Mark Mallaby's 1977 MGB with Rover 3.9L V8 Engine and EFI
as published in British V8 Newsletter, Volume XV Issue 2, September 2007
Owner: Mark Mallaby
City: San Diego, CA
Model: 1977 MGB
Engine: 1990 Rover 3.9L V8 Engine and electronic fuel injection
Conversion performed by: Owner
The basic goal was to "build a reliable car with classic lines and enough power to get out of its own way". After buying the "How to Give Your MGB V8 Power" by Roger Williams and reading all the materials on the British V8 web pages and forums we think we have achieved that goal.
|Engine:||stock 3.9 liter Rover V8 from 1990 Range Rover Classic with SD1 oil pan,
timing cover and Buick 300 short shaft (AC) water pump.
|Transmission:||LT77 "D" five speed, flywheel, and clutch are stock units from a US-spec
Rover SD1. The shifter selector remote section has been shortened
about 2" to emerge in the stock MGB location.
|Driveshaft:||shortened SD1 unit with a conversion plate to match the diff bolt pattern,
I chose this driveshaft because I liked the CV joints better than "U" joints
and the tube is much larger in diameter.
|Rear Axle:||stock MGB with new 3.07:1 gears from Clive Wheatley. I recommend changing
the rear ratio to everyone. You really don't get the full value of the
conversion with the tall stock gears.
|Fuel Injection:||fuel injection is Range Rover 14CUX grafted into a US-spec SD1 ("Federal")
intake manifold. The system works well without the need for machining the
plenum (as would be required for a later-model plenum). The air cleaner is
a K&N unit with custom cold air box. All aspects of the fuel injection
are functional per CA law.
|Exhaust:||RV8 style headers from TSI with O2 sensor bungs. A 2-into-1 catalytic convertor
feeds into 2.75" single muffler and resonator, to give a nice rumble but not so
loud that it's annoying on trips.
|Cooling:||3-row brass radiator (also from TSI) with a pair of thermostatically switched
fans mounted in pusher (front) configuration. The fans are the auxiliary fans
also from the Range Rover. An under body duct routes all air from the lower
oval intakes to the radiator while the top shroud keeps all the air in and
|Body:||the body is in "daily driver" condition, the parts for chrome bumper
conversion were eBay items chosen for their aged "patina" that suits
the rest of the car. I re-used the late model turn signal lamps because
they cover the holes in the fenders and I had them on hand. I also left
the over-riders off. I think the look is cleaner without them. The total
cost of the bumper conversion was about $300.00 and was done in one
(I was bored.)
|Interior:||the interior is stock with LE steering wheel a new dash and wood kit
being the only changes. The yellow lamp in the console in the above photo
is the "EFI" (check engine) warning lamp.
|Driving Impressions:||my wife and I are really enjoying the completed car! We have about 5000 miles
on it so far. At 70 mph the engine is turning about 2000 rpm. The power is
effortless and the car is scary fast and very reliable. The car is also "green"
- it passes California smog tests to 1990 standards and gets about 28mpg with
the top down. (I would expect 30mpg with the top up). I love that the car
looks like a "stock driver", yet we shock the hell out of some unsuspecting
exotics here in Southern California. This is a great conversion. If British
Leyland had made the MGB-V8 available in the US, they'd still be selling
the brand in the US. It's a pity, really, that they chose the wedge-shaped
|WARNING:||the Californian State Senate is not interested in modified cars meeting
smog requirements. They are interested in removing old cars from California
roads. California no longer has a smog exemption law. All cars built after
September 1974 must meet emission standards for the year of manufacture.
They are never exempt. Word to the wise: start (or finish) with a pre-74