The original 350 cubic-inch Chevrolet V8 was first available in the 1967 Camaro as the L48 high-performance engine option. After that inaugural year, it made its way into the rest of the Chevy lineup by 1969. For the past five decades, it has become the go-to engine for inexpensive power in just about every vehicle imaginable, whether it be for towing duty or the track.
Defying convention, the small-block Chevy only keeps getting better. Case-in-point, the new 405 horsepower ZZ6 crate-engine. This engine (PNs 19351532 for a Base engine, and 19351533 for the Turn Key version), maintains 350 cubic-inches of displacement, and makes the perfect drop-in powerplant for modern hot rodders.
With 405 horsepower and 405 lb-ft of torque, the ZZ6 engine is more powerful than any production 350 engine installed in a factory vehicle. To achieve this, GM topped the standard 350 short-block with a pair of Fast Burn aluminum cylinder heads with 62 cc chambers, large intake runners, 2.00/1.55-inch valves, and beehive valve springs. The engine uses a mild hydraulic-roller camshaft with .474/.510-inch lift, and 208/221-degrees of duration at .050-inch lift. There is also a forged crankshaft, powdered-metal connecting rods, and high-silicone, hypereutectic pistons creating a 9.72:1 compression ratio. Up top is a single-plan intake, and a 770 cfm Holley carburetor. All of these parts build an engine that is capable of surviving the recommended 5,800 rpm limit without fail. As great as this engine is in stock form, the General has left room for enthusiasts to tailor it to their needs, while still offering the perfect drop-in option for projects of any kind.
The ZZ6 crate engine is available in two flavors, Base and Turn Key. In addition to the parts above, the Base kit features a single-plane aluminum intake, distributor, water pump, damper, and flexplate. The Turn Key kit offers all of the above plus a carburetor, starter, alternator, air conditioning compressor, front-drive accessories, and an air cleaner that matches the aluminum valve covers.
GM hasn’t released pricing yet, but we expect to hear more once the ZZ6 crate engine makes its official debut in a few weeks at 2015 SEMA show.