Prius Drive Train in 1st Gen Previa Van

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Accessories and Modifications' started by CaliMiller, Mar 13, 2019.

  1. CaliMiller

    CaliMiller New Member

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    Not sure where to post this... it’s just a musing I thought I’d share, not really asking for help. Would love to hear people’s thoughts though.

    So this is a hypothetical idea, that would be really cool if implemented properly, but seems like a lot of work, and almost unnecessary, as hybrid vans are finally coming available.

    I totaled my 2010 Prius II. It still runs and drives, just exterior damage. I was thinking about buying it back from the insurance company, and attempting to do a drive train swap into a first generation Previa van. I’ve always liked the Previa, thinking it resembled a futuristic space shuttle. It would be cool to modernize this to use an engine with better fuel economy. It would make road trips more enjoyable as I could get the best of both worlds: better MPG and more cabin space.

    I know very little about the inner workings of a Previa, but I do know the engine is mounted under the front seats. I wonder if the Prius’s Synergy Drive would fit in this space. I imagine the ECU and wiring would all have to be transplanted, as well as several pieces of the dash, (digital readout system). It would probably take a lot of custom fabrication to make it all fit correctly, let alone look good.

    The biggest question is: would the Prius engine be powerful enough to pull the weight of a Previa, at safe speeds and acceleration. And would it have any negative affect on the life of the drive train. It would likely need recalibrated for gear ratio, to run efficiently and display the proper speed on the readout. I wonder if that’s even possible.

    The pedals might have to be transplanted too, because the Prius controls the throttle digitally, while the Previa most likely uses a cabled throttle.

    If I did this, I’d call it the Toyota Previus.
     
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  2. James Powers

    James Powers Active Member

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    I imagine it would be THE slowest thing on the road LOL with 82 ft lbs, I am surprise the 1.5 gets out of its own way. Tho, it doesnt seem like the worst swap! LOL If you have the time, go for it!! Id follow the thread. PS. I always thought that van looked like a spaceship..
     
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  3. Montgomery

    Montgomery Senior Member

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    I would type in the Priuschat search bar "Firebrid". This dude is converting a 1969 Firebird into the chasis of a Prius, thus the moniker "Firebrid". You may not being doing exactly what he is doing, but he could offer tips and suggestions. Plus, just looking at what he has done will inspire you!!
     
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  4. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

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    Search? Not hip to use that wonderful feature here, no one ever does that :p
     
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  5. Colm01

    Colm01 Member

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    Awesome Idea! However I don't think it will work. The engine in the Previa is a 4 cylinder with the cylinders flat to the left. Not up and down like the Prius. The engine is under the front seats but there is a crankshaft driven torque tube that goes up under the hood. Once under the hood, all the accessories are driven there like A/C power steering and water pump. Just like the Prius, The Previa is a unique vehicle. Keep thinking though, I don't want to discourage. Plus, I may be wrong and you could do it! I Love the Previa, especially 4wd with supercharger from the factory!
     
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  6. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    More to the point, the Previa was a longitudinal mid-engine RWD layout. Every Prius is a front-engine FWD layout. Zero overlap in transmissions between these.

    There is at least one Lexus out there with a longitudinal hybrid synergy drive. Something like that would work in the Previa.
     
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  7. Greenteapri

    Greenteapri Member

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    It's nice to dream:sleep::sleep::sleep:
     
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