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4.3L "Baby LT1" V8

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OK....so I'm flipping through some old C&D rags and in the 10-93 issue, highlighting the "1994 New Cars" there was an article in the Technical Highlights section talking about GM's new "baby" LT1 variant....a 4.3L version that would be the base Caprice Classic engine along with the optional 5.7L LT1....

Does anyone remember this engine? I don't even remember it existing.....and surprised we didn't see it in other applications (might it have fit tranversly in a GM-10 of the time??)

Here's how the two engines compared:

4.3L, SFI V8 (5.7L SFI V8)

200 hp (260 hp)

245 lb/ft torque (335 lb/ft torque)

Let me know if you know anything about it...!

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OK....so I'm flipping through some old C&D rags and in the 10-93 issue, highlighting the "1994 New Cars" there was an article in the Technical Highlights section talking about GM's new "baby" LT1 variant....a 4.3L version that would be the base Caprice Classic engine along with the optional 5.7L LT1....

Does anyone remember this engine? I don't even remember it existing.....and surprised we didn't see it in other applications (might it have fit tranversly in a GM-10 of the time??)

Here's how the two engines compared:

4.3L, SFI V8 (5.7L SFI V8)

200 hp (260 hp)

245 lb/ft torque (335 lb/ft torque)

Let me know if you know anything about it...!

Don't remember that one at all. In fact, I doubt that it actually was produced.

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Don't remember that one at all. In fact, I doubt that it actually was produced.

That's what I'm trying to find out.....this wasn't the "spy information" section of MT, but in the new-car section. And the rags always get that info from new-car long-leads and press releases.

So I'm betting it's accurate and GM had plans for it.....now if they actually carried through with production or not, I'm not sure......

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nevermind, looked it up... the monza had a 4.3L v8 option according to it's page on wiki

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I owned a '91 Caprice wagon that I factory ordered new, then put American Racing wheels on it, 220W amp with 8" bazookas in the back, etc. But the '91 wagon only came with the 5.0 litre. In '92 they offered the 5.7. I saw a prototype of an SS version of the wagon in '94, I think, which had the color keyed grille, mags, and a version of the 'vette engine. I was ready to whip out my checkbook for that one (would have been a blast to tow my boat), but apparently GM never actually went ahead and built them.

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it was a boat anchor

had barely more torque than the 3.8L 2 years later. I bet this engine could make ~280 HP with a high redline (6.7K) now a days....downsize the external size and throw it in an "SS" 'bu, or the w-bodies with a 6 speed manual.

edit: or put this into Alpha

Edited by loki

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it was a boat anchor

Well, maybe not exactly.....for the lack of torque, it had a solid 30 more horsepower than the original 5.0L TBI V8 that was introduced in the Caprice Classic (and acutally 5 more horsepower than the TBI 5.7L.) And I bet the SFI 4.3L V8 would have been a bit more fuel efficient than the 5.0L.....

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I vaguely remember reading about that engine years ago..looks like it was made '94-96 and only used in the Caprice..

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In fact, I doubt that it actually was produced.

lol

I always knew about this engine.

Pontiac did some experiments adding a supercharger to it and put in a Firebird. I think it was a high 13 sec car. Probably better gas mileage.

I should see if I can find this article.....

Some GM based car mag did a build up of one...300hp? Had to be reved pretty high to get that. I think it was in some 55-57 Chevy project car.

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A 4.3 version of the LT1?!

How did I miss the existence of this thing?

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A 4.3 version of the LT1?!

How did I miss the existence of this thing?

Likely because it was only in the Caprice.Who pays attention to them? lol

Very odd--must have been some kind of experiment---the fact it was only used in one vehicle.

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A 4.3 version of the LT1?!

How did I miss the existence of this thing?

Well, it was a blink and you miss it thing...apparently only in the Caprice from '94-96....in '94-96 the Impala SS got the attention, the Caprice faded away..

Edited by moltar

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Still, I don't think I've ever missed the entire existence of any GM V8 before.

Even the lame ones.

I'm embarassed.

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Still, I don't think I've ever missed the entire existence of any GM V8 before.

Even the lame ones.

I'm embarassed.

There's a few other obscure small displacement V8s I was barely aware of--the Chevy 262 of '75-76 and 267 of '79-82, Pontiac's 265 in '80-81, and Olds' 260 of '75-82.

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There's a few other obscure small displacement V8s I was barely aware of--the Chevy 262 of '75-76 and 267 of '79-82, Pontiac's 265 in '80-81, and Olds' 260 of '75-82.

And for some reason I remember all of those, but not this one. :blink:

If it were an obscure Caddy or BOP V8 I wouldn't feel so bad about it, but for me to miss a Chevy V8 is bizarre.

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And for some reason I remember all of those, but not this one. :blink:

If it were an obscure Caddy or BOP V8 I wouldn't feel so bad about it, but for me to miss a Chevy V8 is bizarre.

Well you did live through the 70's, I'm sure there are large gaps of time missing from your memory. :smilewide:

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I remember this engine, and I believe most Caprices from 1994 to 1996 used it. I understand the business reasons for dropping the Caprice and converting the factory to SUV production, but I would now the owner of a Caprice or Roadmaster had GM continued building the car as Ford continued with the Panthers.

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I was going to reply and say it didn't exist and you saw a typo...but I found evidence this exists all over the internet.

I'm embarassed too...

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The 4.3l V8 "Baby LT1" has the L99 production code and is the W in the VIN for B-body Caprices from 1994 to 1996. The displacement is 265 ci just like the original 1955 V8.

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There's a book out there about Chevy police cars from 1955-'96. They mention the 4.3L V8 as a Caprice mill in the chapters for 1994-'96 and I believe there is even some performance data. I'll see if I can find the book and post some more info.

