I'm Wayne Evans in Houston, Texas
I'm 56 and a furniture maker by trade also I've never built or restored a car before.
I've always wanted to but have never had the time or space and the price was too high.
My oldest boy just got married and my youngest boy is at University of Texas. I just built a new garage for a place to work on the cars. So I thought, what better time?
This all started last year at tax time when I decided to donate a Saab 900 that had became a fixture in the driveway and my oldest boy suggested we keep and restore it. I thought about this for a while, but when the projected cost reached $20,000 I said...........I don't think so. But it did start me thinking about a car project. You can see how these things happen.....Kids.
A friend of mine back in high school (some time back) had an original 289 cobra to drive to school .(poor thing) I've always thought those were pretty cool,so I started looking into a cobra kit but found they were $20,000 plus also.
I've always been more Of a 4 cylinder guy anyway.
Then I saw an add for the Locost. Wow, an English sports car with no top. Who needs a top anyway? I've had two Spitfires and there was a time when I really wanted an Elan.
I ordered the book that day and after reading through it decided , I could do this. My wife said, you can't build a car and I said sure I can, just watch. She didn't say much for a long time after that. She's still not real keen on this.
I drove a Saab 9000 turbo at the time so ,of course, I had to have a Saab mechanic. Tony has worked for a couple dealers who also sold Lotus and he has built some sevens out of the box's. His first thought was to go original. Using a ford crossflow and a Lotus DOHC head. I did a fair amount of looking but couldn't find a Ford 1600 anywhere, no fiestas either. I gave some thought to the Toyota 4A-GE, but couldn't locate one cheap here in Houston. Then I started to look for a Ford Zetach but before I found one Street Rodder magazine (May and June 2002 ) ran the article on the Quad 4.. "Roddings new offy". there was a picture on the cover and I was hooked. This engine just looks so cool, very much like the Offenhauser racing engines that ruled Indy in the fifties and sixties. It is in fact a design copy of the Offenhauser engines. And it makes 180 HP.
So with the help of my buddy Kurt, I went to the pick-a-part and spent two days pulling an engine. It was late May and getting pretty hot in Houston. There's no shade in the bone yard.
I think I'm the pioneer with this engine. I don't know of anyone else using one for a Locost yet. If you are let me know. I have had a lot of interest via E-mail though.
I think this engine is a natural.
1. It just looks like a racing engine.
2. At 325 lbs it falls in between the Ford Zetech at 245lbs and the popular pinto at 415lbs.
3. The dimentions are very close to the Zetech so I know it will fit the chassis.
4. It makes 180 HP. If 100HP is enough then 180 would be better, at least in Texas.
5. With a little work you can get 200 HP or more, 300 with a blower.
Quad 4 Rods out of Denver can supply a bell housing to convert the Quad to rear wheel drive.
Their housing hooks directly to a Camaro T5 transmission. I would have prefered a smaller tranny but couldn't find one from GM.The transmission tunnel will have to be made wider in the front to accomadate the T5. This may cause a little problem with foot room up by the pedels. I don't know yet.
The 2.3 Quad 4 engines were put in the Olds Calais, the Trans Am, the Skylark, and Chevy Beretta.
The best years to look for are 89,90,and91. There are two types identitied by the seventh and eighth places in the vin string as 4A and 4D. the 4D is the most common and makes 160 HP. The 4A is usually in specially badged models and makes 180 HP. It had a mild performance cam. Mine was in an Olds Quad 442..
There are two types of intake manifolds, one is a cast unit that is large and bulky the other is a really cool looking tubular type. There is no performance differance and they are interchangable. The same with the exhust headers, one is cast and the other is a stainless steel bent tube type. I used the cool ones.