Autoblog had the rare opportunity to visit GM’s Performance Build Center in Wixom, Michigan where they worked along side master engine builder Mike Armstrong to assemble an LS9 engine. The PBC is unique to GM’s other engine assembly centers as each engine is assembled by hand from start to finish by a single engine builder as opposed to sending the engine down an assembly line where multiple workers add the same part over and over.
The Performance Build Center opened in 2005 and has since been the home to such GM powerplants as the supercharged Northstar V8 that was used in the Cadillac STS-V and the XLR-V. Currently, the center builds the supercharged LS9 found in the Corvette ZR1, the 7.0 liter 505 horsepower LS7 found in the Z06. New to the PBC this year is the dry-sump equipped LS3 that can be ordered with the new manual-transmission Corvette Grand Sports. We also hear that Wixom will be building the engines that power Corvette Racing’s C6.R GT2 in 2010.
Although seasoned Corvette watchers have seen Wixom’s engine-building process before, the autoblog story begs to be shared due to high-res photography and the accompanying text that takes readers through each step of the assembly process.
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