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92 Loyale... Ej22 Swap w/ keeping 3spd auto?


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16 replies to this topic

#1 xbeerd

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Posted 25 September 2009 - 06:24 PM

I know i'll get some ************ for it but, i was contemplating looking into a ej22 swap but keeping my 3 spd auto tranny. is that even a possibilty/ i guess i dont see why it wouldnt. but if it is.. if someone could explain why it wouldnt work that'd be helpful. also... would have me not waste my time! :)

#2 monstaru

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Posted 25 September 2009 - 06:29 PM

well, the history of the 3spd is horrible.and with that amount of torque going through it, i would not use it.you used to be able to get rebuild kits for them.but they are getting almost impossible to find.

i would source a 5spd d/r if i were you.there are plenty of writeups as to what you will need. just search and read.it helps alot. cheers, brian

#3 grossgary

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Posted 25 September 2009 - 06:38 PM

That's an enormous increase in power going through the worst transmission subaru ever made. I wouldn't do it, but cool stuff if you get it to work.

Technically speaking the 3AT is all vacuum operated or whatever so I'd guess it could *work* since there's no electronics to mess with, though the vacuum lines and whatever the trans needs would need to be addressed.

If work is preventing the trans swap then it would seem an engine swap is a rather biggish step.

If cost is preventing the trans swap then I would think the entire retrofit project is probably not the best decision. It's nice to do it right rather than max yourself out financially only to do it half-way.

If you need to retain the auto you could wait until you're ready to move into the legacy's or impreza's, they're getting really cheap, and I was getting offers for free ones a few years ago. It's not hard at all to find one for next to nothing even in good running condition. Just wait for one that needs a bit of work and buy it cheap and fix it. If you're up for an engine swap then some minor work should be cake.

#4 xbeerd

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Posted 25 September 2009 - 09:31 PM

thanks for the input guys.

i was mainly contemplatin the swap because the car is startin to leak some oil (go figure) and i figured if i was going to replace seals and gaskets and all that i might as well see about the ej22 goin into it.

we have a 00 Outback (legacy) that recently got a new engine, I've got a thing for old ugly cars so theres just a little spot in my heart for makin this loyale more than it currently is :):banana:

#5 grossgary

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 09:54 AM

i'd just track down any oil leak you can and fix it.

thing is - any EJ22 is going to shortly have oil leaks too. they always leak at valve covers, cam seals, cam orings, crank seal, oil pump, etc. you'll be tracking down and fixing oil leaks no matter what you do, so you're really not saving anything with the swap.

#6 john in KY

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 11:24 AM

Can't believe everyone has missed the obvious: the 3 AT won't bolt to the EJ series engine.

#7 grossgary

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 11:45 AM

Can't believe everyone has missed the obvious: the 3 AT won't bolt to the EJ series engine.

oh right, that's significant! so you'd have to fabricate (custom job) or buy an adapter plate, probably upping costs significantly.

i guess they make adapter plates for EJ22's into EA vehicles, so it could work for the 3AT too?

if an adapter was made, the 3AT torque converter would have to attach to the EJ22 flexplate or the EA82 flexplate would need to attach to the EJ22.

#8 The Dude Abides

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 01:03 PM

Honestly if you just wanted to keep it simple and more reliable you would just include the tranny with your new engine. Ej22 is an awsome engine and the auto tranny is way better. Problem is i dont think your axels will bolt up to the new tranny so you would need the axels as well. Looks like youve got quite a project on your hands.

#9 Flowmastered87GL

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 04:19 PM

That's an enormous increase in power going through the worst transmission subaru ever made. I wouldn't do it, but cool stuff if you get it to work.


What about the Justy CVT.... THAT is the worst tranny subaru ever made.... the 3AT is the second worst :lol:

#10 Gloyale

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 05:02 PM

Subaru ran Turbo EA82s in front of the 3AT.

110 HP in the U.S. and 137 HP in Europe.

I think it would work just fine as long as you have a good working 3AT. Of course the heavier your foot, the shorter the life......but 3ATs are cheap and plentiful from Loyales.

Heck, an EJ22 might actually have enough power to make a 3AT auto drive reasonable.