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OK, I did some quick browsing of that police car book and it says the 1994-'96 4.3L V8 displaced 265 CID and had the same bore X stroke dimensions as the original smallblock 265 engine of 1955-'57 vintage (3.75" X 3.00"). Performance in the big boat Caprice was "reasonable"; something like a 10.5 second 0-60 time with quarter mile runs in the high 17s. I'll post the exact specs when I have more time.

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Can't believe I missed this thread. :) The 4.3 V8 was the standard engine in the 94-6 Caprice's and not offered in any of the other B/D cars. It's found in quite a few 9C1 cars for LEO departments who didn't want to spend the extra money or didn't see the need for the LT1. Look at it this way, even this little V8 put out similar horsepower to the 5.7 throttle body injected V8 in the 93 Caprice.

Is it slow? Compared to the LT1 sure! But still respectable for a car of it's size and at least as powerful as the 5.0/5.7 combo it replaced. Plus, I've known people who can push close to 30mpg highway with the 4.3 engine.

Sad thing is, quite a few Caprice newbies get suckered into buying one of these because unless you know what to look for (VIN, SPID, exhaust) it's almost impossible to tell the difference. Underhood, the L99 and LT1 look identical.

I've heard stories of mechanics insisting there is no such engine and since it's a 4.3 displacement, it must be a V6. :rolleyes:

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Oddly enough I've actually seen quite a few of them, we have several customers with old Caprices and all of them have the 4.3. I remember the first time I had to look up parts on one and was confused by the 4.3 with the engine code W, because I'm so used to looking up parts on the Vortec 4.3 V6 with engine code W.

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The L99 code W 4.3 liter 265 V8 appears in the majority of 94-96 Caprices that I have seen or know people to have owned in the past. I have driven tons of them as my best friends dealership used to sell them like crazy in the late 90's when gas was still cheap. It made 200 HP and 245 torque, was tied exclusively to the 4L60 4 speed tranny and in 94 used 2.73:1 rear gears. 95/96 saw a change to 2.93:1 rear gears as std and when you ordered limited slip a 3.23:1 ratio was thrown in. I have timed these cars myself around the low to mid 9 second mark pretty consistently in the 0-60 run. They were also capable of mid to high 20's mileage on trips which was good for a 4000 lb true full sized BOF sedan. The engine never appeared in any other full size BOF car like the Roadmaster or Brougham and never even made it to the Caprice wagon which makes one wonder why they even bothered with this engine for one line of sedan for such a limited run.

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The L99 code W 4.3 liter 265 V8 appears in the majority of 94-96 Caprices that I have seen or know people to have owned in the past. I have driven tons of them as my best friends dealership used to sell them like crazy in the late 90's when gas was still cheap. It made 200 HP and 245 torque, was tied exclusively to the 4L60 4 speed tranny and in 94 used 2.73:1 rear gears.

Ponch, did Chevy make this engine for Chevrolet use and at a time when BOP was converting large cars over to front wheel drive? It seems I recall a 4.3 V8 by Chevy in the early 80s (Monte Carlo RWD, etc) that displaced 267 cubic inches. Is that the one? The only reason I say this is because the Olds 4.3 V8 numbered 260 cubic inches and the Pontiac 4.3 V8 numbered 265 cubic inches.

About the engine you refer to above (L99), is it one that had longevity? Any weird stuff like camshaft lobes prematurely wearing (thinking Chevy 305s of the late 70s/early 80s)?

Edited by trinacriabob

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There's a few other obscure small displacement V8s I was barely aware of--the Chevy 262 of '75-76 and 267 of '79-82, Pontiac's 265 in '80-81, and Olds' 260 of '75-82.

Moltie, see my post immediately above. Though not particularly horsepowerish, I am an ardent fan of the Olds 260 because it shared Rocket V8 hardware yet was very, very quiet. I loved that engine.

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Don't remember that one at all. In fact, I doubt that it actually was produced.

Did you guys forget I mentioned it a few months back?

My buddy (Buick collector and used car dealer) had a

blue-green 100% stock 1996 Caprice Classic with the

"267 LT1" in the engine bay... I considered buying it

when I was selling the ('77 Cadillac) Banana Boat due

to $4.59/gallon prices.

I know I mentioned it... anyway, the motor displaced

4.3 liters, 267 cu.in. to be more precise, and it WAS

indeed produced although ONLY in the Chevy sedan

B-body, & IIRC never in any of the wagons or Buicks

/Cadillacs B-bodys.

Kenny had prob. one of the nicest, cleanest examples

in existence. It had factory keyless & under 100K miles.

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oh.... my bad, I guess it was 265 not 267.

I think I got all the other stuff right.

The wholesale car dealer who had this one is a wicked cool guy.

He's owned many a hi-po Buick, his and his bro. are HARDCORE

Buick guys, between them they've owned many a 1960s/early

1970s A-body GS, a few ragtops/rare option codes, a '70 GSX,

'87 Grand National.... Now that Buicks are lame and lack any

RWD product Kenny is a Chevy guy as far as his non-classics,

back in spring of 2003 he bought a brand new Z06 and he was at

New England Dragway one Wednesday night while I was drag

racing my '68 Camaro.

he had about 300 miles on the car at that point. :spin:

Remember my '94 Buick Roadmaster Estate?

I bought that off of Kenny. He's always got a few B-bodies kicking

around for cheap $$$, he usually drives a Chevy pickup of some

sort for a daily driver in bad weather/winter months.

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Ponch, did Chevy make this engine for Chevrolet use and at a time when BOP was converting large cars over to front wheel drive? It seems I recall a 4.3 V8 by Chevy in the early 80s (Monte Carlo RWD, etc) that displaced 267 cubic inches. Is that the one? The only reason I say this is because the Olds 4.3 V8 numbered 260 cubic inches and the Pontiac 4.3 V8 numbered 265 cubic inches.

About the engine you refer to above (L99), is it one that had longevity? Any weird stuff like camshaft lobes prematurely wearing (thinking Chevy 305s of the late 70s/early 80s)?

