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The Series I Land Rover 2 litre Engine ("spread-bore")

The bored-out Land Rover 1.6litre engine [known as the 2 litre "siamese-bore"], with no water cooling passages between cylinders, fitted to Series 1 Land Rovers from 1952 to 1954 did not present serious overheating problems. However, Rover decided to change the design of the block and introduce water cooling between all cylinders.

This new design became known as the Land Rover 2 litre "spread-bore" and had the same power and torque specifications as its previous "siamese-bore" counterpart.

The "spread-bore" was fitted to Series I Land Rovers from late 1954. The 2 litre "spread-bore" engine was fitted to the 86in and 107in Series I's and also to the 88in and 109in Series I's when they were introduced in 1956. Infact the engine was even fitted to the first 88in Series II Land Rovers produced in 1958.

The Rover 60 car had had some overheating problems when fitted with the 2 litre "siamese-bore" engine (perhaps due to the higher weight of the car and the sustained high speed motoring it encountered) so the "spread-bore" version was fitted to the Rover 60 one year earlier than to the Series I Land Rovers. A main difference between the Rover 60 and the Series I Land Rover engine was that the car version had an alloy cylinder head instead of cast iron.

Some distinguishing features of the Series I "spread-bore" compared to the "siamese-bore":

  • wider spaced pipes on the exhaust manifold
  • noticeable step in the rear of the engine sump
  • cooling fan riveted instead of welded
  • disposable-element oil filter on the right hand side of the block

Engine specs:
swept engine volume: 1997 cc
cylinder bore: 77.8mm
piston stroke: 105mm
compression ratio: 6.8:1
carburettor: Solex 32 PBI-2
power: 52 bhp at 4000 rpm
torque: 101 ft lb at 1500rpm

Land Rover Series I chassis numbering sequences for Land Rovers originally fitted with the 2 litre "spread-bore" engine:
UK RHD 1706-0000; Export RHD 1766-00001; CKD RHD 177600001; Export LHD 1736-00001; CKD LHD 1746-00001
UK RHD 1116-0000; Export RHD 1126-00001; CKD RHD 113600001; Export LHD 1146-00001; CKD LHD 1156-00001
UK RHD 1117-0000; Export RHD 1127-00001; CKD RHD 113700001; Export LHD 1147-00001; CKD LHD 1157-00001
UK RHD 1118-0000; Export RHD 1128-00001; CKD RHD 113800001; Export LHD 1148-00001; CKD LHD 1158-00001
Series II 88in 1418-00001(the first few hundred only fitted)


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