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LS-1 INFOQUEST 240-260-280 Z

Rocket fueled zip for your first generation ZCAR, the 240, 260, 280 Z (not ZX). John's Cars ZCar components matched with the all aluminum GM LS V8 and overdrive transmission define AWESOME! This 100% bolt-in kit does not rely on the stock Datsun cross-member motor mount towers alone for strength. There is no welding required or recommended. Everything is totally bolt-in. Suspension modifications are not needed. LS-2, LS-6 Z Cars will use these parts as well. Details:

Stock 77 280Z L28/5Speed
LS1 & T56
W/Roll-bar & Strut Braces
Total Weight:
Front Only:
Rear Only:

Braking/handling are not impacted due to the minor weight change (30 pounds more on the rear). Fact is that an LS-1 ZCar has a lower center of gravity than the original inline Nissan 6. You will, however, want to upgrade both the braking and suspension if you are planning on "competing" with the car. We don't offer those items and I don't have any preferences or suggestions who to use - there are many excellent vendors for you to choose from for those items. Check online Z groups, like www.HybridZ.org.

I hope you will read this information carefully. The good information here should cover 99% of your questions - If it misses one please send an email to zcar@johnscars.com. Three decades of V8 conversions have guided this project and the information you need to make good decisions. I do conversions in house on local vehicles only, not hot rods - full smog, emission legal in Dallas. You can make an appointment to visit JCI - Monday-Friday 8-6. You may note that I repeat some things - I don't have an LS kit for the 280ZX (small block kit is available - go to www.johnscars.com). I don't have anything (nada) for a 300ZX. WHY? - the cars are different - takes different parts - parts I have not designed. If I do build parts I will send out info to those who send an email, please do not call - I do not have anything to tell you and I can't design stuff being a parrot on the phone. I don't need any guinea pigs - I have cars that maybe I'll get to someday, sorry if that does not fit your instant gratification society, the customer is always right and more power to the consumer. I'll be happy to refer all posers to you as soon as you have your ZX fire breather rattling windows. This dog runs 12s on street tires, so if someone beats an LS heartbeat ZCar I’ll wager it is not a daily 20 mpg driver that idles ripple free. There are production line vehicles that are worthy foes - and they are in the 6 figure category. It all depends on how you want to spend the money or if a sleeper is better than flash.

The LS is GM's state-of-the-art all Aluminum, Hi-Po motor, coil-on-plug, fuel injected and fully computer controlled. You even maintain the OBD2 driveline diagnostics. Convert your Z to the technology that GM spent years and hundreds of thousands of dollars to develop for their factory high performance vehicles. Best of all, you don't have to reinvent the wheel to do it. You should "edit" the GM computer to your rear axle ratio, EGR update and maybe some horsepower tweaks! ChipsbyAl@aol.com did the ECM for the prototype, I also use and recommend Street & Performance and Howell Engineering.

John's Cars (JCI) built the LS-1 ZCar prototype in 2002 using a stock 1998 Camaro pullout. Summer of 2003 I took it apart to analyze the effort and the thousands of miles of road and track experience. What did we change? A synchro in 5th gear! JCI now offers proven, no excuse components to you.

Building blocks are what you buy for your Z from JCI. This is not a kit and it is not "blacksmith plans". It is a group of critical components, designed to work together, that will allow the experienced do-it-your selfer to successfully complete this installation. It eliminates "do-overs", second guesses and 50-50 hindsight decisions BUT "most of all" the basket case results of budget and cheaper way projects. Don't call to pump us for free info on your "Just one problem". 30 years plus of hands on experience designed this V8 installation. I have no desire nor need to explain what is proven works. This same experience is why I am very specific in telling you: If you want to design your wheel, be my guest - without my input. You can go online for all the free commiseration you could ever want.

Building blocks I offer are listed here:

Front mounting set: This is a five piece bolt-in set that properly locates your LS in the ZCAR engine bay on GM mounts with clearances for headers and manual steering rack. You don't get to guess where to drill the final holes - yes, there are engine mounts offered that have you make that decision so it becomes "your problem". My mounts are 100% bolt-in. They are black zinc plated, include the necessary hardware and don't require (or allow) any guesswork. My manual details removal of the Z driveline - car prep for the V8 and the install of JCI components you purchase. I do not provide this step by step process without the purchase of the front mounts. Purchase of the front mounting set is required to be enable you to purchase the related components. You can purchase the other components later as your budget dictates. Mounts are on the shelf for immediate shipping. Mounts do fit right hand drive (RHD) Z models also. Front mounting set & hardware, plus my step by step manual, freight paid - $295.00.

Transmission crossmember and rubber mount: The original Z transmission mountings inside the tunnel are removed for clearance so you drill four small holes for installing the new crossmember. Available for either the 4L60E or T56. Crossmember, rubber mount, and hardware, freight paid - $135.00.

Driveshaft: A complete, balanced unit with slip yoke to flange, ready to bolt in. This is steel driveshaft with full size u-joints at each end, bolts to Z diff, freight paid - $235.00.

