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I'm in a bit of an 'unusual' situation as that I have a low mileage 03 996tt engine, Tial turbos, accessories/harness, etc laying around. I'm looking for something unique to do with it. Since I don't have the car yet, I have the luxury of finding the car that is best suited to the swap.

That said, I've searched and am either using the wrong search terms or can't find the facts for the noise. I've read Todd's 3.4 engine swap pdf (now out-dated) and have read most of Wayne's book via google-online. I'm currently waiting for a copy to arrive for the final reading.

Ideally, I'd like to use a 2005 car, but a 03-04 might be a better choice. This is where I need some help. I've done engine swaps similar to this (V6 in an MR2, GS400 engine in an IS300, Celica GTS engine into an MR2 spyder) However with some of the Porsche terminology and interchange I admit I'm a bit lost. I know the key to making this a street legal car and a *nice* driver will be the proper understanding of the electronics.

My questions are:

1. What is the best year model for this swap.

2. Will the Boxster 6 speed bolt to the 996tt block? (I know the flywheel is different) I've read conflicting data about the transmission bolting to the block in my searches.

3. Can the 2005 7.8.4 DME control the turbo engine with reflashing? (I know rewiring/modifying/adding to the boxster harness will be necessary)

a. If it can't, will the '05 chassis accept an earlier 7.8 996TT DME?

b. If not, would the 03/04 Chassis do it or accept the 996TT DME to the Chassis?

4. Who can I hire (local to Dallas TX or mail-order) to help with the programming? I wouldn't be opposed to purchasing or renting a PST2.

5. I'm assuming I can get IPAS codes for the car I purchase, but am unsure if I provide a dismantler's receipt for a DME if I can get the IPAS for the used parts.

6. Who can I hire for information/Parts? Having learned about late model engine swaps myself. I know this information and experience wasn't come by cheaply.

7. Air flow meter. Will it work with the TT unit or will I need to come up with some sort of AFM modifier?

Flow/problems of this project would be: (assuming the transmission bolts up) I do assume that I will lose most, if not all of the trunk.

1. Physically, bolt everything up, identify the sensors that will need to be changed/modified. Remove wires/pins from the 996tt harness and integrate them into the Boxster harness. Variocam/boost solenoids, etc.

2. Reverse intake manifolds. (I have 997GT2 manifolds that I can cut/modify a bit if necessary)

3. Oil cooler may get in the way of the reversed intake.

4. Oil tank is likely to be modified or relocated or all of the above.

5. Convert the chassis to a return style fuel pressure regulator or convert the engine to returnless fuel. (?)

6. Once bolted up and major items are 'in'. Start plumbing everything.

7. Cuss a bunch for how tight all the plumbing will need to be.

Clearly, this is a high overview of this project. But at this point, answers to the above questions will aid in my desire to go forward with this project. The only way I'm interested in seeing it through is if it's possible to make a nice car out of the project. From Todd, Wayne's and Brad's posts they all feel that the proper year car will aid in this equation.

For those of you curious, some of my projects are here: www.bedellracing.com Look under projects. They are a bit outdated, but show the work I've done.

Thanks in advance for any guidance!

-Brad

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Honestly, I would consider putting that engine in a Turbo.

I wouldn't even consider putting it into my 996 NA, but that would be my first choice if a Turbo chassis is not available.

There is so much more to a turbo than just the engine. Significantly upgraded (especially over Boxster, but also 996 NA) cooling system rads, fans, etc, bigger brakes, better suspension, fatter wheels, etc. etc. etc. not to mention you're going to have to be a fabricating genius to fit it in and make exhaust headers/etc..

Putting it in a Boxster is completely insane.

If you were dead set on a Boxster as the chassis, you might have better luck putting a supercharged 3.4L or 3.6L into the Boxster, since those are "knowns".

This would be the first I've heard of someone putting a 996TT engine in anything but a 996TT.

Just some opinions of course... if you want to pave the trail by all means!!!!

