Solve riddle of getting computer functioning w/ non-Jeep engine -
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post #1 of 5 Old 01-04-2020, 10:12 PM Thread Starter
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Jk Solve riddle of getting computer functioning w/ non-Jeep engine

Basically I want to know: If you have modern JK Wranglers (2017 & 2018) 100% factory EXCEPT engine is replaced w/ _______ (yet to be determined non-Jeep engine – let’s say for argument it’s a 5 cylinder diesel Mercedes engine) – is there ANY WAY to get all those awesome accessories that the wiring harness hooks up to work (Example: navigation system, speedometer, button for sway-bar disconnect, etc.) – because I assume the computer is going to block everything if it does not sense what the computer considers to be a “properly functioning engine”?

Now some more info, and my novice ideas:

• I’m hoping everyone skips over the “why” of this problem (as that would be an even longer post) – and just trust me – and accept the facts for what they are and see if we can focus on crowd sourcing a solution.
• You cannot specify a list of engines that I could make this work with. The engine is not purchased yet, but believe me, there will be very few options to choose from.
• Just picture these Jeeps (yes, we have several we need to do this to) with EVERYTHING except the engine (transmission is there and will obviously need an adapter plate to the engine, and everything else the wiring harnesses attach to is there, and works fine as these Jeeps only tend to have 20,000 +/- miles on them). In fact, we can even use the original engine’s wiring harness IF that would do any good.
• Also, I assume there is not a human being on this planet who can completely solve this riddle, or at best some things will have to be sacrificed IF a diesel engine is used – such as the speedometer, and gauges in the dash. Not to mention a diesel engine would require additional sensors to be modified, like to the catalytic converter.

• I can only think of three ideas:
1) get into the computer software (I assume this is impossible as it’s probably proprietary and locked up) and tell it either that each of the engine sensors are now permanently reading all normal, OR make it so the computer no longer needs those sensor’s info to function.
2) find ‘dummy’ sensors for each and every ‘critical’ engine wiring harness connection. This ‘dream’ dummy sensor simply snaps perfectly into the socket of every fitting on the engine wiring harness, and sends a signal to the computer that whatever sensor it is supposed to be ‘reading’ is reporting all normal. I assume this is just a pipe dream.
3) hope the new engine has the basic sensors for oil, water temperature, etc. and modify a connection from that sensor to the original Jeep wiring harness. This seems like it would be a wiring splicing nightmare – with one wrong connection being impossible to track down. PLUS no replacement engine will have ALL the sensors a modern Jeep engine has.

• Don’t worry about emissions, or other laws – this is the Caribbean – IF there is a solution it’s allowed.

• If for some reason you need low mileage factory engines in mint condition – we have them in Miami (again, please don’t ask ‘why don’t you use those’ – believe me, we would if we could ) – we also have the titles for the vehicles, the bill of sales, and videos of the motors driving, and parked.

• Lastly, I am serious about the free trip to the Caribbean. If you have any interest in going this spring, and I am confident you can solve this riddle, I would fly you down, include your hotel, and we make the Jeep work and you hang out and do what you want.

Any help, even if it’s only brainstorming in a way that maybe someone else has an epiphany on a solution, is VERY much appreciated!

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post #2 of 5 Old 01-06-2020, 02:42 PM
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I would contact the people that are in the know on these. Meaning they do swaps to V8 Ls or Hemi etc.. Make them that offer?

MoTech in Las vegas is one, and has a good rep give them a call tell them whats the plan. Money no issue? as most swaps tend to be big bucks today especially anything "one" and done will be the most costly. In the end it will cost more then a new jeep i would bet since integration would be a PITA with the way Fiat works the CanBus TIPM. Since you wont have the resources there for parts etc.. I would bet it would have to be here, then shipped back. That may have legal issues?

m2c and is worthless today.

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post #3 of 5 Old 01-07-2020, 10:25 AM Thread Starter
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EXCELLENT start and much appreciated.

Just talked to MoTech and learned:

-there is no silver bullet 'fake sensor' - and these guys would know - seems they basically invented this field 10 years ago
-They only do GMC drivetrain - so I would need to find an LS or LT engine
-Their kits are $6,000 - $7,000 and include 95% of what's needed (of course I supply motor and transmission) - we could make that price work
-They said Hemi's work fine - and they'll give me names of the companies that sell those swap kits if I find a Hemi
-I will look, BUT I DOUBT I will be able to find LS / LT or Hemi
-You were correct - if you go custom one and done - price probably would be astronomical, IF you could find someone to do it -- as both the Jeep computer and the new motor's computer need their code integrated line by line

I am still very interested if others brainstorm this and have additional thoughts/info -- but I wanted to get this important update out there.

Thanks 222Doc - you're a gentleman and a scholar for sharing that!
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post #4 of 5 Old 01-09-2020, 04:49 AM
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You could use a stand alone controller to run the engine but the trans may be an issues unless it's a stick. Something like megasquirt, They do have controllers to work with some GM transmissions. But integrating it with the rest of the vehicle is the problem.
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post #5 of 5 Old 05-18-2020, 05:11 AM
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RPM Extreme may have some options.
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