Prime Performance’s Rav4 GTT

Check out Prime Performance’s first GEN4 powered Rav4! Click HERE for more photos and be sure to “Like” Prime Facebook page. Cheers guys!

 

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Front Brake Theory Part 2 – Stage 2 Brake Upgrade

Welcome to part 2 of my Front Brake Theory! I left off with alot of material from my first post…some of you have messaged me about a follow-up. I have to apologize for a late response. Since, I have selected my setup and have been testing it for over 4 months.

DISCLAIMER/WARNING: This is simply a guide, written to be and is intended as informational tips. This is not a 100% accurate or guaranteed foolproof guide. Work on your own vehicle at your own risk. If after reading through these tips, you do not feel comfortable doing the work yourself, please seek the help of a professional mechanic. I cannot be held accountable for your safety or vehicle. I do not take any responsibility for any damage to personal property or injury to yourself.

Here is the Stage 2 Brake Upgrade:

I’ve selected: Brake Bracket – Celica GT (95-99)

Part Numbers:

RH 47721-20420

LH 47722-20120

 96celicafrontbrakebracket3a 96celicafrontbrakebracket396celicafrontbrakebracket1

Rotors – Lexus LS430 (01 – 06)

Part Number: 43512-50220

Ls430rotorCalipers – Toyota Avalon (95-97)

Part Number:

RH 47730-07020

LH 47750-07020

avalon96frontcaliper avaloncalipers

Pads – Toyota MR2 Turbo (92-95)

Part Number: 04465-17060

Here are some reference shots: Rotor Comparison…Lexus LS430 (01 – 06) on the left and the Rav4 (96-00) on the right. IMG_8925 Test Fitting…the Celica GT (95-99) Brake Bracket. The dust shield was bent slightly to accommodate the larger 315mm diameter rotor. IMG_8924 More Test Fitting…the Celica GT (95-99) Brake Pads (these were too thick to seat properly into the brake pads clips). IMG_8928 Here is the caliper mounted and the complete what I’ll call “prototype” version of this setup.

IMG_8930IMG_8976

Fitment

There are few spots on the Celica Brake Bracket that need to be grinded to support the (1)thicker rotor, (2)the larger diameter as well as (3)the offset of the rotor. The newer setup will not work with the stock 16 inch wheels unless you use a wheel spacer (25mm thick)…I’m using the H&R one on my stock 16 inch wheels and it barely fits. Its probably better to use the Celica GT caliper over the Avalon calipers because the master cylinder will work much better with the single piston setup. I need to install a larger one with my setup, which means more $$ …which is what I was trying to avoid.

Driving Impressions

It’s a tight fit that will create a front brake bias (with the twin piston calipers) but works with no brake fade unlike that stock setup. Since I did not change/upgrade the master cylinder, the pedal travel has increased…while its good for pedal modulation, its in need of a larger bored cylinder due to the larger hydraulic volume in each caliper. Brake fade resistance has definitely improved. I plan on upgrading the rear brakes, changing the master cylinder and adding some stainless steel brake lines. Good luck, drive safely, and have fun!

3SGTE Engine Swap Tips

When a car enthusiast like myself buys a new car, we often have a plan…a collection of ideas of what we want. I’m no different. Before I purchased my Rav4 I knew this was going to be something big in more ways then one. If you recall, in my blog introduction, there was one specific requirement that the Rav4 doesn’t meet…having “More then 200hp.” Not satisfied by what choices I had amongst the cars I looked at, I figured if I can’t find everything I want…I’ll just build it!

I’ve received a bunch of messages from you fellow enthusiasts, asking tons of questions, looking for tips and advise. This has lead me to the hiccups…the giant ¿question-marks?…so lets highlight those:

1) Does the 3sgte bolt right up to the Rav4 engine mounts?

Yes, all S-series engines (includes: 5sfe, 3sge & 3sgte) will “bolt in” the Rav4 chassis with no modifications. And technically there is only 1 engine mount that actually bolts onto the engine…and that is the passenger side mount. The other 3 mounts connect directly to the transmission. I would advise replacing and urethane filling the engine & rear differential mounts.