Good reading here and nice summaries by Ponchoman, Sixty-eight, and DBeaSSt, and though the question above is directed to Ponchoman I can tell you that the L99 4.3 is known to have the same reliability and longevity of its larger LT1 (P VIN code) 5.7 sibling. The only real complaints usually are directed at the optical-scan distributors and somewhat at the direct-drive water pumps, which are shared by both. These complaints are mostly overblown in my opinion. Sometimes you can get an oil leak from the rear of the intake manifold gasket, which runs down the back of the engine which people mistake for a rear main seal leak.

The three '94-'96 B-bodies I have had have all been LT1 cars though I have friends with L99 Caprices and for all, the engines have proven to be quite reliable, with nothing typically needing to be done to things like head gaskets, valve seals, timing gears, cams, etc. throughout their lives, with little to no oil consumption being the norm. I never needed to add oil to my Roadmaster between standard 3,000 oil-change intervals, even after it crossed the 200,000 mile mark.

As to why they bothered with a smaller engine for Caprice sedans only from '94-'96 while all other B/D bodies were given the LT1s during those years? Not really sure, but I'm guessing having the L99 as base it probably helped give a "value" edge to standard Caprices (including police package cars that were built with the L99) with a slight fuel economy advantage over the LT1. The L99 was competitive with the numbers put up by the Ford 4.6 in the Crown Vic at that time. Also, it is rumored that they intended to offer the L99 in Caprice wagons as well, though that didn't end up happening (keep in mind that in '93 you could buy a Caprice wagon with a 170HP 305, so it wouldn't have been an entirely unreasonable assumption that the L99 could have gone there). Another thing, when these rolled out in the fall of '93 they were likely intended to live longer than to the end of '96, the B/D-body death sentence wasn't handed down until early '95... when they saw how successful the new 4 door Tahoe/Yukon were and, weighed against declining sales of these cruisers, they decided to annex the Arlington assembly plant for additional truck capacity.

FWIW, The 267 Chevy V8 from '79-'82 was advertised as a 4.4 liter, while the 260 Olds and the 265 Pontiac were listed as 4.3 liters in any literature I have ever seen from those years. My '81 Bonneville has the 2-year only Pontiac 265. At 120HP It's slow, but feels surprisingly decent both around town and on the highway, of course, the car only weighs around 3,500 lbs despite its outward appearance looking like it would be more.

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FWIW, The 267 Chevy V8 from '79-'82 was advertised as a 4.4 liter, while the 260 Olds and the 265 Pontiac were listed as 4.3 liters in any literature I have ever seen from those years. My '81 Bonneville has the 2-year only Pontiac 265. At 120HP It's slow, but feels surprisingly decent both around town and on the highway, of course, the car only weighs around 3,500 lbs despite its outward appearance looking like it would be more.

Thanks for the info. That's right, the literature had that smallish V8 as a 4.4 litre.

Yes, Grand Le Mans to Bonneville "Model G" on G-body 4-door platform for a couple of years. With the right seating, those were nice. Shared the GP dashboard as well. So, that engine (4.3 265) ran for 80-81 only.

Back to original topic, so this newer 4.3 is from scratch, more or less, to be in the same family as that newer 5.7... I think that this engine is cast-iron block and head. I was thinking this Caprice/Impala was of the more appealing notchback sedan variety (previous gen), but it turns out it was the "funnier" rounded RWD one which many police fleets used.

Edited by trinacriabob

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<!--quoteo(post=374749:date=Mar 8 2008, 12:37 AM:name=moltar)--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(moltar @ Mar 8 2008, 12:37 AM) 374749[/snapback]</div><div class='quotemain'><!--quotec-->There's a few other obscure small displacement V8s I was barely aware of--the Chevy 262 of '75-76 and 267 of '79-82, Pontiac's 265 in '80-81, and Olds' 260 of '75-82.<!--QuoteEnd--></div><!--QuoteEEnd-->

And for some reason I remember all of those, but not this one. <img src="http://www.cheersandgears.com/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/blink.gif" style="vertical-align:middle" emoid=":blink:" border="0" alt="blink.gif" />

If it were an obscure Caddy or BOP V8 I wouldn't feel so bad about it, but for me to miss a Chevy V8 is bizarre.

There was a ton of them produced! They even used them in the basic 9C1 Police package, unless the "pursuit" 5.7L

engine was specified.

They were the basic V-8 in all the "B" bodies, that had V-8s in the '94-'96 era.

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oh.... my bad, I guess it was 265 not 267.

I think I got all the other stuff right.

The wholesale car dealer who had this one is a wicked cool guy.

He's owned many a hi-po Buick, his and his bro. are HARDCORE

Buick guys, between them they've owned many a 1960s/early

1970s A-body GS, a few ragtops/rare option codes, a '70 GSX,

'87 Grand National.... Now that Buicks are lame and lack any

RWD product Kenny is a Chevy guy as far as his non-classics,

back in spring of 2003 he bought a brand new Z06 and he was at

New England Dragway one Wednesday night while I was drag

racing my '68 Camaro.

he had about 300 miles on the car at that point. <img src="http://www.cheersandgears.com/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/spin.gif" style="vertical-align:middle" emoid=":spin:" border="0" alt="spin.gif" />

Remember my '94 Buick Roadmaster Estate?

I bought that off of Kenny. He's always got a few B-bodies kicking

around for cheap $$$, he usually drives a Chevy pickup of some

sort for a daily driver in bad weather/winter months.

It was not an LT1 with that displacement. That engine had the code designation of L99!

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There was a ton of them produced! They even used them in the basic 9C1 Police package, unless the "pursuit" 5.7L

engine was specified.

They were the basic V-8 in all the "B" bodies, that had V-8s in the '94-'96 era.

Ah.....

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Every time I see a Caprice from the mid-90s, I wonder if it is outfitted with the 4.3L V8. It might be nice to find one in perfect condition to put around in as a "second car." Wait, I already have a second car.

