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Old 11-11-2009, 03:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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2.6 efi retrofit?

Hello everyone!!

I am checking out this new Mitsu section here on Pirate.... lots of nice builds.

Anyway I have a rust free 83 Dodge d-50 4x4 (mitsubishi) with the weak powered 2.6 and a 5 speed. I am new to mitsu 4x4s but not new to modifying 4x4s or swapping in efi.

It has been sitting in storage for about 9 years now and the engine turns over but carb and fuel system are all gummed up and clogged. Needless to say if I am going to redo the whole fuel system I would love to upgrade to EFI at the same time. I do have a dual carb setup and a weber I could use but would prefer efi. The stock carb is crap.

What would be some good choices for donor cars to gut for all the efi stuff??
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Old 11-11-2009, 05:02 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Well their are no real cheap *or even worth it* efi systems that I know of. In AU they have a Magna head with efi but way expensive to get in the states I would think....

The cheapest and best way is using a starion/conquest turbo motor 88-89 preferably. The downside is that the 5spd aren't that reliable with turbos...You'll have to research to see whats up
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Old 11-11-2009, 05:46 PM   #3 (permalink)
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If I were you I would stay with the 2.6 motor. I had an '85 Ram 4x4 with a 2.6 and it had plenty of power. I am thinking that it's time for a rebuild. I did upgrade to a webber carb which made a big difference as far as power goes. Be aware that if you increase the size of the tires, it is vital to adjust your differential gears accordingly. Running 31" tires on the stock gears makes for a miserable drive.
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Old 11-12-2009, 01:23 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks for the quick responses!

I have not seen any turbo starion/conquests that still run for sale for under about a grand. People seem to be very proud of those cars. I see a few for sale with blown motors but never good running ones for cheap. This was the first route I took about 5 years ago when looking to ditch the carb.

I am not completely against throwing on a weber (which I already have) as I have had good luck in the past when they are jetted right, but am really wanting the fuel efficiency and cold weather driveability of efi. MPG with the 2.6 and stock carb was less than stellar for a 4 banger when it was daily driven.
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Old 11-12-2009, 02:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks for the quick responses!

I have not seen any turbo starion/conquests that still run for sale for under about a grand. People seem to be very proud of those cars. I see a few for sale with blown motors but never good running ones for cheap. This was the first route I took about 5 years ago when looking to ditch the carb.

I am not completely against throwing on a weber (which I already have) as I have had good luck in the past when they are jetted right, but am really wanting the fuel efficiency and cold weather driveability of efi. MPG with the 2.6 and stock carb was less than stellar for a 4 banger when it was daily driven.
If I remember right, you get a head off a 2.6 Dodge Caravan and delete the jets all together. You can pickupthese rebuilt heads pretty cheap on ebay.
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Old 11-12-2009, 03:38 PM   #6 (permalink)
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The only other option I know of beyond EFI would be TBI. Not as great, but you could use a chevy 2.8 setup fairly easily to do it. I had planned on doing the swap at one point, but $$$/time was and still is lacking.
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Old 11-12-2009, 04:21 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Why not pull a starion head with all the fuel injection and ecu, minus turbo and exhaust manifold? Rebuild the head, put it on your engine and wire in the ecu.
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Old 11-12-2009, 08:07 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I wouldn't put any money into the 2.6 to get more power out of it. It is a great engine, I got over 250,000 miles on my original before swapping it out. The trouble with trying to get power out of a 2.6 for a 4x4 rig is all the power will be made at the upper RPM range this is bad for off road use.
I bought my 82 D50 4x4 new and dumped about $6.000 into it over 15 years trying to get more power. I wasted my money, it would have made great street truck. When it finally needed a rebuild I decided there is no substitute for cubic inches.
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Old 11-12-2009, 11:52 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I wouldn't put any money into the 2.6 to get more power out of it. It is a great engine, I got over 250,000 miles on my original before swapping it out. The trouble with trying to get power out of a 2.6 for a 4x4 rig is all the power will be made at the upper RPM range this is bad for off road use.
I bought my 82 D50 4x4 new and dumped about $6.000 into it over 15 years trying to get more power. I wasted my money, it would have made great street truck. When it finally needed a rebuild I decided there is no substitute for cubic inches.
Baldy is mostly right, it's the low end torque which helps the most when your in the rocks. If you plan to use it for offroad use, I would recommend getting away from a carb because the don't like extreme angles for some reason. I do think there is one substitute for cubic inches and it's called diesel.

