Initial Run — Baselining the Summit Racing Godzilla Giveaway Engine

Initial Run — Baselining the Summit Racing Godzilla Giveaway Engine

As you have undoubtedly heard, we’ve teamed up with Summit Racing and Late Model Engines to build another giveaway engine. This time, it’s a twin-turbocharged Ford 7.3-liter “Godzilla” engine. This year, our base engine has started life as a complete, running crate engine from Ford Performance Parts. That offers us the unique opportunity to dyno the naturally aspirated engine, as it comes out of the crate. This will show exactly how much we’ve improved the engine in our build process.

Exploring Stock Form

The Ford 7.3-liter engine was dubbed “Godzilla” early on in the rumor cycle. It marks Ford’s departure from exclusively overhead camshaft gasoline engine designs that they’ve been known for over the past few decades. More than just a return to the pushrod, the engine immediately intrigued hot rodders, as the engine offers serious displacement and power potential in a compact form.

From the factory, the Godzilla comes equipped with a forged-steel 3.976-inch-stroke crankshaft, 6.319-inch powdered metal I-beam connecting rods, and 4.220-inch-diameter hypereutectic aluminum pistons. That bore and stroke calculate out to 444.89 cubic inches, or 7290cc (rounded up to 7.3 liters). The rotating assembly is housed in a cast iron engine block, which adds a little heft (the dressed engine weighs in at 580 pounds), but also offers additional strength in spades.

Here’s our Godzilla engine straight out of the crate. It comes from Ford Performance Parts ready to run, just drop right into your project. In our case, it dropped right onto the dyno.

Within the 9.650-inch-deck-height block, the cylinders are siamesed and feature unique channels between cylinders designed to increase coolant flow between cylinders on the semi-open deck. There are knock sensors, which are new to pushrod Ford engines, and a unique new variable displacement oil pump to help meet CAFE efficiency standards. Similarly, the engine features variable valve timing through the single camshaft sitting in the block.

Up top, the Godzilla’s cast aluminum heads are quite stout in stock form. Featuring 8mm valves measuring 2.170 inches on the intake side and 1.674 inches on the exhaust side, residing in a 62.4cc combustion chamber. That makes for a 10.5:1 compression ratio from the factory. Another unique part of the Godzilla cylinder head is that the direct-port fuel injector bosses are cast into the cylinder head ports themselves, not the intake manifold.

giveaway engine on the dyno

The only modification to the engine made was swapping the factory exhaust manifolds out for a set of dyno headers. This wasn’t done for power, but as an administrative task.

Like many other modern engines, the engine features coil-per-plug ignition with the coils mounted on the valve covers, and has a 58-tooth reluctor wheel pressed onto the crankshaft for an ignition signal. Out of the crate, the engine comes with a composite intake manifold with an 80mm throttle body, an 8-quart aluminum oil pan and cooler, along with factory short exhaust manifolds.

In factory applications, the engine is rated between 300 and 430 horsepower and 425 and 475 lb-ft of torque. The crate engine from Ford Performance Parts is rated at the highest outputs of 430 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 475 lb-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm, identical to the output of the current lineup of Ford Super Duty trucks. Even with its oversquare design, we expect this engine to be very biased towards low-end grunt. To verify this, LME uncrated the engine and bolted it up to its SuperFlow engine dyno, and made some pulls.

giveaway engine on the dyno

For the initial test, we used Late Model Engine’s OBR engine management system to control the Godzilla engine.

The Baseline Data

With the crate engine that will soon be built into our twin-turbo giveaway engine on the dyno, there was one concession that had to be made. The factory exhaust manifolds were removed and a set of tubular dyno headers were fitted to the engine. Vinnie Monighetti, who you might remember from last year’s giveaway, or from the LS vs. Coyote engine build, finished bolting up the engine and jumped behind the dyno’s controls.

After running the automated break-in program on the SuperFlow, it was time to push the handle all the way forward and give it the beans. With an amazing sound, the engine was run up to 5,400 rpm before closing the throttle body and waiting for the screen to show the curves. When the graphs popped up, the first thing we noticed were curves that looked like the old school 5.0L engines’, just on steroids.

EngineLabs giveaway engine dyno

The peak horsepower occurred at a slightly lower RPM than rated at, but almost 90 horsepower higher — 519.6 horsepower at 5,100 rpm. The torque peak was right where it was advertised, albeit over 110 lb-ft higher with a final rating of 586.9 lb-ft at 4,000 rpm. With these numbers, we were all taken aback, especially knowing we’re more than halfway to our 1,000-horsepower engine giveaway goal, right out of the gate.

While we could probably just wrap this up as-is and give the engine away to a very happy winner, our goal is a thousand horsepower, and 1,000 horsepower our eventual winner will have. We just have the luxury of starting a little bit closer to that goal than planned. Our next step in the process it to tear the engine apart, pack it up along with all of our aftermarket goodies, and ship it off to the Indianapolis Convention Center, where we’ll be assembling this beast into a 1,000-horsepower twin-turbo monster, that anyone reading this can win by simply heading over to EngineLabsGiveaway.com and entering.

EngineLabs Giveaway Engine dyno

The baseline dyno was quite surprising. With over 110 lb-ft and 90 horsepower above what the crate engine is rated for, there’s no doubt this crate engine is a runner. 520 horsepower at 5,200 rpm and 587 lb-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm will get you moving.

Additional entries will be available by visiting us at booth 951, as well as our partner’s booths, at the PRI Show December 8-10, 2022. This awesome journey to 1,000 horsepower, as well as one lucky fan’s dream, is made possible thanks to our partners in this project: Summit Racing Equipment, Late Model Engines, Ford Performance Parts, Mountain Top, ATI Performance Products, BOOSTane, Brian Tooley Racing, Callies Performance Products, Cometic Gasket, DeatschWerks, Design Engineering, E3 Spark Plugs, Indy Power Products, Johnson Lifters, K1 Technologies, Klotz Synthetics, Kooks Headers, Operational Speed Supply, Precision Turbo, Ryno Classifieds, SCT, Wiseco Pistons, and Wrenchers.

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About the author

Greg Acosta

Greg has spent eighteen years and counting in automotive publishing, with most of his work having a very technical focus. Always interested in how things work, he enjoys sharing his passion for automotive technology with the reader.
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