Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that used engines from Pontiac sedans can fit in just about anything that uses a transaxle. It’s also one of the most common used engines in the world with over 25 million produced to date. It’s been rated one of the best engines of the 20th century, so yeah, it’s reliable.
The CRX is already a good-looking car, and by all accounts, a truly iconic hatchback. That said, you can make it look even better with just a few minor additions. Since it’s a Honda, it also handles engine swaps very well, so you may find yourself looking at GSR Integra engines while you’re at it.
We couldn’t just leave you hanging wondering why Jaguar and Pagani aren’t on our list. Well, there are just a ton of hot cars and only so much paper to write on…or page space here on the internet. Above is a 1961 Jaguar E Type drop, one of the sleekest cars to ever wear the Jaguar emblem. Below is a Pagani Huayra BC. Words to describe the Pagani are hard to come by, so we will just leave it here for you admire.
Smarts originally used engines under 1 liter in size, and you can pick up a rolling shell for under 3k easy. That means you can have this much fun for under 8k fabrication included. Try doing that with a 5-liter ‘Stang.
We started the Japan section of our Used Engines Countdown with a rare find that only came in one car, and these aren’t much better. Used engines of the Wankel variety are most commonly found in models that we didn’t get in the US. Score one point for eBay.
To be clear, power isn’t the thing that sets this car apart from the base model, though there was an optional exhaust offered that upped the output by 6 hp and makes the car that much rowdier. You’ll get the stock 6.2L V8 (which is no joke) making 430 hp and 424 lb-ft of torque. You’ll also enjoy a new appearance package which, while cool, is also functional, and was reported to reduce aero lift by around half. It also has big brakes from the Z06, special wheels, and a fantastic list of optional features. Look for a model with magnetic ride control and you won’t be sorry.
The thing that makes these rides so special is that they offer performance that new models do at a fraction of the price. While some of these cars could easily still be compared to new models from other segments, they’re still very affordable for what they can do.
These crazy cheap cars are some of the most badass wagons on the market, plain and simple. It does 0-60 in 4 seconds flat and features the same 6.2L supercharged V8 (inspired by the C6 ZR1 engine) as its sedan brother. It’s good for 556 hp, 551 lb-ft. of torque, and a shitload of good times, screeching tires, and sideways turns.
If you’re in the market for a new muscle car, chances are you’re looking to spend anywhere between $30,000 and $45,000, or even as much as $60k, depending on options and trims. Instead of looking for a new vehicle though, you may be better served looking to the past instead.
We love the irony of taking one the most mass-produced used engines ever and sticking it in Honda’s first mass-marketed car ever. And if you want to undertake something like this yourself, check out this detailed guide which chronicles how that engine got where it is.
The CRX Si received Honda’s D16A6 4-cylinder good for 105-108 hp (depending on the year and perhaps tailwind/grade) and 100 lb-ft of torque. If that doesn’t sound like much power to you, well…it’s not. Keep in mind though, that this is still basically a Civic, and that this car only weighs about 2,000 lbs. What sets this car apart from the Civic is not its power, but rather its style.
The 2008-2009 Tahoe, Yukon, Escalade, Silverado, and Sierra used engines of the LFA variety which can be converted to an LS2 with minimal effort swap the cam, lifters, and a few covers and you have an LS2 for the price of a wrecked ten-year-old soccer chauffeur.
The Volkswagen Golf GTI has always been and continues to be the definition of a hot hatch. Prior to the upcoming debut of the eighth-generation Golf for MY 2020, the iconic compact will put on the Golf 7 moniker one last time. The 2019 Volkswagen Golf will hence arrive unchanged, but all-time-favorite GTI models have already been updated recently.