• Jan 10, 2008
It used to be that American muscle cars were competing against themselves when it came to power. But rumor has it that, in the case of the Chevrolet ZR-1, the domestic horsepower war has a new international benchmark: the BMW M-division V10.

Word is that "German competition is driving the higher horsepower and torque numbers coming to the Corvette." Chevy engineers said that the new LS9 was created to "match up favorably" with the V10 found in the M5 and M6. The supercharged 6.2-liter LS9 has 620HP and 595 lb-ft of torque, with 535 lb-ft available from 2,600 RPM and a 6,200-RPM redline. The high-revving, naturally aspirated 5.0-liter V10 has 507 HP and 385 lb-ft of torque, and goes all the way up to 8,250-RPM.

It's good to see Chevrolet taking its cues from the best, no matter whether its domestic or international. Especially when it's applied to an engine created with a different philosophy (large-displacement, low-revving grunt) to go in a car with a vastly different purpose than the M5 or M6. BMW's S85 V10 has won at least two International Engine of the Year awards for three years straight, and the LS9 still needs to prove itself. In the mean time, the far more powerful LS9 can gloat that it gets better highway gas mileage: 20 MPG versus. the V10's 17. American ingenuity, +1.

[Source: The Car Connection]



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 75 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      +1 for BMW for not being a Chevy
      • 7 Years Ago
      1, the LS series does beat the M on all counts:

      a) it is a LIGHTER motor (although it has a higher displacement, it is lighter, which is ultimately what effects handling/packaging etc). it is about 50 lbs lighter fully laden so it terms of SPECIFIC VOLUMETRIC EFFECIENCY THE LS7 does fall short, however in terms of MASS EFFECIENCY which is far more important it wins out on the horsepower end and EVEN MORE so on the torque end

      b) it is a more compact motor without having the camshafts on the top of the engine. it makes the center of gravity lower. but it does rev lower but:

      c) it makes more torque throughout the range. horsepower measures more or less how effectively the torque can be utilized with gearing of a given car. you feel TORQUE you dont feel horsepower, power is something very arbitrary while TORQUE is what hits you. HOwever torque is combined with gearing. So a 200 lbft motor with 4.10 gears will accelerate HARDER than a 500 lbft motor with 1.00 gears. take a physics class if you don't believe me.

      d) they both have dry sump oiling, so that is a moot point

      e) both use high tech materials like magnesium and titanium, again a moot point.

      f) the BMW engine is perhaps smoother through the rev range, but it has far less usability in the real world. you probably could not launch it in top gear at 5mph while a corvette can without too much issue (again its a matter off torque)

      g) effeciency in terms of mpg: THINK ABOUT THE M3 which according to most sources is a REDUCED M V10, however the M3 is hit with the GAS GUZZLER TAX
      • 7 Years Ago
      this story/blog is pretty irrelevant. you're comparing a v8 that revs to 6k to a v10 that revs to 8k. what's the point? you may as well compare a nissan VQ to a honda f22

        • 7 Years Ago
        Exactly my thoughts, and, the LS9 has forced induction, and there is no subjective assessment of the actual engines in here (noise, smoothness, responsiveness etc)
        • 7 Years Ago
        wanted to add that comparing highway fuel economy in cars of different classes is not great analysis. especially when you are comparing a (relatively) light weight sports car to a midsize luxury sedan
      • 7 Years Ago
      Stick a large supercharger on the V10 and we may have a different story. As impressed as I am with the LS9 and its ability with the use of pushrods I still prefer the Idea of a 8500rpm V10
      • 7 Years Ago
      The DOHC engine design and execution is about 100 years old and the OHC design slightly older.

      The whole point to the original post is that the OHV LS engine line beats out a superb DOHC engine on so many levels. With CAFE mpg scores becoming so important onme wonders how such BMW engines can survive in the USA. Cadillac already has dropped all future plans for totally new V8 DOHC engines.

      On the road, a lighter, more fuel efficient, less expensive to build and maintain and more powerful engine like the LS is so much more useful. As an LS engine ages the rebuild cost will be so much less than any V10 DOHC!
      • 7 Years Ago
      LMFAO ! Comparing an american v8 to a engineering marvel of a BMW v10 is like comparing a good street ball player to a professional NBA player like Lebron James.

      C'mon guys lets be realistic here, this is an award winning V10 we are talking about not some pepboys crate engine.
        • 7 Years Ago
        I take it you are not even remotely familiar with the LS9, if you are refering to it as being a 'pepboys crate motor'.

