centres, installing of the wiring and the engine/gearbox itself. Plus designing and fabricating the linkages and mounts. I did this working 1 or 2 days on the conversion each week, and I was making a lot of it up as I went along.

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Getting started with the conversion

Before removing the engines

Before removing the 70's engine, I repaired the crash damage and started the engine in the wreck. This was important to establish that the engine was running OK, and it eliminated the engine itself if I couldn't get it started after putting it into the 100.

Removing the engines

Being a straight-6, the 100 series engine is easy to remove. I removed the transfer case and lifted out the engine and gearbox together (basically as described in the 70 series section below), however they can also be removed separately.

Lifting out the 70's engine is more of a challenge. I decided to lift the engine and gearbox out as one unit, since I needed to use both and there was no reason to split them. Preparation:

  • Remove front and rear driveshafts
  • Remove the gearbox supporting crossmember (support the gearbox)
  • Unbolt the transfer case from the gearbox, and remove it
  • Unplug the engine wiring from the main loom at it's various attachment points. For ease of reassembly, I labelled every plug before I disassembled it. Note that there is an earth strap hidden on the top right side of the bellhousing.
  • Remove radiator, batteries, all hoses/lines etc.

The Toyota method for lifting the 1VD-FTV is to disassemble the entire fuel and air inlet system, buy and attach lifting rings to the inside of the 'V', and lift from there. This is a major undertaking, and I figured there had to be an easier way. Instead, I fabricated an I-shaped lifting bracket and lifted the engine and gearbox combination from three points, being the two engine mounts plus a sling wrapped around the bell housing. The front of the 'I' was sufficient to protect the intercooler and rocker covers from damage from the lifting chains. The depth of the 'I' was designed to protect the back of the intercooler and the wiring in that location from damage caused by the sling carrying the weight of the gearbox.

Lifting out the engine alone using this method would not be advisable, as lifting from the mounts without the stability provided by the sling around the bellhousing would put the centre of gravity very high, making the engine very unstable, and likely to flip upside down during the lift.

Electricals

Next, I removed basically the entire front-half of the wiring loom from the 70 series, and installed it into the 100 series alongside the existing loom. I could have stripped the loom down, but decided it would be faster and simpler to just install the entire loom and only connect the required terminals. Basically, this means I could ignore the lighting (Except the interior light), A/C and fan and other bits and pieces.

Specifications

Here's a list of basic specifications and measurements of the engines and gearboxes of the two vehicles:

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Mechanical

Positioning the engine

Make no mistake, the Toyota 1VD engine is large. Being a 90º, quad cam V8 it is very wide and doesn't actually fit into the 100 series bay very easily. It's also quite high, with a big intercooler and other componentry sitting on top of the engine.

Because of it's massive width, there is no hope of the engine sitting back in the firewall where the 1Hz was, meaning I had to move the entire engine/gearbox assembly forward by about 100mm. This created problems using the original 1VD engine cooling fan (due to fouling on the radiator), and also necessitated the fabrication of a gear lever linkage, because the new gearlever would be located some 250mm forward of the original location, which put it under the dashboard. 150mm of this difference is due to the 70's gearbox having a different gearlever location to the 100's gearbox, while the remaining 100mm is due to the forward move of the assembly. I did consider 2 other options:

  • Space the engine/gearbox: This would have solved the gear lever position issue, but it would have been a huge undertaking to build a new bellhousing and then fabricate an input shaft extension. This option went into the too hard basket, but should be possible with the right equipment and enough time.
  • Cut and reform the firewall to allow the engine to sit back: This would have solved both fan and gearlever problems, but there is too much equipment under the dash that would have needed to be relocated or removed (eg fan and A/C). I don't think this would be a feasible option for anyone who wants to retain the original equipment of the 100. However, for a comp rig not requiring A/C etc, it could be an option.
    I didn't have much choice when it came to final positioning of the engine.....

Front - Back:
I wanted the engine as far back as possible, but was limited by the firewall and width of the engine. I decided on a minimum of 20mm clearance to the firewall, and positioned the engine there.

Side - Side:
Again, it's a very tight squeeze. The passenger/near-side position is dictated by the turbo oil return line, which ended up about 10mm from the near-side chassis rail. On the driver's/off-side, there is only about 10mm clearance from the exhaust manifold to the steering shaft. So there is really no room to move in either direction.

