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Discussion Starter #1
Looking for some opinions/advice for a pretty unique car. It's my dads 1986 Panther Kallista in Florida and it has some issues. I work on it when I visit them, but that's only a few days a year so we're going to transport it to Maryland so I can dedicate more time to it.

It has an N/A 2.3l Ford and came with a manual trans and carb, but the PO swapped in an auto and EFI. Over the years, I've replaced most of the 'quality' British wiring, flushed fluids, the coolant twice, hoses, fuel lines, belt, starter, relay, and other basic parts. HUGE chunks of rusted metal flushed out with the coolant so I'm not confident in the overall longevity of the motor, and we had the gas tank epoxy lined but it still has issues. The heater core is corroded and probably leaking, no gauges work, more re-wiring is needed, and I haven't even looked at the rear-end yet. I've got my work cut out for me, but the engine is first and foremost.

I've been thinking about getting a 2.3l turbo engine, and I'm assuming the motor mounts and trans would bolt up? What about wiring harness and engine management? Would it be more worthwhile to just get a whole donor car from the era? What about a 5.0 swap? I know just replacing the N/A 2.3l with another one would be the easiest, but if I'm replacing the engine, I might as well add a little power. I also have a running 1995 turbo Miata which would be a fun drivetrain to put in.

In short, I'm looking for a route to a fun and reliable car, and the choice of engine is the starting point. The car weights ~2,300 lbs so 200hp+/- would be plenty, especially over the stock 88hp. Thoughts/opinions?
 

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Bo Baustin
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13,134 Posts
Is the 2.3 NA an L series?

If that's the case, a lot of ford/mazda 4 bangers should have the same mount locations.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Does that refer to the "Lima" engines? If so, then yes. I found an '87 Tbird Turbo Coupe for sale local and might pick it up just to have everything. Almost a shame, the Tbird is in impeccable condition, but for the price vs sourcing out everything, I think it's worth it for this particular project. I might even recoup some of the cost for the chassis.
 
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