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The Top 10 Engines of All Time (As Chosen by You)!


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What is the best factory engine of all time?

Yep, it’s a tough a question—but somebody had to ask it. And we did via the OnAllCylinders and Summit Racing Facebook pages.

Do you measure the best engine by sheer horsepower? Do you focus more on durability? Or perhaps you give the nod to an engine that’s most affordable to the gearhead masses. It’s a complex question, and we literally got thousands of responses (and strong opinions) from performance enthusiasts like you.

Based on your answers, we’ve created a list of the top 10 engines of all time. Check back as we reveal the list over the next 10 days and unveil your #1 factory performance engine ever.

Stay tuned…







  1. Pingback: Top 10 Engines of All-Time (#10): Ford 427 SOHC - OnAllCylinders

  2. Pingback: Top 10 Engines of All Time (#9): Ford 351 Windsor - OnAllCylinders

  3. Pingback: Top 10 Engines of All Time (#8): Chevrolet 454 - OnAllCylinders

  4. Pingback: Top 10 Engines of All Time (#7): Cummins 5.9L I6 Turbo Diesel - OnAllCylinders

  5. Pingback: Top 10 Engines of All Time (#6): Chrysler 225 Slant Six - OnAllCylinders

  6. Pingback: Top 10 Engines of All Time (#5): Chevy 427 - OnAllCylinders

  7. Pingback: Top 10 Engines of All Time (#4): Ford 300 I6 - OnAllCylinders

  8. Pingback: Top 10 Engines of All Time (#3): General Motors LS1 - OnAllCylinders

  9. Pingback: Top 10 Engines of All Time (#2): Chrysler 426 HEMI - OnAllCylinders

  10. Pingback: Top 10 Engines of All Time (Honorable Mentions): Flathead, Tri-Power & More - OnAllCylinders

  11. Pingback: Top 10 Engines of All Time (#1): Small Block Chevrolet (Gen 1) 350 - OnAllCylinders

  12. Buick 455 Stage 1

  13. Scooter George says:

    427 and 454 Chevy motors are the same. 302 Windsor (5.0) should replace the 351 on this list. The AMC 199-232-258 is a better design than the Slant 6. I would yank the Ford 300 in favor of the Pontiac OHC 6. Ditch the diesel and put in the Flathead Ford.

    • Right on! 5.0 best ever. Produces 414 HP from small block in 2012 Mustang

      • Kyle Michaels says:

        The 2010 and newer 5.0 is not a 302. The new “coyote” 5.0 is a DOHC version of Ford’s modular V8. The original 302 is an OHV engine made from 1968-2001 that produced 120-300ish hp.

    • The 12 valve 5.9 cummins is one of the strongest ,most durable longest lasting engines on the planet. Try pulling a house down with a flat head ford

    • 427’s are different than 454’s. The bore is the same but the stroke is 3.76″ instead of 4″. Plus there was never a low horsepower version of the 427. They really rev and run great, a good combination. I’ve beat a lot of 454’s with mine and have never been beat by a 454

    • Mylan Miller says:

      With out a set of heads the Windsor is a piece of garbage the 302 is a better engine and it will fit in a tool box!

    • Denis O'Brien says:

      Agreed….and in six cylinders, they forgot the Jeep 4.0 litre and the earlier 4.2 litre which are virtually bulletproof

    • Dr. Thomas Tork
      Durch the Cummins? The most capable and reliable motor in the whole list. As a P1 world championship race boat propulsion, as a tractor and truck engine. As a race engine and 1000000 miles every day motor. A list without the 6BT would be rediculous. In 1931 Cummins won Indianapolis with an inline 6 Turbodiesel.

  14. these are all dinosaurs! best engines ever? haha, there’s many jap and euro engines better in just about every detail apart from suitability as an anchor. this list is a bit like your ‘world series’ which includes err.. just you.

    • John Tate is a person who hates everything made in America except himself, who, by the way, he is in love with. He spends hours every day looking at himself in a clear pool of water.

    • just bring it !

    • Mylan Miller says:

      The small block Chevy lasted 50 years show me a Euro engine that is that durable!