Speedometer Drive Unit: Converts the electronic signal from the GM transmission into a mechanical drive enabling you to keep a stock dash using the Datsun stock speedometer with odometer (aftermarket speedos often do not have an odometer). Simple 3 wire hook-up, made in the USA, new cable included, freight paid - $285.00.

Vital Liquids Set: Upper and lower radiator hoses, clamps, adaptors, set up to use the Datsun oil pressure sender, plus two water temps (GM FI and Datsun dash gauge). This will save you days of time! Shipped with other components - $85.00.

Radiator: We'll recore your old radiator with a new 4-row super duty high efficiency core. Ship us your unit and we'll return it ready to install - $345.00 to your door.
Headers: (Not available for CA) 4 tube block hugger style (1 5/8", 16 gauge) custom made in the USA specifically for this application. I do not have any larger tube or stainless headers. They clear the steering, starter and oil filter and maintain good ground clearance. Includes two oxygen sensor bungs installed. These headers are not CARB certified so they cannot be sold in California. Freight paid - $330.00.

AC compressor mount and drive: New aluminum high efficiency compressor, made in Japan (serpentine belt drive). I do not supply or make the hoses except for factory air conditioned cars as there are too many variations. Most hydraulic hose or AC shops can make you a set when you drive the car to them. The GM factory AC compressor will not clear my mounts so I designed a custom unit. My package includes all mounting brackets and hardware, uses stock GM belt ,freight paid - $450.00. Hose set, drier, pressure switch for "280" models with factory air is now available, $200.00 (only with my A/C kit).

Power Steering Pump - considered and designed for but I do not have information on steering racks - hence I do not know what can be used. NOTE: An LS Z car weighs exactly the same as a stock 6 cylinder car on the front axle. This means steering effort will be the same as before.

High volume/high pressure fuel pump: Made in USA and mounts in same location as stock 280Z unit, freight paid - $175.00.
Tachometer calibration: We will calibrate your analog Z tach to read the revs and keep your interior stock. Cost is 75.00 but if you order all the JCI parts above, the tach calibration is your BONUS - no charge. You don't have to buy headers if you are in California to qualify for Bonus.

I strongly recommended that you find a complete Camaro or Firebird (CFB) donor vehicle. Usually you can buy an entire donor cheaper than the boneyard will charge you for the pullout. You need the engine, transmission, full wiring harness, ECM, accessories and brackets, radiator fans, etc. (this A/C comp is not used). Get it all at once and save time and money in the long run. The stock GM alternator is retained. The Datsun unit would not be up to the task of electric fans. Use the stock CFB dual electric fans - they directly plug in to the engine wiring harness and therefore are computer controlled - strongly recommended, very easy to mount.

18" Electric Fan – If you have a crate motor or did not get CFB fans, I do have the 18" heavy duty single fan with pigtail for $225.00.

Transmission choices are the 6-speed (overdriven) T56 manual trans or the computer controlled 4L60E overdrive automatic. Automatics are a slightly easier swap and with the mountains of torque the LS generates it makes for a more driveable car. You can "light-em up" whenever you want and the 30% overdrive reduces noise, improves mileage, and lengthens engine life. The ZCAR factory automatic shifter is okay and there are aftermarket units if you prefer. The T56 Shifter does fit in Z shifter hole.

EGR is the ugly thing at the front of 1998 models. It was eliminated on 99 models and your computer guru should be able to update your ECU to the newer specifications so you can just plug the hole! You will have to verify what is required for local emissions - I can not know what your locale requires, please do not call me.

Side notes: These components are for the first generation ZCars only. The first generation is 240 - 260 and 280 Z - not 280ZX. We do not have anything LS-1 for the ZX, we do offer a small block V8 kit for any of the Z cars before the 300ZX. ZX to LS-1 models may be offered later - send email to zcar@johnscars.com and request ZX info - please do not call, it is a waste of time. Repeating myself again.

These components will allow you to mechanically install the drive train and cooling system in approximately 20 hours. It does not include any super detailing of the engine bay, paint repairs, or electrical connections work. Class takes time - what you see on TV mechanic is fantasy time.

If your Z is rusty, don't even start. Find another body shell that is rust free. The torque developed by this drive train pushes the limits of the Z unibody. The stock Z differential and half-shafts have proven adequate for this application.

To get yourself started toward the ride of your dreams fill out the order sheet, sign it, and send it in along with certified funds. Remember, freight costs included within the continental USA. Hawaii and Alaska will be slightly higher due to higher shipping costs. Tax is due on any sale in Texas. Headers, an exhaust component, can not be sold/shipped to California.

If you have questions I did not address please send an email to zcar@johnscars.com. Thanks for making it to the end - they'll be seeing your tail lights adios with the JCI LS ZCar. More John’s Cars history and V8 kits for XJ and EType Jaguars plus V6 conversions for TR7, Marks and more at www.johnscars.com.

JCI LS1 ZCar Order Sheet Link

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Phone: (214) 426-4101
Fax: (214) 426-3116
800 Jaguar Lane
Dallas, TX 75226

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