Cutaway View of V8 Engines

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US V8 engine history at a glance

USA history of the V8 engine largely pivots around how 'alternative' engine designs were proven during WW2, effectually changing industrial and public opinion. The post-war V8 designs were a component part of automotive styling evolution, allowing a lower, more sleek hoodline.

When Nash and Hudson merged in '54, AMC then was able to make their own V8 engine two years later in '56.

These comparisons are made here to show off the excellent design of AMC's '56-'67 Rambler V8!  

'49 Oldsmobile 288/303 "Rocket V8" - -notice lifter oil galleries have tiny 'bleeds' to lube lifters, notice massive integral clutch housing hanging off rear of engine...true thickwall casting, overbuilt cam support area... looks like a flathead block with OHV heads adapted? One may notice connecting rod design for pressurized wrist pin lubrication...

'53 264/322 Buick "Nailhead V8" 625 lbs. - -Buick did a hemispherical combustion chamber with both valves on same side, note central spark plug location for optimal flame spread, no huge half bell on back of engine... see also

'56 250/327 AMC "Rambler V8" 601 lbs. Not a performance engine? NOTICE OBVIOUS LACK OF BS & IRON LARD! AMC is showing off their excellent 'Hudson X' crank gallery support, superb 6.375" forged steel connecting rods into 10" deck height, head bolts into water jacket walls, superb water jackets, good spark plug placement/compact wedge chamber, 'hot' exhaust port roof -Compare Rambler V8's camshaft gallery; excellent gusseting for rigidity and large diameter areas affording increased cam load potential. See also

'58 332/390 Ford "FE V8" 650 lbs. Starved main bearings forced Ford to redesign oil system, only four head bolts per cylinder... 'modern'/no bellhousing extension on back of engine, bell bolt pattern looks very similar to Rambler V8

'58-'64 348-409 Chevrolet 'big block', credit to ...around 700+ lbs? evolving from flathead to OHV... -got 'proper' OHV combustion chambers in '65...

'58-'60 Ford 'MEL' V8; showing similarity to Chevy 348-409... see

'49 Cadillac 330 V8; 699 lbs. Pre-'53 engines have integral 8" deep '1/2 bell' transmission mount on rear... more than early Hemis... Notice tiny oil passageways to lifters like Oldsmobile V8...This pic courtesy of See also pre-'49 Cad flathead V8;