Supplying racers with big power keeps Muscle Motors busy throughout the year, so when time was short for our contest, engine builder Mike Ware made an executive decision. Instead of building an engine strictly for our competition, Mike got permission to bring an engine that he was already building for a customer. While he knew the small displacement and expensive parts in this motor would likely keep him from a top finish, he says this engine is more representative of what customers want. Rather than purpose-built dyno engines, Mopar customers today demand powerful, reliable engines that will last for many years in a street car, or many passes in a drag car.

Starting with a factory block, engine builder Mike Ware performed all the necessary machine work in-house at Muscle Motors. Inside the block, he installed a Callies 3.79-inch, stroke-forged crankshaft, 6.379-inch connecting rods, and Ross 11:1 compression forged pistons for a final displacement of 400 ci. Oiling was handled by a Melling oil pump, Milodon deep pan, and Milodon windage tray. Since roller cams are known for making great power and providing improved reliability, Mike chose a solid roller cam for this engine.

Topping his bulletproof short-block, Mike chose Edelbrock Performer RPM cylinder heads. He stated that the Edelbrock heads have great flow for the money, and since most Mopars are at least slightly front-heavy, aluminum heads are a great way to shave some 40 pounds from the front of the car. The heads were ported in-house at Muscle Motors before being treated to a multi-angle valve job, stainless steel valves, and new roller valvesprings. Since this engine was a customer's and would be installed in a T/A Challenger clone, Six-Pack induction was mandatory. While Mike knew the dual-plane Six-Pack intake would limit peak power numbers, he chose his combination accordingly and made up for the loss of peak power in torque. In fact, this engine made as much torque per cubic inch as the top motors in this year's contest.

We congratulate Mike Ware and Muscle Motors for their Sixth Place finish, and, more importantly, for showing us the potential of a Six-Pack-equipped small-block.