Height:
I would have preferred to lower the engine further into the bay, but this is prevented by two things. First, the turbocharger (on the near side) is only about 15mm above the chassis rail, and the size and shape of the sump means lowering it further would have risked impact with the front axle on full uptravel. As it was, I have decided to increase the height of the bumpstops by 50mm to prevent impact.

Other than scalloping out a section of chassis, there is little that could be done for the turbo, and the sump is a very complex piece of alloy equipment, with an inbuilt oil cooler and numerous oil return lines. I don't doubt that a more friendly shaped sump could be produced, but with the turbo positioning I saw little benefit to be gained.

Fabricating and positioning the engine and gearbox mounts

I had planned to retain the original gearbox crossmember and modify it to move the gearbox forward, but after some trial and error decided to make a new one from scratch, due to the difficulty in preventing it from fouling on the transfer case and/or driveshafts. I used 75x50x3 RHS tube reinforced with a 5mm plate across the bottom, with a 100x50x3 RHS section on top to lift the gearbox 50mm above standard. I attached the RHS to the original crossmember mount points using 10mm flatbar with 5mm flatbar gussetting from the RHS.

I built and positioned the new crossmember while the engine/gearbox assembly was still suspended, then bolted it up to secure the rear of the assembly, before starting work on the engine mounts. The new crossmember places the gearbox mount 100mm forward, and 50mm higher than the original position (See body lift section below).

It's necessary to cut both original engine mounts from the chassis, as they are not in usable positions for the new motor.

The first engine mount I made was the near-side. I used the original engine-to-rubber-mount section, and then fabricated the section from the chassis to the rubber-mount and welded it to the chassis. This was fabricated using 5mm flatbar, and basically resembles the original factory mount. I can't give measurements and angles, as I found it easiest to fabricate it as I went.

The drivers side mount was more problematic as the engine-to-rubber-mount section also had to be replaced due to it fouling on the chassis and steering shaft. I fabricated this section from 10mm flatbar, then used the original rubber mount and fabricated the chassis-to-rubber section in a similar fashion to the near side.

Gearlever

The main gearlever linkage was fabricated using both the 70 and 100 series gearlevers, 1x 1/2" female and 4x 1/2" male Rose Joints (aka control rod ends) along with some steel plates and other hardware.

Transfer lever

I used the transfer case lever from the 70-series, bolted to the rear of the plate I fabricated for the gearlever linkage. The lever attaches to the transfer case with a shortened linkage. The lever sits in the same relative location as the original 100-series transfer lever, but it does move further as it must travel from H2-H4-N-L4 instead of just H-N-L.

Video of linkage operating and linkage photos (Click to enlarge):

Air Box

The 70-series wreck had a destroyed airbox, and with Toyota asking a truly ridiculous $1100 for a replacement, I decided to go with an off-the-shelf Donaldson airbox and adapt it to both the 1VD intake pipe and the Safari Snorkel fitted to my 100.

The Donaldson I chose was an FPG-9 (#G090219), which was the largest unit I could fit in the space available. This unit offers excellent airflow and the large filter minimises cleaning. Additionally, Donaldson't cellulose-paper elements are water washable and so can be reused several times.

Front and Rear driveshafts

With the forward move of the engine/gearbox assembly, it was necessary to lengthen the rear driveshaft and shorten the front driveshaft.

Differential Ratios

As I've mentioned, I decided to go with the taller 3.909:1 diff ratios of the 70, rather than the lower 4.3:1 ratios in the 100. The diff centres of the new 70 and the 100 are interchangeable, so I could have simply removed the entire front and rear carriers and swapped them over. But as I had air-lockers in the 100, I took all four centres to JMac in Arndell Park and had him swap the crown wheels and pinions between the centres.

Body Lift

After finalising the position of the engine, I found it sitting higher in the bay than I would have liked, and on a slight angle down to the back. The height at the front was necessary to give adequate chassis clearance for the turbo, sump and manifolds, while the lower position at the rear was to allow the gearbox clearance under the transmission tunnel.

