Video: The 1UZ engine build for our Lexcen begins!

In this episode of Carnage, we get back to our V8 Lexcen sleeper project, with the engine build getting underway

Videographers: Matt Hull

Many of you have been asking about when we’d get back to our V8 Toyota Lexcen wagon project, and today is that day!

In case you missed it, we’ve been planning to swap a Toyota 1UZ V8 and a turbo into this unsuspecting VR Lexcen wagon to create a cool drag-and-drive sleeper.

Scotty kicked off the project last year after the original transmission behind the Lexcen’s Buick V6 let go. We pulled the old running gear out, and then tore down the 1UZ engine we have for this thing to get it ready for boost.

Unfortunately, parts shortages then left the project in limbo for some time. We did send the heads off for a clean and service, and for this episode of Carnage, our intention was just to bolt it all back together with some head studs and MLS gaskets, and get the 1UZ ready to go in the car – and then Scotty spotted a problem.

The bores of the 4.0-litre Toyota V8 had some pretty decent scoring marks in them, which Scotty suspected was from overheated rings sitting in the bores after abuse. Unhappy with the marks, he made the decision to pull the rods and pistons out to give the block a Scotty’s Garage hone job.

While it meant the bottom end had to come apart, it did open the door for some further future-proofing of the mill. Scotty left the crank in place but ordered some fresh rod bearings, ARP rod bolts and rings.

With the bores nicely honed, Scotty began measuring up the new rings, which is where we found our next problem. They came in at a pretty wide 25thou, but the factory ones are only 13thou. Scotty ideally wanted around 18thou to suit boost, so these rings weren’t gonna cut it.

He managed to source some more appropriate rings, but the delay of overseas shipping killed the momentum for now. Still, enjoy this week’s episode, and in the next instalment, you’ll see the new rings go in and the 1UZ finally getting put back together.