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V8 Conversion, 73 240Z or 81 280ZX 2+2?

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Figured this would be a good place to ask this question.

Which of these two cars is the easiest and best one to set up with a 400 SBC and turbo 350 tranny?

I have my choice of doing this build with either, so I need help making this decision.

My 240Z is still all original with the factory engine and 4 speed tranny. Motor was supposedly running before I got the car, but right now its got some fuel/carb and firing issues. Brakes will need completely replaced with all new parts, Car has sat for a few years, and everthing in the brake system is froze up. This car has been wrecked, and the frame has had work done on it before-replaced from the firewall forward I think.

My 280ZX 2+2 has a blown clutch. Never heard the engine run. Everything else seems to be in good shape.


I have studied up on all the conversion postings, and from what I can tell, the 240Z would be my easiest Conversion project, and the lighter of the two cars for sure.

But on the other hand, the 280ZX has the stronger rear end, and would probably have a better chasis to handle the 400's torque, plus some extra weight on the rear wheels to help traction.


Which way should I go????:confused:

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You can swap the R200 from the ZX to the 240 without too much trouble. Major structural damage to the 240 kinda throws up a red flag for me, but it depends on the quality of the work done. The 240 has a longer engine bay so more room, but the ZX isn't too bad either. I dunno, a lot of the considerations come down to what you want the car to do.

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I agree with bschlitz. It basically come down to how well the 240 was repaired. I say, if you had a TOP NOTCH fix on the 240, go for that. The S30's are getting more rare to see on the road everyday AND are a MUCH better LOOKING car than the ZX, IMO. Plus you can make some stucture mods to the 240 to make it stiffer that the ZX.


However, if the repair work was substandard, it might be time to call it quits on the 240 before you ever get started, and just go with the ZX.


Either way, if both cars are straight it would basically be a personal preference on the aesthetics of the car. You can always make the necessary mods for the swap..

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Well, after a short drive this afternoon to where the 81 280ZX is at, its plainly evident that its going to be the 73 240Z for sure now. I was leaning towards it anyways, but now after looking close at the underside of the 81 2+2, its plain that its days as a drivable car are over. Frame rail on driver side is bad rusted out and torn off all the way back to the rear of the driver seat from the firewall. After discovering this, its now just became a doner car for sure.


240Z all the way now baby. I may just go ahead and look towards replacing the whole frame and building a tube frame from the firewall forward. Might as well do this right the first time and not have any regrets.....:D

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