FORM and function spring to mind when you eyeball Jeff’s latest work (above). Not only will this 365ci Holden V8 pump out around 700 naturally aspirated horses for his HZ ute, but it’s just so beautiful to look at!
“It’s been a 20-year project.” Jeff explains. “I bought the block off GM as a brand-new stroker casting originally destined for the last of the VT Series I Commodores, and was going to build it to power an SV5000 drag car project. It was around that time I also bought the Dave Bennett –11-casting alloy heads, which are a pretty rare bit of gear – Perfectune only made 100 pairs. This allowed us to fit bigger valves than their –9 castings and flow around 330cfm.”
The engine’s 365 cubes begin with a 4.030in bore and 6in Oliver Chevy rods. The factory GM stroker casting meant no clearancing of the block was required to fit a custom knife-edge 3.580in Chevjournal crankshaft from Crankshaft Rebuilders, which spins a Camtech solid-roller cam specced with more than 0.700in lift. That’s sure to make best use of the boutique cylinder heads’ breathing capabilities.
An 11.5:1 compression ratio and a diet of E85 will fuel the fire, with the short motor rounded out by a Commodore Cup-spec ASR sump. The good oil will be circulated by a Peterson belt-driven pump – one of the only non-local products on Jeff’s engine.
That droolworthy intake is a custom piece from Bliss Custom Machining, one of a number of local suppliers that have had a hand in this build. “I’ve tried to use as many Australian engineering companies as possible and have to thank Andrew at Bliss, Steve Jack at Jack Bros, John Noonan from NRE and Gonzo from Gonzo’s Racing Pipes,” Jeff says.
“It’s been quite a few years in the build but it’s getting close to dyno time now, so we’ll see how it goes,” he continues. “I’m not looking to break national records or the like; this project has just been about having some fun for myself.”