This year in our performance guide, we are focusing on the ever-popular LS family of engines in use on today's builds. Given the platforms dependability in daily driving situations, these engines have proven that they are here to stay. Aftermarket manufacturers have also recognized the importance of the LS family of engines, and have been working hard to satisfy the consumer needs that go along with installing them. Some of the products they have developed include motor mounts, oil pans, intakes, bolt kits, serpentine systems and the large array of engine harnesses that are being incorporated for these engines.

Most LS engines run well because of their practical internal design, which includes a roller system and a need to run the synthetic oil to allow the parts to run properly. Most manufacturers will have the oil that they recommend along with the proper weight, which is usually much thinner than the traditional 10W-40 that most engines use. If you own an older vehicle, you need to make sure to use oil with zinc additive if not; you might risk blowing up your engine. You should look into Lucas Oil, a product that has become a key player in lube for vintage and modern engines.

As I mentioned earlier, these LS transplants are becoming easier as the harnesses are becoming more readably available in a straightforward, plug and play application. These harnesses, like the Holley brand or Painless brand versions have been modified to eliminate the EGR valves and smog pumps that our classics don't require. These additions keep the engines running so efficiently that it only gives further proof that driving older cars is better and cooler than driving a Prius down the Boulevard! MSD Performance also stepped up their game, as they developed their LS Atomic system, which has helped clean up some of the engines compartments.

As I keep saying for those of you that have already invested so much into your small block and can't just switch out your engine, we haven't turned our backs on you; as we have looked into products that will help your small block run better. Manufacturers like Edelbrock and MSD have stepped to the plate and developed fuel injection for the carbureted market that is ready to convert their classic small block into a fuel injection system. This is a happy medium that will allow your car to run more efficiently without having to swap out the complete engine.

From the proper Lucas lube to the latest engine accessories available for your classic, this guide will be sure to touch upon every subject under your hood and your car's chassis. So if you want to look good under the hood and go fast with a few bolt-on performance products, or if you are like me and are just trying to have reliability with some peace of mind, this guide should help you out.


1. The E-Street EFI System is intended as an affordable, easy to use, fuel injection solution that can be installed on any V-8 engine, originally equipped with a carburetor. The Edelbrock E-Street EFI System includes a pre-assembled throttle body, engine control unit (ECU), 7-inch touch screen tablet PC, high quality wiring harness, wide band O2 sensor and instructions for a hassle free installation. For more information, visit www.edelbrock.com.

2. Flaming River is excited to announce the addition of Billet HD Amp High Output Alternators to their growing line of high performance automotive products. These alternators feature new technologies and increased efficiencies over OEM alternators that equate to excellent output at extremely low engine RPM, more horsepower to the wheels and less energy wasted in the form of heat. For more information, please call 1-800-648-8022 or visit www.flamingriver.com.

3. FAST Self-Tuning Fuel Injection Kits For LS Engines. Both the FAST EZ-EFI and EZ-EFI 2.0 Multi-Port Self Tuning Fuel Injection Kits are perfect options for upgrading LS engines that have been part of an engine swap. Multi-Port Kits are one upgrade that lets users take advantage of these swaps in a big way; the kits allow owners of existing factory or aftermarket equipped, multi-port, fuel injected LS applications to experience the benefits of an EZ-EFI system. There is no limit on horsepower because the system is based on each customer's supplied injectors. They feature a limited lifetime warranty and are backed by the industry's most extensive technical support team if you have questions visit them at www.fuelairspark.com.

4. MSD is breaking new ground in electronic fuel injection with the next generation of Atomic EFI—the all-new Atomic LS system. Where the Atomic TBI consolidated electronics and sensors into the throttle body itself, the LS platform incorporates the electronics into the fuel rails of the system! There's no bulky ECU to mount and therefore no wires to route to and from—it's all on the engine, hidden in plain sight. The Atomic LS will begin learning and tuning your LS engine as soon as you fire it up. Advanced adjustments can be made to air/fuel targets, pump squirt, ignition timing and much more. The self-tuning Atomic LS system will give you the performance and drivability you expect from your LS engine. To learn more log onto www.msdperformance.com.

5. Trans Dapt. There is no better way to finish off the look of a well built vehicle than by replacing the old, beat up, or rusted cover on the differential. Whether you are building your vehicle for show, street, track, or off-road, a new Trans Dapt powder coated aluminum differential cover with polished accents will give you the unique, eye-catching appearance you are looking for. For more information on Trans Dapt's powdercoated differential covers, please call 562-921-0404 or visit www.tdperformance.com.

6. CPP LS kits. It's time to install an engine that requires no maintenance, is super lightweight, puts out unbelievable horsepower and torque yet gives you a vehicle you can just jump in, hit the key and go. CPP's kits will work on all LS motors (except LS7) and '00-and-newer Vortec motors. Kit includes: engine mounts perches, engine mount adapters, engine pads, full length ceramic coated headers, transmission cross-member and all mounting hardware and will work for your vehicle. To learn more about the kits available call (866) 593-2631 or visit them on the web at www.classicperform.com.

7. QA1 Custom Mount Shocks. Get the perfect shock for your lowrider with QA1. Designed for great performance and show-stopping appearance, QA1's custom mount shocks are available in coil-over or smooth body options to get the ride you want. With multiple valving options available including double, single, rebound, ride sensitive and non-adjustable, QA1 has the perfect shock for your ride. QA1's aluminum shocks made in the USA and are 100 percent dyno tested before leaving our Minnesota facility. For any questions feel free to call 800-721-7761 or visit them at ww.QA1.net.

8. Powermaster's newest addition to the LS starter line is their Powermax starter, part number 9109. With a lightweight permanent magnet design, the 9109 provides higher cranking torque with low amperage draw for engines up to 10:1 compression. A 1.2kw starter motor and 6:1 planetary gear ratio result in a 7.5lb starter that packs a big punch in a small package. 12 clocking positions allow the already featherweight starter to fit in even more positions to clear headers, kick out oil pans, factory cooling lines, and more. To learn more look them up at www.powermasterperformance.com.