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Subaru ( and other engine) TRIKES

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I need a number of opinions and or ideas ..


I currently have one of the first " as far as we know"

Subaru Trikes in the US.

My questions are a few;


First- Can a four wheel drive auto transaxle be run with some sort of plate

over the front "axle holes" and just used with a drive shaft to a rear differantial?

Is the rear an IRS?


In my case, I have a two wheel drive transaxle with the engine in front of it

but another is being designed to be a little longer and would "require" a short driveshaft.


The other question - If you were NOT using a Subaru, what other

engine/autotransaxle would YOU use - some that would hold-up

ALMOST as well as the Subaru :grin:


Any help / ideas ??








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Know all about Cyclestyle, looks like nice stuff, BUT - he is in New Zealand.

While he THINKS the frame belongs to him, our frame is older then his

and if you look at his pics ..... Hummm looks a little like mine :banana:


I thought about getting one from him, but when you factor in shipping

and the front end, we can have them built in Hartford CT (and possably in Cleveland) at about the same price.



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If you wanted to go with the more traditional engine in the rear the VW vanagon had an auto, and I believe you can get an adapter plate to mount up a Subie motor (I know you can for the older manual units). If you’re looking for a mid engine with a short driveline and a rear diff, any smaller pickup drive train should work. And yes, you could use a Subaru 4WD tranny (locked in 4WD) with the front diff removed, I’m sure you could fab up some plugs for the output seals, or just leave the diff in and let them spin. The trouble with the Subie auto trans is gonna be that the rear drive is NOT a positive gear drive, it’s a clutch pack, and I believe it reduces clutch pressure based on engine vacuum. You might be able to get full time clutch pack pressure if you disconnect the vac source, but you will still be driving through the clutch, not gears.








P.S. if you want to build a 3-wheeled vehicle that really handles well you need to put the two wheels in the front.

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I guess I forgot to mention .... NO VW !!!


The very idea of taking an engine, and HANGING it behind the axle

just doesn't sit well with me, also the idea of using adapters

between the engine and transmission / transaxle is not something I want

to do ....


EVERYBODY does it that way, If I wanted to be like everyone else,

I'd be riding a VW powered trike "wheeley machine" !!


I currently Ride a Subaru !!






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the transmissions dont need a plate over the front shaft stubs, there is no way for oil to leak in or out anymore than when there are axles on. However it might look dumb if its not covered up. The rear output on a part-time 4wd tranny is strong enough to run a whole subaru off of, it should be no problem for a trike. A pushbutton 4wd manual or auto will work, as well as dual range manuals. Go with a part-time 4wd transmission though, full-time 4wd transmissions will have a center diff or clutch pack that wont send 100% power to the rear. However there are some ft4wd manual transmissions with a center diff lock, which could be locked, but you might as well go with a part-time tranny because theres no advantage for you in ft4wd, unless you want to make a 5wheel bike with 4 wheel drive :cool:

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