Looking to do a Subaru conversion in Perth

Hi everyone,

I am wanting to do a Subaru conversion for my Syncro, so am looking for recommendations on who can do one in the Perth WA area.

Anyone here has used someone locally they would recommend?

Thanks in advance,

Hi Gaetan,

It isn’t that hard to do it yourself.

You can buy conversion kits from various places.

If you feel like travel to Covid infested Victoria you can get Luke from Bayside VW to do one for you for about $6k.

Might have to quarantine in your van for a couple of weeks on the way home which could be fun in a syncro camper in South Oz or WA.



Thanks Scott. Having researched it a bit I think it’s a little harder than I have time for! I’m actually leaning towards Bayside, going to talk to Luke tomorrow. I like the idea of the one-stop shop, and to have someone who specialises and really knows what they’re doing.

Thinking I might just put the van on a freighter, then drive it back when it’s done. Sounds like a great road trip, and yea 2-weeks campisolating doesn’t sound too bad!

Gaetan :slight_smile:

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Well I’ve taken the plunge. Van is booked to get shipped to Luke mid August. Going to the dark side, EJ25 with the Rjes bellhousing. Can’t wait to get it in September, really looking forward to be able to cruise at 110 with no reliability worries!

You wont regret it but make sure you have the head gaskets done/ water and oil pumps replaced before it goes in. Saves the worry for years.

They are a lovely motor and have awesome clearance with the Smallcar mount and short sump and all the vitals are well protected by the syncro skid frame. All except the hose from the thermostat up to the main coolant hose - that thing is still a bit exposed even though it is up high.

This photo is not from my van but it is basically the same issue.

By the way that is not a Smallcar sump - it is shortened but no where near the quality of the Smallcar sump.

Well my van now has an EJ25 courtesy of Luke at Bayside, was picked up this morning and should be on a ship home in a few days.
Must say I can’t wait!

Also I’ll have a complete waterbox motor for sale, in great condition other than a crack in the left hand case.
Planning on parting it out so hit me up if you’re looking for anything specific.
Has brand new heads, and checked and rebuilt last year.

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You will love the scooby. Luke tends to just use a stock sump and his own support cradle so the syncro skid plate doesn’t work and the sump clearance is poor.

You may need to invest in a shortened sump when you can.

Enjoy the fun ride when you get the syncro back. If not for the Covid 19 it would have been a fun drive home…

Welcome to the EJ25 club, they are a perfect fit and purrr along nicely including up hills.

Mine is also running dual fuel making it economical to run on LPG but also giving double the range.

Sounds like going by ship is faster than by train ?

All good Scott, I went for the Smallcar sump and engine mount, and the RJES bellhousing :slight_smile:
I hear ya about the drive, I was so looking forward to fly over and drive it back…

Hey Uwe,

ship and truck seemed similar in time, but the ship ended up being the best deal. Also they didn’t have any restriction about having the old motor inside.

Weird Prixcar shipped it Perth-Melbourne (door to door) for $828, but then quoted over $1,500 to do the exact same journey the other way!!

Good move with the smallcar and RJES bits - expensive but worth it.

The cost of transport is climbing in general I think.

The closed borders are making it very difficult for the truckies too.

Hi Gaetan,
How is your new Subaru motor going?..Pros and cons?..Just noticed a weeping head seal on my 2.1 motor, I have the receipt’s from the rebuild before i brought it not long ago but who knows what monkey did it. What did luke charge you?. Did you need to supply anything?.

Hi Joe,
loving the Subi motor so far.
Pros: runs like a dream, much better drivability, better mpg, looks like it’s built to last
Cons: none that I can see so far!
I paid Luke just over 6k, that included the motor and the install.
Here’s what I had to supply:

  • RJES bell housing from the UK
  • shallow sump, exhaust header, skid plates, exhaust brackets & clamps, engine mount - all from Smallcar USA

I guess with all these parts the total was just about 10k. Worth every penny IMHO!


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Seems like a good price to pay, What starter motor are you running?..

Honestly I’m not looking back. All ancillaries - starter, AC, alternator, power steering come with the EJ25.
It’s really nice and neat, and there’s so much more room to work around the motor!

Sure looks good, What did they do with the fuel pump?.

I’m actually not sure? Might need to ask Luke, I think that may still be the original - I can’t remember seeing in in my spare parts but I could be wrong.

Fuel pump is original VW :slight_smile:

Ok thank you for sharing the info.

Looks awesome but get rid of that pod filter - it will clog up on your first dirt road.

I had one like that when my syncro had its 6cyl. Clogged up so easy.