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Mini Van Repowerd With BMW
Jacob Kraybill repowers cars and trucks with Cummins engines on a regular basis, but he’s only repowered a mini van with a BMW engine once. He bought a 1999 Ford Windstar with a blown engine and a bad transmission. The BMW engine, one of fewer than 500 ever made for use in Lincoln Mercury’s, fit perfectly.
    “The BMW even has Ford stamped on the valve cover,” says Kraybill. “I found it in a 1985 Lincoln Continental that I got for the scrap price of $250.”
    He pulled the engine, got it running and slipped it into the van. It was a 2.4L, inline 6 diesel with turbocharger. He rebuilt the truck’s transmission. While the bolt pattern on the transmission matched up with the engine, Kraybill still had to make an adapter plate to mount the starter that had been in the transmission. He also had to make a new nose cone bushing for the torque converter.
    “It had an 11-in. flywheel, flexplate torque converter, overhead cam and timing belt,” recalls Kraybill. “It was an engine that was way ahead of its time.”
    The BMW is transverse and was shorter than the original Ford. As a result, he had to carve some space for it on the passenger side and shift the engine and transmission to the driver’s side.
    “The redline on those engines was 5,350 rpm’s, extremely high for a diesel, but the Windstar gearing was plenty high for it,” says Kraybill. “It cruised smoother at 75 mph than it did at 55. I should have reset the turbo as the efficiency never panned out as I had hoped. The best I did was 30 mpg.”
    Kraybill says he has slipped Cummins engines into a Toyota pickup, a Ford Ranger and done other repowering, but the Windstar/Lincoln Mercury/BMW was unique.
    Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Peter Groves Mechanics, 7997 Manito Lake Rd., Fortuna, Mo. 65034 (ph 573 723-0699).

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2012 - Volume #36, Issue #6