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MG MGB GT V8 Factory Originals Technical - Ford 302 in an MGBGT

I'm thinking of building a sebring gtv8 conversion and wondered if anybody this side of the pond had shoehorned the ford v8 into a gt shell? I've done a couple of conversions with the rover v8 but the extra grunt of the ford has a certain appeal. How much chopping about around the bulkhead area needs to be done. Any input most gratefully received.
Dave P

Dave ---although I'm not on your side of the pond -I o have a 302 V8 in my 79 MGB. The first suggestion to you is to get a post 1976 model as the engine compartment and tunnel are larger and makes the installation easier.I did no alterations to either except along the side of the tunnel to fit my clutch slave cylinder set up--but most use a hyd throw out bearing and this is not necessary.I can send some pics of my installation . I am sure you will hear from more of the Blue Oval crowd over here.
I also used the B&W T 5 transmission from a Mustang--great set up.
If I can be of more help just let me know .
Good luck --Gil
Gil Price

Well there are differences in the LH and RH versions of the car and I am not sure how that will affect the install. That said the Frod fits in quite easily. The biggest modification is having to notch the cross member. After that you need to make mounts and headers.
Larry Embrey


If you can hold out just a little while, the third edition of Roger Williams' "How To Give Your MGB V8 Power" book will be out soon (He is expecting a December release date). He has an excellent write-up on using the Ford 302.

Also, go to and have a look-see at the engine swap section. There are a few examples there. Also, download the May-August 2003 issue of the newsletter. There is a pretty good write-up in there on the 302 as it pertains to using it in an MGB.

One item of interest - the 302 is smaller physically than the 215 BOP/R. Not much, but if there's room for a 215, there's room for the 302.

The only real problem you'll encounter, is, as Larry said, the front crossmember, but this is an easy DYI operation (you may want to take it to a welder after you've made the modifications if you don't have a welder yourself). This mod is covered in detail in Roger's book.
Dan Masters

Thanks for the input everyone, that gives me food for thought. Gil,if you could e-mail me some pics that would be great. I will keep a look out for the new edition of Rogers' book, good suggestion for a Christmas present. I'm not in any great hurry, I've go to finish restoring my wifes '72 V8 roadster first!
Dave P


I have a MGB with the 302 SVO crate motor. I also sell the headers for this conversion, with these headers I have been on the chassie dyno and pulled well over 300 HP at the rear wheels! These headers exit through the fender well, simular to the RV8 style.
They sell for $500.00 US plus shipping.

Thank You
Steven Carrick
Coyote Engineering LLC
Steve Carrick


What do you do with 300 hp at the wheels? :)
I have been giving serious consideration to putting a v8 in my 78 mgb but considering I have something close to 50 hp stock, anything around 150 is cool. I'm wondering about the weight of the 302 is it similar to the 215 cid aluminum motor?

That 302 crate motor you used have smog stuff? Can it be avoided? Is it carbeurated or fi? Thanks.

CW Strong

I found my answer on the weight, the 302 is 460 lbs vs 310 lbs for the 215 CID Buick rover.
CW Strong


Those weights, although often quoted and quite common on the Internet, are not correct. The actual engine weights are:

MGB: 395
Ford 302 with aluminum heads: 435
Ford 302 with iron heads: 485
BOP/Rover: 355

There can be a lot of variation in the weights, depending on the ancillaries used - starter, flywheel, etc, but these are pretty close, and are based on actual weighings of the engines.

The varous numbers posted on the internet don't tell you what all is included in the weight. Some include the starter, flywheel, etc, and some don't. The weights above include EVERYTHING needed to complete the package except oil and water.
Dan Masters

This thread was discussed between 10/09/2005 and 26/09/2005

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