Best Cj7 V8 Motor -
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post #1 of 2 Old 07-28-2011, 11:56 AM Thread Starter
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1983 CJ7 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Nantucket
Posts: 298
Best Cj7 V8 Motor

I have an 83 Cj7 Project. It needs a new engine and a transmission/transfer case to mate. I just need motor suggestions, not necessarily the transmission and transfer case, unless you'd like to add that!! I bought my CJ7 non-running so I'm not too sure on how it runs with it. It currently has the 258 inline six. It has a motorcraft ignition, clifford intake manifold & Tb spacer. It has a Holley carb, tho not sure on the cfm! Also has a blue distributor labeled "max power," though I've never heard of that. The exhaust appears to be aftermarket as well, though all labels are rusted so I can't tell. I'm not much of a 6 cyl guy. I love the 8's. I need a really good reason to make me stay with these inline 6's. Ive heard that they guzzle gas more than some 8's! I have seen on youtube that the 258's are godawful slow, too. Now, if i did a v8 swap, what would be the best engine??? Now, I'm taking into effect 1. Ease of installation in regards to finding proper mounts and transmission to mate it with 2. fuel economy. 3. horsepower/torque (though torque is more what I'm looking for) 4. a deep v8 grunt obviously, hopefully a high lift cam to give it some grunt! 5. how easy it is to work around the motor.. because I know something like a 454 might not fit too well..... and last but not least...6.. PRICE!!!! Also, should I go new (crate), used and rebuild myself, or remanufactured... Thanks!!

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post #2 of 2 Old 07-28-2011, 12:23 PM
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1985 CJ7 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 2,041
Ease of installation your best bet is a 360 but it wont do you much good for #2 on your list.

The best V8 for fuel economy will be a fuel injected SBC or SBF most likely. I love the LSx series of chevy motors and regularly get 20mpg+ out of my 5.3L.

On the other hand, the LS series motors arent that cheap just yet. and its a lot more work to make them fit than a 360 would be....

Honestly, the straight 6 is a great motor when well maintained and with a few minor upgrades and I still consider it to be the best motor jeep ever used in the CJ/YJ/TJ's. It has great low end torque and will do 70 on the freeway with the right gearing, etc. Jeep werent designed to do burnouts and produce gutbusting HP and TQ... Just something to keep in mind.

1985 CJ7 Project
Phase One : 5.3L Vortec/4L60E, Moser axles for AMC20, Twin Stick'd Dana300 - Completed
Phase Two: Bedliner, Rollcage, Seats, BESRK Rear Bumper w/ tire swing, Soft Top, and a few other goodies - Mostly Complete
Phase Three: Waggy 44 front, Scout D44 Rear, 4.56's, ARB's (F/R) SOA with YJ Springs, 35x12.50x15 BFG MT - Not Even Close to beginning

Also a mostly rust-free 1970 Scout 800A That I'll get to start working on someday...

Chrome won't get you home...BUT Rattle Can Black may just get you back"
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