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S13 - VQ swap for endurance racing

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  • S13 - VQ swap for endurance racing

    I have an S13 chassis that was once a racing car. It was a very well balanced platform. When it was campaigned from 2005 to 2008 it had an SR20 which worked well and made decent power. What it lacked was consistent reliability. I still have the chassis and was considering making it an endurance racing car. We had a 350Z and it lasted 40k miles of street and merciless track driving without ever having to open the engine even one time. That's why I wanted to pose the question in order to see if anyone has any thoughts on the why's and/or why not's of the swap for racing, what may need to be done in order to make it live in a strictly racing environment and if there's a better option I am unaware of at this time? Thank you in advance for your time.

  • #2
    http://nissanroadracing.com/forum/un...ce-racing-saga

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    • #3
      Thank you! Much appreciated. I saw them out there this past weekend. Would really like to connect with them. I imagine we are geographically close as we frequent the same tracks. Also considering the LS and would like their opinion on that as a viable race engine option for endurance racing. I have a lot more to learn.

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      • #4
        Where are you located if you don't mind me asking?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by clotuning View Post
          Where are you located if you don't mind me asking?
          Just outside Philadelphia, PA in Chalfont. Chassis has been in my garage all these years and I guess I was waiting to do something with it again.
          Attached Files

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          • #6
            That car is pretty! Any video of it in action?

            i think the vq is a better choice than ls motor because of fuel consumption.

            But if your stuck in traffic the torque of the ls will definitely help out.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by clotuning View Post
              That car is pretty! Any video of it in action?

              i think the vq is a better choice than ls motor because of fuel consumption.

              But if your stuck in traffic the torque of the ls will definitely help out.
              I like your thought on fuel consumption. I am hoping to have it be a nice class 3 AER car but the VQ may push it up into class 4 which is still fine if it does.

              I am pretty sure this was in 2005. It's the only video I ever made in it and was before it reached it's final stage when I raced it in NASA sprint races in 2006.

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=76Follwvrbo

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              • #8
                Yea I think the vq will put u in class 4 since gills is in that class

                Is the sr still good? Not sure on cost but you could also slap on a ve head, raise the comp to 11:1-12:1 (so you can still run 93 octane) and remove the turbo. That should put you at a reliable 200whp without the weight and heat from the turbo. I would think that could keep you in class 3 and be competitive. But im not 100% sure since I have no experience in aer nor sr20. Just trying to help throw out ideas and options

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by clotuning View Post
                  Yea I think the vq will put u in class 4 since gills is in that class

                  Is the sr still good? Not sure on cost but you could also slap on a ve head, raise the comp to 11:1-12:1 (so you can still run 93 octane) and remove the turbo. That should put you at a reliable 200whp without the weight and heat from the turbo. I would think that could keep you in class 3 and be competitive. But im not 100% sure since I have no experience in aer nor sr20. Just trying to help throw out ideas and options

                  The SR blocks are fine and I have two of them but either of them would need to be completely refreshed. My experience with the 350Z tells me that's the way I want to go. 20k miles when we bought it and over 60k when we sold it. Easily 20 track days a year in it for 10 years. Motor was never opened and trans still shifted although the synchro's were tired. That's the kind of reliability i am looking for now if I am going to do this.

                  The car starts getting stripped in and out next week and made ready for a repaint. Definitely moving forward with this project.

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                  • #10
                    Awesome! Try to do a build thread

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                    • #11
                      If you are a glutton for punishment (and punishing your wallet), endurance race an FI engine'd car in a faster class. The only successful ones that run in AER are the 1.8t in a VW Jetta and I think an Ecotec swapped Miata. Both are dialed back to last and compete in class 3. There's now a supercharged K20 swapped Integra, but I don't have much faith in that thing lasting very long, but they also dial it back to class 3 so maybe it will.

                      I don't have any personal experience with an SR20DET so I can't honestly asses their potential for use in endurance racing. I'd venture to guess it would be teething based on conversations I've had with people who track them regularly.


                      So your assessment on the VQ is accurate. The engine (VQ35DE) has been nothing short of phenomenal in terms of reliability and it makes good enough power in an prepped S-chassis for them to be proper quick with a good driver. Up until NJMP last year, we've been putting the car in AER class 5 (fastest class) with a basic bolt-on DE engine in the S14. It is the Japanese answer to the M5x/S5x family of German NA engines and I think more reliable and cheaper. Maybe not quite the specific power output capability of an S54, but the 37VHR has been putting down some serious numbers lately with bolt-ons and a tune.

                      Really, the only major downside is that they are very TALL and the transmissions are heavy mofo's that can develop synchro issues. With that said, you can get a brand new transmission direct from Nissan for well less than $2000, which is a bargain considering. We did that last January and it's been holding up to the abuse after 5 races.

