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Question Of The Day: What Car Would You Swap A Sport Bike Engine Into?


Question Of The Day: What Car Would You Swap A Sport Bike Engine Into?

Jamming the engine from a crotch-rocket into a car the size of a postage stamp would almost be a no-brainer, wouldn’t it? If for no other reason than having a redline that would make a rotary geek jealous, we’d be on board. After seeing what a Hayabusa-powered Smart is capable of (read: spanking a Ferrari in a drag race) and a Fiat 126p powered by a Honda CBR900RR mill attack a rally stage with the ferocity and noise of an angry hornet, we are sold. The question then becomes: what car gets the conversion?

Surely, the car has to be small and light enough to make such a swap worth the effort. In the American market, that pretty much eliminates any car bigger than a Geo Metro. Rear-drive would be a perk as well. We’d look towards the imports of the 1970s and early 1980s because they offer up both points while still being light. Could it even be done with cars that were found in the U.S. market, or are there only a handful of machines, like this 1972 Honda N600 that was recently featured on The Smoking Tire, that fit the bill? Surely, a Fiat 124 Spider from the 1970s would wake up with a 12,000 RPM redline? What say you, readers?


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16 thoughts on “Question Of The Day: What Car Would You Swap A Sport Bike Engine Into?

    1. Matt Cramer

      I would go with the convertible version, but was also thinking a Fiat 850 for its rear engine / rear wheel drive combination.

      Reply
  1. elkyguy

    back when dinosaurs ruled the earth,i had a hillman husky 3 door wagon that would have been a fine victim for such a swap–stock motor had all the fury and power of your average home sewing machine…..

    Reply
  2. larryw

    Agreed on the 850 spider. Had one in high school and it was a blast. And under-powered, evidenced by my surviving high school…there\’s one on eBay for $800 right now…

    A buddy had a mini, but it would be a shame to hack up a classic like that.

    Reply
  3. Hauen

    2CV, Original Fiat 500 or 600, just about any early Renault or maybe some of the weird German 2-stroke cars like Gogomobile or Messerschmitt.

    Reply
  4. Brendan M

    There’s a guy who goes to our local Hill Climbs who shows up in an old Bradley GT kit car. Powered by a Yamaha R1 engine. Not sure how fast it is, but oh my god does it sound great!

    Reply
    1. Brendan M

      For me though, pull the VW four out of a Meyers Manx and insert busa power. World’s greatest dune buggy!

      Reply
  5. Gary351C

    There’s a Honda just like that one a block from my work, I thought of this two years ago.

    Reply
  6. ratpatrol66

    I saw a video of a Geo Metro with some kind of outboard powering it. Time for YouTube search!

    Reply
  7. BeaverMartin

    Subaru 360 van with a Goldwing flat 6, classic Fiat 500 with a HD big twin, Honda S600 with a CBR1000 inliner.

    Reply
  8. Dan Tuttle

    The land speed racers have been doing this for years. There is a Honda 600 with a GSXR 750 in it that runs 115+ at El Mirage every month.
    My pick? I have a 1971 Saab 96 that is begging for a Hayabusa or a ZX14.

    Reply

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