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Being In Canada we have the option of getting japanese car that are 15 years or older, but that only makes my decision harder...

-I could import a jdm mr2, but I'd never know what I have until it's sitting next to me, also to mention that would be the cheapest option.(under 6000 CDN).

-I could buy an "american/canada" spec MR2 and get something a lil younger if I'm lucky, that would be more expensive (around 10 000 CDN I guess). Rust and mileage would be more of an issue also.

-I could buy an "american/canada" N/A MR2, that would be cheaper in the beginning and I could get a newer model for cheaper, and then swap the engine for a 3sgte of course. The car and swap would probably come under 10 000$ CDN. And as an added bonus, upon the swap I'd have a spare tranny and engine for my 5s-fe celica ! w00t. hehe....

Anyone have experience they could share with me? Also beyond the engine are the turbo and NA mr2s the same?

ALSO TO NOTE : Due the extreme lack of MR2 in my region, any MR2 I'd buy would be a shot in the dark, I'll never be able to take a look at it in person before buying.
 

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- JDM is cheapest?!?! Or do you mean a JDM Mk1 is cheaper than a CDM Mk2? It's so much more expensive for me to get a JDM than a USDM. . .

- JDM Mk2's were made all the way until '99, where the CDM/USDM Mk2's were only made until '95, so you could get a significantly newer JDM car (unless you were talking about getting a JDM MkI).

- I think doing the motor swap is good for learning things, but you'll need a secondary car for a few weeks until you get the swap fine-tuned and running good. If you're like me, you'll need a second car for a couple years until you get all the correct parts. ;)

- Turbo Mk2's have better brakes, and stiffer suspension (struts, swaybars and maybe springs). The transmission, half-shafts and rear wheel hubs are also beefier, but you may include that in the "engine" category. Turbos also have a boost gauge. . . :D Turbo badge, raised engine deck, engine bay fans, larger radiator and tend to come with more options (like foglights, premium sound, leather and t-tops). Beyond that, I think they're the same; I know the chassis, most of the suspension, 99% of the interior, and most of the exterior are the same.

- Something else to note is the difference in suspension/brakes between a '93+ and a '92-. They beefed up suspension all around, but only the turbos got significantly better brakes on the '93 revision.

- I bet that if you do a search for "turbo vs na" you'll get quite a lot of info. . .
 

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fosley said:
- JDM is cheapest?!?! Or do you mean a JDM Mk1 is cheaper than a CDM Mk2? It's so much more expensive for me to get a JDM than a USDM. . .
JDM is definitely cheapest. There are no modifications needed, just pay federal sales tax and a small import duty. The downside is:

fosley said:
- JDM Mk2's were made all the way until '99, where the CDM/USDM Mk2's were only made until '95, so you could get a significantly newer JDM car (unless you were talking about getting a JDM MkI).
that the car has to be 15 years old to import from Japan (or anywhere other than the US). So the newer models don't help us any.

Ray it sounds like you're pretty much in my situation, there's virtually no MR2s around here either. FWIW I'm planning to go JDM. That's if I don't get a Soarer :)
 
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Murphy said:
JDM is definitely cheapest. There are no modifications needed, just pay federal sales tax and a small import duty. The downside is:



that the car has to be 15 years old to import from Japan (or anywhere other than the US). So the newer models don't help us any.

Ray it sounds like you're pretty much in my situation, there's virtually no MR2s around here either. FWIW I'm planning to go JDM. That's if I don't get a Soarer :)
AHaha I hear ya, "virtualy no MR2" is not an understatement here too, I've seen ONE (read : ONE) SW20 on the street in my entire life, and it was in Fredericton, not even here.

After some thought I let down the NA swap, I really want the extras the turbo has like the better seats, fog lights, brakes, etc...

Now I just need to find a descent looking JDM, has many people here got JDM ones, no bad suprise upon arrival?
 

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fosley said:
- Turbo Mk2's have better brakes, and stiffer suspension (struts, swaybars and maybe springs). The transmission, half-shafts and rear wheel hubs are also beefier, but you may include that in the "engine" category. Turbos also have a boost gauge. . . :D
If you get a clip all this is comes with it and most clips come with a gauge cluster also even if the stock boost gauge is crap.

fosley said:
Turbo badge, raised engine deck, engine bay fans, larger radiator and tend to come with more options (like foglights, premium sound, leather and t-tops). Beyond that, I think they're the same; I know the chassis, most of the suspension, 99% of the interior, and most of the exterior are the same.
The turbo badge is the same color as the car so your not gonna be able to see it unless your right on top of it anyways. Plus majority of non-MR2 owners aren't gonna know that the turbos have a raised deck lid. The fans you can buy from someplace like KO racing, or twosRus and as far as I know no one has yet to have a problem with using the NA radiator on the turbo engine. You can get NA's with foglights and t-tops standard and your prolly not gonna keep the 15 years old stereo stock to begin with. As for leather good luck finding 15 year old leather in good condition (but it can be done ) and thats even if it was an option on the NA (i dont remember).

After saying all that I still believe that if a turbo is what you want, buy a turbo.
 

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If you want a turbo then buy turbo. Settling for less and planning to change this and that is a pain in the ass. Personally I would stay away from the 15 year old JDM cars.....I've seen pictures of what's been getting imported to Canada from Japan and they don't look so hot plus you won't know what your getting yourself into until it's in Canada. I couldn't find a good condition 91 in Ottawa so I contacted a buyer outside of Toronto, talked to him on the phone and email, requested pics of the engine, interior, exterior and then made the trip which was well worth it. Don't try and go the cheapest route because you almost always get what you pay for.
 

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sorry but this is by no means a thread hijack. I'm having trouble finding a decent mr2 in california. they are mostly modded to death or extremely outrageously priced if in stock condition with low miles(under 100k). I'm considering giving up and attempting the swap. I could care less about the seats and leather. I just want a accident free hardtop thats stock. I have a few ?'s about interchangeability of wiring on the jdm motors and us motors. I might start a new thread unless somebody is willing to give me some answers. before you say it, I have searched to death till 4 am for weeks now. should I just give up this fantasy of owning my dream car or is this possible?
 

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slowdriver, there is plenty of information on swapping a japanese 3S-GTE into a normally aspirated MR2, if that's what you're referring to. But if you aren't real good with wiring, do not attempt to do it yourself. Have a shop do it. My brother jumped way in over his head with an RB20 swap for his 240SX, and six months later it's still not running, even with help from several friends.
 

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the jdm motor would not be my best bet living in california and all. I assume smogging the vehicle would be a pain. I'm in the market for a us spec gen 2 clip, I reached this conclusion after reading through many, many posts on the swap subject. I'm pretty decent at reading schematics, I would like to think so after two years of toyota training. I would however prefer to keep it simple and quick by buying a wiring harness as to minimize downtime and some headache on my part. I got some diagrams from the toyota dealer I buy parts from and there does not seem to be too many wires that would have to be spliced. I would still try and get the harness, just in case. I read Ron from motors unlimited has good clips for sale. I have no experience with it, I just read a few people recommending him. I will try and give him a ring. the wiring would be my only concern, I'm sure I can get the motor in with no problems. I have done a r&r on a ae86 but it was the same motor and therefore needed no new wiring.
 
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