2013 is likely the last year for the legendary LS7 427 7-liter V-8 engine in a Z06, 427 convertible, or any new production Corvette, but it will continue on in the 2014+ Camaro Z/28 muscle-car. 2013 is also the last year for the current C6 (sixth generation) Corvette. The LS7 engine is a relatively lightweight, very powerful, not overly complex, high revving, naturally aspirated, big cubic-inch, durable, fairly economical, and compact modern muscle-car engine that's a proven winner by nearly any measure. Chevrolet or Chevy, 427, small-block, V-8 and high performance are historic keywords for the LS7 engine and the way it's perceived and marketed. Along with the LS7 we'll look at the LS7 based LSX engine and a few ideas related to Chevy muscle-cars engines.
Chevrolet LS7 427 7-liter aluminum bare block by GM
Note similarity to LSX block ->
Chevrolet LSX iron block - multiple volume options
<- Note similarity to LS7 block
General Motors Chevrolet LS7 427 Introduction: One of the greatest naturally aspirated V-8 production sports car engines of all time, the General Motors Chevrolet LS7 427 (7-liter) V8 was made famous by the C6 Z06 Corvette starting with the 2006 model year. The C6 or sixth generation Corvette began in 2005, but the LS7 427.6 (7-liter) started with the 2006 model year which became available in late 2005. It is Chevrolet's largest small-block ever. It's also Chevrolets most powerful production small-block! As mentioned earlier, the LS7 427 will move from the Corvette Z06 to the Camaro Z/28 beginning with the 2014 model year.
The 2014 Z/28 Camaro is designed as a street-legal track type muscle-car. The 2014 Z/28 Camaro LS7 engine gets the dry-sump oiling system like the Z06 and all power numbers remain about the same and the aftermarket is full of go-fast parts for the LS7 engine as it will be nearing 10 years of production and racing by the time it reaches the Z/28. The Camaro Z/28 is also lightened and tuned to pull 1.05-g in the cornering department. The Z/28 is one wicked Camaro.
The vehicle production life of the LS7 was relatively short (2006-2013), but the LS7, and engines based on the LS7, like the LSX small-block will continue to be manufactured and available as a crate (aftermarket) engines for decades to come. The LS7 crate engines even include the race track inspired dry sump oil pan, but you will need to supply the external oil tank if your application is other than a direct replacement. Also, if you're not replacing a C6 Z06, or 2013 427 Convertible Corvette engine, "Chevrolet Performance" has a complete controller kit for the LS7 crate 427 engine that includes a wiring harness, O2 sensors, a mass air flow sensor, electronic throttle controller, and the E-67 electronic control module (ECM) for easy installation and retrofit into a custom vehicle, and this makes it an excellent all around choice for high performance lightweight motor replacements. Similar controller kits exist for the tire shredding LSX line of LS7 based engines.
The LS7 was the mainstay power plant of the C6 Z06 Vette, but it was also exported for the Australian built Holden Special Vehicles 2008-09 HSV W427, and as a final farewell, the LS7 made its way into the 2013 Corvette 427 convertible. The first LS7 powered 2006 Chevrolet Z06 Corvette was capable of 198 mph, an 11.5 second quarter mile at 127 miles per hour, and could do a first gear 0-60 mph time of 3.5 seconds thanks to its high 7,000 RPM.
Also, now that the Corvette will not exclusively claim the LS7 427 as its own, hopes are high that we'll see a 427 Camaro. Simple big cubic-inch engines are always better for long term high output reliability in our book, but advancing technology makes simple more complex as time goes on.
The new C7, or seventh generation, 2014 Chevrolet Corvette (378 C.I.D.) 6.2L LT1 generation 5 small-block V-8 base engine replacement will more complex, lighter, and more fuel efficient with direct injection, Active Fuel Management and continuously variable valve timing. This new (378 cu in) 6.2L LT1 gen 5 small-block V-8 engine will make the new standard model C7 2014 Corvette the most powerful base mode ever with around 450 horsepower and 450 lb.-ft. of torque (610 Nm) on tap, the quickest with a 0-60 sub 4 second time, and the most fuel efficient with better than 26 miles per gallon on the highway. Of course the LT1 is the base model Corvette engine replacement, and we wrote about it here. Also, we'll have the news right here when details become available on 2014 C7 Z06, ZR1, or what-ever they call the new Corvette with the super high performance engine options.
The king of cubes (cubic-inches that is) is the V-10 SRT Viper. Kudos to Chrysler for having the nerve to begin a new Viper production run with the pavement buckling 512 cubic-inch (8.4 liter) monster. Unfortunately for many though, the V-10 just doesn't have the same rumble that the purist V8 enthusiasts have grown to know and love over the decades long muscle-car wars. It's also light-years away from the sweet sound of an Italian V12. Most reviewers agree that the Viper sounds like total crap and that's quite annoying in a supercar contender, but we're not talking about Chrysler here so let's get back to it...
If you're looking for earth shaking naturally aspirated V-8 engine replacements for the modern muscle-cars, or any car, there's the LS7 based LSX engine. "Chevrolet Performance" (GM Performance Parts) has a video demonstrating the electrical hookups (harness / controller package) for an (LS7 based) LSX 454 for the Camaro. Redline Motorsports has been selling the new 5th generation Camaro with an LSX 454 motor replacement already installed called the HTR-454SS through dealers for years. Redline can also do an LSX454 motor replacement in your existing new model Camaro. Also, the LSX is built to withstand forced induction (superchargers and turbochargers), so the performance potential (taking durability into mind) of the LSX engine is beyond nearly anything widely available in the world today, especially if you also take affordability into mind.