Once I discovered the engine wouldn't fit under the bonnet I toyed with the idea of fitting a bonnet 'bulge' (think XR8 Falcon), but after consulting an engineer to check legality, decided to do a 50mm bodylift instead. The advantages of this option were:

  • Gave clearance for the engine under the bonnet without the need for a bulge.
  • Gave clearance for the clutch master cylinder over the engine rocker cover.
  • Allowed me to lift the gearbox by 50mm, reducing the engine angle and improving transfer case ground clearance.
  • The 100series has twelve body mount points. Ten of them have 10mm bolts through from the body to the chassis, while two are simply pads under the load area. These two pads are mounted blindly under the load area without through bolts and only actually contact the chassis when a load is added to the rear of the vehicle.

I used 65mm MoS2 filled Nylon rod to make the bodylift mounts, bought from Cut To Size Plastics at Yennora and machined down on a lathe. It's cheaper than steel or aluminium, while also minimising the transmission of vibration and reducing the creaking and groaning common with metal body lifts. If you don't have access to a lathe to make your own from the rod, you can buy pre-made versions online.

For the ten main mounts I drilled 10mm holes through the centre, while for the two pad mounts I drilled 9mm holes, then screwed in 3/8"x2" coach bolts and cut off the heads allowing the top 10-15mm of the bolt to protrude out the of the mount (see picture). This protruding bolt section locates in the chassis under the pad and prevents the nylon mount from falling out when there isn't any pressure on it. I also used a little silicone under the nylon to prevent any vibration or rattling.

Intercooler Scoop

To feed air to the intercooler, I installed a bonnet scoop from a 2008-09 model Holden Colorado Turbo-Diesel. There were no other vehicle or off-the-shelf scoops that were large enough to feed the 1VD's sizable intercooler and fit the bonnet of the 'Cruiser.

Holden are asking a whopping $680 for this scoop (Don't you love genuine parts?!), but they were unable to get one for three months. Before trying Holden I made a few unsuccessful calls to wreckers, but the Colorado was too new to be common. However, after Holden couldn't get one I spent almost a day on the phone ringing about a hundred wreckers around Australia before I finally found one for a much more reasonable $270.

There are now aftermarket versions of the scoop available for much less than genuine.

The scoop looks pretty good and fits the curve of the Landcriser's bonnet well. It's almost the same width as the intercooler and lets in plenty of air.

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Custom crossmember
Near side engine mount
Off side engine mount
Custom gear linkage
Custom gear linkage

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Electrical / Air Conditioning / Power Steer / Cooling

Looms

After removing the engines from both vehicles, I removed basically the entire front-half of the wiring loom from the 70 series, and installed it into the 100 series alongside the existing loom. I could have stripped the loom down, but decided it would be faster and simpler to just install the entire loom and only connect the required terminals. Basically, this means you can ignore the lighting (Except the interior light), A/C and fan and other bits and pieces.

ECU

The ECU is mounted in the engine bay in a custom sealed steel box, mounted to the firewall. It's wired to the 70's intact loom.

Immobiliser

When I installed the 70-series engine, ECU and loom, it included the immobiliser system for the new engine. The important part of this system is a plastic ring that surrounds the ignition barrel and instructs the ECU to allow the engine to start when the correct transponder key is inserted. So to use the new engine, you MUST have a working master (black) key from the doner 70-series.

The only problem is that the ignition barrel and the transponder key of the 100 is different to the 70's.

The solution is this:

  • Remove the 100-series ring from the ignition barrel, and install the 70-series ring in it's place.
  • Have a hybrid key cut and programmed. To achieve this, I needed to attend a locksmith who was equipped with a transponder key programming machine, and provide them with an original 100-series key (so a new key which would operate the doors and ignition barrel could be physically cut). I also needed an original (black) key from the doner 70-series. The transponder code from this key is then written to the new key, and I ended up with a hybrid key that incorporated the 100's cut with the 70's transponder.

Because Toyota changed their immobiliser system in ~2002, it's not possible to program the 70's immobiliser to recognise the 100's key transponder, hence the need for new keys.

Ignition Barrel

This is a key connection point for the 70 series loom into the 100 series. Leaving most of the 100 series loom connected to the barrel (with the exception of the "start" wire) to allow the vehicle systems to operate, while connecting the 70 series loom to the 100 series barrel in parallel. I had to test the 70 series wires manually, as the Factory Service Manual wiring diagram had different wire colour listing to those found on the vehicle. These were the connections I made:

Gauges

Temperature:
I'm using a Scangauge II as a temperature gauge.

Oil Pressure/Level:
I simply connected the 100's wiring loom to both the oil pressure and oil level sensors, as the 70's sensors are only connected to the gauge, not the ECU.

