Want your GT86 to rev out to 9,000 RPM? Here’s one way to do it.
The 570HP 4.5L Ferrari V8 powered ‘GT4586’ of Ryan Tuerck was at the Goodwood Festival of Speed and we caught up with Brian Hartsock of Unicorn Garage to get a few more details of one of the more unusual GT896 engine swaps you’re ever likely to see. The engine hails from the F136 V8 family and originally was housed in a Ferrari 458. Other than some setup changes for fitment, it remains relatively stock and despite boasting 80% of it’s 540Nm of torque being on tap from 3,250 rpm, Nitrous Oxide is injected up until 6,000 rpm to prevent a lot of clutch work and increased maintence to keep it sliding.
While the original GT86/BRZ Subaru FA20 engine was both port and direct-injected (DI), the Ferrari F136 is solely direct-injected and was the first mid-engined setup from the marque to be so. Due to this, a newer MoTeC M142 ECU is used which was produced with DI engines in mind, and like the other M1 series ECUs it has the ability to replicate CAN messages once set up to do so, and this is done via a John Reed Racing firmware package and loom construction done in-house by Unicorn Garage.
Power goes to the ground via a Fortin Racing 5 speed sequential that uses a remote shifter with a potentiometer instead of the traditional strain gauge setup Brian would normally use, however as the car is not for competition use (it does not fit the regulations and was not built to) the slightly slower shifting speed is not an issue. The 8” rear diff is from a Supra for extra strength and ease of sourcing ring and pinion options when required with Wisefab suspension components, BR Racing DR series dampers and springs and Brembo brakes used front and rear and a Nameless Performance hydraulic handbrake to assist with drifting duties.
The build wasn't without some challenges in relation to the physical size of the F136 and inlet manifold requirements which see it sitting as far back as possible to fit between the Toyotas suspension struts and a solid coat of RainX liberally applied when needed counter the lack of windscreen wipers. The exhaust exits right at the front of the car taking what little space was left for the cooling system, and this has seen the Mishimoto radiator system mounted in the boot.
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