The Commanche Project/240 Diesel

OK, so about two years ago I was given a nice Jeep Commanche pickup truck with no engine.  At the time I was driving a 82 Mercedes 240 D and liked the mileage of the diesel engine but not  the lack of carrying ability for junkyard runs or hardware store expeditions . Some tape measure sleuthing on the Mercedes engine and the Jeep engine bay revealed the near impossibility of such a interesting swap so I proceeded anyway. Mercedes engines use a front sump oil pan that goes right where the Jeep steering parts need to be. No problem right? Well there were some “details” to work out but the steering works fine now even if I did have to install a different front axle and a 4 inch lift. Now it has a Wagoneer Dana 44 front axle with unlocking hubs ( something the MJ XJ TJ ZJ Jeeps never came with)  and 4 inch CJ7 rear springs ….yeah in the front… I adapted a S10 T5 five speed and 207 transfercase to the engine -a truly wonderful combination of parts. Mercedes never blessed the USA with 240D or 300D Five speed manual transmissions the europeans got them (and 4 speeds too) most american Mercedes were automatics.  Just because they never built something does’nt mean that I cant have one, I just have to build it myself.  Next on the list of stuff is the rear axle. The lowly dana 35( though perfectly adequate for the 67 horsepower OM 616 diesel engine) will be swapped out for a Dana 44 sprung over matching the front and they will be geared at 5.38 . Tires are a set of BFG mud terrain tires in the 33×9.50x 15 size. Well, I will give an update when it is up and driving around hopefully soon.


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