They are EPA rated at about 26 or 27 mpg, only a couple of mpg less than my Regal. However, there are few sounds sweeter than those of a small-block GM V8, which also occupies Ward's List of Top 10 Engines of all time.

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My buddy owned several 94-96 Caprices as he loves those cars to death. One needed the Opti-spark system replaced and his 96 needed the very common mass flow air sensor by pass done to keep it from being contaminated. My 96 LT1 in fact also needed this done. These cars had a few odd quirks such as front tires that would wear uneven, the MAF problem and Opti-spark issues and the 4L60 tranny didn't always last much more than 100-120k miles without needing a rebuild. The door panals were creeky plastic and the steering column would loosen up after time with clunkiness. Another famous issue with these cars was the stop leak tablets that GM saw fit to put in these cars at the time. This of course caused the heater cores to become blocked up and a no heat condition in Winter driving. The fix was to power flush the heater core and entire cooling system and replacing the t-stat.

Back in the 70's and early 80's GM had a slew of small V8 engines. The first was the 1975 4.3 liter 262 2 BBL V8 that made 110 HP. This engine was installed in some Novas and Monzas as was meant to be an economical V8 choice after the first fuel crisis in 1973. It lasted for two model years only and was later replaced by Chevys 4.4 liter 267 2 BBL V8 in 1979 that made 125 HP. This engine was installed in many Monte Carlos, Malibus and Elcaminos and was again a more economical choice for buyers insisting on a V8 engine. The 267 was also produced in 1980 where it was detuned to 120 HP, in 1981 and 82 where is was further detuned to only 115 HP. From 1980- 1982 it was offered in the mid size cars and also expanded to the Camaro and Caprice Classic. Due to a slowly settling economy, lower gas prices, relaxed mileage CAFE standards and a slight renewed interest in performance the 267 was dropped from the lineup and the 305 4 BBL took over as the top V8 option in all but the new Vette which would debut as a 1984 model with the Cross Fire 350 engine.

Olds also introduced there little 4.3 liter 260 2 BBL V8 in 1975 in answer to the first oil Embargo.It was a smaller bore lighter weight version of the 350 Rocket. This engine made it's way into Omegas and Cutlass Supremes with a HP rating of 110. The 260 lasted until 1982 and was offered on Cutlass and 88 models. Sadly with the adaption of the C4 computer system and strict emissions it was rated at a pathetic 100 HP at a very low 3600 RPM's which translated into ok low end torque and virtually no highway passing power, especially in the heavier 88 B-body! The 307 4 BBL took over in 1983 with 40 more HP.

Not to be outdone Pontiac also got in on the small V8 scene with there own 4.3 liter 265 2 BBL V8 in 1980 which was just a small bore version of the divisions 301 engine. It put out 120 HP and was offered in the Bonnevilles, GP's, LeMans and Firebird cars. It lasted only two model years and was canceled in April of 1981 when GM made the decision to go corporate and dropped both Pontiac and Buick made V8 engines.

The problem with all of these engines was the terrible rear end gears GM installed with them to get the mileage up and the highway revs down. This of course made the engines with there reduced outputs feel sluggish and logy so one sure fire way to improve performance with any of these baby V8's is to upgrade your rear gears to a 3.08-3.23 cog. I knew a few guys with 1977 Omegas with the little 260. They swapped out the 2 BBL intakes to 4 BBL, upgraded to 3.23 rear ends, re- curved there distributers, stuck in a hotter cam and dual exhausts and the difference was nothing short of amazing giving me a new found respect for these peanut V8 engines.

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My buddy owned several 94-96 Caprices as he loves those cars to death. One needed the Opti-spark system replaced and his 96 needed the very common mass flow air sensor by pass done to keep it from being contaminated. My 96 LT1 in fact also needed this done. These cars had a few odd quirks such as front tires that would wear uneven, the MAF problem and Opti-spark issues and the 4L60 tranny didn't always last much more than 100-120k miles without needing a rebuild. The door panals were creeky plastic and the steering column would loosen up after time with clunkiness. Another famous issue with these cars was the stop leak tablets that GM saw fit to put in these cars at the time. This of course caused the heater cores to become blocked up and a no heat condition in Winter driving. The fix was to power flush the heater core and entire cooling system and replacing the t-stat.

Back in the 70's and early 80's GM had a slew of small V8 engines. The first was the 1975 4.3 liter 262 2 BBL V8 that made 110 HP. This engine was installed in some Novas and Monzas as was meant to be an economical V8 choice after the first fuel crisis in 1973. It lasted for two model years only and was later replaced by Chevys 4.4 liter 267 2 BBL V8 in 1979 that made 125 HP. This engine was installed in many Monte Carlos, Malibus and Elcaminos and was again a more economical choice for buyers insisting on a V8 engine. The 267 was also produced in 1980 where it was detuned to 120 HP, in 1981 and 82 where is was further detuned to only 115 HP. From 1980- 1982 it was offered in the mid size cars and also expanded to the Camaro and Caprice Classic. Due to a slowly settling economy, lower gas prices, relaxed mileage CAFE standards and a slight renewed interest in performance the 267 was dropped from the lineup and the 305 4 BBL took over as the top V8 option in all but the new Vette which would debut as a 1984 model with the Cross Fire 350 engine.

Olds also introduced there little 4.3 liter 260 2 BBL V8 in 1975 in answer to the first oil Embargo.It was a smaller bore lighter weight version of the 350 Rocket. This engine made it's way into Omegas and Cutlass Supremes with a HP rating of 110. The 260 lasted until 1982 and was offered on Cutlass and 88 models. Sadly with the adaption of the C4 computer system and strict emissions it was rated at a pathetic 100 HP at a very low 3600 RPM's which translated into ok low end torque and virtually no highway passing power, especially in the heavier 88 B-body! The 307 4 BBL took over in 1983 with 40 more HP.