      • Some aren’t bad Mylan Miler

        -Jaguar L6, XK block , equipped the XK120 in 1947, still in the XJ sedan in the 80s, and till 1992 in a big Daimler limo.
        5 times Le Mans winner.

        -The so called Ferrari “Colombo” too many variants, too many races, too many victories start in 1947 till 1989 in the 412

        -Maserati V8 start as a race engine 1957, in 1990 still on the big quattroporte.

        You can joke at their reliability, but they were not that problematic, although they are a pain in the a$$ to care (changing oil very often, never pure water in the cooling system, checking chains regulary and so on… ). but the sound is really something on these babys.

        Real problem is now parts and all the electrics which are plain ridiculous compared to US.

      • The small block Chevy lasted that long because GM was so slow to innovate.

  15. How about the 3.5 hp Briggs and Straton lawn mower engine that saved the world from overgrown weeds, rats, moles and snakes.

  16. I guess Pontiac 389 and Olds 442 don’t count?

  17. The Hemi should be #1. It has not lost in T/F or F/C since the early 1970’s!!!

  18. Your a freaking Idiot and no nothing about engines that is clear to see!

  19. Maybe you should change that name of the list to “Most Popular American Engines of All Time.” or something. As it is, this list just seems ridiculously narrow minded.

  20. I think you got it right. Good job

  21. The Ford 302 isn’t even in the top 10! That’s just not right. Even worse….the AMC/Chrysler/Jeep 4.0 didn’t even make honorable mention. Several million have been made and are still one of the most, if not THE most popular off road engines in existence.

  22. The jeep 4.0 is a great engine primarily because it is an inline I’m very happy to see that the 300 strait 6 or as most of u liter guys would know it as the 4.9l made number 4, was going to yank it out in favor of the 351w but now I think I’m going to stick with it because of its sheer durability and extreme low end besides high HP in a 4wd please. Hey I’m sure even the Chevy and dodge guys will agree that the 300 6 is a good engine

    • Yes, the 300 straight six Ford is a monster. And yes, I am a MoPar fiend.

      • Denis O'Brien says:

        …and sadly they also missed the great old 383 Magnum….I had a factory installed 383 Magnum in a 67 Coronet 500….damn thing didn’t corner worth shite, but in a straight line it was G suit time!

        • perry hvegholm says:

          Chrysler’s B engine (383) was far more common than the Hemi and 440, and is responsible for a considerable portion Chrysler’s muscle reputation on the track and the street. Hot Rod Magazine conducted a contest. They pitted a big dollar Chevy 383 stroker against a Chrysler 383.

          The 383 was built by steve dulcich, in his garage, and thrown togeter with junkyard parts and old used stuff off the shelf. Everyone was laughing and making bets on how badly the mopar “junkyard dog” as they called it, was going to get spanked. The Chrysler crushed that GM stroker and stunned everyone. My vote would also have been for the 383 as #1. Its an unsung hero engine that is always overshadowed by its larger brethren.

  23. The olds 455 is one of the best engines GM ever made , they had the highest nickel content, you could not wear them out!

  24. Donkeychantel says:

    Rolls-Royce Merlin engine in a P-51 Mustang. It changed a donkey into a racehorse.

  25. Donkeychantel says:

    Our sugar cane mill was powered by 6 Nubian goats. Extremely dependapull power plant that ran on weeds and Privet Hedge. Oh, I almost forgot, the goats were all black.

  26. Joey beard says:

    I’m a ford man myself but in reality there is good and bad in all American made engines i have better service out of ford where the next guy may get better service out of Chevy or mopar everyone is different so who is to say what engine is better

  27. francois cote says:

    350, first place, 426 Hemi, second place.
    Last time I saw a 350 chevrolet at the local meet, there was more people watching it than the lousy 426…
    The top-10 list is worthless, stop arguing about the place that other engine had. Ford 427, at the 10th place… behind the slant 6 LOL!

