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Old 11-22-2013, 05:25 PM   #8
ohioguy98
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Default Re: Flashback Friday: The Legend of the Saturn SL3

I would be very surprised if a stock, mass produced, normally aspirated six cylinder engine of that era intended for a mainstream economy car would have produced anywhere close to 250 hp. That many ponies (more than double an SL2) in a car of that size would be very quick indeed even now, especially so for the early '90s.

Straight sixes are typically torquey, so the power would not only be usable, but feel magnified. I had a 3.6 liter straight six in my Jaguar of that era, rated at "only" 180-something hp, and that thing was smooth as silk and pulled like a freight train. It didn't feel under powered for the era even in a car much heavier (3900 lbs) than an S-Series.

Heck, most mainstream sixes of even the early 2000s - ten years after the mysterious SL3 - were rated at only around 190s - low 200s. The GM Vortec 4200 I-6 in the early '00s Blazer produced mid 200s, but of course that was a 4.2 liter engine ten years after the SL3, and in a much heavier vehicle.

For an N/A engine developed in the late '80s - early '90s, 150 hp would be a more believable but still respectable number, and even in that range a car the weight of an S-Series would scoot right along.

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