How do I Build a 700 Horsepower Small Block Chevy?

by Don Kress

Squeezing 700 horsepower out of Chevrolet's popular small block engine platform is a task which has been accomplished numerous times through the years since the small block V8 engine was introduced. It remains a difficult and expensive task.

Machine the engine block so that it increases compression in the cylinders to match the compression needs of the aluminum race heads, supercharger, and nitrous injection. A stock Chevrolet 350 block can be machined to these tolerances with only minor danger of critical engine failure.

Install a bottom end crankshaft which will allow the engine to displace 383 cubic inches rather than 350. Be certain to use a high performance crankshaft matched with the correct lightweight pistons and rods. Stock components will not work under the demands of a 700 horsepower engine build.

Install the aluminum race heads onto the block, followed by the roots-type supercharger. The supercharger can be either fuel injected or carbureted, depending on your preference.

Install the air-to-water intercooler in front of the vehicle's radiator.

Install the nitrous injection system. With the setup outlined, the injectors should be no larger than 150 horsepower jets in order to prevent critical engine damage. Larger power gains are possible only by replacing the engine block with a structurally reinforced lightweight racing block.


  • Follow the guidance of a professional engine builder while setting up your race engine. If possible, contract the work to a recognized professional to avoid potential problems later on.

Items you will need


About the Author

Don Kress began writing professionally in 2006, specializing in automotive technology for various websites. An Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certified technician since 2003, he has worked as a painter and currently owns his own automotive service business in Georgia. Kress attended the University of Akron, Ohio, earning an associate degree in business management in 2000.

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