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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Justy Engine into a Sambar?

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4 replies to this topic

#1 Wyo



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Posted 03 May 2017 - 12:04 PM

Bought a 1993 Subaru Sambar truck with a bad motor. I was wondering if a Justy engine will go into this vehicle. My main reason for asking is, the little 1200cc Sambar motors are like $3,000. I noticed you can pick up Justy motors for around $500 and they come with 50% more horsepower. Any advice?

Edited by Wyo, 03 May 2017 - 12:40 PM.

#2 joe5


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Posted 03 May 2017 - 12:51 PM

I'm not too familiar with the Sambar so I can't offer specific information on that swap. But keep in mind that Justy's are also pretty rare. If you are going to the trouble to do a swap, why not try to use a more modern motor (ie ej series). You can find them for ~500, and parts will be readily available looking ahead to the future. 

#3 Wyo



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Posted 03 May 2017 - 01:46 PM

Thanks for the advice. I'll look into it. Any information will help as I've only owned these trucks for about 2 weeks now.

#4 Numbchux


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Posted 03 May 2017 - 02:07 PM

Well, I was pretty sure the Sambar used an inline engine, and therefore a boxer might not be the greatest option. So I looked at the Sambar wikipedia page, and found this: "with the EF12 three-cylinder engine's displacement increased to 1200 cc and SOHC borrowed from the Subaru Justy"



Sounds like the only 1200cc Sambar engine was actually just a Justy engine. So yes, I bet you could use a Justy engine.

#5 Wyo



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Posted 04 May 2017 - 11:17 AM

Thanks for checking that out for me. For now I do have an extra engine and tranny for the truck sitting in the back of a parts truck that came with the one I purchased. It's been sitting for 5 years plus in an open truck box, so it should be an adventure.

I made a mistake in my first post. I said 1200cc earlier, but these little 4-bangers are 660cc. I believe the 1200cc engines were only mounted in a few styles of Sambar that actually had a slightly larger body (marketed to Europe).  I really don't want to mess with trying to cut and weld a hole for the engine, but I'll bet it will bolt to the transmission pretty easily.


Here is what an article on Wikipedia says about these models and the Justy engine, "The Sumo shared many characteristics with the Sambar, except it had extended front and rear bumpers and a larger engine borrowed from the Subaru Justy." They didn't mention that the Sumo styled vans were also a few inches wider. Also, an extended rear bumper would allow for more engine room as I open the bumper of this truck to access half of the engine.


Changing out the engine for a different one may not be a road I should tempt myself to go down right now. It would be nice to have more than 40 hp though.

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