Turbo-Charged Jeep Crawler / Daily Driver! - Ford 2.3 Turbo, Atlas 4 T-Case

Price: US $15,000.00 Item location: Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States
  • Condition: Used
  • Make: Jeep
  • Model: Wrangler
  • SubModel: YJ
  • Type: Convertible
  • Year: 1987
  • Mileage: 9,500
  • VIN: 2BCCZ8110HB522017
  • Color: Black
  • Engine size: Ford 2.3L Turbo
  • Number of cylinders: 4
  • Transmission: Automatic
  • Drive type: 4WD
  • Interior color: Black
  • Vehicle Title: Clear
  • Want to buy? Contact seller!

1987 Jeep Wrangler YJ

A lot of time, money, and planning went into this Jeep. It started as a 1987 Jeep YJ / Wrangler, and was designed to be the perfect balance between a nice daily-driver, and a very capable off-road crawler. The goal was to build something I could comfortably drive to work every day, and still conquer some nasty trails.
All of this work has been done in the past year:
Drive Train:- Turbo-charged, Fuel-Injected 2.3L motor out of a Ford SVO Mustang, built by Geddes Racing Engines- Ford C4 automatic transmission, built to same specs as the 800hp Mustang that does Pikes Peak Hill Climb.- Wideband O2 system- Mustang 5.0 Throttle Body- Atlas 4-speed transfer case (1:1 / 2.7:1 / 3.8:1 / 10.3:1 crawl ratios)- Garrett GT28RS Ball bearing Turbo (The "Disco Potato")- Stinger Performance long-tube stainless steel header- Adjustable Fuel Pressure Regulator- Front-mount Turbo intercooler and Transmission Oil cooler- Stinger Performance PiMP ECU, completely tune-able by laptop- Hydroboost Brake conversion- Ford 8.8 31-spline Rear End with disk brakes- 4.56 Gears- Ox Locker in front- Aussie Locker rear- 4x New Goodyear Duratrac 33x10.50x15 tires (have a 5th matching rim, but no spare tire)- 4.5" Lift (3.5" RE lift springs, plus 1" lift shackles)- 2" DOM tube front driveshaft- Double-Cardan (CV) rear driveshaft- 2.5" Borla Exhaust
Interior:- Interior was gutted and Rhino-Lined- New Front and Rear Seats, New carpet, floor mats- Kenwood Stereo with CD, Bluetooth, and XM Radio. Alpine amp driving Polk Momo speakers- Infinity Subwoofer with 500watt Kicker amp, hidden in the center console- LED Dash Lights- Wideband AFR and Boost Gauges- Bluetooth module for ECU, can tune it from a laptop or Android wirelessly- Later "Family Style" roll bar in the back with 3-point shoulder seat belts
- Frameless Soft Top - Converts to Safari Top, windows store in a hidden pocket on top- Half doors with Soft uppers- LED Tail Lights- Body Armor on the rear corners- Aftermarket Front/Rear bumper with tow hitch
Yes, I have reciepts and installation/instruction manuals for everything.
Engine, transmission, and transfer case all have less than 10,000 miles on them. Everything was new/rebuilt this past year.
The Atlas 4 transfer case is just nuts. It has a 3-lever cable shifter, so you can engage Hi/Lo on the front and rear axles independently, and the 3rd lever is for ultra-low. With a wide range of crawl ratios on the t-case, and an automatic transmission, you're always in a good gear to climb. You don't loose any momentum from shifting. Just point the Jeep where you want it to go, and it gets there without even having to work the gas pedal. Here's a quick video of the first test run: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1HtXF6XcrCFZYFDzgbOU7rv_XxHhrVOZWjg/view
Ignore the loud diesel truck in the background on that video. The Jeep is actually very quiet. There is a soft, low note from the Borla exhaust, but otherwise the main noises it makes are from the turbo. It sounds like a freakin' space ship, it makes me giggle inside every time I get on it. Any gearhead you pass just stares at you with total confusion when they hear the turbo spool up, or when the blow-off valve releases.
The PiMP ECU lets you adjust Air/Fuel mixture maps, timing maps, and even control the boost levels or Nitrous, all from a laptop.
It will also let you run E85 gas, all you need is a flex-fuel sensor and bigger injectors ($200 total). E85 is around 110 octane, so you should be able to dial up boost and timing to hit around 400+ horsepower with a good tune.
And E85 costs about $1.70 per gallon. Your mileage will drop by about 30%, but it still ends up costing less.
Right now the motor is tuned conservatively at around 250hp at 12psi of boost, which is still very quick for a Jeep. The GT28RS turbo is good for around 20psi on this motor. I could dial up the boost and get to 300+ easily, but it's hard to find anything higher than 91 octance gas in Colorado. As it runs now, it will still chirp the 33s going into 2nd gear when you hammer it, and it's already a little bit scary to drive when you hit boost.
The turbo is a great fit. The power is smooth and controllable, not like a v8 conversion that everyone else does. I actually had a hot-rod CJ5 with a small-block Chevy before this, and I didn't really like to drive it. The power was either full on, or nothing. Hard to just drive it normally.
With the turbo, it only feels like a hot-rod when you mash the pedal. If you're cruising around town and light on the gas, it feels like a stock jeep. Enough power to do what you want, but tame and easy to drive. But drop the hammer, and the turbo kicks you in the pants at about 2500 RPM. Getting up to highway-speeds by the end of the on-ramp is not even close to being an issue. Plus, if you keep it around 55-60mph on the highway, you'll get about 18mpg. You'll never see that with a v8 conversion.
The hydro-boost brakes are very strong, but not over-sensitive like some cars. If you stomp on the pedal it will lock up the 33's, but stops smoothly with lighter pressure.
The interior is super clean, it handles well on the road, and the stereo sounds great. This is an amazing off-road Jeep, but still looks and rides nice enough to take your wife/girlfriend out on a date without being embarrassed.
I've got about $20k into this Jeep, not counting a year of my life to build it.
There are a few things it could still use. Not critical, but worth mentioning are:
Bigger radiator - The engine puts out a LOT of heat under boost. Around town it's fine. If it's 95 degrees out and you're trucking down the interstate at 70mph, the coolant temp will start to climb. Ususally if you slow down everything drops down to normal, but if you're planning to turn up the boost or go E85, you'll definitely need a bigger radiator. Even just putting exhast wrap on the header and down-pipe would probably help a lot, too.
Fine-tuning for cold weather startups - The weather just hasn't gotten bitter-cold here yet, so I haven't been able to set the cold startup fuel below 40 degrees F yet. There is an engine block heater installed, so if you don't want to mess with it you can just plug it in during the winter to keep it warm.
Transfer Case Shifters - Need to be mounted. Right now they are not bolted to the floor. Since they're cable shifters they still work fine. You just get some heat from the engine bay that comes up through the gap in the floor. I haven't gotten around to it yet, but it's pretty minor.
There's a lot of stuff I've done to it that I'm probably forgetting. If you have any questions at all, please feel free to call or text anytime.
Thanks.-Timcell: 719-357-7045