#11 Numbchux

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 05:18 PM

Heck, an EJ22 might actually have enough power to make a 3AT auto drive reasonable.


I think you might be pushing it a bit there :grin:

do-able....yes.

worth it? no.

the bellhousing issue is the same as it is with a manual. adapter plate, and modify the holes in the flex plate. much easier, in fact, as the flexplate is about 1/8th the thickness of a flywheel.


but yea, if you're looking for an auto, nab an EJ 4EAT, and a pair of EA82 turbo axles. little more wiring, little modification to the shifter (or switch to the EJ one. it needs to have separate settings for D, 3, 2, and 1. or, live without being able to manually select first....not the end of the world).

probably cheaper than the adapter plate. and a muuuuch better trans.

#12 Gloyale

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 08:13 PM

but yea, if you're looking for an auto, nab an EJ 4EAT, and a pair of EA82 turbo axles. little more wiring, little modification to the shifter (or switch to the EJ one. it needs to have separate settings for D, 3, 2, and 1. or, live without being able to manually select first....not the end of the world).

probably cheaper than the adapter plate. and a muuuuch better trans.


I dunno.

I got adapters for sale for $150.

And as you point out it would be easy to hog out holes on an EA flexplate.

EJ engine harness swap has been done a million times. There is however no writeup for the EJ trans swap. It can be done.......but would double the complexity of the wiring swap.

I really think that a 3AT driven with some restraint would be a fine combo.

#13 Numbchux

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 08:25 PM

It can be done.......but would double the complexity of the wiring swap.


double? no. a little bit, yea, but if you can read the diagrams enough to make sort the engine stuff out, the trans isn't much harder.

you can buy a whole 2.2l 4EAT legacy for $150 :lol:


the 3AT isn't a terrible trans, in the grand scheme of things. but if you ever want to go on the freeway, and get decent mileage at it, no. they leave you turning 4k rpms at 70! a 4EAT is designed to let the TC slip a bit, so it's geared very long. once the TC is locked, it'll do 70 at about 2500....

#14 Gloyale

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 08:30 PM

you can buy a whole 2.2l 4EAT legacy for $150 :lol:


Not out here.

300 minimum for anything other than junk.

If you find a whole car out here for for $150 it will have a bad motor or trnas or both.

There is too much tendancy to list the insane lowball deals we get from time to time as an "actual cost" that these cars really sell at regularly. Sure we have bought whole cars for a few hundred...........but it doesn't happen all the time.

Last 4EAT I had to buy from a wrecker cost $300. And I had to replace every seal and the dipstick tube cause they jacked it up removing it.

#15 silverhelme

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 10:58 AM

This is a swap I have considered being as my wife HAS to have an auto to be able to drive a car.

As much as I like the 4eat ( I have 3 ) I have 3at's in the other 3. I must be an oddball because I have never had much of a problem with the 3at's. I know how to rebiuld them and also have one in my brat that is original at 200k and still going strong. The statement about more hp waking up the 3at imho is correct, I put an ea82 in the brat a while back and it feels like a different car ( I know only a few more hp but rev's better ) and gets 28 to 30 mpg. The ea82 into ea81 3at cars is a much easier swap then the stick.

I have thought about doing the ej swap just to try it out and see if it will live under moderate driving but haven't found the time to do it lately because of work.

I say go for it and if it doesn't live swap in a 4eat later if need be. The only extra cost is the adaptor and you can recoup that later if you do the 4 eat.

#16 xbeerd

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 12:53 PM

man, you guys can get these cars cheap as hell. you dont see many old sube's around here, i have yet to even find one in a junkyard.

#17 Greenley

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Posted 29 September 2009 - 02:48 AM

I think it's a fine idea using the 3AT.
Get that 2.2 in there and running first.

...and if it doesn't meet your expectations, it's not too difficult to adapt the EJ trans into a 3rd gen vehicle.
You can then flip the adapter plate for a little less than it cost you, easily.


My perfectly running $100 legacy was certainly an exception.
Even with a keen eye for bargains, expect to pay $3-600 for a running condition Lego.




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