Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

For everything related to converting and up keeping diesel engines in an FSJ
Zorm
Posts: 223
Joined: Thu Mar 28, 2013 8:48 am
Location: Pensacola, Fl.

Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby Zorm » Fri Feb 17, 2017 8:26 am

Still fighting with wiring up my 4.7 stroker or go 351w or now a merc diesel? I found a OM617 in a yard and was looking at just pulling off the turbo for my stroker then thought, why not just get the engine and rebuild it. Found a place that makes the adapter to go from it to my NV3550. on top of that, found a good running merc 603 complete, harness and everything.

soo... thoughts?
83 Cherokee 4dr WT(axles)
4" Rusty's lift, 32x11.50s,
351w in the works

hunting a Triumph TR6
2007 SeaRay 205
71 F-250 Camper Special

HE guides my path, forgives me when I stray and lights my life.

User avatar
Pablo
Posts: 98
Joined: Sun Dec 15, 2013 6:58 pm
Location: Arizona

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby Pablo » Fri Feb 17, 2017 1:43 pm

I have driven an OM617. Good engine if you respect it. Might be easier to swap than the newer 603. Modern MB is computerized and full of wiring. Parts can be expensive last I checked. Tear down and inspect before installing. Acceleration is bad with the stock turbo as it spools ridiculously slow. Replace it with a modern design, but DO NOT exceed the boost specifications for this motor. It is indirect injection and if you boost it above its limited PSI, you will be picking up the pieces. Ditch the restrictive s bends in the stock intake.

I think a stroked 4.0 would work good as well. Lots of room for cooling it in the FSJ that I dont have in my XJ. More HP than the diesel, but much less fuel mileage. If you want both, then there is the popular Chevy Vortec.

If I were going Ford, I would do an inline six or go big and put a 460. I don't like the idea of the Ford baby V8's in truck applications. Too many F150 owners not satisfied by their longevity. You could go crazy and run the ford inline on propane and wood gas. I am thinking about doing this one day with an F150 for a ranch truck. The engine would last forever on the 'pane.

Which brings us to, what are your goals for thing?

rocklaurence
Vendor
Posts: 1339
Joined: Sat Mar 30, 2013 6:53 am

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby rocklaurence » Sat Feb 18, 2017 8:48 am

I sell a lot of the OM617s and I now have an OM603. The Merc603, is that a bout motor. Whats you options to intergrate a Merc to a transmission?
OH, Im the only one that didn;t understand Mercededs 603. My understanding is the 87-88 had the head issues. After that it was corrected
Last edited by rocklaurence on Tue Feb 21, 2017 7:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

SYRacing
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2017 11:20 am

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby SYRacing » Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:30 am

I was big into this years ago. I had an 83 300D with the 617. Not a big powerhouse but reliable. Not lots of mods available unless you spend the big money on the Myna diesel pump with the bigger elements.

I think the OM603 is a much better option. Much more power right from the factory and does respond well to minor fueling mods (it will roll coal) they are common to have cylinder head failure.

OM603 and 617 have similar wiring, really just a single 12V source to the fuel shutoff solenoid and glow plug controls. These are both mechanical injection pumps so not much science in getting one up and running.

There was a company selling adapters called 4x4labs back in the day selling adapter plate to chevy bellhousing. My plan was to use SM420/465 trans.

http://www.mercedesdiesel4x4.com/category_s/1833.htm

With all of that said, I would probably seek out a 4BT cummins, with the P7100 pump. The TH400 adapter is super common as is the manual trans adapter for the NV4500. It shares bells with the 6BT from 1st and 2nd gen dodge trucks. If you already have a 3550, it might be worth some research to see if you can use factory parts to make this work instead of custom ones.

User avatar
Pablo
Posts: 98
Joined: Sun Dec 15, 2013 6:58 pm
Location: Arizona

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby Pablo » Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:07 pm

I went the 4bt route, but I would not put a built 4bt behind a TH400/475. They can't hold a stock one hardly. I would go with an auto from a Dodge, if I wanted an auto.

Note the 4bt is 850 pounds dressed, versus the OM's at a tad less than 600. The 4bt is probably going to cost a bit more to purchase too.

Adventure_Wagon88
Posts: 441
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2016 2:00 pm
Location: Leesport, PA
Contact:

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby Adventure_Wagon88 » Wed Feb 22, 2017 7:03 am

I looked into doing an om617 swap. There's an active build on here with a 617 going into a 1964. The 617 is an indirect injection engine, and as such boost is limited. You can have the injection pump rebuilt for considerably more HP but its pricey. So pricey that even if you got the engine for free it starts to get into basic 4BT swap territory. I'm sure the 3550 would hold up well behind the 617 and Mercedes Diesel 4x4 makes the best adapters. That said, I can't imagine it being a joy to drive a 4500lb vehicle with a 617. The Mercedes that came with them were a shade under 4k lbs. I owned an 83 Mercedes 300D and while I did not modify it in any way, it was a sluggish boat of a car. Yes, it got 25+ MPG, and pickup at freeway speeds was pretty good, but as an example of the acceleration (ahem..lack of acceleration) when I was in a hurry I would often step on the throttle when the light for cross traffic turned yellow, which would start the turbo spooling and launch me right as the light turned green. Worked every time. They're still torquey engines and no doubt a mildly modded one behind a properly ratio'd manual gear box would be a bit of a different experience. I'd be curious to try it some time, but honestly I'd much rather build one into a lighter vehicle. I haven't 100% decided on which one yet, but I've narrowed it down to one of the 3.9's for my own Wagoneer build (in order of my current preference) - Cummins ISB 170, Isuzu 4BD1T, or Cummins 4BT.

