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Engine Swap?

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Hi, new member, but I have been lurking and finding much useful info since I bought my 2007 XT about 3 years ago. Thanks to all for the informative forum!

I had a bit of bad luck a few weeks ago and ditched the Forester on an icy corner. The insurance just called to say they have written it off, but I can buy the salvage. I just spent a lot of money having the cylinder heads overhauled, so I don't want to let it go lightly!

One possibility would be to repair with second-hand parts, which I will be looking into. However, another possibility has presented itself. I can buy a 2008 Legacy diesel for £800, which needs an engine, but otherwise looks OK. My local specialist (John Pye in Bishop Auckland) is wary of this, thinking that mating the canbus Legacy with the 'conventional' 2.5XT engine would be a problem.

Does anyone know if this could work and what would be required?



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I would buy the fozzy back and get it back on the road if the damage isn't too bad, going down the leggy route may work but one of the biggest problems is converting it from diesel to petrol, then wiring looms/ecu's and i'm not sure because i've never worked on either of those cars but will the engine mounts etc be the same? 😉

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don't think I would contemplate a 2008 legacy conversion unless personal project as simply be silly man hours sort out all the problems of that swap.

repair of forester probably wiser and used parts if mainly bolt on parts makes some of these right-offs fixed for couple hundred quid.

we picked up a SF forester that super tidy besides clipped hedge driver side and all needed was a wing lights and bumper plus driver mirror, was pretty easy get panels right colour too and no painting makes it easy and cheap plus factory quality end result . 

XT foresters are pretty cheap and not hard find decent, early legacy diesels cheap too as no one wants risk the early ee20 hassles .

2.5 and 3.0 Lecacy/outbacks super cheap too even for super nice examples so can't see it being cost effective concept .

review your forester and see if potential easy repair and overall worth the effort . If not look at simpler ways use it or it's parts either from selling or better matched grafting .


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Strut hub and lower arms cheap enough and easier source than bodywork so as long no chassis damage and mount points straight it be pretty easy sort with bit of luck and patience sort right parts at right prices .

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