Tacho:
I'm also using the Scangauge II as a tacho.

Speedo:
I currently have the 100's dash speedo connected normally, but there is no speed input going to the ECU. This results in an error code appearing on the scangauge, but there is no other effect (ie: does not initiate a limp mode or any engine effects).

Alternator, Battery and Starter

I removed the wiring for the 100's starter and the main charge line from the alternator.

Connecting the intact 1VD engine loom to the battery connects its starter and alternator charge lines. Charging then operates through the 70's main charge line and fusible link. The alternator also sends a signal to the ECU and gets it's power through the 1VD's "Engine" fuse. In order to have the dashboard charge warning light work properly, I found it necessary to connect the 100's charge warning light wire to the 1VD's alternator. On my vehicle, this meant connecting the Black/Orange wire on the 100's alternator loom to the Yellow wire from the 1VD's alternator connector plug.

Making the ignition barrel connections detailed above allows the 1VD's starting and glow plug circuits to operate. I removed the 100's starter motor wires from the engine bay as they were no longer required.

I originally had a dual battery system in the 100, but I had to remove the 2nd battery to make room for the Donaldson air cleaner. It might have been possible to use a smaller air cleaner and install a small 2nd battery, but as I moved my 2nd battery into my camper trailer, I had no need for it in the Cruiser.

Air Conditioning

I used the 1VD's compressor. There isn't really a choice, as it mounts differently to the 100 compressor and the 1VD uses a serpentine belt to drive all the ancillaries. I doubt it would be possible to mount the 100's compressor to the V8.

The 70's AC compressor has a three-wire loom. One wire activates the clutch, while the other two are for the ECU for idleup etc. The 100's compressor has a single wire that only activates the clutch. I connected this wire (Green/SilverDots) in parallel to the 70's clutch wire (Yellow/Green), and left the 70's 3 wires connected as well.

I had the gas lines for the compressor hooked up by an auto electrician. Because Toyota have changed their proprietary A/C fittings, I needed to use the lines from both the 100 and the 70 and have them welded together in order to get the AC lines connected. Total cost was $350 including regas. I also changed one of the electric engine fans to trip on with the compressor, rather than being thermatically controlled.

Power Steering

I had a custom power steer pressure line made by my local Pirtek for $150. This line used the 1VD's pump banjo fitting (with pressure sensor), connected to the 100's steering box fitting via a 40cm flexible hose.

From there, I used my old 100 series reservoir (as the 70's was damaged), and attached the return line to the reservoir and reservoir to the pump.

Fans and Cooling

Getting the cooling system sorted involved some trial and error.

I originally used the standard 100-series radiator combined with a twin electric fan module from a Ford Falcon. This usually proved to be adequate, but on hotter days and when towing, the vehicle's temperature would slowly climb, although it never overheated as backing off the throttle was sufficient to manage the temperature.

I then installed a heavy duty 3-core aluminium radiator from Aussie Desert Cooler. The Ford fan module was too thick to fit with the bigger radiator, so I replaced it with twin Davies-Craig 14" low profile electric fans. This combination was an improvement, however still resulted in a temperature climb under some conditions.

The next improvement came from modifying and refitting the Falcon fan module to the new radiator. Again, this resulted in an improvement. For typical road, off-road and towing conditions the setup did the job nicely. However, the temperature would still rise under extreme conditions, such as extended heavy engine load on very hot days.

I then discovered that Davies-Craig had released a new 14" high-performance electric fan, with a 1500cfm (cubic feet per minute) rating. This was about 60% higher than either their original fan or the fans within the Ford module. Even better, the fans essentially bolt in to the Ford fan shroud, allowing me to combine the higher air volume with the efficiency of a shroud. This setup proved to keep the temperature under control no matter what the conditions.

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Aussie Desert Cooler w/ Ford fan module

Power, Performance, Economy and Conclusions

Power and Performance

The 1VD is big a step up from the 1Hz-turbo in overall performance although it's not the huge leap you might expect, especially if your 1Hz is equipped with a 3" exhaust and running 12lb of boost as mine was. The engine's big advantages are a beautifully flat torque curve and amazing fuel economy.

Although I was very happy with the performance, it didn't take too long before I started looking at the range of aftermarket performance chips available for the new engine, to improve it even further. After considerable research into the plethora of options available, I decided on the V-CR chip from Tunit.

