Friends, the crafty team at Garage 54 is back with a new mission, and oh what a glorious one it is. The video above is just over 13 minutes long and when you get to the end, you’ll be anxious to see the next chapter. That’s because this clip has all the elements of a good action film – a difficult challenge against seemingly insurmountable odds, epic battles, plot twists, and understated banter from the heroes. Also, oil erupts out of the engine not once, but twice. More on that in a bit.
The antics this time around include dropping a massive V8 engine into a tiny Lada. How massive of an engine are we talking about? It’s a 7.0-litre – or possibly a 6.0-litre, nobody really knows for sure – petrol mill sourced from an old Zil-131 6x6 Russian military truck. As such, slipping the engine into the Lada’s tiny bay isn’t a simple case of fabricating up some new engine mounts. Among other things, the boat anchor is said to weigh upwards of 450 kilograms which is roughly triple the weight of the Lada’s original powerplant. We don’t know if these figures are spot-on accurate, but seeing the Lada’s front end smooshed to the ground during the initial test fit, we’re inclined to believe what we hear.
Gallery: Lada V8 Engine Swap
Even without the weight issue, there’s a serious problem with space. The car’s firewall and transmission tunnel were pretty much removed completely for the test fit, as well as a good chunk of the front clip and the engine still didn’t fit. More cutting followed, and with the help of some clever engineering involving a hammer, the V8 finally settled into its new home. Yes, the crankshaft pulley now serves as the Lada's front bumper, but that's not important right now.
The drama didn’t end there, however. The requisite first-time engine startup saw a stream of oil blast through an open tube at the back of the mill. Apparently, the donor engine received the same gentle treatment as the Lada, because once the crew wiped their faces and plugged the leak, another rogue oil line sent black liquid everywhere on the second start-up attempt. At least we know the oil pressure is good.
The third attempt finally saw the engine fire and run without spewing any vital fluids, but alas, this was just a test fire with the engine resting in on the Lada. The steering, suspension, and driveline are additional challenges to be met before this crazy creation can actually be driven, and we’re anxiously awaiting the next installment to see what further adventures befall our heroes in this engine swap of epic proportions.
Source: Garage 54 via YouTube