2) Will the 3sgte fit stock E250F transmission?

Yes, all S-series engine share the same transmission bolt pattern thus the 3sgte will mate up to the stock E250F transmission.

3) These leads into,will the stock Rav4 clutch & flywheel fit as well?

Yes & no. Yes, they technically share the same bolt patterns and yes, you could reuse your stock flywheel (I recommend machining it before reuse). But the stock clutch is only made to handle 120-130hp and are too weak to handle the added power. So you will definitely need a new clutch kit with the 3sgte swap. On another, there has been a debate on whether or not the stock Rav4 3sfe has an 8-bolt or a 6-bolt flywheel setup. From the information I’ve gathered, the early versions of the 3sfe from late 80s Celica & Camry had a 6-bolt flywheel setup. Sometime in the 90’s Toyota made the switch from 6 to 8 bolts. Lastly my Rav4 had an 8-bolt setup.

4) Does the Celica or Caldina E150F transmission swap fit?

Yes, it bolts right up, reuses other 3 stock engine mounts…the shifter cables & shifter itself work just fine…but you’ll need a Rav4.2 driver side axle. Also the clutch line, .  Note that the speedometer will not be accurate. And lastly note that the Caldina transmission doesn’t have a VSS or Speedo Gear Ring. See my post regarding this situation HERE.

5) Is the 3sgte wiring harness plug and play?

No, you will need to either custom fabricate a harness yourself or reach to a specialist like Doug at WireGap

6) Will the stock fuel pump work?

No, the fuel pump will not flow enough volume for the injectors. You will need an upgraded pump. Check out my MOAR Fuel N Stuff post. I’d also recommend servicing the injectors.

7) Does the stock Rav4 have a returnless fuel system? Will the 3sgte required a fuel return line?

Yes, the stock Rav4 has a returnless setup and yes, this swap will require adding a fuel return line to the gas tank.

8) Are there any clearance issues in and around the engine bay?

Yes, the 3sgte turbocharger interferes with the stock Rav4 radiator fan. So a slimmer fan (less the 2.5inch thick) is needed. Since I’m using the stock Caldina air box, I had to modify the lower half to fit in properly. It also interfered with the stock coolant reservoir which I have moved slightly from it’s original position. Please note that a custom intake setup will eliminate this issue.

9) Where do you mount intercooler?

This will be your choice. If you want a front mounted intercooler, you will most likely have to sacrifice your AC condensor to create space to fit one. I opted to keep my AC and retain the stock Caldina top mounted intercooler. This required cutting the hood, adding a hood scoop with splitter to direct air flow thru the intercooler.

10) Are there any miscellaneous items that need attention?

Yes…here’s a summary of the smaller things that you will need address:

Throttle Cable – the stock Rav4 cable is too long for the Caldina intake manifold setup. So we made bracket relocating the mounting position to correct this issue.

Cruise Control – works but continuously tries to spool the turbo and once it hits boost, it cuts off. Since this has been a low priority, I really haven’t looked into it much but I suspect acquiring a 3sgte cruise control ecu would fix this.

AC Compressor – since the AC lines on the Caldina compressor are arranged differently then the Rav4’s, you’ll have to reuse your stock Rav4 AC Compressor. Also note keeping AC will limit the space in the front to mount an intercooler.

Alternator – if you choice to retain the stock Rav4 AC system, you will also need to retain the stock alternator as well. This is because of clearance issues from the turbo and the oil dip stick. I also needed to fab up a lower alternator bracket as well…to prove extra clearance.

Exhaust – since no such exhaust system exist for this type of swap, you will have to create your own custom exhaust setup.

Custom Intake – in general this is an easy one to handle, nonetheless you will also to create a custom intake setup. As noted above, I’m my setup consist of the stock Caldina air box custom fitted to the lower portion of the stock Rav4 setup. I will be upgrade to cone filter setup in the future.

OBD2 – like nearly all JDM engine swaps, you will lose OBD2 functionality. This means, depending on your region, you may have or may not have issues with inspection.

