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Check Out This Twincharged Engine-Swapped Mazda RX-7

Illustration for article titled Check Out This Twincharged Engine-Swapped Mazda RX-7

Normally people swap out the rotary engines in their Mazda RX-7s because they want something more simple. A nice chassis, a beautiful design, no more worrying about apex seals. This guy did just that, except the opposite, because he did swap in a conventional piston engine, but he supercharged and turbocharged it.

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This guy, Scott Pham, living in the Pacific Northwest, stuck a Toyota 1JZ VVTi engine in the front of his FD RX-7. That’s a pretty standard move. Most people will cram V8s in the front of their FDs, but a 1JZ is a straightforward way to get good power, easily, consistently, and without a lot of fiddling.

Well, this Scott fellow didn’t seem to be wildly interested in doing things the way everyone else does. (No surprise. He did go ahead and buy an RX-7 after all.) But if you watch the video of him explaining how his low-mounted Eaton M90 supercharger boosts the engine at all times, then his Borg Warner S366 turbo spools up and adds power on top of that higher in the rev range, he doesn’t seem particularly troubled by his setup. He has no electronic clutches to switch from super- to turbocharged boost. Everything seems relatively orderly.

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He says it makes 400 horsepower. Listen to him explain the whole mess here:

And listen to it run here:

Scott makes it sound easy, but I would never in my life attempt this kind of garage engineering. I’m just going to continue staring in awe.

Raphael Orlove is features editor for Jalopnik.

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DISCUSSION

I can’t watch the vids b/c of work - but am I crazy thinking a 400hp turbo + roots 1JZ is a little low on power? Or...is this more of a get everything installed, and then more power can come later deal?

Also - has F1 had any reports of a missing wing lately?