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Chevy Corvette LS3 Performance Engine - Shop Talk

Sep 1, 2007
Chp0709_01_z Chevy_ls3 Rear_view 2/1

The General's Coming Back Big
If you're anything like me, then you know there's been a huge buzz, or rather rumors running amok all over the Internet, regarding the LS3. I'm talking about everything ranging from the guesstimated power levels to the bottom end to the type of induction system it'll feature. On April 27, 2007, those rumors were put to rest after GM's latest press release, and man, oh man, did the news travel fast-matter of fact, nearly every GM-related Web site and message forum was on fire, listing the highlights as if they were right-click copied and pasted for the world to see.

Shortly after that, I had the chance to speak candidly with John Rydzewski, the assistant chief engineer for General Motor's small-block division. Of course, the hot topic of the day was the upcoming LS3 powerplant for the '08 Corvette. Granted, we're not a Vette book by any means, but you can bet there's a good chance we'll see something similar resting in the engine bay of the new Camaro.

During our conversation, John went over the better part of the details listed in the press release, but there was one new piece of information that really caught my attention. For starters, while the new LS3 features a 6.2L bore, larger than its previous 6.0L configuration, it's also based on GM's previous truck blocks. Through extensive R&D, GM Powertrain has completely gone through the block and strengthened the bulkheads by 20 percent and will use them in the new truck line too. That's right, both the Vette and truck will feature identical part numbers for their latest foundation. Do you see where I'm going with this yet?

With the wide availability of these production parts, it won't be long before we're seeing the newest mills being transplanted into our first- and second-gen musclecars. Come on, with an estimated 430hp rating and its already venerable heritage, it's hard not to consider it. Here's an added bonus: If you already own an LS2, know that the LS3 induction is very similar to the LS7 package, meaning huge airflow, big power, and it will fit the older 6.0L. I was told there may be a little overhang within the cylinders, but it'll seal. (We'll have to test that.)

Personally, I've never been so excited with GM, and with all of its latest offerings, I truly believe that The General is listening to us Bow Tie aficionados. Do you agree? Disagree? I want to know, so share your thoughts on our message board at or e-mail me directly at the address listed below.

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