        Arrogance is not becoming, nor is it a good cover for an obvious lack of knowledge of the subject at hand.
        • 7 Years Ago
        bert, that was the best, most appropriate comment i've read in weeks.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Maybe so, but I bet a lot of e92 m3 owners will be pissed come next year when they find out their M3s aren't quicker than midly modified 335i's which have full torque from like 1500 rpm. High rev motors like the BMW and Honda engines are great "engineering feats" but forced induction = win. The fact of the matter is forced induction gives the optimal balance of high rpm and low rpm punch.
      • 7 Years Ago
      i remember clarkson drove the z06 from a standstill to 160 in FIFTH gear

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LTuIf_5_bv4

      Pretty impressive but aimless party trick. Wonder what the ls9 can do? I don't know how an SMG gearbox on the M5 works. Will the computer won't let you pull off in fifth?

      Their is a supercharged version of the M5.
      Maybe this would be a fairer comparison to the LS9. It has more HP but less torque, so which is the better engine?

      http://www.carmagazine.co.uk/News/Search-Results/First-Official-Pictures/G-Power-Hurricane/?&R=EPI-5369

      • 7 Years Ago
      The LS9 engine is lighter than the BMW V10, but at equal displacement it would have a higher power output.

      If the BMW M V10 was a 6.2L motor:

      628 hp
      477 lb ft

      If the BMW M V10 was a 6.2L motor + Supercharger:

      You already know who will make the higher output.
        • 7 Years Ago
        and equal displacement matters how? You can't tell an engines displacement by looking at it, or driving it, so as big as the M motor is, it had might as well be a 7 liter engine. You can only tell physical size, c.g., power, torque, mpg, and LS7/9 win on all those accounts.

        Unless you take the engine apart to measure the cylinder displacement, specific output has no value.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Or if you are taxed or restricted on displacement. IMHO, this is what drove OHC engine development in Europe. Many countries used to tax on displacement alone. Some countries like Taiwan still do.

        If an OHC engine can rev high enough it can make more power than a similarly-sized OHV engine. But 8250 doesn't cut it anymore. Not when OHV engines are at 7,000.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Who says the relationship is linear? It's not like GM doesn't know how to make a 100hp/L motor. If you don't believe me, then go get a subscription to Engine Master or GM Tech. Every now and then, they will have an article showing you how to build such a motor.

        Don't believe the hype that 100hp/L is some how unattainable. That's just a marketing gimmick. The ratio is purely arbitrary.

        I own a BMW 6-series, my next car will be a BMW, but boy do I sure wish BMW would plop an ls7 into the 6 series as an option for their customers. Not only will it make the 6 much faster, and it sure needs it, it will actually make it handle better by lumping off weight on the front of the car.

      • 7 Years Ago
      choose the right engines to compare...

      Corvette sportcar engine LS7 LS9 compared to a BMW sportcar engine M70/2

      BMW M70/2 engine
      6.1l
      627hp at 7400rpm
      480ftlbf. at 5600rpm
      n/a
      with a wet weight of 266kg
      a limited edition delivered 745hp
      possible redline of the engine 9000-9500rpm...

      the normal 627hp M70/2 is 2.5 seconds faster 0-125mph(200km/h) as the LS7 powered Z06...
      0-300km/h(189mph) the M70/2 is 19seconds faster as the LS7 powered Z06...

      pointless comparing of a sedan engine to a sportcar engine.

      The one who knows which car the BMW M70/2 engine powered recive a online cookie..
        • 7 Years Ago
        This engine powered the McLaren F1 correct...
        • 7 Years Ago
        That engine weighs 15% more than the LS7 and makes about 20% more power, while costing FAR more. It's a good engine, but you're not making a killer case for DOHC.
        • 7 Years Ago
        The one and only F1.
      • 7 Years Ago
      The BMW engine has 3 oil pumps... it is much more complicated then the corvette engine.
      It also has more parts = could be less reliable.
        • 7 Years Ago
        You mean more reliable, right? I think you got confused for a second.
        • 7 Years Ago
        @Andrew:
        no im not confused,when one of the oil pumps fail does the whole sytem fail.
        Three pumps means three times more possibility to fail.
        • 7 Years Ago
        It's also German = less reliable
        • 7 Years Ago
        @Andrew:
        no im not confused,when one of the oil pumps fail does the whole sytem fail.
        Three pumps means three times more possibility to fail.
        • 7 Years Ago
        As the owner of a 3-series, I'll take a GM car over a BMW for reliability any day. However I'll take the BMW for everything else (especially resale value).
      • 7 Years Ago
      In the end you still get more pussy in a BMW than a vette.
      HotRodzNKustoms
      • 7 Years Ago
      Even the LS7 is a vastly superior motor in my opinion to the M V10. Not to say the M V10 is not a fantastic motor but I think the LS7 is defiantly the superior powerplant.
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