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  1. #1


    Ok Im sure this has been talked about a million times before but as newbie I just plain old dont know.

    So how is it possible that you all seem to be getting away with passing smog. Its my understanding that you cant just go grab a Chevy 350 small block with a Pantera gear box, shove it in a Fiero and expect to pass smog. As nice as that sounds (well its my dream anyway) I further understand that any car previous to a '72 is exempt from having to be smogged, therefore eliminating the 84-88 Fiero. My biggest question is primarily for the guys that are using the Pontiac 3800. Are you bringing all of the smog control units over in the swap as well?? Are you smogging it as a (whatever year the engine came from) do you know the cat daddy doin the smog and sliding him a few green backs??

    I live in California so anyone that lives here can surely relate to what Im saying, I dont know what the governing bodies are in other states but here it can be a pain in the butt.


  2. #2
    Senior Member Randolph's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002


    I haven't been through it personally but here are some of the major guidelines:

    1) You can only swap in engines from California cars (don't order a crate motor from somewhere else outside California)
    2) Engine must be same year or newer than the donor car
    3) Engines that didn't have a manual transmission as an option can not be used with manual transmissions. For example, the 3800 supercharged and the cadilac 4.9, and Northstar engines came in cars where automatic was the only option. It is mechanically possible to do those swaps but the smog refs won't pass it. LT1's and LS1's on the other hand came in cars that had manual and automatics so you can use these engines with a manual transmission.
    4) When smogging the car you can follow the guidelines of either the new engine or the donor car.
    5) Swap must be certified be offical California Air Resource Board before you can have regular smog checks.

  3. #3


    Thanks that helps me alot, I was in the process of buying my buddies small block chevy and purchasing a fuel injection system for the darn thing... you saved me about 2 grand there.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Los Angeles


    Check out pennock's fiero forum. A CA guy just got his car titled with a Northstar - he scanned the owner's card that showed the car as fiero and engine as Northstar (or maybe it was 4.9). Interesting write-up too. Also be aware that places like LA have stricter standards than other places in the State. B4 I ever did a V-8 swap, I'd spend some time personally talking to someone at the DMV, then get their name and number and refuse to deal with anyone but them until the car cleared.

    Also I've heard of some guys titling V-8 cars in other states - don't know if you could maintain an address at the Phoneix MailBoxRUs and have your car registered with AZ plates ?

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