How to Install an AMC 360 in a Willys Pickup

Rugged and steeped in history, the Willys Jeep was first produced in 1940, with the Willys pickup introduced seven years later. Factory equipped with four- and six-cylinder engines, the Willys’ Jeep vehicles were underpowered by modern standards. Designed for 1972 American Motors Corporation CJ-series Jeep vehicles, the AMC 360 V8 engine is a viable option for anyone wanting to upgrade a Willys pickup engine.

Things You'll Need

  • Wheel blocks
  • Wax pencil
  • Wrenches
  • Oil drain pan
  • Bucket
  • Pliers
  • Flat-head screwdrivers
  • Jack
  • Chain
  • 3-inch bolts
  • Engine hoist
  • 4 motor-mount adapter brackets
  • CJ-series 360 engine
  • 360 exhaust manifold gasket
  • 360 exhaust pipe
  • New transmission mounting bracket
  • CJ-series-360-compatible transmission
  • Engine wiring adapter
  • New engine hoses
  • New hose clamps
  • Engine coolant
  • New oil filter
  • Motor oil


  1. Engine Removal

    • 1

      Park the truck on a level spot, block the front and back of the rear wheels, and shift the transmission into neutral.

    • 2

      Trace and outline around both hinges on the hood with a wax pencil and remove the hood with a wrench.

    • 3

      Remove the engine oil pan plug with a wrench and drain the oil into an oil pan.

    • 4

      Set a bucket under the radiator, loosen the drain petcock on the bottom of the radiator with a pair of pliers, and drain all coolant from the engine. Disconnect all engine hose clamps with a flat-head screwdriver and pull the hoses from the engine, with your hands.

    • 5

      Remove the battery cables and grounding wires from the starter and engine block with a wrench. Disconnect the engine wiring harness plug with your hand.

    • 6

      Remove the mounting bolts from the fan shroud, fan, radiator and water pump with the appropriate wrenches.

    • 7

      Remove the first section of the exhaust pipe from the engine exhaust manifold and the tailpipe, using a wrench.

    • 8

      Disconnect the bolts from the engine flywheel and the bolts connecting the engine block to the transmission with a wrench. Disconnect the driveshaft from the rear of the transmission, using a wrench. Support the transmission with a jack, remove the bolts from the transmission mount with a wrench, and lower the transmission to the ground with the jack.

    • 9

      Bolt a length of chain to two open holes on opposite sides of the engine block with a wrench, and attach the chain to an engine hoist. Remove the motor mount bolts with a wrench and remove the engine from the truck using the hoist.

    Engine Installation

    • 10

      Bolt a motor mount adapter bracket to each motor mount on the truck, using a wrench. Attach the 360 engine to the hoist; lower the engine into the Willys pickup engine bay, and bolt the motor mount adapters to the engine block with a wrench.

    • 11

      Install a new manifold exhaust gasket and exhaust pipe section, matching the 360 exhaust manifold to the 360 engine, using a wrench.

    • 12

      Install a transmission mounting bracket, matching a new transmission compatible with the 360 engine, to the transmission mounting brace on the truck, using a wrench. Lift the new transmission in place with the jack and bolt the transmission in place with the wrench. Bolt the driveshaft to the transmission.

    • 13

      Reinstall the radiator, the fan and the fan shroud, and attach the engine grounding cables and battery cables with a wrench.

    • 14

      Attach an engine wiring adapter to the engine wiring plug and insert the plug into the truck wiring harness.

    • 15

      Install new engine hoses, compatible with the 360 engine, with new hose clamps and a flat-head screwdriver. Fill the radiator and engine with new coolant.

    • 16

      Align the wax pencil markings drawn on the inside of the hood up with hinges and bolt the hood to the hinges with a wrench.

    • 17

      Install a new oil filter, securing it hand tight plus half a turn, and ensure that the oil pan plug is securely in place before filling the crankcase with fresh motor oil.

Tips & Warnings

  • Top off the radiator with antifreeze after the new engine has been thoroughly warmed up.
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