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Old 30th December 2012, 13:32   #1
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Default Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

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I have a 2000 model Maruti Baleno. This is my college car and I am very much attached to it emotionally. I have also 2004 model Baleno Altura which is in very good condition. I'm really not willing to sell any of these cars and the Baleno is just lying unused since the past 6 months.

so I have decided to convert it to diesel.

I know its really not a good idea and many of you would be discouraging me from doing so. I have inquired about the Toyota 1N engine and these are available for as low as 20-25k with gearbox at Kurla. I guess the total cost of conversion would be around 50k.

I have decided to go for it and am ready to risk my 50k even if everything fails!

Am going to send this car back to my village, so legal things are not going to be problem as it wont be endorsed in the RC book.

So finally I want to give it a chance. also I don't care about performance/NVH levels/handling, but want it to be little reliable.

Can anyone suggest the best place to do this swap in Mumbai?

Last edited by GTO : 31st December 2012 at 09:29. Reason: Correcting typos
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Old 30th December 2012, 14:22   #2
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

The toyota 1N engine is quite reliable and economical also and it was fitted to numerous maruti 1000s and early Esteems so it will fit well in your Baleno.
I think the best person to guide you about finding a good place to fit the engine is the guy selling it to you itself as you can only test the engine properly after it has been fitted and you wouldn't want the mechanic and engine dealer playing blame games once a problem crops up. If you fit the engine by someone recommended by the dealer then you could work out a deal that involves lesser fitting charges and also a warranty.

One suggestion that i have is to try to get the engine swap done legally, as i think there are some states in India that allow a legal diesel engine conversion. it may involve getting the car re registered to that state and it would certainly increase the cost but, you could avoid problems with taxing and insuring the car. Think about it and ask around if you please.
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Old 30th December 2012, 17:41   #3
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That's a nice idea to go ahead with provided you are aware of a very reliable person who has done many such conversions as, there's a very strong chance of problems post-engine transplant.

On a separate note, is it really imperative for you to convert this into a diesel? Why go against the tide mate as you stand to lose the money here. Instead, go for a CNG converion IMHO - provided you have no real uses of the boot

All the best!!

Last edited by MetalBuff : 30th December 2012 at 17:47.
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Old 30th December 2012, 20:03   #4
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

Make sure you would have some good mechanic in your village who can take care of the car post the diesel conversion, since the car would be mainly used there. Even if the best mechanic does a perfect conversion, unless you have a good mechanic in your village, it would be difficult to maintain it in that state. Since your car won't be fully legal, getting it back to Mumbai for repairs regularly might not be feasible.

Also check how easy it is to source the Baleno parts in your village and the time it would take to procure the same. It might not be as quick as you find in Mumbai.

If the above aspects are covered, looking forward to the updates on the conversion process

Quote:
Originally Posted by MetalBuff View Post
On a separate note, is it really imperative for you to convert this into a diesel? Why go against the tide mate as you stand to lose the money here. Instead, go for a CNG converion IMHO - provided you have no real uses of the boot

All the best!!
Good point. I'm not sure if there would be any CNG pumps in the villages yet. LPG might stand a better chance for availability in village areas, though even that is not guaranteed. Ensure you have a CNG/LPG pump within reasonable distance of where the car would be used if you plan to go with CNG/LPG conversion. If so, even I would suggest going with this option. It can easily be endorsed in RC and insurance and you still have a car that is fully legal. You can use it in Mumbai too if you want to.

Last edited by GTO : 31st December 2012 at 09:30. Reason: Quoted post deleted
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Old 30th December 2012, 20:21   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zenren View Post
Make sure you would have some good mechanic in your village who can take care of the car post the diesel conversion, since the car would be mainly used there. Even if the best mechanic does a perfect conversion, unless you have a good mechanic in your village, it would be difficult to maintain it in that state. Since your car won't be fully legal, getting it back to Mumbai for repairs regularly might not be feasible.

Also check how easy it is to source the Baleno parts in your village and the time it would take to procure the same. It might not be as quick as you find in Mumbai.

If the above aspects are covered, looking forward to the updates on the conversion process
Zenren, you struck bulls eye, man!


Procircuit,

A wide spread fact that this is, procuring spares for the Baleno is not only an expensive affair but, an equally huge task as well (on account of their unavailability in the metros and we are talking about a village here)

Why not sell off this Baleno (might be difficult for the enthusiast in you), plonk the 50 K you intend to invest into the Diesel engine implant and search for a Diesel Esteem. Will be difficult to find however, as everything is pretty much stock for this, should come up to be pretty reliable to use. Not forgetting, spares for the Esteem are pretty easily available.

You might also want to look at an aged version of the Diesel Indica but, that will bring along it's own share of niggles which the TATAs' are synonymous with. Over to you General !

