The Heart of the Beast: The 2008 Corvette’s LS3 6.2L V8


One thing you can always expect from the guys at Chevrolet is that they are going to get the maximum amount of horsepower out of a push-rod small block V8. And then a couple years later they’ll do it again. And a couple years later they’ll do it again. In fact, the Corvette has gained 130 horsepower from its base LT1 300 hp engine in 1996, just 12 short years earlier. This year’s version is called the LS3, a 6.2 liter push-rod V8 is rated at 430 hp. The new V8 with a six-speed paddle-shift automatic can go 0-60 in 4.3 seconds and its top speed is 190 mph.

2008 Corvette LS3 6.2 liter V8 2008 Corvette LS3 6.2 liter V8 2008 Corvette LS3 6.2 liter V8
The LS3 replaces the 6.0 liter LS2 rated at 400 hp that was the inaugural C6 engine. For production engines, three years is a very short lifespan. However, just because it is no longer installed in the Corvette doesn’t mean it may be destined for other GM performance vehicles including the new Camaro. I’ve read the posts on the forums that discuss how the upgrade in engine for Corvette allows the LS2 to become the Camaro’s base V8. The LS3 engine is truly a marvel. It features a larger bore at 4.06 inches compared to the LS2’s 4.0 inches as well as larger pistons, upgraded camshaft and high-flow intake manifold. Total displacement grows from 364 to 376 cubic inches. But the real secret to the LS3′ success comes borrowed from the Z06 Corvette’s LS7 engine. The LS7 offers several hand-me-downs for the LS3 including new high flow LS7/L92 cylinder heads with the large port/large valve design, and the high flow fuel injectors. Also optional on the 2008 Corvette is the Z06 styled two-mode performance exhaust system. Not quite identical to the Z06. The LS3 still has the 2 1/2 in exhaust compared to the three inches in the L7. The system features butterfly valves that close two of the four ports to reduce engine noise under normal driving conditions, but open up for maximum performance when called for. With the new dual mode performance exhaust, the power output for the LS3 rises to 436 hp and 428 lb.-ft. of torque.


6.2L V-8 LS3

Displacement (cu in / cc):

376 / 6162

Bore & stroke (in / mm):

4.06 x 3.62 / 103.25 x 92

Block material:

cast aluminum

Cylinder head material:

cast aluminum


overhead valve, 2 valves per cylinder

Fuel delivery:

SFI (sequential fuel injection)

Compression ratio:


(hp / kW @ rpm):

430 / 321 @ 5900* w/ std. exhaust
436 / 325 @ 5900* w/ opt. exhaust

Torque (lb-ft / Nm @ rpm):

424 / 575 @ 4600* w/ std. exhaust
428 / 580 @ 4600* w/ opt. exhaust

Recommended fuel:

premium recommended but not required

Estimated fuel economy :


Still amazed? Production begins in late July with cars shipping in August/September. Although Chevrolet has not yet announced the pricing for the 2008 Corvette, it should remain similar to the 2007 model that retails for $44,995.
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