Nica Swap

12:16:00 PM


I have been working with an NGO in Nicaragua for over 15 years, on many of my trips to Central America I have seen vehicles with interesting drivetrain swaps, such as this 1996 Mystic Painted Ford Windstar LX. I have seen some wild conversions, but many times people think I am exaggerating about how creative the Nicaraguan people can get with their vehicles. So when I came across this one being driven by a local pastor I had to take some pictures.

I never knew that you could order a Ford Windstar Minivan in the same color shifting paint as the limited edition Cobra, while the paint was faded it was definitely the green to purple color shifting hue that was offered in 1996 on the Cobra.


The  front wheel drive 3.0 liter Ford Vulcan V6 has been removed. In it's place is a Mitsubishi 4D55 Turbo Diesel and 5 speed manual transmission likely from an old pickup truck or commercial vehicle. The van retains the stock front suspension and brakes, but a new shifter location had to be made.


Just add a hole to the floor and you are good to go, note the new ignition key location next to the radio where the cigarette lighter used to be.


The rear swingarms, coil springs, and shocks are all gone... shackle points were welded in place and leaf springs and what is assumed to be the Mitsubishi rear end were added to drive the rear wheels.


Overall the Windstar has been converted into a interesting turbocharged rear wheel drive hauling machine... look for more from my trip to Nicaragua in upcoming stories.

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