Thanks guys (anywhere in time), now it makes perfect sense.
I drove the car briefly before i restored it so i blamed the noise at 60mph on the condition...
9 months later car restored, engine rebuilt and i was like ... what the hell is this 60mph drama about ? maybe third gear is not kicking in ??? maybe my automatic gear slips ?? maybe i forgot something loose in the engine ? ... no, no and no
After installing an external tachometer (mine has a watch instead) i found out that i drive 60mph at 3500rpm , like (almost) all '02s even when i have a 4.11 diff.
Spinning the wheels at start and 2nd gear very common and the car is very agile.
i found a 3.64 diff on ebay and by the simple math it should do 60mph at 3045rpm, great cause that's where it's still relatively relaxed.
Yet, keeping up with traffic is no less than 75mph and that should be around 3800rpm which starts to sound like a very normal engine speed.
If i could only change my disbelief that those engines are "happy" with it ...