1998 Corvette: GM's New LS1 5.7L V8 Distinguished as One of the Best in 1998

GM's New LS1 5.7L V8 Distinguished as One of the Best in 1998

Corvette LS1 Engine Cutaway - David Kimble

FOR RELEASE:  January 5, 1998
CONTACT:  Chevrolet Communications
Phone: 1-800-CHEVY-MI 0r 810-492-8841
Fax: (810) 492-8853

PONTIAC, MICHIGAN - GM's completely new version of the legendary small block engine, the 5.7L V8 (LS1), is among those selected in the Ward's Auto World "Best Engines of 1998" Awards. The 1998 Chevrolet Corvette and Camaro, and the Pontiac Firebird are all powered by this favorite engine.

"We are pleased to be among this elite group of winners," said Arv Mueller, vice president and group executive of GM Powertrain. "This is the fourth consecutive year GM has been recognized for a 'best' engine design." Previous winners include both the naturally aspirated and Supercharged 3800 Series II V6 engines and the Northstar V8.

Ned McClurg, vice president and general manager of GM Powertrain Engineering, said the engine is well known to auto enthusiasts around the world for its simplicity. "The 'keep it simple' philosophy was not sacrificed for trendiness when the current design was first introduced in 1997," McClurg said. The LS1 is an overhead valve engine with a single camshaft and two valves per cylinder, a simple but elegant design.

Compact dimensions, light weight, durability and efficiency are all trademarks that were established with the first small block and continue with the present 'best' engine. The venerable small block heritage, of which the winning 5.7L V8 belongs, goes back to 1955 when it first appeared in the Chevrolet lineup.

The 1998 5.7L V8 is the most technologically advanced push rod small block to date. The engine continues with its heritage of 4.40 inch center-to-center bore dimensions and high output. Notable features include a deep skirt aluminum block with six bolt main bearing cap attachment, coil-near-plug ignition, roller rocker arms, symmetrical intake and exhaust ports and a structural oil pan.

GM Powertrain's winning small block has an efficiency level as high as 60 hp per liter or one hp per cubic inch, a standard much sought after in the engine industry. In the Corvette, the new small block produces 345 horsepower and 350 lb.-ft of torque, the all time record for a production small block. In the Camaro and Firebird, the 5.7L engine produces 305 horsepower and 335 lb.-ft of torque.

All of GM Powertrain's 5.7L V8's for Corvette, Camaro and Firebird are produced at its Romulus, Mich., engine plant. Engineering for the new 5.7L V8 continues where it began, at the General Motors Technical Center in Warren, Mich.

The 5.7L V8 was selected by a panel of six Ward's editors. Engines were rated based on "power, torque and driveability". Nominations were limited to vehicles costing less than $50,000. The official award announcement will be at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit on January 7.