A beautiful car with a subpar motor is much like that good-looking person with a birdbrain. In short, they’re great to look at but a long-term relationship is probably out of the question. To be honest, we probably all know someone who owns one of these oversized paperweights. These are the cars we adore while having a barbecue, and when it comes to actually taking it on a cruise, well, you’ll most likely find them cruising on the back of a flatbed or posted on a side street waiting for help.
Part of the joy of building a weekend warrior is to just do that. You want to be able to fire it up knowing that it will take you where you need to be, but that’s not possible if your motor is in dire need of a mechanical overhaul. To add to that, many of the motors in these classic cars are some 40-plus year old tired motors. While retaining its stock formation may be appealing to purists, it’s not really a concern to lowriding, so the next best step may be to drop in a fresh crate motor that was purpose-built for your ride. In terms of cost-effectiveness, it may be slightly cheaper to revamp an older powerplant, but the benefits—think horsepower gain, peace of mind, and performance—are second to none when it comes to throwing in a new motor, and this is where BluePrint Engines comes into play.
Last year we announced the release of a special collaboration between BluePrint Engines and Lowrider magazine. Our goal was to create a reliable, heavy-breathing, performance engine based on the legendary GM 350 platform. Knowing that BluePrint Engines was started 20 years ago this came as an assurance that we were aligning ourselves with leaders in the market segment, and the end result is a readily available motor that we’re proud of.
Lowrider x BluePrint Engines Collaboration Engine
The lineup of turnkey crate engines from BluePrint will replace your stock engine with more power and better looks. They are available with aluminum heads (producing 400 hp) or iron heads (producing 365 hp). The engines also vary when it comes to fuel delivery as one comes equipped with EFI (FI System) and the other is carbureted. The Lowrider-licensed series engines come with billet engraved “Lowrider” script lettering on the valve covers, Edelbrock intake, and if you want a serpentine drive belt system then March Performance comes exclusive for your order. Please see below for the breakdown of each motor.
Blueprint x Lowrider magazine engines are available in two formats: Street or Show
GM 350 – Aluminum Heads
400 hp | 410 lb-ft | EFI Series
Lowrider Signature series valve covers
Optional March Performance Serpentine Kit
GM 350 – Iron Heads
365 hp | 400 lb-ft | Carb
Lowrider Signature series valve covers
Installation of this motor is really as easy as remove and replace. While it does require the basic mechanical prowess, the installation process is one that can be done by yourself or with the help of a few friends. It drops in with ease, comes with just about everything you’ll need, and all you have to add is oil, antifreeze, plugs, and wires, and just a bit of patience. In the end, our install took about a week in total, this project 1965 already came custom painted and we had to be careful not to chip or scratch the paint, but considering this was done with whatever spare time we could scrape up, it was a project well deserving of the time it took.
Once the install of this engine was complete, we simply fired it up, double-checked all the connections and fluids, and it’s run like a champ ever since. From show to show, tour to tour, we’ve put a good amount of miles on the 1965 Impala that received that transplant, and to be honest, the owner hasn’t driven his car this much in decades. Throttle response is crisp, idle holds steady, and the overall performance value is simply incredible. In all, the installation of this new BluePrint engine has changed the soul of this vehicle and it’s the one upgrade that may not be directly visible, but an upgrade that is felt and appreciated by the owner of the vehicle.
In all, the addition of a fresh motor does justice to any vehicle and it changes the entire dynamics of your lowrider. Far too often, we worry about the motor last, but when it comes time to hit the boulevard, it becomes the first concern. We wonder if we’ll make it, if it’ll overheat, or if today is the day it’ll finally give in. By installing a new BluePrint engine, you’ll not only increase the value of your vehicle, but also give yourself the peace of mind knowing that it’ll fire up and drive like it was designed to do. That said, be sure to take a look at each of the motor options and see which one best suits your taste, budget, and build.
Till next time, we’ll see you at the next meet or show, and remember, the only thing worse than missing a car show is missing it because you were found stalled alongside the entrance of the show. While it sounds like a humorous attempt to poke fun at all those with ill-running engines, the truth of the matter is we’ve seen it happen time and time again so don’t be “that guy”—step up your game by going with a BluePrint engine.