First off I would like to say that this site is an awesome resource. I am new here but I have been reading pretty heavily on here for the past few weeks. With that said, I have some questions about the automatic to five speed swap process in a 1996 Sunfire 2.2. I have read the other threads and have done some searching on here first, and didn't quite find all the info I need, so I figured I would start a thread and ask.
First off, let me explain my situation. I have converted a car that I drove on the street for 7 years, into a race car to run at a local asphalt circle track. The track is 3/8 of a mile, and moderately banked. The class I run in is a stock compact class, so the rules are very limited. I have raced the car a few times already and it's a consistent top 3 car as it is right now. I am considering several mods that will be within the rules, but the mod I am leaning most heavily toward is swapping in a 5 speed in place of the 4 speed automatic. I have access to every part needed for the swap for $150.
In reading, most of the info on the swap pertains to cars that people intend on driving on the street...so they have to worry about things like the console, getting around the dash, safety switches...etc. My car is completely gutted so I obviously don't have all of those concerns. My questions are...
1. Since this car is gutted and will never ever see a street again, can I just disregard hooking up the safety switch or will it disable the engine?
2. Is it absolutely necessary that I change out the ECM for one out of a manual car? I won't be shifting at all during races....these cars stay in 2nd gear once the green flag drops.
3. If I have to swap out ECM's, will that require a complete change of the wiring harness?
4. Will this swap help much in terms of freeing up a little horsepower through reduction of rotational weight and/or by gearing? Or am I wasting my time by freeing up 2 horsepower? lol
5. Am I going to hurt myself rather than help myself as far as gearing? I have 15" tires on the car currently.
6. Please let me know of anything I am not thinking to ask just yet....lol.
Basically I am looking for bare minimum procedure advice for a car that doesn't need all the bells and whistles to function properly on the street. I know it's a big job, but I'm willing to tackle it if the results are worth it. Any advice is greatly appreciated!
To trick the computer you need to cut the thick yellow and purple wires on the prndl switch. You'll just get 4 automatic codes but it will not affect the way it runs at all. You will also have to switch vss connectors unless your not worried about the speedometer. I just did a 5 speed swap a few weekends ago so if you have any questions feel free to pm me.
FYI - automatic PCM will run 5 speed but they have torque management that retards the timing when it shifts so on a 5 speed it it think it needs to shift and retards the timing. This is for the 4 speed autos.
I know I'm a little late on the subject but I also do short track racing and I have a racing team. The teams most dominate car is a completely stock 96 5spd. I sold my 97/98 combo auto and hopped in a 5spd and there is a world or difference. It's just that much faster. I have seen autos come in first bit that was with a gutted tranny and stall converter. Pm me and we can talk some more.
I accidentally tried to use an Auto LD9 ECM on a 5 Speed LD9 (back before HPT, SC M45 install in a Pre2k, 99 ECM swap to delete EGR)...... With Check engine light, it also ran like crap. lol
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