Yamaha G16 Engine Swap: Compatible Golf Cart Engines

Like every mechanical wonder, the JN6 301cc 3-stroke engine originally used in the Yamaha G16 golf cart wears off after a certain period. Therefore, we consider that replacing the engine is preferable to wasting money on repairs that don’t fix the problem of an old engine. 

Different models of engines are identical to the electrical system and power delivery suitable for swapping the JN6 engine of the G16. Some of these are the Lifan 15HP, Duramax 16HP, Briggs and Stratton Pro series, and Predator 13HP.

However, we couldn’t just remove the old engine and put on a new one because many secondary factors must be addressed while swapping. You might want to read this article till the end to get in-depth information on the compatible engines for a Yamaha G16.

Best-Suited Engines For Yamaha G16 Golf Cart

We analyzed different engine kits after conducting multiple online and retail marketplace research to find the engine that would work best for my Yamaha G16. Here are the six most compatible engines we filtered out for my G16.

Predator 13HP Golf Cart Engine

The Predator 13HP engine is a small 4-stroke engine suitable to adjust in the mounting area of a Yamaha G16. It has a displacement of 420cc, producing 13 horsepower at 3,600 rpm. 

The fuel type used in this engine is common gasoline with a compression ratio of 8.5:1. 

However, being a moderate-level engine, it uses an air cooling system which works fine for a day to day activity.

It’s worth mentioning that the Predator 13HP engine is not specifically designed for use in the G16. 

Therefore, we might have to modify the lift height of the vehicle and the electrical system to install the new engine. 

Installing a Predator 13HP engine in a golf cart may significantly increase its power and speed, which could affect its handling and safety.

Duramax 16HP Golf Cart Engine

Duramax 16HP Golf Cart Engine

we found the Duromax engine to be the most powerful in producing horsepower in this segment. 

For engine swapping in G16, we must remove the fuel tank, the battery, the wiring, and the solenoids apart from removing the old engine. It is because none of that applies to the Duromax.

The Duromax is a 16 HP, 420cc 4-stroke air-cooled engine with a horizontal shaft and a single cylinder. 

It’s got an electric start, which we must hook to the electrical system. The Comet 40 series clutch works better with this engine. 

It fits the engine, but the issue is it didn’t fit the belt. After researching, we found that the 40 series clutch uses a narrower belt, and the original driven clutch uses a wider belt. Therefore, there needs to be a modification with the belt also. 

However, once all fit in, the engine works perfectly with the Yamaha G16 and revives it to roll on the golf course for an extended period. 

The best part of swapping the stock engine of the G16 with the Duromax is no need for modification in the chassis and lift of the vehicle.

Lifan 15 Hp Golf Cart Engine

Similar to other engines, the Lifan 15 Hp has a displacement of 420cc with 4-Stroke OHV Industrial Grade. It runs on gasoline with an electric start. Moreover, the 18 Amp external charging system.

We were amused to see the universal mounting pattern of this engine. Hence, we need not install any lift kit for my golf cart to support this engine. 

Although, we might need to purchase a comet 780 torque converter with a compatible belt for an efficient outcome from the engine.

The wirings are not color-coded, which can be an issue for beginners like me. Hence, replacing the engine and proceeding with the installation under the expert’s supervision is advised.

Briggs and Stratton Vanguard V-Twin Engine

The Biggs and Stratton engines are renowned for producing small engine units. Its vanguard is a 420cc, 4-stroke single-cylinder engine suitable for the Yamaha G16.

However, judging by the dimension of this engine kit, the G16 seems lower to me and requires an additional lift kit. 

Moreover, it comes with an electric start, and thus, we need to hook additional wirings for the ignition.

Its 16 amp default charging system is suitable to support the electrical systems of my Yamaha G16.

Things To Consider Before Swapping Engine In Yamaha G16

A Yamaha G16 golf cart’s original engine must be swapped out for an aftermarket engine that is compatible with the golf cart’s framework and electrical system. 

Making adjustments to the structure and electrical system to make room for the new engine can be challenging.

There are a number of things to consider before getting an engine and swapping with the stock engine of the Yamaha G16.

Size and power output

The engine must be appropriate for the golf cart’s weight and size and produce considerable power to meet the needs of the intended use.

Cart Chassis Compatibility

The chassis and electrical system of the golf cart should be compatible with the engine, and it might be required to make tweaks to make room for the new engine.

Fuel economy

It’s important to consider the engine’s fuel efficiency, particularly if the golf cart will be used frequently or in an expensive-fuel area.


It’s crucial to pick a dependable engine with a strong performance and durability history. Besides, the availability of spare parts for the engines should be kept in mind before getting one.


For more details about the Yamaha G16 engine swapping, you might want to go through the following questionnaires.

Can you make a Yamaha gas golf cart faster?

Swapping the stock 2-stroke engine of the Yamaha golf cart with an upgraded one significantly increases the power output and throttle response.
It is recommended to replace the existing engine with a new higher cc 4-stroke engine for enhanced speed.

Which engines are suitable for the Yamaha g16 engine swap?

The predator 13 and 16 hp engines, Lifan 15 Hp, Duromax 16hp, and different 4-stroke engines from Briggs and Stratton are suitable.
These engines don’t require extensive modifications on the chassis before installation. For a lifted cart, the Predator 670 is recommended.

What modifications should be done for Yamaha G16 engine swap?

The engine compartment of the G16 should be made compatible for the replacing engine.
Its dimension and weight distribution needs to be addressed. Furthermore, you might have to adjust and make specific wiring connections with the battery and other electrical equipment.


Swapping my Yamaha G16 stock engine not only revives the cart but it enhances the performance. Therefore, selecting the best suited engine for G16 has been very challenging.

In comparison, we found the Duromax 16 hp seems to be perfect for Yamaha G16 engine swap. It fits well, is fuel efficient and delivers better power than the JN6. Besides, Predator, Briggs and Stratton works fine but requires installing a lift kit to the cart.

We hope beginners find this article informative and instructive for their G16 engine swap project. Besides, it may guide them to refrain from making selection mistakes.

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