The day after installing the chip, I loaded up the family for a trip to the NSW Snowy Mountains. The difference in performance was immediately apparent. On the Hume Highway's Skyline hill, where the 1Hz turbo would force me to drop to 4th gear and 100km/h, I comfortably held 110 in 5th at only about 25% throttle. Not a single hill slowed down the 'Cruiser on the trip south, and I constantly found myself having to lift the right foot after instinctively putting it down while climbing hills. Even during the climb from Jindabyne to Thredbo, I never once had to drop back to 4th gear!

Tunit claim that the chip takes the 1VD from 151 to 173kW and 430 to 536Nm. But the numbers don't do the chip justice, and it feels like a much larger increase. The biggest gains from the chip are at low to moderate revs, where the difference is literally night-and-day. I don't think I've ever made a performance modification that lives up to it's claims quite like this chip.

There's a small comparison table below, so you can see what differences the engine and chip have made to performance in the real world.

Update: The above was written back in 2009, when 'rail chips' like the Tunit were about as good as it got. I'd still go with a Tunit again if going with a rail chip, but technology has moved on and there are superior options available, such as the Unichip I have installed in my 200-series.

Fuel Economy

On general running around town or on trips I'm achieving figures of 11-12L/100km. If I drive for economy, I can achieve 9-10L/100km.

To put this in perspective, even when the 100 was new with no turbo and no additional accessories or aggressive tyres, I was using over 12L/100km. Once I'd fitted a turbo and a range of accessories (Bullbar, winch, rear bar, 33" tyres, long range tank etc), I was down to 14L/100km around town and at least 16L/100km on a trip.

On a recent trip around hilly Tasmania the re-engined (but unchipped) 100 averaged just 14.5L/100km fully laden and towing a 1000kg camper-trailer! On exactly the same trip, a friend in a naturally-aspirated 4.2L diesel (1Hz) 100series averaged over 17L/100km, and he wasn't towing a trailer.

With all the extra power I was expecting a bit of a hit from the 11L/100km I was getting pre-chip, but to my surprise it came back essentially unchanged. On some trips using slightly less fuel, and on some slightly more.

Comparative Figures - 1Hz Turbo vs 1VD vs 1VD w/chip

About the tests and vehicle

1: A short standing start run up a hill. The speed is that at the finish point.
2: A rolling start in 4th or 5th gear up a long highway hill which gradually gets steeper. Starting speed of 80km/h, where full throttle was applied. The 2nd speed is the maximum speed achieved and the third is the speed at the top of the hill.
3. Standing 0-100km/h on a slight uphill grade.
4. Average fuel economy achieved in a mix of town, mountain and freeway driving.
5. Average fuel economy achieved loaded for a trip with a mix of road conditions.
6. Average fuel economy achieved loaded for a trip, and towing a 1000kg camper-trailer.

Bear in mind that the figures above would not apply for a lighter, less modified vehicle. They are just for comparative purposes between the three versions of the same vehicle. The 'Cruiser is set up for touring and off-road work, with a heavy steel bullbar, winch, rear/tow bar and wheel carriers, fridge, 33" tyres, long range tanks etc.

Reported oil consumption

There have been reports doing the rounds of 1VD-FTV engines consuming oil at an abnormal rate. Toyota identified several causes and made some changes to the engine design in 2010. These were a different piston top design; A change to the vacuum pump; A change to an oil return gasket. These changes seem to have solved the problem, in combination with using thinner oil than originally recommended. I'd suggest either a 10w40 or 5w40 instead of the original 15w40. More information on the Project 200 site.

Conclusion

Without a doubt, the most common question I'm asked about the conversion is: "Would you do it again?"

The answer is Yes*!

I couldn't be happier with the truck. It's got the power of a new 76-series combined with the room, safety and comfort of the 105's body and all-coil suspension. It tours effortlessly -towing or not- yet has off road ability that leaves a 200-series in the dust, thanks to the live front axle.

So I don't regret doing the conversion one bit, and I think I'd be hard pressed to list anything I'm not happy about in the finished result.

* The only thing that would make me think twice about doing it again is the time and effort it took to get the job done. If you can afford to be without the vehicle for six long months, then go for it. You won't be disappointed. But if you can't, and you dont want to pay someone else $30,000 to do it for you, then this might not be the conversion for you.

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