Not to be outdone Pontiac also got in on the small V8 scene with there own 4.3 liter 265 2 BBL V8 in 1980 which was just a small bore version of the divisions 301 engine. It put out 120 HP and was offered in the Bonnevilles, GP's, LeMans and Firebird cars. It lasted only two model years and was canceled in April of 1981 when GM made the decision to go corporate and dropped both Pontiac and Buick made V8 engines.

The problem with all of these engines was the terrible rear end gears GM installed with them to get the mileage up and the highway revs down. This of course made the engines with there reduced outputs feel sluggish and logy so one sure fire way to improve performance with any of these baby V8's is to upgrade your rear gears to a 3.08-3.23 cog. I knew a few guys with 1977 Omegas with the little 260. They swapped out the 2 BBL intakes to 4 BBL, upgraded to 3.23 rear ends, re- curved there distributers, stuck in a hotter cam and dual exhausts and the difference was nothing short of amazing giving me a new found respect for these peanut V8 engines.

Correct sir on the 260 V8:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTIYh9A8QF0&feature=player_embedded#!

In reference to the Caprice 4.3 liter V8:

I have the brochure in my house:

It was a 4300 V8 with sequential port fuel injection rated at 200 hp. It was standard on all Caprices in 1994. It was not offered on the wagon in 1995 and 1996.

ENGINES 4.3L V8

Type OHV V8

Bore x Stroke 95.0 x 76.2 mm

(3.74 x 3.00")

Displacement 4343 cc (265 cu.in.)

Compression Ratio 9.4:1

Fuel, Recommended Regular Unleaded

Fuel Induction Sequential F.I.

Horsepower 200 hp @ 5200 rpm

240 lb.-ft. @ 2400 rpm

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ENGINES 4.3L V8

Displacement 4343 cc (265 cu.in.)

power 200 hp @ 5200 rpm

240 lb.-ft. @ 2400 rpm

same power numbers as the 3.8, series 2...yes, not the same rpm. but still modernize it and you get what...maybe 330hp, 290lbft?

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Easy way to tell if your B body has the Lt1 or L99. LT1 had dual exhaust, L99 single exhaust. Also LT1 required premium gas while L99 used regular.

L99 felt like a gutless wonder until it got wound up then it took off.

4.3 V6 was an option in these cars ONLY for fleet usage.

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Easy way to tell if your B body has the Lt1 or L99. LT1 had dual exhaust, L99 single exhaust. Also LT1 required premium gas while L99 used regular.

L99 felt like a gutless wonder until it got wound up then it took off.

4.3 V6 was an option in these cars ONLY for fleet usage.

My '95 LT1 didn't call for special gas... and never had anything but 87. I think that it the Vettes or F-bodys thing that required premium.

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Easy way to tell if your B body has the Lt1 or L99. LT1 had dual exhaust, L99 single exhaust. Also LT1 required premium gas while L99 used regular.

L99 felt like a gutless wonder until it got wound up then it took off.

4.3 V6 was an option in these cars ONLY for fleet usage.

I don't think the B-body LT-1s required premium.

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A small displacement "Small Block" is not really a good idea.

Not that a small displacement V8 is necessarily a bad thing, but the small block's 111.76 mm bore center is really better suited to something around 5.5~7.0 liters, not 4.0~5.0 liters. The 4.3 had a 95 mm bore, that's almost 17mm of metal between each cylinder. This is completely unnecessary for strength. It also makes the engine unnecessarily big and heavy (a lot of useless metal) for a 4.3 V8. If the idea is to create a 4.3 V8, a 102 mm (same as Northstar) or 103mm (same as 3.6 HF V6) will be a better choice. These will yield a smaller and lighter engine. Make a small block displace that few cubic inches, is like deboring and destroking a 3.6 V6 to 2.4 liters. You'll end up with a 2.4 liter engine that is heavier and no smaller than the 3.6 while making less power and torque.

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An old friend of mine had one in his 95 Caprice. It worked well and gave great fuel efficiency. It was smooth and superior to the earlier 5.0L V8 in feel and sound.

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Guest william lasater

i have 1 and i am very happy with the with it. I have a 1994 caprice and i'am the 3 oner.

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Heh. Remember the Olds 260 "Baby Rocket" V8? :)

I was always amazed at the Ford 221 V8 that came out 1962-ish. That particular mill always seemed happier in 289 or 302 guise.

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A small displacement "Small Block" is not really a good idea.

Not that a small displacement V8 is necessarily a bad thing, but the small block's 111.76 mm bore center is really better suited to something around 5.5~7.0 liters, not 4.0~5.0 liters. The 4.3 had a 95 mm bore, that's almost 17mm of metal between each cylinder. This is completely unnecessary for strength. It also makes the engine unnecessarily big and heavy (a lot of useless metal) for a 4.3 V8. If the idea is to create a 4.3 V8, a 102 mm (same as Northstar) or 103mm (same as 3.6 HF V6) will be a better choice. These will yield a smaller and lighter engine. Make a small block displace that few cubic inches, is like deboring and destroking a 3.6 V6 to 2.4 liters. You'll end up with a 2.4 liter engine that is heavier and no smaller than the 3.6 while making less power and torque.

They came pretty close to that when they made the 2.8 HF

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Small is not always better, The Mazda K8 V6 1.8L comes to mind with it's numb numbers of 144hp with 115lb-ft of torque and 7000 red line. Personally this was a cool engine for how small it was but showed that more is not always better in the cylinder count.

I would think we could find the perfect sweet spot for the size of 4, 6 and 8 cylinder engines.