Zorm
Posts: 223
Joined: Thu Mar 28, 2013 8:48 am
Location: Pensacola, Fl.

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby Zorm » Wed Feb 22, 2017 8:31 am

Ok, thanks guys, just more ammo and fire under my butt to get my Cherokee back on the road with what she has as a heart. Now watching is a good not overly pricy locker for the rear, an AMC 20.
83 Cherokee 4dr WT(axles)
4" Rusty's lift, 32x11.50s,
351w in the works

hunting a Triumph TR6
2007 SeaRay 205
71 F-250 Camper Special

HE guides my path, forgives me when I stray and lights my life.

User avatar
Pablo
Posts: 98
Joined: Sun Dec 15, 2013 6:58 pm
Location: Arizona

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby Pablo » Thu Feb 23, 2017 12:57 pm

The 300 D was slow, a bus would beat you across the street. It was the ancient turbo holding it back. Replacing it with a modern one wakes it up. No need to tune the pump or boost more than stock psi for most. Just a modern turbo is a night and day difference in response.

230ohc
Posts: 275
Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2016 2:27 am
Location: Northern California

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby 230ohc » Mon Mar 20, 2017 12:14 pm

I'm using the 617 out of a 300sd in my wagoneer.
The mercedes is heavier than my 64.
Other than steering changes I'm currently undertaking it was a simple swap with the
Mercedesdiesel4x4 adapter and mounts.
1964 willys wagoneer
Om617 turbo diesel
T18 granny
Dana 20
3.73 dana 27 front
3.73 dana 44 rear

Karl Streich
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2017 3:42 pm

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby Karl Streich » Wed Jun 14, 2017 4:02 pm

Head over to superturbodiesel to get more information, they are just mbz diesel and have plenty of information, I think a new IP is in the range of $1000-1500 I'd like to find a 4bt for that

rocklaurence
Vendor
Posts: 1339
Joined: Sat Mar 30, 2013 6:53 am

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby rocklaurence » Thu Jun 15, 2017 7:14 am

Karl Streich wrote:Head over to superturbodiesel to get more information, they are just mbz diesel and have plenty of information, I think a new IP is in the range of $1000-1500 I'd like to find a 4bt for that

However, a 4BT is close to 1000lbs [900+]....Definately more Bang for the Buck!!

Billybob535
Posts: 24
Joined: Mon Dec 25, 2017 5:44 am

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby Billybob535 » Wed Feb 21, 2018 5:11 am

I am looking to do a mercedes diesel swap into an 80-83 waggy or cherokee so I have done a whole bunch of research on this. I got to experience someone's YJ wrangler with an OM617 and it was barely enough power to get along. It has deep gears (5.xx) and 33s and it felt like it was constantly struggling to move. After that I decided to look for something other than the OM617. I found that the OM606 can have a mechanical pump from an OM603 swapped on and just recently mercedes4x4 released adapters for the 606 to AX-15. I amg oing to go that direction as a turbo 606 is going to have a lot easier time moving a FSJ. Just something else to think of. Good luck.

Lokciam
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2018 4:16 am

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby Lokciam » Tue Jul 10, 2018 4:31 am

Hello there :-bd Just bought me a Mercedes Benz 300sdl 87 with OM603 :idea: I’m going to put it on my Jeep Grand Cherokee ZJ 1997 with AX15, I’ll try my best to post everything I did :fsj: :evil:

Billybob535
Posts: 24
Joined: Mon Dec 25, 2017 5:44 am

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby Billybob535 » Wed Jul 11, 2018 1:20 pm

Lokciam wrote:Hello there :-bd Just bought me a Mercedes Benz 300sdl 87 with OM603 :idea: I’m going to put it on my Jeep Grand Cherokee ZJ 1997 with AX15, I’ll try my best to post everything I did :fsj: :evil:


Are you going to use the mercedesdiesel4x4 OM60x to AX-15 adapter?

Lokciam
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2018 4:16 am

Re: Mercedes diesel 603 engine or OM617

Postby Lokciam » Thu Jul 12, 2018 2:51 pm

Billybob535 wrote:
Lokciam wrote:Hello there :-bd Just bought me a Mercedes Benz 300sdl 87 with OM603 :idea: I’m going to put it on my Jeep Grand Cherokee ZJ 1997 with AX15, I’ll try my best to post everything I did :fsj: :evil:


Are you going to use the mercedesdiesel4x4 OM60x to AX-15 adapter?


Yes , but first I’m trying to find the adapter in another country , if I can’t find it I’ll go with MercedesDiesel4x4 for sure (most likely is a yes lol) and motor mounts I have to check with them or I’ll just build my own , I am also trying to figure this blue smoke when I soon start the car it last for 7 to 10 mins and then is gone , I notice a bad injector too so little by little here I go and sorry for the bad spelling :mrgreen: if anybody got any advices they’re welcome :!: :P


Return to “FSJ Diesel Conversions”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests