1996 Firebird Swap - Fourth Generation Pontiac Firebird (1993 - 2002) - Firebird Nation

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1996 Firebird Swap

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#1 Clouder


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  • Gender:Male
  • First Name:Michael
  • City:Marion
  • State or Province:IN
  • Country:USA
  • Year: 1996
  • Make: Pontiac
  • Model: Firebird
  • Engine: 3800
  • Transmission: Manual 5

Posted 5 days ago

I have a old school 350 from a donor gmc. I was told it should just drop right in with tweaks needing to be done to the computer. Any help on this would be appreciated

#2 Injuneer


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  • Year: 1994
  • Make: Pontiac
  • Model: Firebird Formula
  • Engine: 381ci LT1 stroker
  • Transmission: TH400 + GV O/D

Posted 5 days ago

It may not "drop in".  The 1996 Firebird has two different K-member (engine support) configurations, one for the Gen 2 SBC (LT1) V8 and one for the 3800 V6.  Probably need to replace the K-member, beef up the front springs, etc..  The T5 tranny in the 96 is not strong enough to reliably handle decent power/torque from a V8.  That's why GM never put the T5 behind the L98 350 engines in the third Gen F-Bodies.


And no way you can run a Gen 1 SBC with a PCM from a 1996 3.8L V6.




381ci all-forged stroker (Callies Stealth, Oliver billet rods, BME 2618-T61 nitrous pistons) - 10.8:1 - CNC LT4 heads/intake - Comp Cams solid roller - MoTeC M48 Pro engine management - 8 LS1 coils - 58mm TB - 74#/HR injectors - 300-shot dry nitrous - TH400 - Gear Vendors 0.78:1 O/D - Strange 12-bolt - 4.11 Pro-Street gears - AS&M headers - true duals - Corbeau seat - AutoMeter gauges - roll bar - Spohn suspension - QA1 shocks - a few other odds 'n ends. 800HP / 800lb-ft at the flywheel, on a 300-shot. 11.5 @ 117 MPH straight motor


#3 ZumpTA


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  • Year: 1993
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  • Model: Trans Am
  • Engine: LT1
  • Transmission: 6-Spd

Posted 5 days ago

Define "old school".  To me and likely everyone else, old school means carbureted.  Even with the older TPI engines, I highly doubt the 3800 ECM would work.  Drop right in?  No.  Not even close.  Easier than an LS swap into a mustang or miata, but abandon all hopes of "drop right in".  You'd at a minimum need a v8 k-member, suspension upgrades, brake upgrades, the appropriate computer (obd1 or none at all).  Not sure the 5 speed is up to the extra torque either.

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