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Indeed good points and always are worthy of considering when shooting for a well balanced package. I've been called insane several times by my peers. The turbo is the most financially sound choice from an investment standpoint. They really won't depreciate much from here. A highly modified Boxster will be lucky to see .50 on the dollar. If I'm considering an 05 987 and it follows the trend of the older Boxsters, it will even be more so true. A higher mileage 01-02 996tt is well within 'reach' of the money. I recently sold my 02 996tt and had an 01 TT, I bought both right and made a little money on them while driving them two years each. I really enjoy tinkering/fabrication work. I miss it since I stopped doing it for a living. All of the engine swap cars I've built are still running and daily driven with no abnormal issues some are going on 10 years of road duty now.

I'm expecting 100-150 hours in fabrication time and that's assuming I can reuse or modify the headers that I have and salvage some of the connectors/flanges. I'm an above average fabricator. I have the metal working equipment on site. (tig welder, bandsaws, lathe, mill, etc) I bet I have most of the tubing/bends on site also. I doubt my 996 intercoolers will work, but can cut the tanks off them and build tanks if I find a hole to stick them in. The Stock IC's are even smaller than the upgrades that I have. I'm not sure if there is room in the quarter panels for ducting, but grafting on 997 vents and venting a fiberglass rear bumper cover would be a slick solution. A pair of Short 100 cell cats with the hot side of the turbos facing the rear of the car would leave finding room for a pair pipes to a rear mounted muffler (maybe even a gutted & replumbed stock muffler)

Part of the update would be the center radiator/bumper cover as well as wheels/brakes/suspension. (I have my stock 996 calipers & rotors, left the 997 6 pots on the car) However, these are simply throwing money at a vendor for already engineered solutions. Right now, I just want to focus on the 'hard parts'. To me, with as picky as I am about it 'all working', making all the electronics happy will be the tricky part.

*IF* I can simply flash the 03/04 Boxster 7.8 DME with the 996TT engine code, the wiring is simply a matter of exercise. However, if the 7.8.4 DME of the 05 would also accept some version of the TT code, that would be my first choice. Wayne's book and Todd's posts imply that a 7.8 DME will accept any code, but it's always been in the context of the wet sump engines.

In any case, I want to compile the data and make an educated guess at the time/cost involved. And then double it... If I can confirm the electronics will work with the correct choice of cars, I'm 99% sure I'll tackle the project.

Hopefully this thread will find Todd and I can start shopping for a car or put this crazy idea to sleep.

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Wow, well I will certainly be subscribed to this thread should you choose to embark on this endeavor.

Good point on the turbo having better resale. If you have money to throw at it and it is a project car, I'm sure you would raise a lot of eyebrows in a 987 with such a powerplant... but a well made turbo might raise just as many.

As for the DME, here's what Durametric has to say about compatibility.

996

ME7.8 for 2002-2004 (Engine)

ME7.8 for 2001-2005 Turbo, GT2 (Engine)

986

ME7.8 for 2003-2004 (Engine)

987

ME7.8.1 for 2005-2008 (Engine)

997

ME7.8.1 for 2005-2008 non-turbo (Engine)

ME7.8.1 for 2005-2009 Turbo and GT2 (Engine)

I'm not sure if you could flash 7.8.1 backwards to 7.8 - and if you could I'm guessing there would be some re-wiring to do.

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Wow, well I will certainly be subscribed to this thread should you choose to embark on this endeavor.

Good point on the turbo having better resale. If you have money to throw at it and it is a project car, I'm sure you would raise a lot of eyebrows in a 987 with such a powerplant... but a well made turbo might raise just as many.

As for the DME, here's what Durametric has to say about compatibility.

996

ME7.8 for 2002-2004 (Engine)

ME7.8 for 2001-2005 Turbo, GT2 (Engine)

986

ME7.8 for 2003-2004 (Engine)

987

ME7.8.1 for 2005-2008 (Engine)

997

ME7.8.1 for 2005-2008 non-turbo (Engine)

ME7.8.1 for 2005-2009 Turbo and GT2 (Engine)

I'm not sure if you could flash 7.8.1 backwards to 7.8 - and if you could I'm guessing there would be some re-wiring to do.

Thanks for this! Hopefully Todd will chime in, but this might just have answered my question for the 987. *bummer* but at least it brings the car cost down a bit. I'd likely have to go to the 997 electronics on the engine to make it work on the 987 chassiswork. (I seem to recall an electric wastegate, dual air flow meters, different air pump/etc) I intend to omit the air pump system as code is available for the 996, but I'm not sure how 'hacked' the 997 stuff is just yet.

