Joined: Nov 2016
The 289/302 smallblocks are amazing, given their physical size and weight, if you put good heads/cam/intake with them. Their only real limitation is block strength, once you take them around 500 horses, but if you go with an aftermarket block, that's not a problem either.
The 351, despite being heavier and a bit larger, holds even more potential. You can go well over 427 cubic inches with them, and it's pretty common to see them over 500 horsepower with the right supporting stuff.
Mod motors? Well, they're tough. I'll give 'em that. Weight-wise, they're comparable to a 351. But ye gods, they're absolutely massive! Despite their smallish displacement, they're wider than a 429!
Even if you wanted a drag car and don't care about handling, and your'e willing to carve out your shock towers, why not actually use a 460 (or bigger!) pushrod motor anyway? With those new John Kaase heads, you can even make it a Boss. If you don't care about mileage, there's not much limit to the power output on those things.
For any of the early cars that came with pushrod stuff, I have to say it makes more sense to stay pushrod, if you want to work on your own car. The fitment issues, and crummy Mustang II style front suspension you have to put in to use a mod motor doesn't make much sense to me.
My dream motor would be a 347 big-bore (4.125" bore, 3.25" stroke) aluminum block, with AFR heads, individual runner fuel injection and a mild cam. It'd be a blast on the track, but you could drive it anywhere, if you were able to keep your foot out of it. Pound for pound, it would be hard to find any other naturally aspirated engine that comes close.
I smile a lot. It makes people wonder what I'm up to...