2ZZ Powaaaaa: 2001 Toyota MR2

This final swapped car completes today’s triumvirate of swapped rides, but this one is, surprisingly, an upgrade.  The 3rd generation (W30) Toyota MR2 Spyder was the last version of
Toyota’s tossable mid engine runabout to be sold around the world, but for some reason it was saddled with a dog for an engine, even though Toyota had a fantastic engine that just bolts right in.  Find this 2001 Toyota MR2 with Toyota 2ZZ swap bidding here on eBay for $6,000 located in Nashville, TN.

Why was the final MR2 stuck with a basic 138 horsepower inline-4 even when the Celica
had a 190 horsepower 2ZZ engine in the GT-S model?  My own personal conspiracy theory revolves around the deal Toyota had selling 2ZZ engines to Lotus for their $50k Elise sportscar.  A factory MR2 with the 2ZZ power would have offered Elise performance for a fraction of the Lotus cost, but I can’t imagine the sales of a few engines to Lotus would have stopped Toyota from offering that engine combo when they put the 2ZZ in the Matrix/Vibe a few years later.  I will just wave my hands in the air and scream CONSPIRACY!!!

The engine (that isn’t pictured anywhere in this advertisement) in place of the original 1.8 liter 1ZZ-FED (rated at
138 horsepower) is the 2ZZ-GE from a Celica GTS rated at 180 horsepower. 
Both engines are dual overhead cam 16-valve engines with variable valve
timing, but the 2ZZ has a secondary higher lift cam profile that opens up the breathing at high RPM and completely changes the driving experience from Toyotazzzzz to Toyotaaaaaeeeeee!

See a better sleeper for cheap? tips@dailyturismo.com