Monday, April 19, 2010

Formula 1 Champion Powered by American Stock Block Engine

Do you have any idea which Formula 1 engine manufacturer powered a team to TWO back to back world championships using an American V8 stock block?

Repco produced a racing engine for the Brabham team that took them to successive world championships in 1966 and 1967. The engine was based on the Oldsmobile 215 cu. in. aluminum block V8 that we've come to know and love in Rovers, Triumphs, MGs, Land Rovers and many other British cars.

Repco bought up the remaining inventory of surplus Olds aluminum V8s after it was dropped from US production and set to work making it a racing powerplant. The Repco engine held its own against exotic stuff from Ferrari and Coventry Climax, even with it's low-tech two valve per cylinder design. By 1967, Repco had the engine running at 8,500 RPM and pumping out 330 BHP.

Trivia of the day: Do you know how to tell the difference between an Oldsmobile 215 cu in engine and a Pontiac or Buick unit? Count the head studs. An Olds has 24, Pontiacs and Buicks had 20.

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