Forgive me if this is a repost - I tried searching.
Check out this 705ci Camaro from popularhotrodding.com
No, that engine isn't raised in the chassis--it really is that tall. Where a normal big-block Chevy has a deck height of 9.8 inches, and a "big" big-block measures 10.2 inches, what do you call one with a height of 11.7 inches?
"Unbelievable" was the cover blurb when we featured Tony Bartone's Bill Mitchell-built 705, the biggest engine ever covered in these pages. Back in that February 2000 issue, we presented some scary facts about this crazy Merlin setup. This engine made 800 lb-ft of torque on the dyno's first sample, just off idle! Since then, Tony had Pat Musi convert the engine over to EFI, mostly to make sure it would fit in the car. That car is this '69 Camaro, which is part Pro Street, part g-Machine, and completely nuts.
A winner of 25 NHRA National Events in Top Alcohol Funny Car and holder of the all-time NHRA record for consecutive round wins (37), Bartone is no stranger to sick power. He's been reading PHR since his teenage years and had his share of hot rods, but never owned a feature-quality car or something that set a precedent within the hobby. In fact, Tony's automotive interests (beside drag racing) have focused on European exotics up until now, and his heavily modified 993 Twin-Turbo Porsche with AWD boasted 650 hp and plenty of thrills. Still, he wanted a car like this.
Since their race shop is near Bill Mitchell's Hardcore Racing Products and World Products engine facility, we went down the street to see the inspiration, aluminum Merlin Superblock. This wasn't to be a racing engine, but a true street engine that could tear the driveline out of any ride on the street. Using a Callies 5.300-inch crankshaft, Crower's 7.750-inch forged billet rods, and a set of Lunati's 4.600-inch pistons, the foundation was laid for a $30,000 dream engine that makes 893 lb-ft at 4,600 rpm and 829 hp at only 5,300 rpm. The engine only revs to about 5,500 rpm on its best day, since those heavy parts are hard to get moving and the Brodix -4 cylinder heads (which start with a giant 390cc intake runner before porting) just can't keep up with such a giant port. The giant intake valves, measuring 2.350 inches, are a major hindrance, too. Would they go this route again? Though it's not the most efficient engine around, the "wow" factor makes it worthwhile if you have the means.
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