For the second consecutive year, The Chevrolet LT1 Small Block 6.2-liter V-8 has won a spot on Ward’s 10 Best Engine list for 2015. That’s thanks to its highly respectable power numbers combined with its fuel efficiency numbers. SAE-certified to make 460 horsepower, the V-8 makes enough power to move the Corvette C7 Stingray to 60 mph in just 3.8 seconds yet still get an EPA-estimated 29 mpg highway.

Wards reviewed some 37 engines and other propulsion systems from 12 separate manufacturers in this year’s competition. The criteria not only includes power and fuel efficiency, but also new technology and refinement.

“The 6.2L LT1 V-8 is the heart and soul of the seventh-generation Chevrolet Corvette, and it proudly upholds the 60-year legacy of small-block engines from General Motors,” says Tom Murphy, executive editor of WardsAuto World digital magazine. “This one’s been re-engineered from head to torque converter, and the LT1 is the crown jewel of this massive engine family.”

The family Murphy refers to is the Gen 5 family of Small Block engines that include the 4.3-liter V-6, the 5.3-liter V-8, and the 6.2-liter V-8 from the GM truck lineup. Like the Corvette’s LT1, all three engines have the EcoTec3 list of advancements that include direct fuel injection, variable valve timing, and Active Fuel Management.

All Gen 5 engines benefit from the direct fuel injection’s precise control of fuel and the cooling effect it has on the combustion chamber, the variability of the intake and exhaust valvetrain in producing power, and the engines’ ability to cut fuel to cylinders when under light load.

Click past the jump to read more about Chevrolet Corvette.

Why it matters

Ward’s 10 Best Engine list is a rather prestigious one to make. Only powertrains with a huge advancement in design and technology make the cut. Now having made the list in two consecutive years, Corvette owners and those on the fence about purchasing a Vette can rest easy knowing the 6.2-liter is an excellent engine.

Chevrolet Corvette

2014 - 2016 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Exterior
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The 2015 Corvette C7 Stingray is now entering its second year of production and times are good. Vette sales are up, the awards keep rolling in, and the car’s big brother, the Z06, just hit showrooms. At the heart of the C7 is the 6.2-liter V-8 that makes 460 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque. Backing up the engine is a seven-speed manual transmission and a new-for-2015 eight-speed automatic.

The car’s backbone is an aluminum chassis with a carbon-fiber hood and roof for added lightness. Pricing starts at $51,995 and exceeds $62,800 for the top trim package with the performance Z51 package.

Press Release

The high performance, technology-packed LT1 Small Block 6.2L V8 that powers the 2015 Corvette Stingray is a Ward’s 10 Best Engine for 2015. The engine also was recognized with this award in 2014.

WardsAuto reviewed 37 engines and propulsion systems from 12 manufacturers in this year’s competition, which looked at power, fuel efficiency, new technology and refinement and compared the attributes with data for similar engines.

“This recognition is another step in earning customers for life,” said Dan Nicholson, vice president, GM Global Powertrain. Having the WardsAuto experts choose the LT1 as one of the best in the industry two years in a row is proof of what this Powertrain team can deliver – uncompromised performance, durability and efficiency that helps make the Stingray one of the best sports cars in the world today.”

The LT1 Small Block technologies contribute to making the new Corvette the quickest, most powerful and most fuel-efficient standard Corvette ever. The engine delivers an SAE-certified 460 horsepower, helping propel the car from 0-60 in 3.8 seconds and a quarter mile in 12 seconds while offering EPA-estimated 29 mpg highway with an 8-speed automatic or 7-speed manual transmission.

“The 6.2L LT1 V-8 is the heart and soul of the seventh-generation Chevrolet Corvette, and it proudly upholds the 60-year legacy of small-block engines from General Motors,” said Tom Murphy, executive editor of WardsAuto World digital magazine. “This one’s been re-engineered from head to torque converter, and the LT1 is the crown jewel of this massive engine family.”

“In the Corvette, this 460-hp V-8 barks with authority, delivering an exhaust note reminiscent of Detroit’s finest muscle cars. And it’s efficient, too. WardsAuto editors flogging the ’Vette for more than 300 miles managed better than 20 mpg with the new 8-speed automatic."

The LT1, part of the Gen 5 family of Small Block engines, combines several advanced technologies – direct injection, Active Fuel Management, or cylinder deactivation, and continuously variable valve timing – to support an advanced combustion system.

Direct injection is a primary contributor to greater combustion efficiency by ensuring a more complete burn of the fuel in the air-fuel mixture. This is achieved by precisely controlling the mixture motion and fuel injection spray pattern. Direct injection also keeps the combustion chamber cooler, which allows for a higher compression ratio.

Increased power and efficiency result from more than 10 million hours of computational analysis including computational fluid dynamics, to make the most of the combustion system, the direct injection fuel system, active fuel management and variable valve timing systems that support it. The combustion system itself benefited from 6 million hours of dedicated CPU analysis time.

Other variants of the Gen 5 Small Block include the 4.3L V6, 5.3L and 6.2L V8 truck engines offered in the Chevrolet Silverado, Suburban, Tahoe, the GMC Sierra pickups, Yukon XL and Cadillac Escalade SUVs. The LT1 is manufactured in Tonawanda, N.Y.

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