Blue Zuk1, unlike a Jeeps and toyota's, there is no real manual or road map for building up a Mitsubishi and thats what I like about them. If you start looking through all the rigs on this forum they are all different because of this fact. Listen to the good advise, take it into consideration and then build what you want.
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Old 11-13-2009, 03:42 AM   #10 (permalink)
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The only substitute for displacement is a turbo!
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Old 11-13-2009, 07:26 AM   #11 (permalink)
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StarQuest swap is the arguably the best route. It is well proven and many are running it. I think that you will be a little hamstrung with the older D50 in that I believe it has the narrow block/bellhousing, in which case it won't bolt up to the 87 or 88-89 preferred SQ blocks.

The stock 12A turbo spools early in the RPMs. I have a 14G that takes a few hundred more RPMs, but puts out more power in the end moving more air.
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Old 11-13-2009, 08:14 AM   #12 (permalink)
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The only substitute for displacement is a turbo!
Well as looking for substiutes here are a few more.

supercharger
NOS
alcohol
propane

and electric turbocharges you can buy on ebay for 19.99
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Old 11-13-2009, 12:00 PM   #13 (permalink)
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propane...forgot about that. Can't you run propane-carb at extreme angles?
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Old 11-13-2009, 02:21 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Yep, the system is pressurized. You would need to convert your engine to propane though, with mixer(ect). Propane is not going to give you more power or anything, not like a deisel. But because of its higher octane rating you can run a higher compression ratio.
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Old 11-13-2009, 04:09 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Well that would solve one advantage of the EFI swap while staying carb.

OP, the best you're going to get out of a 2.6l with stock tires or maybe 31s is about 20mpg. Of course the 2.6l is slow as shit so you'll (well at least me) have the pedal to the floor... I get about 15ish mpg city (stock raider with 31s). What weber carb do you have? The 32/34 i think it is gives better MPG than the stock mikuni.
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Old 11-13-2009, 04:44 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Well that would solve one advantage of the EFI swap while staying carb.

OP, the best you're going to get out of a 2.6l with stock tires or maybe 31s is about 20mpg. Of course the 2.6l is slow as shit so you'll (well at least me) have the pedal to the floor... I get about 15ish mpg city (stock raider with 31s). What weber carb do you have? The 32/34 i think it is gives better MPG than the stock mikuni.
15-20mpg


Man, I am so glad I sold my 2.6 and bought a diesel. Great mpg's, Ton's of power, and easy to modify. I love my little 2.3 diesel.

I don't think I ever got better than 17mpg out of my 2.6 and I was running 29" tires. Maybe you should sell out and pickup a mitsubishi diesel. I have not regretted it for one minute.

I need to start a thread on how to build up a 4d55 diesel.
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Old 11-13-2009, 08:22 PM   #17 (permalink)
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My dad had an 86 2wd with the 2.6, in 17 years and 220k miles as a DD, it averaged at best 24mpg us. It was decent enough power wise with 215/75R14's on it and the 3.54 2wd gears, but a 4x4 with even 31's would probably suck bigtime without good gearing. We did have a 4.22 geared rear axle out of an 87 that we were going to swap into the truck at some point, but, it never did happen.
I may have a fullsize 1 ton for a wheeling pig, but if I could find a diesel D50/MM in good shape I'd be all over it in a second.
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Old 11-14-2009, 05:00 PM   #18 (permalink)
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My dad had an 86 2wd with the 2.6, in 17 years and 220k miles as a DD, it averaged at best 24mpg us. It was decent enough power wise with 215/75R14's on it and the 3.54 2wd gears, but a 4x4 with even 31's would probably suck bigtime without good gearing. We did have a 4.22 geared rear axle out of an 87 that we were going to swap into the truck at some point, but, it never did happen.
I may have a fullsize 1 ton for a wheeling pig, but if I could find a diesel D50/MM in good shape I'd be all over it in a second.
dodge raider with the 2.6 (and 3.0) came with 4.625 gears (or 4.88s in mountain regions, but very rare to find). Its way slow compared to all the other new cars I still have the stock carb on mine, I hope to put on 38 mm weber and get a little more power. Torque is great though, I don't have to wind the shit out of it like a 22r.
A member on 4x4wire has a 4.3 chevy swap and gets 15+ with 35s and 4.56s mehhh...whatever
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Old 11-14-2009, 05:02 PM   #19 (permalink)
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15-20mpg


Man, I am so glad I sold my 2.6 and bought a diesel. Great mpg's, Ton's of power, and easy to modify. I love my little 2.3 diesel.

