Rootes Group Cars

a place for Sunbeam, Hillman, Humber, Singer, and Talbot performance enthusiasts

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TBaker
Thomas Baker
Houston, TX
(7 posts)

Registered:
02/04/2021 06:52PM

Main British Car:
59 Hillman Minx convertible 2.0 Turbo Ecotec

2.0 turbo Hillman Minx project
Posted by: TBaker
Date: March 13, 2021 09:39AM

Hi all,
I recently acquired a 59 Hillman Minx Convertible in fair condition. Only a small amount of rust that I've already repaired and the engine runs like a top. Unfortunately, it runs like a 53 hp/ 90 ft/lb top and that's where you all come in! I also happen to have a 2.0 turbo Ecotec from a 2018 Camaro that is 275 hp and 295 ft/lbs of torque along with the 8 speed transmission. Has anyone here done an Ecotec swap? With the Sunbeams also being Rootes group cars, I'm hoping somebody has some advice regarding front suspension and rear axle. I enjoy the restored cars, it's just that I'm more of a modified performance guy and this Minx has some potential to be unique to say the least! I'm not shy about the cutting and welding, the stand alone wiring harness or making things fit, but I'm no steering expert and the Hillman's front suspension/steering will likely conflict with the engine swap. Thanks in advance for your thoughts.... love reading the success stories on this site!

Tom
Ecotech with 8 speed trans.jpg
LTG 4 cyl Ecotec.jpg
Hillman 5.jpg


TBaker
Thomas Baker
Houston, TX
(7 posts)

Registered:
02/04/2021 06:52PM

Main British Car:
59 Hillman Minx convertible 2.0 Turbo Ecotec

Re: 2.0 turbo Hillman Minx project
Posted by: TBaker
Date: March 17, 2021 11:57AM

My Hillman uses a steering box located on the frame rail (right below the steering column exit through the firewall), that connects to something of a tie rod that parallels the firewall. So it runs behind the engine and above the transmission. My new driveline combo being a modern 2.0 turbo ecotec and transmission will likely conflict with that, so does anyone have experience with alternate steering/crossmember combinations? I've seen a Husky with a narrowed Mustang II with rack and pinion, but that is going to very expensive. I'm hoping someone has gone down this road looking for alternate methods. Does a Sunbeam steer this same way?

Tom



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/17/2021 12:45PM by TBaker.


mgb260
Jim Nichols
Sequim,WA
(2082 posts)

Registered:
02/29/2008 08:29PM

Main British Car:
1973 MGB roadster 260 Ford V8

Re: 2.0 turbo Hillman Minx project
Posted by: mgb260
Date: March 17, 2021 05:01PM

Dan R on the SAOCA forum has a arched tie rod or spacers to lift yours. Alpines have the same setup.

[danr.mhartman.net]



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/17/2021 05:04PM by mgb260.


TBaker
Thomas Baker
Houston, TX
(7 posts)

Registered:
02/04/2021 06:52PM

Main British Car:
59 Hillman Minx convertible 2.0 Turbo Ecotec

Re: 2.0 turbo Hillman Minx project
Posted by: TBaker
Date: March 17, 2021 07:16PM

Great tip..... Thanks! The turbo down pipe will have to clear on a full left turn, but this could solve my steering issue


TBaker
Thomas Baker
Houston, TX
(7 posts)

Registered:
02/04/2021 06:52PM

Main British Car:
59 Hillman Minx convertible 2.0 Turbo Ecotec

Re: 2.0 turbo Hillman Minx project
Posted by: TBaker
Date: March 20, 2021 09:41AM

After the tip from Jim Nichols, I'm feeling much better about the steering system I have in the Minx (since it's the same as the Alpine). I went through the photo section and saw a lot of V8 cars using the stock steering with an arched tie rod or spacers so my modern 4 should be easy to steer. Does anyone have experience with rebuilding the front end? I've found poly bushings on line, but I rebuilt an El Camino once with poly bushings and didn't like the ride. This car is a cruiser, not a racer at all. I've looked for rubber in the usual places with no luck so is there another car that uses the same parts? I'm not sure that my parts are all that bad, but it would be foolish not to renew the soft parts when the engine is out. Thanks in advance.

Tom


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