The Day We Celebrate The 5.3L LS Engine horsepower

For a generation of hot rodders, this IS their small block Chevy. The 5.3L, 325ci LS engine was the bread and butter of the company’s line up for more than a decade and many, many millions were built. The engines are very capable in factory form but in the hands of creative hot rodders this engine platform revitalized an industry like no one had seen since the middle 1950s and the introduction of the original small block Chevy engine. Yes, the mighty 6.0L and 6.2L engines were bad ass. Yes, the LSAm LS7, and other variants had more sex appeal, but the 5.3L engine was and is the hot rodder’s mill.

The can be bought for less than a couple hundred bucks virtually complete from many wrecking yards, they can be run hard, blown up, and replaced for less thoughtless sums of dough. A camshaft, headers, and some tuning later and you have a 450+ hp engine to go and play with. Add boost and the numbers skyrocket.

We could say so much about this engine but the reality is that so many already know. Our solution? Here’s the generation by generation history of the 5.3L LS below. The words and data from Wikipedia. Why? Because pasting this up is as easy as an LS swap!



The Vortec 5300, or LM7/L59/LM4, is a V8 truck engine. It is a longer-stroked by 9 mm (0.35 in) version of the Vortec 4800 and replaced the L31. L59 denoted a flexible fuelversion of the standard fuel LM7 engine. Displacement is 5,327 cc (5.3 L; 325.1 cu in) from a bore and stroke of 96 mm x 92 mm (3.78 in x 3.62 in). Vortec 5300s are built in St. Andrews. Catharines, Ontario and Romulus, Michigan. Another engine variant, the L33, shares the same displacement, but has an aluminum block with cast in cylinder liners, much like the LS1.


The Vortec 5300 LM7 (VIN code 8th digit “T”) was introduced in 1999. It has a cast iron block and aluminum heads, and can be considered the “garden variety” version of the Generation III V8s.

The 1999 LM7 engine produced 270 bhp (201 kW) and 315 lb⋅ft (427 N⋅m) of torque.

The 2000-2003 engines made 285 bhp (213 kW) and 325 lb⋅ft (441 N⋅m).

The 2004-2007 engines made 295 bhp (220 kW) and 335 lb⋅ft (454 N⋅m) of torque.

The stock cam specs @ .050 lift are: 190/191 duration, .466/.457 lift, 114 LSA, 112/116 Timing

LM7 applications:


The Vortec 5300 L59 (VIN code “Z”) is a flexible fuel version of the LM7. The 2002-2003 L59s made 285 hp (213 kW) and 320 lb⋅ft (434 N⋅m), while the 2004-2007 L59s made 295 hp (220 kW) and 335 lb⋅ft (454 N⋅m).

L59 applications:


The Vortec 5300 LM4 (VIN code “P”) is an aluminum block version of the LM7, and had a short production life. The LM4s made 290 hp (216 kW) and 325 lb⋅ft (441 N⋅m), it should not be confused with the L33 described below.

LM4 applications:


The Vortec 5300 L33 (VIN code “B”) is an aluminum block version of the LM7, known as the Vortec 5300 HO in marketing materials. The L33 uses flat top pistons from the 4.8L instead of standard dished pistons from the LM7. It also uses 799 cylinder heads, which are identical to 243 castings found on LS6s and LS2s, lacking only the Corvette spec valve springs and hollow stem exhaust valves on the 2002-2004 LS6. This combination increased the compression from 9.5:1 to 10.0:1. The L33 also had a specific camshaft not shared with any other engine, specs @ .050 duration are: 193 duration, .482 lift, 116 LSA. As a result, power increased by 15 hp (11 kW), to 310 hp (230 kW) and 335 lb ft (441 N m). It was only available on extended cab 4WD pickup trucks. Only 25% of trucks made in 2005 had the L33 engine.

L33 applications:

Gen IV


The Generation IV 5.3L engines share all the improvements and refinements found in other Generation IV engines. 8 versions of the Gen IV 5.3L engine were produced: 3 iron blocks (LY5, LMG, and LMF) and 5 aluminum blocks (LH6, LH8, LH9, LC9, and LS4). All versions featured Active Fuel Management except for the LH8, LH9 and LMF.


Introduced in 2010, the LMF is a lower tech version used in the lower volume half ton vehicles cargo vans with AWD that still used the 4 speed automatic, and do not use Active Fuel Management.

LMF applications:


The Vortec 5300 LH6 (VIN code “M”) with Active Fuel Management replaced the LM4 for 2005, and was the first of the Generation IV small block V8 truck engines to go into production. The LH6 produced 300 to 315 hp (224 to 235 kW) and 330 to 338 lb⋅ft (447 to 458 N⋅m). It is the aluminum block counterpart to the LY5.

LH6 applications:


Introduced in 2007, the Vortec 5300 LY5 (VIN code “J”) is the replacement for the LM7 Generation III engine. For SUV applications, it is rated at 320 hp (239 kW) and 340 lb⋅ft (461 N⋅m) of torque; While for pickup truck applications, it is rated at 315–320 hp (235–239 ​​kW) at 5200 rpm and 335–340 lb⋅ft (454–461 N⋅m) at 4000 rpm

LY5 applications:


The Vortec 5300 LMG (VIN code “0”) is the flexible-fuel version of the LY5. Power and torque ratings for SUV and pickup truck applications are the same as each application’s LY5 rating. Variable valve timing was added for the 2010 model year.

