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Discussion Starter #1
I am in Los Angeles, CA
& I was wondering...

does anyone know of a shop or mechanic in So-Cal that does the CA Legal V6 swap?

I'd like to keep an auto tranny b/c driving in LA Traffic with a 5spd doesnt sound like very much fun to me, and im not in the market for a second car

(currently my ride is an automatic NA 5sfe)

Even if i wanted to, i dont have the mechanical know-how to do the swap... So yeah...

I was thinking of going to ToySport for my 3s swap, but i have yet to receive an email reply from them regarding that so i dont know if they even do V6 swaps.


anyway, let me know what you guys have done / tried / found out :)

i dont plan to swap engines till the summer, but im trying to research early.

if i cant find anyone ill just do the 3s swap, but id really rather go V6

thanks again :)

OH

and where have you guys bought your engines? what were your experiences?

im thinking of getting one from a 2000+ camry lol
dont know what i should be expecting to pay yet though, or what exactly i should be expecting HP wise but ive only heard good things :p

((the only v6 ive been in is my friends SLK 280, '08.. car sounds nice and drives fast :D haha))
 

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If I remember correctly, ETL Motorsports in Ontario is an MR2 specialist you can look into. I don't know about a V6 swap specifically though, and haven't used their services myself.

 

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To make the 1MZ CA legal is easy. Best set it up like a 1997 or 1998 Camry. Parts are all over at Pick N pull. You can get an Auto harness and just get rid of the Auto wires, ground the pin for M/T mode. Super easy.
 

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While keeping the automatic transmission will pose some technical challenges, it will also make a CA legal 2GR swap a little easier as I under stand it. The primary hurdle being that it was never offered by Toyota with a manual and so the ECU always throws codes, or has to be hacked, and either way the ECU reports that it's from a car with an auto and a manual is present. But swapping the entire engine and transmission from, say, a Camry, and using the stock ECU(s), should be do-able I would think.
 

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The latest swap regulations for California that was released in 2018 states that you can keep your car's stock transmission setup if the car is OBDI. Therefore transmission setup doesn't really matter. You can also keep the stock evap system as long as you can get it to work. If someone has done a swap and got it certified recently, it has not been documented or shared, which is why this community is so far behind others such as the miata, wrx etc. Besides that, us Californians are a small market so no one will go out of their way to do this stuff for so few. The guys at Throtl have done a swap that they have documented on youtube. Though it was not a Cali legal swap, I'm sure they can be commissioned to do one with the right amount of money and guidance.
 

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Oh, that's good to know!
 

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Seems they've made changes to make it easier to replace dirtier engines in OBDI vehicles.

Here's the relevant text:

Non-OBD II certified vehicles receiving an OBD II certified engine must meet the following:

a. The donor engine must be in a stock certified configuration, and support ALL the certified OBD II functionality
b. Modifications of the intake and exhaust system are permissible only if necessary to accommodate the packaging of the vehicle and only if they do not affect the functionality of the systems. Any changes must not modify the stock functional design of the components (i.e. the intake air box must not be modified, EGR valves still properly mounted, etc.)
c. The transmission and evaporative systems will be allowed to remain in the recipient vehicle configuration, but must function appropriately (see i below)
d. ALL of the requirements (a-i) listed below for “All model year vehicles”

II. Vehicles originally equipped with OBD II must receive an OBD II certified engine and meet the following:
a. All emission system configurations must be in the original emission control system configuration as the donor vehicle, including, but not limited to, the transmission, evaporative system, exhaust, and intake
b. ALL of the requirements (a-i) listed below for “All model year vehicles”

Source: https://www.bar.ca.gov/pdf/Smog_Check_Reference_Guide.pdf

Scroll down to Appendix D.

You're still required to pass a dyno smog test, which is easy with A/Ts and 3-cat setup.

Not sure what they do when ECM reports EVAP codes using OBDI canister and system.
 

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Jason, in theory i could get you an australian tune instead of a USA tune. Those 2GR tunes don't have an evap monitor on them but still have a purge valve to run the stock evaporative emissions system.

The only question is would it fail due to the tune checksum?
 

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BAR and ARB did change the Engine Change rules in 2018, which did make OBDII engine changes easier. In the case of the 2GR, still have to use the OEM Toyota California flash, and you are not allowed to flash or modify it. BAR will compare the flash with other similar vehicles, between your car and what you are trying to conform it to. An Australia flash would not work because there would be no similar vehicles. You are allowed to use an external module to simulate the Automatic transmission, but that's about it. Trust me, this is 100% accurate.

Also, you would still need to run the newer Evap system, you are allowed to integrate it into the MR2 stock fuel tank.
 

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@SixAppeal I do not. I have talked to @Gouky about this, the easiest way would be to possibly get a CARB Approved flash made for this swap, but that would rest on his hands lol. Other than that, you would need to use a Lotus Evora ECU and Emission controls.
 

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Also, you would still need to run the newer Evap system, you are allowed to integrate it into the MR2 stock fuel tank.
Not according to the quoted text.
 

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Not according to the quoted text.
You would, because you wouldn't be able to get the 2GR ECU to run like the donor vehicle without throwing codes, without running the necessary EVAP stuff. The newer you get, the more complex the systems are.
@celicaguy13 Do you work for the BAR?
I work contractually for BAR, not directly at BAR, but I can assure you that I am providing you guys with the correct information.
 

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You would, because you wouldn't be able to get the 2GR ECU to run like the donor vehicle without throwing codes, without running the necessary EVAP stuff. The newer you get, the more complex the systems are.
Ahh, gotcha. So you need the sensors that are built into the later evap system to get the ECU happy, therefore you need to retrofit at least some of the new system into the MR2?
 

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@celicaguy13 Thanks for the accurate information. The 2GR-FE is so plug-and-play that its such a tease for us Californians! Gouky was the only person working on the Evora swap and last I checked, he has shelved that project. So I guess the options now for anyone living here who wants a 6 cylinder mid-engined car is:
1. Register your 2GR swap out of state.
2. Sell the MR2 and get an Evora or Cayman.
 

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Ahh, gotcha. So you need the sensors that are built into the later evap system to get the ECU happy, therefore you need to retrofit at least some of the new system into the MR2?
As mentioned in another thread by @DaveMush this can be done.

Marc, a couple things on this topic.

I’m here in NY.
Back when I was working for Toyota, we had an instance when a vehicle needed a ECU replacement from a Corolla recall and the parts Dept accidentally ordered a Mexico market ECU. It did not have the monitors that the USA requires. As such, the “n/a” status of the monitors did NOT pass the OBD2 portion of the state inspection.

Also, I have one of your tunes ECU’s, and the only monitor that fails for me is the cat converter. I AM running all (4) sensors, both a/f’s And both O2’s, but no cats. So this is no surprise to me.
But I have had the EVAP system fully running and passed for quite some time. The Rav4 canister is installed in my trunk.
 

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@celicaguy13 Thanks for the accurate information. The 2GR-FE is so plug-and-play that its such a tease for us Californians! Gouky was the only person working on the Evora swap and last I checked, he has shelved that project. So I guess the options now for anyone living here who wants a 6 cylinder mid-engined car is:
1. Register your 2GR swap out of state.
2. Sell the MR2 and get an Evora or Cayman.
@SixAppeal unfortunately so. That is why I'm running a TRD Supercharged 1MZ in my MR2, it's the most power you can technically legally have in a v6 MR2, within reason. The 2GR swap is technically easy, but you would have to dump money into the Lotus ECU, harness, etc.
 
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