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A 5M-GE freshly rebuilt will be just that, a zero time motor. A used 3RZ-FE with any miles on it is not as good a deal for the same price. Much more difficilt to swap. Remember the 5M-GE is a bolt in swap. Trade off is a tight engine bay and figure out what to do about the radiator versus fabbing engine mounts. The 5M-GE will pose less demanding smog issues, if the locals accept an engine never installed by Toyota in your trucks.The 5M-GE will run smoother and last longer than any inline four cylinder engine. You'll know exactly what's in the engine rebuilding it yourself. Installing any used junkyard engine is a crap shoot. Most 3RZ's won't give you problems simply because they're not as old, or used as long. Just ensure you use the correct head gasket and torque specs. I believe the 5M-GE is less notorious for blowing a head gasket than the 7M-GE.Don't worry too much about horsepower. Look at the torque of the two engines. More specifically the torque curve. Go for the engine that produces a decent, flat, torque curve over a broad range of rpm. Torque is what moves the vehicle from point A to B in a given amout of time. Ever wonder why a 5.9 liter Cummins turbo-diesel gets off the line faster than a 7.3 liter Power-Stroke when both trucks have the same gear ratios, and weight? Look at the torque specs.... Now if you want to turbo the engine, go with the lower compression version 8.8:1 (or less) versus the 9.2:1. Keep the boost reasonable.
The taco motor is a waste of your time and I woulda never considered it
I know you've already decided what to do, but I just wanted to defend the "taco motor"If you are boosting an engine, then I agree that you can get more reliable power from more cylinders. But the Tacoma engine is one hell of a great engine. It is dang near impossible to stall out (perfect for wheeling) and still puts out a good 160 Hp / 185 Tq with simple bolt-ons. Give it just a little bit of boost, 6 psi or so, and it'll dish out 212 Hp / 252 Tq according to TRD (Smog Legal). That is 63 Tq per cylinder.If those 6 cylinder M-engines were as efficient as the 3RZ then you'll be up to 378 Tq!!!!! (63 x 6cyl)Now if you can make 378 Tq from just 6 psi of boost from the 5M/6M/7M/3VZ/5VZ, then DO IT!! But I know its not possible The 3RZ is one hell of an Engine. Period.
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