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Thread: PDK Transmission and LSx

  1. #1

    PDK Transmission and LSx

    I'm just bench racing here, but curious if anyone has ever explored doing a PDK transmission in a M400 chassis?

    I'm aware of an LS7 Rossion build
    http://www.pictaram.com/media/123276...9933_263554464

    I tracked down the builder, and it has a Ferrari F40 transaxle. In other words a really bad idea from a parts and price standpoint

    PDK seems like a great option that will survive anything - if it will fit.
    I'm imaging mounting the LS motor longitudinally with the flywheel towards the firewall

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by lowend View Post
    I tracked down the builder, and it has a Ferrari F40 transaxle. In other words a really bad idea from a parts and price standpoint
    ...
    I'm imaging mounting the LS motor longitudinally with the flywheel towards the firewall
    Two things:
    1. It's not a Ferrari F40 gearbox -- It's a GM F40 gearbox.

    2. From a price standpoint, mounting the LS motor longitudinally and mounting a PDK is even a worst idea than what you thought was a Ferrari F40 gearbox. Add the cost of the PDK; an adapter to mate the PDK to the LS motor; figuring out the appropriate clutch, pp, and tob; engineering the mounts for the LS and chassis braces; custom axles; electronics to run the PDK -- and you're looking at $20K to do it yourself, likely $35K+ to have someone build it.

    And, for a clutchless gearbox, the PDK is good but boring. Better off with a sequential box and would cost about the same but be a whole lot more fun.

  3. #3
    The gearbox thing makes sense. The shop owner just said F40 and given his other projects I wouldn't have been shocked if he had a Ferrari trans axel sitting around and decided to make it work

    I should explain my thoughts here.
    I've driven NUS0143 pretty extensively. If you saw a M400 parked at the Meguiar's booth at the Monterey Historic's this year, that's me. If you don't know 143, it's got pretty much everything in Hoover's toybox
    The car is amazing to drive, easily the most fun chassis I've been in. But the powertrain combo really isn't for the street. It's mostly due to the clutch and ultra-light flywheel but the car just doesn't want to idle, or launch. The lack of dead pedal makes the car a pain to drive long distances.
    I'd be building the car to be driven on the street... as I'd want as much seat time as I could get.

    A bunch of these problems are solved by a clutchless manual. The GM/ZF 8-speed Automatic is damed good, but it's designed for a front engine layout. Ferrari's box is expensive and has lots of issues with idle. The PDK is strong, fast and plentiful
    I've seen many Porsche's with LSx conversions, so I know the LS/PDK adapter exists.

    The engine - while the V6 is fun, it's high strung and heavy for what it is. I did the math and figured out that a dressed LS3 is only ~20 LBS heavier than the V6 with Turbo architecture... and I can do a 600HP LS motor that will last 200K miles for less than $10K

    This starting to make sense?

  4. #4
    Idling is a problem with the tune. A light flywheel will sometimes make the engine stall when coming to a stop and pushing the clutch in, but just idling issues is oftentimes the tune.

    Renegade Hybrid's has a kit for the 996 LS swap gearbox kit for under $4000. http://www.renegadehybrids.com/996/LS-1.html
    However, you still have to get the PDK GCU to work with the Noble's MBE (or whatever ecu you're using), which will be pricey and difficult. Or go a complete standalone.
    It'd be easier to get a sequential box and have it mate to the duratec, since the sequential box doesn't require a GCU, since you could program the no-lift shift with the ECU.


    I definitely understand the desire to wanting to make the Noble a bit more street friendly, but it depends on how much you want to spend.
    I pulled the Duratec motor from my M400 and put in a Honda 4 cylinder -- So I definitely see the allure of the LS swap -- but coupling it to the PDK and turning the layout 90' isn't cost effective.
    Is it neat? Yes.
    Will it run better than the Ford V6? Most likely.
    Will it be easy and cheap -- No.

    So far, the best powertrain options are:
    1. Stick with the duratec. You're stuck with expensive retunes and are limited on tuners. Parts availability is limited. But, you know the drivetrain kinda works (I could never use my AC without it cutting out in weather above 90'). Over the first six months of owning my M400, I pulled the drivetrain out three times due to gearbox issues and turbo issues. And it never idled with the AC on, alternator issues constantly, tuning was painfully difficult.

    2. K20/K24 Honda swap. I, along with the other Noble owners who have done it, love it. Parts availability is excellent. Used engines are $1000. Used gearboxes are $1000. There's a Honda tuner in virtually every major city on the planet. My swap netted a ~100lb loss in overall curb weight (2450lbs to 2350lbs), and I gained 100hp. Gearboxes are the weakpoints, but you can also do hardened gearsets or sequential boxes.

    3. LS swap w/ the F40 gearbox. Willy is still testing this setup, but it sounds amazingly good. Makes the same power as the V6, sans turbos, but with more torque. Better tuning capabilities, as well as better parts availability. I would have gone this route had they been further along with this setup and ready for people to buy a kit -- but I'm loving the reliability and streetability of the Kswap so far.