LMG applications:


The Vortec 5300 LC9 (VIN code “3” or “7”) is the aluminum block Flex-Fuel version of the LH6, and is found in 4WD models. SUV applications are rated at 320 hp (239 kW) at 5400 rpm and 335 lb⋅ft (454 N⋅m) at 4000 rpm.[8] Pickup truck applications are rated at 315 hp (235 kW) at 5300 rpm and 335 lb⋅ft (454 N⋅m) at 4000 rpm.[8] Variable valve timing was added for the 2010 model year.

LC9 applications:


The LH8 was introduced in 2008 as the V8 option for the Hummer H3. It was the most basic engine of its family, it did not use any special technology. Also known as the Vortec 5300, the LH8 was available in the H3 and GM mid-size pickups through 2009.

The LH8 is a variant of the 5.3 L Gen IV small block V8 modified to fit in the engine bay of the GMT 345 SUV and GMT 355 trucks. It produces 300 hp (224 kW) at 5200 rpm and 320 lb⋅ft (434 N⋅m) at 4000 rpm. It has a displacement of 5,327 cc (5.3 L; 325.1 cu in)[9] and a compression ratio of 9.9:1.[10]

LH8 applications:

Bore & stroke (in/mm): 3.78 x 3.62/96 x 92
block material: cast aluminum
Cylinder head material: cast aluminum
Valvetrain: OHV, 2 valves per cylinder
Ignition system: coil near plug, platinum-tipped spark plugs, low-resistance spark plug wires
Fuel delivery: sequential fuel injection
Compression ratio: 9.9:1
Horsepower (hp/kW @ rpm): 300/224 @ 5200
Torque (lb.-ft./Nm @ rpm): 320/434 @ 4000
Recommended fuel: regular unleaded
Maximum engine speed (rpm): 6000
Emissions controls: evaporative system, four close-couple and underfloor catalytic converters

In 2010, the LH8 was replaced by the LH9. The LH9 was upgraded with Variable Valve Timing (VVT) and flex fuel capability. The Vortec 5300 LH9 produces 300 hp (224 kW) at 5200 rpm and 320 lb⋅ft (434 N⋅m) at 4000 rpm. It has a displacement of 5,327 cc (5.3 L; 325.1 cu in).[9] The compression ratio was 9.9:1 for 2010, but was reduced to 9.7:1 for the remaining two years of production.[11][12][13]

LH9 applications:


LS4 can also refer to a 454 cu in (7.4 L) Chevrolet Big-Block engine of the 1970s

The LS4 is a 5,327 cc (5.3 L; 325.1 cu in) version of the Generation IV block. Though it has the same displacement as the Vortec 5300 LY5, it features an aluminum block instead of iron, and it uses the same cylinder head casting as the Generation III LS6 engine. The bellhousing bolt pattern differs from the rear-wheel drive blocks.

This engine is adapted for transverse front-wheel drive applications. According to GM, “The crankshaft is shortened 13–3 mm (0.51–0.12 in) at the flywheel end and 10 mm (0.39 in) at the accessory drive end – to reduce the length of the engine compared to the 6.0 L. All accessories are driven by a single serpentine belt to save space. The water pump is mounted remotely with an elongated pump manifold that connects it to the coolant passages. Revised oil pan baffles, or windage trays, are incorporated into the LS4 to ensure that the oil sump stays loaded during high-g cornering.”[14] Active Fuel Management is also used. Output of this version is 303 hp (226 kW)/300 hp on LaCrosse Super and 323 lb⋅ft (438 N⋅m).


Gen V


Dubbed EcoTec3 5.3 L (320 cu in) is a Generation V small block V8 truck engine. (VIN Code “C”) Like its Vortec 5300 Generation IV predecessor, it gets its displacement from a bore and stroke of 96 mm x 92 mm ( 3.78 in x 3.62 in) with a compression ratio of 11.0 to 1.


Year(s) Model Power Torque Dyno Chart
2014–2019 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 355 hp (265 kW) @ 5600 rpm 383 lb⋅ft (519 N⋅m) @ 4100 rpm link
376 hp (280 kW) @ 5600 rpm E85 416 lb⋅ft (564 N⋅m) @ 4000 rpm E85
2014–present Chevrolet Tahoe/GMC Yukon 355 hp (265 kW) @ 5600 rpm 383 lb⋅ft (519 N⋅m) @ 4100 rpm link
376 hp (280 kW) @ 5600 rpm E85 416 lb⋅ft (564 N⋅m) @ 4000 rpm E85
2014–present Chevrolet Suburban/GMC Yukon XL 355 hp (265 kW) @ 5600 rpm 383 lb⋅ft (519 N⋅m) @ 4100 rpm link
376 hp (280 kW) @ 5600 rpm E85 416 lb⋅ft (564 N⋅m) @ 4000 rpm E85


The L8B is an eAssist mild hybrid version of the L83 featuring a .45-KWH lithium ion battery pack. This setup can improve fuel efficiency by about 13%. This adds about 100 lb (45 kg) to the total weight of the truck but provides an additional 13 hp (10 kW) and 44 lb⋅ft (60 N⋅m).[25][26]



The L82 is one of two 5.3 liter V8s available in the 4th generation Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra. The L82 uses Active Fuel Management instead of the L84’s Dynamic Fuel Management system, and is only available on lower trim trucks.


The L84 is one of two 5.3 liter V8s available in the 4th generation Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra. The L84 is distinguished from the L82 by the presence of the Dynamic Fuel Management System, and is either available or standard on mid- to high-level trims.

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