Boost Behavior

Awhile back, I saw a group buy for Omori Boost Gauges…I got so excited, I impulsively bought one, without having any force induction on my car. It’s very popular seller amongst the MR2 and WRX community. I’ve always been a fan of its compact size and style. I’ve been planning to add a boost controller, to squeeze out a few more ponies from my CT15B…hold on, hold on, hold on!!! Let me take a step back for a sec.

Why add the boost gauge?  Well, as you “turn up” the boost on the boost controller, the engine begins to produce power in excess of the stock capabilities. This makes it essential to monitor the manifold air and boost pressure via boost gauge to ensure things are in order. Thus a boost gauge goes hand-and-hand with a boost controller.

Fast forward, I now actually have a turbocharged engine and an opportunity to install it.

omorielectronicboostgaugeomorielectronicboostgauge2omorielectronicboostgauge1

Let me tell you a little bit about the Omori 45mm Electronic Boost Gauge:                               – 45mm gauge with a red needle/black face and white backlight.                                           – Kit includes y-splitter, air hose, filter, sending unit and mounting bracket.                            – Needle performs a 270 degree calibration sweep at start-up.

I had a hard time finding a mounting pod for a 45mm gauge. So, I opted to making my own out some left overs I had laying around. There’s nothing like a DIY project…so much fun. Anyhow here’s my finished product:

IMG_9251IMG_9267

MOAR Fuel N Stuff!!!

It’s a simple equation….more power requires MOAR FUEL!!! With the anticipation of building my Rav4 GT-T, I needed to prepare my fuel system. An upgraded pump was necessary, as well as a fuel return line.

For reference, Rav4 Fuel System Components:

rav4.1 fuel system

sxa10 gas tank 1 sxa10 gas tank 2 sxa10 gas tank 3

I searched around the inter-web and came up with Deatschwerks, a company dedicated to high-performance fuel systems solutions. They sell affordable, high quality fuel pumps for a variety of applications and offer an industry best 3-year no fault warranty. But what I really like about Deatschwerks, is that they are a family own business, that stand behind the name of their brand.

I selected a Deatschwerks DW200 In-Tank Fuel Pump as my replacement:

dw_fitment_kits_9-0791_cropdw2001

Features Include:

  • Flows 255 litres per hour
  • In-tank application specific fitment
  • Ethanol compatible
  • 3-year no-fault warranty
  • Quiet and reliable turbine impellerIMG_8719

Though this isn’t an exact video of a fuel pump swap, its a good visual illustration of how to find and remove the fuel pump from the Rav4. Definitely useful!

Here’s another resourceful link on how replace a Rav4 fuel pump…

Off-Road.com’s “Rav4 Crawler: In-Tank Pump Swap”…just click the photo:

Rav4 Crawler: In-Tank Pump Swap

More fuel detail to come shortly…

Intermittent Wiper Stalk Swap

While on a vacation in a rental car, it was rain and I thought to myself…it makes me sad I’ve never owned a car with an intermittent wiper feature. This may not be a big deal for some but for me, it’s just annoying to constantly switch the wiper from intermittent, to low and then back. Becuase the Rav4.1 never came with one from the factory, I was left to figure it out on my own.

I’ve been on a hot streak with part compatibilty sourcing, so I had hunch that this was a easy fix. Determined, I started searching for Toyota models with a intermittent wiper stalk and rear wiper function as well. I came up with:

Toyota Part: 84652‑26530 SWITCH ASSY, WINDSHIELD WIPER
TOYOTA CELICA (1996 – 1999)
TOYOTA SIENNA (1998 – 1999)
LEXUS RX300 (1999 – 2002)

Here’s what what it looks like:

IMG_9242Searched around the interweb and came with one for $12 bucks shipped.

It easy to install, it bolts right in. Simply remove 4 screws on your steering column cover, unplug the harness, remove the 2 screws holding in the wiper stalk, then remove it. Next install the new stalk in and reverse the order…DONE! No wiring needed.

rav4wiperstalkremoval

Here’s a quick comparison…the top is the original wiper stalk and the bottom is the new intermittent wiper stalk.

IMG_9244IMG_9246

Here is the final product…

IMG_9248

Why The Caldina Gen4 3SGTE?

One might ask why….why the ST215W Caldina 3SGTE?

