Investigating the Turbo Taxi’s busted Barra – Carnage Plus episode 26

While the Turbo Taxi awaits a new gearbox, Scotty checks out what went wrong with the old Barra motor

carnage turbo taxi bent rod piston

EVER since it unceremoniously grenaded at Calder Park last year, the Turbo Taxi’s original LPG donk has sat alone in the corner of the Carnage garage awaiting a proper inspection. After proudly serving for 370,000km and some low 11-second passes, things had proved too much for the old girl on its last outing and a rod went AWOL. 

Carnage Turbo TaxiFor those who’ve just tuned in, this barbecue-gas Barra had a dead-stock bottom end, native to the poverty-pack Mk1 FG Falcon. Back at the beginning of Carnage and the Turbo Taxi build, Scotty and the crew bolted up a Garrett turbo and sent it down the strip.

Carnage Turbo TaxiBut despite their famed hardiness in high-kilometre applications, these motors do have their limits – especially once boost is added to a slightly unhealthy powerplant. Carnage episode 22 saw the Taxi fitted with a fresh LPG motor, this time with an external wastegate and more head work.

Carnage Turbo TaxiIn between hammering away at the $2K Challenge and waiting for the Taxi to get a new gearbox, Scotty found some time to give the old gas unit the autopsy it deserved.

Wearing a couple of big holes in the block, it was evident that things were badly amiss. Most significantly, rod number four had tried its best to make an exit, ending up in the sump. Scotty attributes this to a dead injector, with the piston showing detonation, heavy wear and melting.

Carnage Turbo TaxiPlenty more damage appeared as Scotty not-so-delicately pulled the block down, including a bent rod in cylinder five and a chewed piston to match.

Never fear, Turbo Taxi will bounce back and return to Carnage soon, aiming for 10-second passes.


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Jack Houlihan

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