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From my farming experience, I know that cylinder count isn't always better, and is in fact sometimes worse when considering more heavy duty applications like tractors used for tilling ground. Back in the 1960s-70s, some manufacturers began installing V8 diesel engines in tractors. In most cases, they were large displacement mills (the Cummins 555 and 903 CID V8s come to mind here). At the same time, other manufacturers stuck with large displacement, inline six diesels (Cummins had an 855 CID six, and I remember John Deere's 619 CID six as well). From my experience, the V8s put out their rated horsepower at a higher RPM than their six-cylinder counterparts (something like 2800 RPM vs. 2100 RPM), and they also lacked the lugging ability of the sixes (torque curve was peakier, maybe, or the torque rise wasn't there). I remember operating a big Versatile 4X4 tractor powered by the 903 V8 circa 1975; the thing would bog down a lot more easily than a Steiger tractor with the 855 Cummins six. I don't claim this is any kind of scientific analysis; it's just my experience from back in the day...

Edited by NeonLX

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Guest Heavychevy

I just bought a 96 caprice classic with a 4.3 v8 and did a little digging, its externally identical to the lt1 except the bore and stroke are different. It was standard option 94-96 (four larger v8s were optional). Wikipedia.

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Guest michael wright

I own a 1996 chevy caprice with the 4.3 V8 and love it i have 165742 miles on it and still runs strong

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Guest Guest

I have a 77 caprice coupe but im having issues with my 96 caprice 9c1 (ex cop car ditectives unit) with the 4.3l i just bought it at 88 thousand miles.

Seems to run well but I had dual exhaust added,straight duals no cats to flowmasters and now after a few weeks it's idling very high but only under load,

If I'm at the lights on the break it's pulling forwards if I slip in to nuteral it revs up for a few seconds then levels out to a normal idle

Just wondering if anyone thinks these problems could be related to the exhaust change?

Also with these changes do I need to reprogram the computer?

Thx to any one that can help

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Guest Sharman

I have a friend who has that exact motor in a 94 caprice. It really is a baby Lt1 which is in my 96 caprice...I think most of those cars went to the police, but it wasn't stripped of the door panels, rubber'd floor, and lights..just used as a detective or officer's car...

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Guest Bob O

I have never been able to understand why auto companies have a good thing going and then abandon it. If it aint broke don't fix it rarely applies for some reason. Do they WANT to lose money and business ? Reliable with great gas mileage doesn't get old. You would think they actually believe buyers prefer unreliable gas hogs.

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Guest Robbie

Ive got one I swapped into a S-10. Has a stock 5.7 camaro cam, headers, megasquirt is running the fuel...Optispark is crap..drilled a hole in the intake and put in a short distributor. Ready for some boost :)

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Guest brandon

OK....so I'm flipping through some old C&D rags and in the 10-93 issue, highlighting the "1994 New Cars" there was an article in the Technical Highlights section talking about GM's new "baby" LT1 variant....a 4.3L version that would be the base Caprice Classic engine along with the optional 5.7L LT1....

Does anyone remember this engine? I don't even remember it existing.....and surprised we didn't see it in other applications (might it have fit tranversly in a GM-10 of the time??)

Here's how the two engines compared:

4.3L, SFI V8 (5.7L SFI V8)

200 hp (260 hp)

245 lb/ft torque (335 lb/ft torque)

Let me know if you know anything about it...!

i actually have a 1995 caprice classic, and yes it has a 4.3 v8 also knows as "the baby ls1"

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Guest seth

I run the 4.3 in my 1994 caprice classic sleeper with a mild cam valve springs and stall along with 4.11 rear gears and a custom ecm tune it leaves mustangs at the line wondering how a 4100 pound boat just smoked them. Prefur the torque curve of the 4.3 over the 5.7 it seems too pull threw the high side of gears better

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Guest William C Murphy

In 1982 I ordered through a Pontiac Buick dealer in Ontario Canada a 1982 Pontiac Grand Prix LJ or SJ with a v/8 gas engine, and it was a 267 cu.in. displa.

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Guest craig

the crank would be perfect in a 350 hydraulic roller block to build a 302, add a turbo or two...

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Guest Bdover

I bought two caprice classics a few months back. One is a 94 and the other a 95. They both have the 4.3 L99 in them. I sold the 95 because of body condition and have been restoring the 94. 156,000 miles and that little v8 runs like a top and since putting true dual exhaust and bullet mufflers on has a little get up and go to it. I'm getting ready to put a stage 3 performance chip system in it that supposedly will give me an extra 100 lbs ft torque and 40-60 more horse. I'm curious to see how she performs afterward but overall am impressed with the baby LT1 already and had my doubts when buying them.

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Guest Keno

I have a 94 Chevy caprice classic with the 4.3 and I was trying to see how can get mores horsepower

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I highly recommend Jet Chips. They really give GM small Blocks some amazing improvements over OEM Chips.

http://jetchip.com/

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Guest JT Lambert

I think ya'll are missing ,that GM shaved two cylinders off of an LT1 V8 and made a bonzi 4.3L LT1 V6.Guess who used it......GMC in the CYCLONE and another model.Both models were AWD.They were turboed and well over 400hp with scads of torque.

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Guest 95 4.3 Caprice

GM did make a 4.3L. V8. I happened to own a 1995 Chevy Caprice with that engine its ok for everyday driving but as far as raw power and torque it doesn't have that the only time you may spin a tire is in loose dirt or wet pavement.

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4.3 was also sedan only, all Caprice Wagons from 94-96 came with the LT1.  I had a 96 Caprice LT1 and a 96 Roadmaster LT1, miss them both.

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Guest Andrew

I'm picking up an 86 Monte Carlo that has this exact motor in it. 4.3 EFI V8. It's a pretty engine, and even rarer swap, but it does exist. 

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I think ya'll are missing ,that GM shaved two cylinders off of an LT1 V8 and made a bonzi 4.3L LT1 V6.Guess who used it......GMC in the CYCLONE and another model.Both models were AWD.They were turboed and well over 400hp with scads of torque.

 

Yes GMC use their Turbo V6 in both the Syclone and the Typhone. Syclone was the awd pickup truck and Typhone was the compact awd SUV.