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Jump over to the Noble forums and pm Will that owns the Rossion and talk to him about the V8 swap. He will likely change your mind and option 3 as driven mentioned will be your best option

  6. #6
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    LS, LS, LS, that's all I hear. I thought it was better to keep our brand exclusive. I guess we're going to join the ranks of every BMW, Toyota, Nissan, and on and on tuner/builder who has put an LS engine in their car. I know they're CHEAP and make easy horsepower but EXOTIC, not so much. Why aren't Ferrari, Lambo, Aston Martin, McLaren, Jaguar..................owners doing an LS swap. I like the tranverse mounted drivetrain in the Noble, it gives it better F/R balance instead of cantilevering extra weight over the rear of the car making it an even more rear biased car.
    2004 Noble M12 GTO3R (NUS0031), Platinum Silver (Currently at TurboHoses getting the Ultimate Hooverization)
    2016 Shelby GT350 #433, Track Pack, Deep Impact Blue, Black Stripes
    2013 Mustang BOSS 302 Laguna Seca #264, School Bus Yellow
    2009 MB C63 AMG Tuned
    Lola B2K/40-Nissan, 2001 Rolex 24 SRPII Class Winner, 2000/2001 Grand Am SRPII Class Champions
    Lola T87/90 S2000 SCCA National Champion 2000
    Lola T250, T252, T324; Caldwell D10

  7. #7
    What about a Hayabusa turbo motor with sequential transmission? Close to 400hp, high revving.

    There is a place in the UK that makes the complete system with the transaxle, Vtech.co.uk.
    I think replacing the motor with this would drop several hundred pounds and would make for a fun track toy. Thoughts?

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by FASTLAP View Post
    LS, LS, LS, that's all I hear. I thought it was better to keep our brand exclusive. I guess we're going to join the ranks of every BMW, Toyota, Nissan, and on and on tuner/builder who has put an LS engine in their car. I know they're CHEAP and make easy horsepower but EXOTIC, not so much. Why aren't Ferrari, Lambo, Aston Martin, McLaren, Jaguar..................owners doing an LS swap. I like the tranverse mounted drivetrain in the Noble, it gives it better F/R balance instead of cantilevering extra weight over the rear of the car making it an even more rear biased car.
    If exotic was priority, having a Ford Taurus V6 (read: use to be the best selling sedan in North America) as an engine would counter that idea.

    I'm not so sure mounting the engine longitudinally is worse for balance than transversely. Consider that you're moving the engine towards the center of the car, including the accessories and other components, it would seem that you are actually improving the balance -- even with some of the weight of the gearbox hanging more rearward. Sure, a transaxle gearbox will weight less than a proper gearbox and most of that weight is aft of the axles... pushing the motor forward will offset that.

    But, this is all speculation, since no one has any numbers on how the weight is affected by rotating the drivetrain and I'm not sure turbohoses will share that info publicly once they get their car done.



    Quote Originally Posted by WJS26 View Post
    What about a Hayabusa turbo motor with sequential transmission? Close to 400hp, high revving.

    There is a place in the UK that makes the complete system with the transaxle, Vtech.co.uk.
    I think replacing the motor with this would drop several hundred pounds and would make for a fun track toy. Thoughts?
    I'd do it if I had a spare chassis laying around

    Downside, Radicals have motorcycle drivetrains and they have rebuild schedules based on run hours vs mileage -- which is a complex way of saying they break a lot. The issue, it seems, is that the drivetrains are built with ~700lb vehicles and riders in mind -- and putting it into a vehicle that is 3x as heavy doesn't do it any favors.


    Random thought: a three rotor Noble would be interesting, if not the loudest Noble/Rossion ever.

  9. #9
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    You missed the entire point abut exotics, swap an exotic engine for an LS, not so much. I did not even mention the Duratec. And FYI, Porsche designed the Duratec to put in one of their future car lines but sold it to Ford instead, so yes it may be an exotic after all. It was one of the highest HP/Litre engines t the time.

    You mention moving the engine forward, where, in the the interior between the driver and passenger.
    Last edited by ForumSuperMod; 12-30-16 at 03:11 AM. Reason: Forum Rule #1
    2004 Noble M12 GTO3R (NUS0031), Platinum Silver (Currently at TurboHoses getting the Ultimate Hooverization)
    2016 Shelby GT350 #433, Track Pack, Deep Impact Blue, Black Stripes
    2013 Mustang BOSS 302 Laguna Seca #264, School Bus Yellow
    2009 MB C63 AMG Tuned
    Lola B2K/40-Nissan, 2001 Rolex 24 SRPII Class Winner, 2000/2001 Grand Am SRPII Class Champions
    Lola T87/90 S2000 SCCA National Champion 2000
    Lola T250, T252, T324; Caldwell D10

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by FASTLAP View Post
    You missed the entire point abut exotics, swap an exotic engine for an LS, not so much. ... I did not even mention the Duratec. ... It was one of the highest HP/Litre engines t the time.
    Actually, I didn't. You're complaining about LS swaps into various cars claiming it makes cars less exotic, but since we're on a Noble forum, let's stick to Nobles.
    Since Nobles had Ford Duratecs installed in them, swapping out a common v6 engine for a common V8 engine isn't hindering the exotic nature of the Noble, since neither engines are "exotic".
    Also, what does hp/l have to do with anything? Having a high hp/l doesn't mean much other than some really awesome engineering, but doesn't make an engine exotic (see: B16A).

    You mention moving the engine forward, where, in the the interior between the driver and passenger.
    Yes, pushing it into the cabin, so there's an easier way to do belt changes and front cover inspections

    Maybe this will help you ... I couldn't find any photos in this forum, but I knew it was posted in Nobleforums, so I apologize for the cross-linking:
    http://www.nobleforums.com/attachmen...8&d=1477019792

    This photo shows the engine, mounted longitudinally and, oddly enough, not penetrating the cabin and sticking under the parcel shelf -- moreso than it would transversely mounted.

    Yes, some of this weight will be offset by the rear of the gearbox hanging beyond the rear axle, but the weight is centered more left/right.
    Last edited by ForumSuperMod; 12-30-16 at 03:14 AM. Reason: Forum Rule #1

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