I don't think I ever got better than 17mpg out of my 2.6 and I was running 29" tires. Maybe you should sell out and pickup a mitsubishi diesel. I have not regretted it for one minute.

I need to start a thread on how to build up a 4d55 diesel.
I was thinking about buying a ranger on craigslist I saw, but it was non-turbo mazda perkins diesel(2.2l) and 4.5 hours away.
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Old 11-14-2009, 05:11 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Thanks again for all the responses...

I do need to clarify a few things first that I was not clear about.....

I do not intend to build up my 83 d50 for offroad use. I have a Suzuki Samurai and a Toyota FJ80.

My intent is to revive a nice rust free 4x4 d50 pickup with flatbed for a reliable daily driver to be used primarily in cold Minnesota winters. Wanting the EFI for cold weather driveability and for good fuel mileage.... something the stock carbed 2.6 sucks at.

The starion engine swap to get efi might be the easiest but there are no cheap running starion/conquests anywhere near me. This is not an option unless one shows up locally for a couple hundred bucks lol.

Picking up a 2.6 efi Caravan can be had really cheap and sounds like exactly what I need. I did not realize that was the same Mitsu engine. My bro might even have one in his impound yard at work..... Thank you for that idea 4d55!
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Old 11-14-2009, 05:50 PM   #21 (permalink)
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research on the caravan head swap
http://www.4x4wire.com/forums/showfl...rue#Post335079
http://www.4x4wire.com/forums/showfl...rue#Post869927
http://www.4x4wire.com/forums/showfl...rue#Post492281
http://www.4x4wire.com/forums/showfl...rue#Post204463
http://www.4x4wire.com/forums/showfl...rue#Post207543
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Old 11-14-2009, 07:45 PM   #22 (permalink)
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I've seen lots of 2.6 powered FWD Mopars, but, every last one of them has been carbed. Looks like the reasoning for the head swap is to lose the jet valves. Thankfully Canadian spec stuff didn't have those... LOL
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Old 11-14-2009, 11:55 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Thanks again for all the responses...


Picking up a 2.6 efi Caravan can be had really cheap and sounds like exactly what I need. I did not realize that was the same Mitsu engine. My bro might even have one in his impound yard at work..... Thank you for that idea 4d55!
Your welcome, anything to help. You can call me Spence.
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Old 11-15-2009, 12:04 AM   #24 (permalink)
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I was thinking about buying a ranger on craigslist I saw, but it was non-turbo mazda perkins diesel(2.2l) and 4.5 hours away.
Yeah you want avoid those 2.2 Perkins Diesel. They were 0-60 in 25 seconds. The 2.3 Mitsubishi Turbo Diesel went from 0-60 in 12 seconds. The were the second fastest truck built in 1983 behind the El Camino SS, if you consider the El Camino a truck. These little diesel pickups were the fastest trucks of there era and that includes the big boys. The 2.3 was also considerably faster than the 2.6 pickups.
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Old 11-16-2009, 08:58 PM   #25 (permalink)
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[The only substitute for displacement is a turbo]

That is not really true either. I also tried the turbo route. It too made all the power up high in the RPM range. I had to keep it spooled up to get the power then dump the clutch, this was not a very good technique for crawling around in the rocks or going slow. I tried just about every power trick available but finally spent my hard earned money on an engine that produced power down low.
I thought about going to the diesel however, as a daily driver with 38" super swampers the little diesel would not be able to keep up with traffic and grades. It does however make great low end torque for strictly off road use.
The small block 350 gives me the best of both worlds. I get 16 MPG, it will do 70 to 80 uphill at high altitude fully loaded towing a trailer and also have the low end torque I want for crawling.
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