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I think ya'll are missing ,that GM shaved two cylinders off of an LT1 V8 and made a bonzi 4.3L LT1 V6.Guess who used it......GMC in the CYCLONE and another model.Both models were AWD.They were turboed and well over 400hp with scads of torque.

 

 

No. They were not well over 400HP.

 

And the 4.3L was not based off the LT1. The 4.3L V-6 came out in 1985. The same year as the L98

 

There was no LT1 in 1985 to base the 4.3L Vortec off of.

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I think ya'll are missing ,that GM shaved two cylinders off of an LT1 V8 and made a bonzi 4.3L LT1 V6.Guess who used it......GMC in the CYCLONE and another model.Both models were AWD.They were turboed and well over 400hp with scads of torque.

 

 

No. They were not well over 400HP.

 

And the 4.3L was not based off the LT1. The 4.3L V-6 came out in 1985. The same year as the L98

 

There was no LT1 in 1985 to base the 4.3L Vortec off of.

 

The Syclone was rated at 280HP 350 pounds of torque. 

 

The Typhoon was 280hp 360 pounds of torque.

 

Yet with aftermarket parts they could go over 800hp.

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Guest Travis

I own a 94 caprice classic the 4.3 v8 is very real that's what came in mine factory very reliable motors...and actually have some power for bein so small displacement and a heavy car...

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Guest Travis

I run the 4.3 in my 1994 caprice classic sleeper with a mild cam valve springs and stall along with 4.11 rear gears and a custom ecm tune it leaves mustangs at the line wondering how a 4100 pound boat just smoked them. Prefur the torque curve of the 4.3 over the 5.7 it seems too pull threw the high side of gears better

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Guest Travisk1987

I own a 94 caprice classic with the 4.3 v8 very reliable mptor & has good power considering the size of car & how small motor is...

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Guest Travisk1987@gmail.com

OK....so I'm flipping through some old C&D rags and in the 10-93 issue, highlighting the "1994 New Cars" there was an article in the Technical Highlights section talking about GM's new "baby" LT1 variant....a 4.3L version that would be the base Caprice Classic engine along with the optional 5.7L LT1....

Does anyone remember this engine? I don't even remember it existing.....and surprised we didn't see it in other applications (might it have fit tranversly in a GM-10 of the time??)

Here's how the two engines compared:

4.3L, SFI V8 (5.7L SFI V8)

200 hp (260 hp)

245 lb/ft torque (335 lb/ft torque)

Let me know if you know anything about it...!

i actually have a 1995 caprice classic, and yes it has a 4.3 v8 also knows as "the baby ls1"

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OK....so I'm flipping through some old C&D rags and in the 10-93 issue, highlighting the "1994 New Cars" there was an article in the Technical Highlights section talking about GM's new "baby" LT1 variant....a 4.3L version that would be the base Caprice Classic engine along with the optional 5.7L LT1....

Does anyone remember this engine? I don't even remember it existing.....and surprised we didn't see it in other applications (might it have fit tranversly in a GM-10 of the time??)

Here's how the two engines compared:

4.3L, SFI V8 (5.7L SFI V8)

200 hp (260 hp)

245 lb/ft torque (335 lb/ft torque)

Let me know if you know anything about it...!

i actually have a 1995 caprice classic, and yes it has a 4.3 v8 also knows as "the baby ls1"

 

Yup the family had a couple of these, all retired and long gone but was a solid baby V8

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Guest bill

I on one i drive everyday it a good car they also put that motor in fire birds and cameos has good torque and good top end speed

 love my caprice its a 1994 model

  

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I on one i drive everyday it a good car they also put that motor in fire birds and cameos has good torque and good top end speed

 love my caprice its a 1994 model

 

 

The 4.3L L99 was never available in a Camaro or Firebird 

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Guest Oltomkat

I actually have one. Put it in my CJ7. It does great.

 

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Guest carguy

It was produced. A friend of mine had one and it was very smooth but not very powerful yet a far better engine then the previous 305CI 5.0L V8 in the Caprice. Like the first SB V8 it was 4.3L's and 265CI!

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Guest Christopher Taylor

Is this LT1 being used today? And in which models?

No. This is based on the original reverse flow cooling SB Chevrolet V8. Todays SB V8 is very different. They reuse names every 25 or so years for the performance versions of the SB V8.

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It's funny that this thread recently woke up again.

A B-O-P service adviser told me about this engine.  It was in a Chevy they sold on their used car lot and they then had to service it.  He couldn't believe it either.

At any rate, I then became interested in these 4.3 units, seeing how much I liked the Olds spin on their V8 (theirs was a debored Rocket 350 back in the day).  That one was known for its quiet operation and longevity.  So, I found a few on used Caprices of '94 to '96 vintage on used car lots with this engine.  Upon turning the key, this engine has a beautiful purr (nicer than any 5.0 or 5.7 I can remember) but I didn't want to drive it because I knew I wouldn't be buying it.  With a serpentine belt and electric fan(s), this thing set up as RWD is a mechanic's dream.  

I've even talked to a few owners.  They love their Caprices of these years.  One was a Kentuckian who had taken it down to Florida for vacation.  It had about 300,000 original miles on it and he told me he can break past 25 mpg on the open road.

I don't think I'll ever do the second car thing again.  However, if I did, this would be it.  I've looked at EBay and other sites.  It's hard to find one in a nice color, in good shape, with cloth seats (leather has all these cracks after all this time), and reasonable mileage.

I know that their 80's 4.4 displaced 267 cubes.  I think cubic inches had fallen out of favor by the time this engine rolled around.  It would be interesting to know how many c.i.s it displaced.

 

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More info:  L 99 - displaced 263 c.i. - born of the Chevy 5.0 L / 305 c.i. - no change in bore but change in stroke - 200 h.p., even, and very good torque - over 25 mpg on highway EPA rating - only produced for 3 years and for the sedan (not the wagon), so not an omnipresent engine in the Chevrolet stable.  Very interesting, at least to me.