The 997 electronics would be easier as I wouldn't have to build a 'y-pipe- to feed the inlet of the turbos. I could simply put the meters somewhere easier to deal with plumbing wise. But they drive the cost up as I'd have to find and hack everything together. I'm a fan of KISS, the more parts I cobble together the more difficult to maintain the vehicle will be.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm still digging. I see mention in older threads that the transmission will bolt to the block and also see mention that it won't. I know for sure. It won't. (based on photos I'm seeing) Not without an adapter plate. So 996tt transmission, flip it around will be the only solution. Does anyone know of a reverse ring gear or if the Boxster 6 speed ring gear will fit? *or* if I could hybrid a 996tt transmission front housing to the boxster transmission case? (I did this with the V6 Mr2)

To clarify above: When I say transmission front housing, I mean this piece, #1, AKA the front transmission case:

i-WkHxNvz-L.jpg

It's very likely that it won't fit, but worthy of finding someone who rebuilds transmissions that might know. I'll go digging for LSD part numbers to see if the Boxster 6 speed and TT 6 speed share the same one.

This is the motor mounting area. Looks like 4 studs replace the green bolts for the 6 speed.

I can't see in PET, but I seem to recall studs instead of bolts in this location.

i-WmBkDGj-L.jpg

One more thing, based on information on Pelican parts, both motors are 20" in length from flange to front of crank pulley. Physically, it'll fit. Engine height, Oil filter height and plumbing will be the biggest hurdles. *best * I can tell on paper. I suspect I'd have to slice the trunk sheet metal and raise it around 2". It might be easier to cut 2" more of the trunk from a junk car and section it in vs just a 2" strip to raise it.

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Brad,

I envy your fabrication skills.. Although at first I thought this was a crazy idea I hope you go ahead with it.. A Turbo Boxster?? That would be freakin awesome. :thumbup: Please keep us posted on your progress.

Oh, it's completely crazy. And financially doesn't make a ton of sense when the 996tt is worth $30-45k and won't really depreciate more at this point. I'm just not sure why it hasn't been done, especially by a 'bored' Porsche shop owner or shop fabricator. I see people spending 30-40k on these engine swap projects when they pay someone. A used TT engine can be hand for around $8-12k. (I paid $10k for mine, 10k miles documented) Transmission $4-8k. So, 20k in parts pretty quickly plus the cost of a car and paying someone or one's self 200-400 hours of labor. But the thought of a 600+hp Boxster just makes me grin. I figure the finished car will weigh in about 2900-3000lbs on the heavy side. Which is an easy 4-600lbs less than a 996tt. It'd be a bigger challenge to keep the car planted than actually doing the work.

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Oh my.. I hope you are able to accomplish this.. I'm suprised that no one has done this as well. A 600hp Boxster! :jump: My 997 Turbo has about 550hp but like you said it's a heavy car. I think it really needs 700hp (which it will have after the warranty is up.)

That's a really good price you got on that engine..

Please keep us posted about your progress. I wish I could be more help but this is way out of my league..

Phillip

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  • 1 year later...

I have done a lot of BMW engine swaps. A lot but never a Porsche one

2002 powered by S14

E30 M3 powered by S38, S52, S54, S62

E36 powered by S54, S62, S85

For some strange reason I am thinkig of selling my extremely modified VW 1303s German Look for a 2004 boxster S. Then I will try to fit the engine and the tranny from a 996T. That is the reason I registered on this forum.

I am thinking of using the 996t dme and just modify the Boxster's wiring loom to accept all the rest. I have a good friend in Germany that have done all the BMW dme works for me in the past. I will ask him if he deals with Porsche's or knows somebody.

Edited by TSAF
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  • 5 months later...

any updates on ANY of this?? :notworthy:

FYI: The new 9A1 based turbo engine is a direct bolt up to the PDK trans (and 6 speed) used in the Boxsters/Cayman's. This is a tad more feasible :) Next is the new GT3 engine into a Cayman/Boxster :)

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