Six cylinders?

Would you build a car with six cylinders?  What I mean is, would you build a classic car with just a six cylinder engine, and not a V8?

I am not talking about a restoration with a stock six cylinder.  I am talking about a modified six cylinder.  Something like this:

There are actually more performance parts available for the old six cylinder engines than I realized.  Just goes to show, is there is a way to make a car faster, someone will do it.

The pluses, how many six cylinders do you see at a car show?  They also have a unique sound, and more room to work on the engine.

The downsides, you don’t have that V8 rumble, and parts are more expensive.  While I haven’t done the math, I think it is probably cheaper to swap in a V8 and make it go faster, than to do it with a six cylinder.

But then again, everyone does that.  I think it would be fun, and something different.  But then again, I think a lot of odd things would be fun and different, so nothing new there.

And high performance six cylinders are not anything new.  Chrysler developed a hyper pak for the slant six for a compact class in NASCAR for 1960.  The class died shortly after it was created, but it gave birth to the first high performance slant six.  I am not sure if there were any high performance versions of other six cylinders, but you can get the parts for them now.

Anyone out there have any thoughts on it?



Six cylinders? — 10 Comments

  1. I built a performance slant-6 engine when I bought a 1975 Plymouth Valiant 4-door from a breaker’s yard for € 450. I’ve made significant changes to the car but let’s stay on topic and talk about the engine. Here is my list ; Wiseco high-compression pistons (10,3 : 1), lighter connecting rods, a mild race cam from Comp Cams (necessitating an higher stall-speed torque converter), a ported, polished, gas-flowed cylinder head with larger valves and dual valve springs from Hemi Performance of Bilambil Australia, who also provided the equal-length runner intake manifold and tubular extractor. I’ve also installed a Street Fire ignition system, a 600cfm Edelbrock 4-barrel carburettor and a Magnaflow 2-1/4″ builder’s exhaust system. Cooling is with a Griffith Aluminium radiator and a Derale electric cooling fan. As a bonus, the car has a NOS nitro system. In summary, most performance parts are sourced from Australia or Summit Racing. Total cost ? My guess is about € 10,000. Performance isn’t cheap ; you’re right to suggest that installing a V8 would probably have been cheaper.

    I’ve made a world of changes to the car ; drive train (4-wheel disc brakes and coil-over suspension on all 4 corners), as well as cosmetically. But that’s another story.

    Trust this is of interest to you.

    • Although the V8 route is cheaper, it isn’t as unique. There is something fun about making something that wasn’t ever meant to go fast, go fast.

  2. Building an economy slant for a lil more performance also. The specs:
    Bigger bumpstick (270 duration, 440 lift? Dont have specs in front of me right now…)
    Back cut valves
    Hurricane equal length intake (from down under) & 500 holley
    Dual exhaust
    LOTS of port and polish time on head
    Shaved head for 9.3:1 comp

    Hopefully it’ll be a torquey lil motor (w/4.125 stroke it should be!) for under 2k

    Maybe I’ll toss in a lil shot of nitro if it ain’t enough!

    • With the undersquare setup of a slant six and that nice long stroke with a bump in compression, it should have great torque. With more airflow on the intake and exhaust it should make for a nice performance boost.

      Did you have a template for the porting, or just clearing out the restrictions?

      I would think with how tough a slant six is, it should take nicely to nitrous.

      • Gasket match, bowl blending, and knocking down the valve guides. I haven’t ever found a template,just went by others advice and what seemed logical.

        • Sounds like a good plan. I have read that 80+ percent of the gains are in the bowl area anyway. You will have to let me know how it turns out.

  3. The car was finished in july after 2 years of work. Of course, it needed some development after completion and I have a short list of tasks I want to finish, and then I’m done !

    • Are you ever really done with a car? It seems there is always something else to work on or tweak, but then again, isn’t that the fun?

      • No. Not really, even if one just washes and polishes the car once a week. But the big difference, is that one gets to drive it ! And bask in the looks and compliments ! One morning while driving to work on the A1 toward Geneva a Ferrari driver couldn’t help but stare. Sweet.

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