Ford 460 Big Block Specifications

by Tom Lutzenberger
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The name “Big Block” refers to a series of Ford engines that ranged from 429 cubic inches in size to 460 cubic inches. These engines were used as power producers for a variety of purposes, both private and commercial in nature. Even finding use as a boat engine, the 460 gained a strong reputation.

Engine Size and Use

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The 460 cubic inch Ford engine was the only one it produced in this size class of assembly. The engine was assembled as an eight-cylinder design. The engines themselves were iron cast, which carried significant weight. The pistons were made of aluminum and the entire system was matched to a four-barrel carburetor setup for air-fuel mixture. The 460 engine model lasted until 1980, long after many other large engines were discontinued for fuel efficiency performance. It returned again 1983 for production and was discontinued a second time 1997.


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The 460 engine as produced in 1968 put out a torque of 500 lbs. per square foot while running at 2,800 RPMs. Rated horsepower produced by the engine reached 365 horsepower while running at 4,600 RPMs. The 1983 460 returned with an eight-cylinder setup that put out between 200 and 245 horsepower at 3,800 RPMs, a bit lower than its predecessor designs. The torque level was 390 lbs. per square foot at 2,000 RPMs. The specific horsepower depended on what transmission and drive system the engine was matched with.


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The 460 engine was installed in consumer vehicles ranging from large, full-accommodation motor homes to marine engines on private boats. The engine was also installed in the Lincoln Continental for a time as a consumer car option. Commercial application was limited to light commercial truck use for small, in-town delivery type operations.

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