                      Fuel range will be an issue with a stock S13 tank (15.9 gallons). On the S14 (17.2 gallons), we can squeak out about 85 minutes of green flag only laps before fuel starvation. It leaves us with basically zero fuel strategy in AER's ruleset. This is something that I hope to address during the summer break this year.

                      I'll leave it at that for now. PM'd you.
                      Core4 Motorsports
                      CLICK HERE for Wilwood FSL6R Radial Bracket & Rear Wilwood BBK GROUP BUY
                      S14 VQ AER Endurance Racing Team

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                      • #12
                        I race a s13 in CHampcar with a VQ30. We can't run the vq35 because of how the rule work. If i were to run an AER or WRL car it would for sure be a vq35 S13. It is an absolute drean to drive. check of some of our video's on youtube. Search NLS Racing on youetube, Facebook and twitter. There is one pther team in champcar that has the same swap. They set fast time of the day just about everywhere they go.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by gills View Post
                          If you are a glutton for punishment (and punishing your wallet), endurance race an FI engine'd car in a faster class. The only successful ones that run in AER are the 1.8t in a VW Jetta and I think an Ecotec swapped Miata. Both are dialed back to last and compete in class 3. There's now a supercharged K20 swapped Integra, but I don't have much faith in that thing lasting very long, but they also dial it back to class 3 so maybe it will.

                          I don't have any personal experience with an SR20DET so I can't honestly asses their potential for use in endurance racing. I'd venture to guess it would be teething based on conversations I've had with people who track them regularly.


                          So your assessment on the VQ is accurate. The engine (VQ35DE) has been nothing short of phenomenal in terms of reliability and it makes good enough power in an prepped S-chassis for them to be proper quick with a good driver. Up until NJMP last year, we've been putting the car in AER class 5 (fastest class) with a basic bolt-on DE engine in the S14. It is the Japanese answer to the M5x/S5x family of German NA engines and I think more reliable and cheaper. Maybe not quite the specific power output capability of an S54, but the 37VHR has been putting down some serious numbers lately with bolt-ons and a tune.

                          Really, the only major downside is that they are very TALL and the transmissions are heavy mofo's that can develop synchro issues. With that said, you can get a brand new transmission direct from Nissan for well less than $2000, which is a bargain considering. We did that last January and it's been holding up to the abuse after 5 races.

                          Fuel range will be an issue with a stock S13 tank (15.9 gallons). On the S14 (17.2 gallons), we can squeak out about 85 minutes of green flag only laps before fuel starvation. It leaves us with basically zero fuel strategy in AER's ruleset. This is something that I hope to address during the summer break this year.

                          I'll leave it at that for now. PM'd you.
                          I had many many many hours on my first SR20DET, and it was bone stock from the headgasket down. A 25 yr old o-ring finally gave me a big mechanical on track, but I don't really attribute that to it being FI.

                          A water cooled turbo puts more heat in the cooling system, but once that's sorted out, the engines are extremely reliable as long as you're not stupid with them. That said, I did have to weld the turbine housing to the manifold because the M8 studs could not handle hard track usage. They would stretch and then gasket would blow out. Welding the two together made things reliable on that end.

                          I did have a Garrett GT2871R die on it after a while, but well, stuff breaks on track. I still completed that weekend getting passed by 1.6L Miatas... haha


                          But in general, I think they're reliable as long as you do some minor refreshing of the old engine and keep and eye on it. VQs are also reliable, but a mild bolt-on turbo and cams on an SR will outpower a VQ35DE all day long and then some, even with things turned down on track.
                          '18 Chevrolet Volt - Electric fun hatch for DD duty!


                          DefSport Koni Sleeve and Spring Perch Buy!!!
                          http://www.nissanroadracing.com/showthread.php?t=5902

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                          • #14
                            Trust me, there's nothing I want more than more 240's with SR's to race what I race in or similar. Please, somebody, anybody build said mild bolt-on SR and come BEAT US!

                            I know you have plenty of experience with the SR, but I still remain skeptical that a mild bolt-on SR will outpower a VQ AND do it for 9 hours on end easily. The idea is that it'll take a lot less effort with the VQ.

                            Also, at the same power level, how does the fuel consumption of an SR compare relatively to a VQ? Old port injection FI engines are almost as thirsty as carbuerated V8's.










                            Core4 Motorsports
                            CLICK HERE for Wilwood FSL6R Radial Bracket & Rear Wilwood BBK GROUP BUY
                            S14 VQ AER Endurance Racing Team

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                            • #15
                              I apologize for being away so long. Between work and other's cars and their issues this was pushed back. Moving it up on the list of importance now. I will start planning in earnest how this will be done effectively.

                              I will not be doing the SR20 for this build. I will say that based on lap times on the new surface at Summit Point Main the old car with the SR20 would have been a class 5 car comfortably at the AER event in 2018 and that was with only 245 rwhp. Problem is it only would have run about 25 minutes before something blew up or off of it. VQ for me this time around with this car. Just want a car that runs the whole race every race if possible.

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