Buick's "109" 3.8-liter block, the basis for the awesome LC2 turbocharged powerplant, handled a measly 200 rwhp in stock form but is capable of triple that with very few modifications. Straight from the factory, the block, crankshaft, and connecting rods will easily handle the horses needed for that kind of timeslip. For reliability's sake, some who know the wick will be turned up in the future opt for a girdle, forged internals, and upgraded hardware when doing a build of this caliber. But if mid- to high-10s is the goal, the simple addition of new billet caps and cap studs and quality hyper or forged pistons will get you there just fine.
The buildup of Frank Vallelonga's 100K GN continues as the staff at Cotton's Performance Center begins to focus on the engine. Before any wrenches are turned, proprietor Jack Cotton works with the customer to determine his or her goals for the buildup. Once the block reinforcement, rotating assembly, and camshaft choices are made, Cotton supplies a custom-built short block and the build begins.
Frank has opted for minimal upgrades to the bottom end--stronger main cap studs and billet main caps will replace the stockers, and high-quality Diamond pistons reside in the block, but once this block was machined, it was filled with a stock crankshaft and stock connecting rods with ARP bolts.
Cutting edge turbo V-6 builders have found that roller cams will really wake these motors up, and JC has specced a 212 ductile roller for this build. To maximize airflow, Cotton's suggests Champion Racing Heads on top of any performance 3.8 turbo mill. For Frank's ride, the aluminum GN1 cylinder heads are matched up with a ported factory intake to inject and distribute as much air as the 70 turbo can throw at it.
The story is starting to heat up in Agawam, Massachusetts--one high-powered LC2 coming right up.