As for the place where you can get this swap done, I am pretty sure, the guy who is actually sourcing the engine can be of help. There might be a couple of garages in Kurla itself considering, the huge automobile market there.

Last edited by MetalBuff : 30th December 2012 at 20:41.
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Old 30th December 2012, 20:31   #6
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

Front suspension needs to be upgraded(stiffer ones).

Final drive ratios will be higher for petrols, thus making the diesel motor work at higher rpm.

Coolant temperature gauge calibration might be needed, but this is not a big issue.

Proper engine mounts to tackle the vibration.

These are all the issues i can think about. Also, you may think about doing something to the exhaust pipe. I find it too low in the Baleno.
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Old 30th December 2012, 20:34   #7
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

thanx a lot for your suggestions guys but i am not interested in cng as the car will be used for 70kms/day and filling time for cng is irritating.no cng for sure.
the question is should i try this toyota 1N swap or its so bad idea that i should not even try it.
there is no question of selling it otherwise its most logical step to just sell her and get another diesel car.this car is special for me!
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Old 30th December 2012, 21:28   #8
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

If the car is so special for you, then keep it stock. Converting it to a diesel will surely come with its own share of problems, and if they keep building up or prove difficult to solve, then it will break your heart to see your car in this state. At that point, you will have nothing but regret for taking the decision to convert her.

As MetalBuff has suggested, save the 50k and look for a diesel Esteem or an Indica. How about an Uno? I am sure there would be quite a few (significantly) old vehicles that you will find in Mumbai for 50k.
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Old 30th December 2012, 21:37   #9
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

Quote:
Originally Posted by procircuit_234 View Post
i am not interested in cng as the car will be used for 70kms/day and filling time for cng is irritating.no cng for sure.
How is the availability of Autogas (LPG) in your area? I have a Zen with LPG kit and the filling time is similar to that of petrol based on my experience. FE is probably 1-2kmpl lesser than petrol but with a 60L tank, you should be able to get a pretty good range for the full tank.
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Old 30th December 2012, 21:51   #10
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

70km per day equates to around 2000 kms per month.
This is quite high a mileage for a car with a non-standard engine conversion. Would be highly unreliable.
CNG is best bet and since it will be at a village and won't be irritating you with the fill up times, I would suggest this.
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Old 30th December 2012, 21:57   #11
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

I strongly not recommend these swap. Would suggest to let go of the emotional touch with at-least one car and buy a Swift Diesel. You will get one of the older vintage cars for 3 lakh rupees. This will be way more reliable than a swap. Remember: you intend to send this car to your village where the mechanic may not be very competent on a swapped engine + with driving 75 kms - you want top notch reliability.

A swapped motor will definitely be unreliable for sure. And the 50k may run upto near 80k - 100k once you actually start doing the swap. What about the electronics in the car - AC, PS, PW - Will they work as intended. Dont think so.
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Old 30th December 2012, 22:27   #12
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

In fact, according to me, the following statements

Quote:
Originally Posted by procircuit_234 View Post
...i am very much attached to this car emotionally...
and

Quote:
Originally Posted by procircuit_234 View Post
...am ready to risk my 50k even if everything fails!..
sound contradictory.

Understand that by everything, you are risking the possibility of even turning the car into a dump. An engine transplant includes opening up several mechanicals, and if things go wrong, there is absolutely no guarantee that you can revert everything back perfectly to stock.

PS. For this reason, I have rejected the idea of fitting an LPG/CNG kit to my Alto, even though my daily running very much warrants it. All this only because she is very dear to me and I wouldn't want to risk anything that can cause issues to crop up. But hey, that's just me!!
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Old 30th December 2012, 23:41   #13
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

Hey procircuit, I understand your emotional attachment to your car and it will be difficult to part with one which has served you for quite a long time. We are seeing a lot of BHP-ians here, who consider their rides as part of their family and call them by names. But practicality is quite different from emotions. As swarnava.m has pointed out above, you might even lose you beloved possession in case you take this step.

Take a step back and think of it in a practical way. Why not go for a CNG/LPG conversion without risking much? Or leave her in the way she was born/made - as a petrol car?
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Old 31st December 2012, 00:24   #14
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

What is the mileage of your Baleno? I remember you telling me about the high ODO reading of your Baleno, with that, I wonder whether it would even be a feasible option to CNG/LPG it without rebuilding the engine first.

Last edited by GTO : 31st December 2012 at 13:18. Reason: Quoted post deleted
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Old 31st December 2012, 01:14   #15
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Default re: Maruti Baleno - Diesel Engine Conversion?

Quote:
Originally Posted by infotech58 View Post
What is the mileage of your Baleno? I remember you telling me about the high ODO reading of your Baleno, with that, I wonder whether it would even be a feasible option to CNG/LPG it without rebuilding the engine first.
In that case, check cylinder compressions (both dry and wet) and then, move ahead.
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