small-block engine

small-block engine
During the '60s and '70s, GM, Ford, and Chrysler made two types of V8 engines of the same displacement: e.g., 350 cu. in. small-block and 350 cu. in. big-block. The small-block engine was an enlarged smaller displacement engine (e.g., GM enlarged the 283 to 327 then to 350 by boring the cylinders). The big-block engine was a completely different basic engine size even though it displaced the same as the enlarged small-block engine. Thus, as vehicles grew smaller and more equipment was stuffed into the engine bay, the small-block engine was favored over its larger brother.

Dictionary of automotive terms. 2015.

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