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Ecotec Swap- why so few? by craigtbone
Started on: 11-27-2013 12:34 PM
Replies: 14 (768 views)
Last post by: jscott1 on 11-29-2013 02:58 PM
craigtbone
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Report this Post11-27-2013 12:34 PM Click Here to See the Profile for craigtboneClick Here to Email craigtboneSend a Private Message to craigtboneEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I suppose that I am really showing my ignorance here but as I ponder what to do with my ’88 Duke with a blown head gasket I find myself dreaming of an engine swap.

Over the past few years as I thought about engine swaps I keep coming back to the Ecotec as the perfect engine for the Fiero (for me). Light weight, rugged, does not completely fill up the engine compartment requiring a contortionist to change the plugs, good fuel economy, can build to any amount of power desired from modest to insane, for my thinking it fits the philosophy of the car, my Fiero was born a 4 cylinder and maybe it was intended to stay that way.

So why are there so few Ecotec swaps? Is it expensive? If so, why? Are there features that make the swap difficult? I presume that it is completely computer controlled making all the instrument gages and indicator lights more difficult to hook up?

Are there other factors? Are 4 cylinder engines just not desired?

I am not an all-out car nut so I just do not know and I would like to.
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BV MotorSports
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Report this Post11-27-2013 02:11 PM Click Here to See the Profile for BV MotorSportsClick Here to Email BV MotorSportsSend a Private Message to BV MotorSportsEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I think its because the 3.4pr (oh the horror!) and 3800 are so cheap and easy. Personally I think the ecotec is a great option and I am surprised it never really took off. I would imagine the Colbalt SS supercharged engine and trans would make for a really awesome Fiero.
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hookdonspeed
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Report this Post11-27-2013 02:12 PM Click Here to See the Profile for hookdonspeedClick Here to visit hookdonspeed's HomePageClick Here to Email hookdonspeedSend a Private Message to hookdonspeedEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
have they cracked the ECU's on those yet so you don't need to transplant the BCM and all with it? id not want a mess of wires behind my seat for buncha stuff I don't need/want.

(I haven't readup on them yet)
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FieroJimmy
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Report this Post11-27-2013 02:21 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FieroJimmySend a Private Message to FieroJimmyEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by hookdonspeed:

have they cracked the ECU's on those yet so you don't need to transplant the BCM and all with it? id not want a mess of wires behind my seat for buncha stuff I don't need/want.

(I haven't readup on them yet)


Yes, HPTuners can disable the VATS on the cavalier pcm. I've been contemplating one, so I've been doing the research.
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hookdonspeed
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Report this Post11-27-2013 02:31 PM Click Here to See the Profile for hookdonspeedClick Here to visit hookdonspeed's HomePageClick Here to Email hookdonspeedSend a Private Message to hookdonspeedEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by FieroJimmy:


Yes, HPTuners can disable the VATS on the cavalier pcm. I've been contemplating one, so I've been doing the research.


what about the need for the BCM / gauge cluster?
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pontiackid86
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Report this Post11-27-2013 02:40 PM Click Here to See the Profile for pontiackid86Click Here to Email pontiackid86Send a Private Message to pontiackid86Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
3800 is so cheap and easy and puts out the same if not more than a SC/TC ecotec.
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n7vrz
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Report this Post11-27-2013 02:55 PM Click Here to See the Profile for n7vrzClick Here to Email n7vrzSend a Private Message to n7vrzEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by pontiackid86:

3800 is so cheap and easy and puts out the same if not more than a SC/TC ecotec.


and is around 100 lbs heavier than the ecotec

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dobey
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Report this Post11-27-2013 03:09 PM Click Here to See the Profile for dobeySend a Private Message to dobeyEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
The newer turbo Ecotecs that make 200+ HP aren't cheap yet, and aren't so easy to swap.

The older N/A Ecotecs that are easier to swap and cheaper to find, don't make as much power without building them up and throwing an aftermarket turbo on. It's often cheaper to just swap in a Series II 3800SC.

An Ecotec would be a great swap though, even without a turbo. It'll make more power than the Duke, sound better, and can still get 40+ MPG on the highway.
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Report this Post11-27-2013 03:12 PM Click Here to See the Profile for dobeySend a Private Message to dobeyEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post

dobey

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quote
Originally posted by hookdonspeed:
what about the need for the BCM / gauge cluster?


You need to clarify specifically which model of Ecotec you are talking about. There are many. The Cavalier didn't come with the 200 HP turbo model, that runs on the Bosch motronic ECM. Early 2000s Ecotecs are easy. The LNF and similar models will be more difficult to wrangle with.
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css9450
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Report this Post11-27-2013 03:15 PM Click Here to See the Profile for css9450Click Here to Email css9450Send a Private Message to css9450Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
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FieroJimmy
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Report this Post11-27-2013 03:26 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FieroJimmySend a Private Message to FieroJimmyEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by hookdonspeed:


what about the need for the BCM / gauge cluster?


The Cav bcm is only needed for the fuel continue password for VATS. With it disabled, the bcm is unnecessary, and the cluster is not used.

I haven't looked at Cobalt/Ion, etc. pcms.
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Report this Post11-27-2013 06:21 PM Click Here to See the Profile for hookdonspeedClick Here to visit hookdonspeed's HomePageClick Here to Email hookdonspeedSend a Private Message to hookdonspeedEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by FieroJimmy:

I haven't looked at Cobalt/Ion, etc. pcms.


they were the ones I was wondering about like from the SS and such

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Report this Post11-27-2013 07:44 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fieroguruSend a Private Message to fieroguruEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
80-90+ % of people doing swaps want to be able to buy what they need and bolt it together with very good/detailed instructions. They also want to do swaps that other have done with success so they know it will work, and they will be able to finish it.

At this point the ecotec is still a one-off project where you will need to custom fabricate all the needed parts and handle the harness on your own. Very few people are willing to take on such projects, so there are very few completed ecotec swaps.

It will take more completed swaps from DIYers or strong vendor support for the swap for it to take off and be more common.
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fierocarparts
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Report this Post11-29-2013 01:52 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fierocarpartsClick Here to Email fierocarpartsSend a Private Message to fierocarpartsEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Exactly! On the 3800sc, it is practically plug and play and has plenty of power. No new ground-breaking required and plenty of support. Wouldn't be surprised that there are more 3800sc engines in running Fieros than 2.8s. They're getting long-in-the-tooth for decent used.
So easy, even a caveman can do it!

 
quote
Originally posted by fieroguru:

80-90+ % of people doing swaps want to be able to buy what they need and bolt it together with very good/detailed instructions. They also want to do swaps that other have done with success so they know it will work, and they will be able to finish it.

At this point the ecotec is still a one-off project where you will need to custom fabricate all the needed parts and handle the harness on your own. Very few people are willing to take on such projects, so there are very few completed ecotec swaps.

It will take more completed swaps from DIYers or strong vendor support for the swap for it to take off and be more common.


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jscott1
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Report this Post11-29-2013 02:58 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jscott1Send a Private Message to jscott1Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by fierocarparts:

Exactly! On the 3800sc, it is practically plug and play and has plenty of power. No new ground-breaking required and plenty of support. Wouldn't be surprised that there are more 3800sc engines in running Fieros than 2.8s. They're getting long-in-the-tooth for decent used.
So easy, even a caveman can do it!



Lol at the more running 3800 than 2.8. I'm not a big fan of the 3800 but if a person is looking for an inexpensive replacement for a blown Fiero motor the 3800 is the most bang for the buck. I would probably still prefer the 3.4 pr for a bunch of reasons but the Ecotec is still way too exotic for most people's taste.
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