Walk up to any old-timer at a cruise-in at the local burger joint, and ask about the nastiest street engine they’ve ever seen. Chances are that you’ll hear tales of a rip-snortin, gear-drive-equipped, roots-blown big-block Chevrolet huffing through a pair of Dominator carbs that had zero street manners, but garnered the title of “street” engine because the owner was just cray-cray enough to pour gallons of race fuel into it and bring it out to cruise night back in the 80s.
Thanks to the adoption of centrifugal superchargers as a main source of motivation, real street cars are capable of putting down well over 1,000 and even 1,500 horsepower, yet still remain drivable nearly anywhere you want to go – and Steve Morris Engines is at the forefront of this movement.
Case in point? The insane 3,000 hp engines that Morris has become known for, like the one in Steven Neimentas’ Bentley across the pond, and Tom Bailey’s Sick Seconds Hot Rod Drag Week machine.
The lessons learned on projects like those have enabled Morris and his team to science out the specifics of milder engine combinations like the one in this video – as if nearly 1,500 horsepower can be considered low-power!
The 540-cube Dart-block, Dart 345-cc Pro 1 ported-head engine was brought to SME by customer Greg Czywczynski, who had the engine built elsewhere, had some issues with it, and ended up at SME to make use of their skill building and tuning engines like this one.
The blow-through-carbureted, non-intercooled combination makes use of an F-2 ProCharger in a side-slinger configuration, and is destined for street/strip use. Morris’ expertise with camshaft design, along with piston and connecting rod specifics and the company’s valvetrain enhancements have been put to work inside the engine.
Morris’ tuning skills are put to work in the dyno cell. Although Morris built a tuneup for both pump fuel and race fuel, with VP Racing Fuels‘ C-16 dino-juice in the fuel tank and 15 pounds of boost, the ProCharged BBC cranks out 1,454 horsepower at 7,600 rpm and 1,064 lb-ft torque at 6,900 rpm – and sounds hella-nasty in the process. Morris notes that the carburetor isn’t even the perfect unit for the combination and that the engine could make more power with dialed-in equipment on top.
Crank up the speakers and let your clicker-finger fly!