LS Swaps: The Anti-Fad

DJ_GMHTP Nov 15, 2013 0 Comment(s)
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Swapping in an LS-series engine is possible in almost anything, with the right size engine compartment.

Like puzzle-pieces and building blocks for adults, General Motors has provided the parts and created the most addicting craze for anyone in the automotive universe. With the right size engine compartment, ripping out the old, and swapping in any interchangeable LS-series engine is completely feasible. The starting point for the donor engine is irrelevant, and the only thing that matters is the end location, nestled in and bolted up, under your hood.

From merely friends, to car shows, and to the full-blown four day Holley LS Fest, the LS swap culture is alive, and not leaving anytime soon. Thankfully not a fad, there is a strong possibility of knowing someone who has an LS-series engine under their hood, instead of the original, non-LS equipment. From first-gen Camaros with LS7s to Pontiac Solstices with blown LS3s, anything and everything is a potential candidate for an LS swap.

Speaking of Holley LS Fest, LS-swapped Nissans and BMWs compete in drift competitions with Pontiac GTOs, alongside countless hours of drag racing at the strip. Yes. Nissans and BMWs. The purpose-built drift cars scream American horsepower symphonies, thanks to the LS-swapped engines under the hood. That’s the beauty of the swap craze, though. The reliable high horsepower, for the buck, can’t be beat. Countless combinations are possible, and the American-only purist needs to wake up and get with the program. 

Just as the United States of America is home to countless combinations of ethnicities, almost any ride can become American, GM LS powered. Think of it as those U.S. citizens who are born in a different country, but have applied and obtained U.S. citizenship. Sure, they were born somewhere else, but they’re now Americans. Or, if that analogy doesn’t float your boat, think of LS swaps as a renewed vowel-package for that worn out derelict, sitting in your garage. Wake it up, and swap in an LS engine.

While we were at Holley LS Fest 2013, we came across Jeremy Hoskins, and his 1995 Mitsubishi Eclipse. At first, we thought, An Eclipse at LS Fest? Yes an Eclipse. Let’s get started: Jeremy’s Eclipse has LS3 heads and a 6.0-liter truck block, a total of 370 cubic-inches. It has a stock LS intake manifold, LS crankshaft, stock LS valves, and stock LS rocker arms. The custom 1-7/8-inch headers and Dynomax Bullet 3-inch exhaust have transformed the sound of the Eclipse into a true American concerto.

For the transmission, Jeremy’s Eclipse has a TH-350, 2500-stall speed converter, and a Hurst pistol grip shifter. He runs an 3.55 gear set in a 8.8-Mustang rear-end. The Mitsubishi sits on QA1 coilovers, with Weld Draglite wheels wrapped in Mickey Thompson 275/50-15 ET Street Radials.

The Hazard, Kentucky resident not only tuned it himself, but also did everything on his own, at his dad’s shop. Folks, he’s 23-years old.

Not bad, Jeremy! The Nitrous Express equipped and LS-powered Eclipse rockets Jeremy down the strip in under 11-seconds. His best run, so far, was a 10.827 ET at 122.40 mph, with a 1.503-second 60-foot time.

Jeremy says, “I picked an Eclipse because it’s different, and as far as I know, it hasn’t been done. The owner was going to scrap the car, and it was a mess when I found it online. I wanted to challenge myself, and if I could LS-swap an Eclipse, I could put an LS in just about anything. I wanted to show what I could do, since I want to own my own race shop.” Jeremy’s other ride is an LS-swapped ’84 Chevy S10, with a 5.3-liter V-8. He would love to thank Hoskins Performance, Tim Hoskins (Dad), Eugene Hoskins (Uncle), Jamie Hoskins (Wife), and the rest of his family.

Swapping in an LS-series engine is possible in almost anything, with the right size engine compartment. Use Jeremy and his Eclipse, for example, and give him props for braving LS Fest with a Mitsubishi. He deserves to be there, and he his Eclipse embodies the LS-swap culture. Swapping an LS into an Eclipse is just as foreign as swapping one into a ’70 GTO, and thanks to a stout and adaptable platform, it’s possible!

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