If your wallet can’t afford to buy a 2019 Corvette ZR1, then Chevrolet Performance has the next best thing for you.
Chevy will be unveiling three of its newest crate engines in a trio of classic vehicles at the SEMA Show set for Oct. 30-Nov. 2, including the 755-horsepower LT5 monster that powers the new ZR1.
Many enthusiasts no doubt have a vehicle they’d love to stuff an LT5 under the hood. For me, it’s my dad’s 1970 Impala that has been lovingly restored over the past 11 years – but still has the original 350 small block that’s just not very potent when you’re used to driving Corvettes.
Chevrolet Performance has chosen to show off its LT5 crate engine in a 1973 Chevelle Laguna. Remember those distinctive, body-colored urethane front and rear fascias? And who could forget Cale Yarborough driving a Laguna to the winner’s circle in NASCAR back in the day?
The LT5 crate engine is based on the ZR1’s motor and delivers 755 horsepower and 715 lb-ft of torque. It’s also a high-tech wonder with Chevy’s first dual-fuel system, featuring direct injection and supplementary port injection, along with a new, larger-displacement supercharge to boost the engine’s air charge.
Take a look at this black Laguna, and you’ll notice that Chevy was inspired by the higher hood of the ZR1 and adapted similar carbon fiber styling on the Laguna, which also features front and rear spoilers that are reminders of the NASCAR racecars of the 1970s.
Two other crate engines are also being featured at SEMA.
One is the all-new ZZ6 EFI 5.7-liter V-8 that has been installed in a 1967 C/10 pickup.
Chevy says this new motor combines the drivability advantages of electronically controlled fuel injection with the classic style and installation versatility of the 350 Small Block engine, noting that the ZZ6 offers a “best of both worlds” solution for hot rod and resto-mod projects. A traditional air cleaner atop the fuel injection throttle body instead of a carburetor offers a traditional appearance and all the drivability advantages of EFI – all while producing 420 horsepower.
The third new crate engine, the L96, is residing in a 1978 K10 Silverado and delivers 360 horsepower and 380 lb-ft of torque. The electronically controlled, fuel injected L96 gives greater power than the Big Block engines of the square box era, in a lighter, more compact package. Furthermore, in this ’78, it’s coupled to an electronically controlled four-speed overdrive automatic transmission “for a combination that exemplifies today’s popular trend of adapting modern Chevrolet LS and LT propulsion systems in vintage vehicles.”
As for pricing, Chevy hasn’t released final details on the LT5 engine, but to give you an idea, the Camaro ZL1’s LT4 crate engine costs a little over $13,000. However, it appears that the ZZ6 is around $7500, and the L96 is about $5500.
So what kind of vehicle would you like to see with one of these potent engines under the hood?
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