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Mercury Marine Corvette engine


Anyone know Mercury Marine built a Corvette engine back in 1985? It set a bunch of records. Article link below.


https://autoweek.com/article/car-life/merc-powered-corvette-zr-1-featured-mercury-marine-museum

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    PickleRickPickleRick Member Posts: 3,920 ✭✭✭✭✭
    The only one i know of was the 327.  The numbers matched the vett assembly line.  I think they were direct pull offs, required closed loop cooling iirc as they had standard freeze plugs and head gaskets.

    The distributor and electronics were all switched to marine.


    I dont know about any records set as a 5.7 was more torque and horse power.  The cam wasn't impressive because it was just a standard marine acceptable cam, similar to a truck/rv cam.  Im not sure if the stock vette cams back then would have sucked in water or not.  

    Im willing to bet it was done because of gm union strikes in 70s, boat manufacturer's needed motors.  Saying it was a vett motor made it sound fast.  Same reason the trans am got am olds motor but without any vette assembly line bragging rights.  Sales men probably set records with selling under powered boats for a higher mark up because of the source of the motor.  

    This was from before my time but i once looked at buying an old Thompson fly bridge with twin inboard "vette" motors. 70s vintage.  Really needed big blocks or at least 5.7s.  Inboards need all they power they can get.  Beautiful old boat but needed a loan for enough fuel to leave a dock.

    I also owned a 79 trans am with an olds 403.  Was equally unimpressive.




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    Black_DiamondBlack_Diamond Member Posts: 5,439 ✭✭✭✭✭
    That 6.6l was a dog. As were most cars in the 70’s and 80’s. Did you have the screaming chicken on the hood?

    Past owner of a 2003 342FV
    PC BYC, Holland, MI
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    mattiemattie Member Posts: 1,264 ✭✭✭✭
    edited March 2020
    Absolutely remember it well. 1988.

    My Dad bought a new vette in 88. I remember he paid $44K CDN for it. Crazy amount of money at the time. Think the ZR1 375hp LT5 was an extra $22K option. 

    The motor was a collaboration deal. Merc & GM. Lots of aluminum parts. Double overhead cam?? Can’t remember the deets.

    Edit:
    1989 - engine designed by Lotus
    all aluminum 5.7L V8
    First & only 32 valve corvette engine, dual overhead cams, 4 valves per cyl.
    Chevrolet chose Mercruiser because of experience working with aluminum.
    95% of LT5 drilling, boring & machining done by Merc.



    246BR, 276BR, H310BR current
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    mattiemattie Member Posts: 1,264 ✭✭✭✭
    FYI
    GM marine small block V8’s that were used from 1967-1986 were all 283ci, 327ci or 305ci versions.

    Pretty sure of the above info anyway.



    246BR, 276BR, H310BR current
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    PickleRickPickleRick Member Posts: 3,920 ✭✭✭✭✭
    By i think 1973 or 1974 the emissions had made all GM and affiliated engines a dog.  Low compression, low hp, gutless heavy motors.  I think my 403 was rated at 170hp.  I looked into putting on older higher compression heads but i was in highshool with a highshool budget, i was lucky to afford a paint job, gear change from 2:41 to 3:73 and rebuilt the th350.  I had purchased a 1970 Pontiac 400 block for a good deal, had it bored/honed but never started the build by the time i sold.  

    My 79 trans am was silver with a huge red bird and shaker hood scoop.

    The Pontiac 400/455 up til that point was impressive.  

    The 80s saw improvements but wasn't until the 96 plus vortec that they got good again, and great with the LS engines. 
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