I’m not going to get into the performance specs or numbers, you can just Google that yourself. I’m going to simply provide you with a personal opinion and how I came to my conclusion for this particular project.

Now I contemplated this for months…do a choice a BEAMS 3SGE, Gen3 or Gen4 3SGTE? While I also considered a V6 1MZFE and even 2GRFE. The 2GR was just not economically efficient…on top of the fact that the V6 platform interferes with the transfer case. I just didn’t want to go there, especially for only 200hp from the 1MZ. Now the BEAMS, this was definitely more inline with what I’m use to & absolutely love, high revving NA power…BUT, on average its almost the same price as a Gen3 or Gen4 3SGTE…and there it was…I was left between two choices.

I have to take a step back and ask the question, I’ve asked so many plotting to do an engine swap…what is your vision? what are your goals…what are you looking to get out of this project?

My vision was to create something I couldn’t find or buy anywhere else…the motto “built, not bought” sums it up! If you go back go back to my intro post you’ll find I wanted something with “More Then 200hp”. Well a stock Rav4 doesn’t cut it but thankfully it had something else I was looking for, “Engine Swap Potential.” With a 3sgte, I was now looking at 250-300hp. With that said I was going to exceed my vision and goals. The swap also had to be as reliable as possible, just as any other factory Toyota would be.This leads me into why I chose the Gen 4 3SGTE.

As I read forum post, after forum post, I gathered more and more info & data. I soon came across a well known and growing Northeast MR2 shop called PRIME. They have been specializing with these engine for quiet sometime. Their presence on the forums (MR2.com & MR2OC.com) and Facebook have influenced my decision.

So here it is….I’ve taken PRIME’s “Top reasons why you want a Gen4 3SGTE” and gave it a Rav4 twist:

1) Newest breed of swappable 2.0L 3SGTE engines for a Rav4.1. Built from 1998-2003.

2) Coilpack ignition, 550cc injectors, 1-piece turbo and manifold, high volumetric efficiency intake manifold.

3) Gen4 has the most modern electronics, which means every system operates more efficiently.

4) You have to drive one to understand how much better it runs, drives and goes than any other gen 3sgte motor.

5) Optimized for high response, this super fast spooling turbo 3SGTE engine drives like a naturally aspirated engine with no turbo surge or lag. Drives like a modern day turbo car – not one designed in the 1980’s (Gen2 3SGTE).

6) Has more then twice the power over a stock 3sfe…and with a basic boost control, it’s an easy 300hp at the flywheel.

7) The Gen4 is by far the easiest 3SGTE to work on in the engine bay once your swap is done – due to the lack of the spider web of hoses typically associated with Gen2 and Gen3 3SGTE motors. Yields for a cleaner and less cluttered engine bay.

8) Prime supplies a custom wiring harness that creates a plug and play solution for the Gen4 motor. No cut wires or hack jobs. Their harnesses retain the functional factory diagnostic port (not OBD2 port), cruise control, and A/C!

9) With its increased turbo response and torque it’s the best 3SGTE engine for autocross or road racing hands down. Nothing is more responsive than a Gen4.

10) Don’t take our word for it. COME FOR A RIDE IN MY RAV4 GT-T OR GO TEST DRIVE ONE OF PRIME’S GEN4 MR2’s FOR FREE!

Here is one of Prime’s Gen4 DYNO RESULTS. NOTE…these are wheel horsepower figures (AWD will yield slightly lower #’s). Engine flywheel power is ~280HP and ~300TQ. The test car was a 1993 MR2 with factory catalytic converter and running a  Prime Stage 1 setup.

With that said, this was certainly enough for my to pull the trigger on a Gen4 3SGTE. The biggest take-a-ways for me were: reliability, responsiveness and power potential. The Gen4 was the perfect match me.

gtte

Lastly, there are some pros to a Gen3 3SGTE:

– It has a better air-to-water intercooler

– If you have a 96-97 model it will be easier to wire up the distributor and stock tachometer

– The Gen3 manual transmission will have a Differential Speedo Gear Ring

– The CT20B will yield more peak boost and peak HP

– The exhaust manifold will make it easier to upgrade to a larger turbo