    • perry hvegholm says:

      Fat chance that some crappy grandma motors SB was drawing more attention than a Chrysler elephant motor, LOL

  28. Leonard F Powell says:

    I’m 74 years old; I was weaned on Chevy 216’s and 235’s in the fifties. My Father over-hauled a 235 thus: 1) He mixed sand from a children’s play-lot with toothpaste to create a grinding compound to re-surface the valves and valve seats in the head. 2) The block had already been done to .40ths over, so he just ground the lip off each cylinder, and replaced the worn rings with fresh .40ths rings. 3) He coated all the gaskets with (lead-based) house paint – dried twice. 4) He used the same bearings in that they showed very little wear. The engine was in a GMC 3/4 ton with a granny box. We rarely ran the truck over 55 mph, but Dad drove it, I drove it, a Brother drove it. We finally let the truck go when Dad died in 1973. They were both tough as nails. We mis them both very much. Thanks for reading. Leonard Powell, Berkeley, CA

    • Denis O'Brien says:

      I had a buddy in the 60’s with a 54 Chev….that old 235 was acting up sporadically but got him home (50 odd miles) where upon examination it was found to have broken the crank

  29. randal skates says:

    All of you guys are top notch in my book I’m going blind and have been depressed about it badly the last couple of years, I’ve always been a Chevy man ,but this morning you guys gave me the gumption to put away my depression and go buy a 69′ Ford p/u with a 300I6, don’t know how I’ll ever be able to put it on the road but just knowing I got off my ass and tried is good enough for me ,thank you. Randal Skates ,Lake Isabella, CA.

  30. joe donnelly says:

    chevy 425 horse 396 and chevy 327 375 horse,

    • Brian F Galvin says:

      327 365hp wasn’t it (Corvette FI)

    • Mylan Miller says:

      The 425 hp 396 and the 375 HP 327 were so badly over rated even GM seen there mistake and re rated the 396 to a more realistic 375 hp. and a 330 hp Boss 351 engine would destroy any 375 hp 327! that is proof GM liked to brag and over rate there engines.

  31. Have to say that diesels are an entirely different consideration. Have heard commercial drivers debate them for hours on end, going back to the Cummins 444 and many others. You can’t just throw in one diesel engine on a list of ten gasoline engines and do the subject justice. Hope you’ll look into doing a separate list.

  32. 265/283 Chevy small block. Ancestors of all that is great.

    • The first sbc to be hotrodded!! 283 was and still was a beast. I have 2 of them and I love ANF know all the tricks to tune them just right!! U have to admit, 290hp in 1957 was out of this world!! Several sbc engine combinations were based off these 265s and 283s and shared lots of parts.

  33. Felix Knight-Webb says:

    The underrated chrysler 340 has to be in the top ten. It would wipe the floor with a stock 350 and embarrassed many big blocks. An amazing engine by any account.

  34. DIDIER GUYOT says:

    what about the 460 then???

  35. Dave Barfoot says:

    Where is Chevrolet’s small block 327? One of the most durable engine ever. Pound for Pound one of the best engines ever produced.

  36. Bill knapp says:

    How about the all-aluminum Buick Olds Pontiac 215, that became the Rover 3.5, 3.9, 4.0, 4.2, 4.6? Only factory block to win the Indy 500. From 1961 to well into the 1990s. Put in many hot rods and stock performance cars in England and other countries. I built one in my basement and a friend and I brought it back upstairs in a plastic 50 gallon can.

  37. I enjoyed your list, many of the big blocks never made it down under.

    The Aussie Barra turbo (Ford 4.0L I6) more than accounts for most of the list, and was still smoking the 6.2LS-X in 2016 at the end of local production. You can see Barras with 500,000km on them, or if LPG fitted, 1,000,000km is not uncommon. We remained RWD and I6 right until the end…

  38. Steve boudewyn says:

    350,especially the lo5 vin k.this is was built to last,durability,reliability,and descent power.these motors have been known to go a million miles.i have one that has 160,000 miles and runs like it was 5 smoke,no burning oil,ticks,noises,nothing.amazig,amazing engine.have to go with the L05 vin k 350.

  39. The best motor ever made that can run is 10.million. miles. Can anyone tell me which motor it is .and it can be put in every car and plenty of horse power .
    With little or no transmission.

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