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94, 95 and 96 Caprice ONLY. Go to Rockauto.com and look them up, they are there. They are an L99 and they are NOT the same as the MONZA engine. The MONZA had a different bore and stroke. The L99 has a 3 inch stroke, same as the 283 and chevy 302. As a matter of fact, you can take the crank and put it in a 350 block and you'll have a true chevy 302 just like in 1969 except it will have the one piece rear main seal. Just make sure you use the L99 connecting rods with whatever 350 pistons you want. That's all Chevrolet did, they put a 283 crank in a 4 inch bore block and made a 302. A Ford 302 is the same bore and stroke as well. 

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On 1/1/2018 at 5:27 AM, liketowin77 said:

94, 95 and 96 Caprice ONLY. Go to Rockauto.com and look them up, they are there. They are an L99 and they are NOT the same as the MONZA engine. The MONZA had a different bore and stroke.

Every once in a while, I go onto eBay or craigslist and look for these Caprices ... in base form and with the 4.3 liter V8.  If you think they come by cheaply, they don't.  Far from it.  What you'll see is one that is in dire straits and on its last legs sitting in a corn field in a small town in southern Illinois where there are fewer teeth in the town than there are cubic inches in the engine, and they're asking $795 or less, and it has been sitting there for a long time, looking like the Andrea Doria accumulating plankton.  Then, you'll see one in immaculate condition with 60,000 miles and they want anywhere from $5,500 to $7,000.

Within the past 4 months, I was at a light next to one.  I rolled down the window and so did the passenger.  It was burgundy, had whitewalls, factory spoke wheels, and a burgundy leather interior.  The husband beamed that it had less than 45,000 miles.  I asked which engine it had.  The wife, the passenger, looked at her husband and he said it had a V8.   I knew that.  The light changed, so I couldn't ask more questions nor ask if he'd sell it.  I'm betting it had the 5.7 liter V8.

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On 1/7/2016 at 5:26 PM, FordCosworth said:

 

 

No. They were not well over 400HP.

 

And the 4.3L was not based off the LT1. The 4.3L V-6 came out in 1985. The same year as the L98

 

There was no LT1 in 1985 to base the 4.3L Vortec off of.

 

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1978
 
The 4.3L Chevy V6 is among the strongest of production V6's ever produced, especially in its later versions. It was first produced in 1978 and that design stemmed from the 1955 Chevy Small Block V8.
 

The Novak Guide to the Chevrolet Small Block V6 Engine

Had Several ofn these cars, during my quest for one of them, I came across a 1994 (this was in 2006) former NYC police car, former NYC taxi, 557,000 miles. With regular maintenance, these were tough cars.

 
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I remember the 4.3L V6 debuting in 1985, but Chevrolet first V6 based on the small block V8 was a 200 cubic inch version that debuted in the downsized 1978 Malibu.  It was upsized to 3.8L in 1980  229 cubic inches (full size cars still had the 250 inline six as standard for 1977 through 1979), which was standard in the full size models and then upsized again in 1985 to 4.3L.  I remember having driver's training in a late 70's Malibu with the 3.3.  It could barely go up a hill. 

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Posted (edited)
On 8/2/2020 at 1:43 PM, ehaase said:

I remember the 4.3L V6 debuting in 1985, but Chevrolet first V6 based on the small block V8 was a 200 cubic inch version that debuted in the downsized 1978 Malibu.  It was upsized to 3.8L in 1980  229 cubic inches (full size cars still had the 250 inline six as standard for 1977 through 1979), which was standard in the full size models and then upsized again in 1985 to 4.3L.  I remember having driver's training in a late 70's Malibu with the 3.3.  It could barely go up a hill. 

A lot of good facts here and with all the low 3 liter V6s and 4.3s in both V6 and V8 form, it's easy to get them confused and/or forget them.

I had forgotten.  There was a 3.3 V6 in the downsized Malibu because, that same year, they put out a 3.2 V6 (196 c.i.) for equivalent Buick products, such as the Regal and the Century.  I knew someone who had this engine in a hand-me down in a 2-door Regal, and he said it was reliable, economical, but had no oomph.

It was great that Chevy's downsized full-sizes kept the inline 6 because the engine bay had room for it.  I believe 231s were available in the BOP full-size base cars.  I think, in that era, I'd opt for the inline 6 over the 231.

I don't know what the 4.4 V8 was based on, which was also found in Malibus and Monte Carlos.

4.3s by Chevrolet can be confusing, since they made them as V6s and V8s.  Both were excellent engines. 

The 4.3 V6 (Vortec) was sliced off from a Chevy 350.  Who'd have thought that this engine was a slam dunk for 300,000 miles?  A few Astro van drivers have told me that their 4.3s would not give up the ghost.  I think that, in that era, the 4.3 V6 (~ 262 c.i.) with simple TBI was better than the 231 c.i. V6, even if the 231 had gone even firing.  And, yes, it showed up in the 1985 MY model year.  I had the opportunity to drive a RWD Monte Carlo (bucket seats and console!) coupe with that engine in the NYC area and the extra ~ 30 hp (if I recall) came in handy for short ramps and getting out of the gate after paying a bridge toll.

The 4.3 V8 was a de-bored 5.0 (305 c.i.) V8.  It showed up for the 1994 MY in RWD form but only stuck around for a few years.  If in excellent condition, the purr that they make is music to the ears.  It also can go the distance ... just hope the Optispark ignition control doesn't give out, which can be costly.  For some reason, the smaller GM V8s have nice, quiet exhaust notes and I like quiet running cars.

Also, in the late '70s, Chevy had some batches of 305s and 350s that had premature camshaft wear problems.  I knew a few people who had problems with them.  That definitely skewed me towards Olds designed V8s.  However, with all of that behind them, I would gladly drive a car powered by the L99 engine (4.3 Chevy V8) that the thread discusses.

 

Edited by trinacriabob
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