Southern Performance Systems Hand Builds Custom Engines

Southern Performance Systems may specialize in offering drop-in LS engine packages for muscle cars and other swaps, but the engines they build by hand are really where they show their expertise. SPS starts each build with a bare LSX block, a durable cast iron 6-bolt main block, and can build it out to handle an extreme amount of power. Customers have gotten engines with power levels of over 2,000-horsepower from these beasts. 

SPS builds the engine around the needs of the customers. All of the internal engine parts, cylinder heads, and bolt-on parts are matched to meet power and build requirements, many use these engines to handle extreme boost. SPS runs their engines through the break-in process, and dyno tests each before the customer picks them up. Learn more about the hand-built engines by Southern Performance Systems in the official release below.

Official Release:

Custom Hand-Built Engines by Southern Performance Systems

Southern Performance Systems (SPS) in Sugar Hill, Georgia specializes in providing the most complete “Turn-Key” LS engine packages for classic cars, muscle cars and trucks. However, their custom hand-built engines are where they shine. The gallery full of past work on their website showcases some of the biggest and most unique.

To create their custom engines, SPS starts with a new GM LSX Bowtie bare block. This is a durable cast iron block with 6 bolt mains and 6 bolts per cylinder head – capable of 454 C. I. and able to support in excess of 2,000 H.P. From there each build varies depending on customer needs and wants. They include adding heads, rockers, and rocker arms. Changing the rocker bearings, push rods and the rotating assembly come next. The crank is the forged steel Magnum. Connecting rods, pistons and bearings are all selected based on the engine and the H.P. and boost required. Many of the SPS custom engines run Magnuson Superchargers.

Although these engines are designed for power and reliability many customers also request a high level of detailing to complement the high-end car or truck that they are building. As part of that detailing, SPS paints the engine with each part painted independent of each other. There is a great deal of special prepping that is required for the longevity of the engine. Once finished the block and heads are assembled according to specs for that build.

The finished engines are run and broken in until they are put on the dynamometer to be tuned. The end result is a beautiful engine custom made for the customer’s individual build.

Southern Performance Systems was founded in 1994 by John Tucker. Located in Sugar Hill, Georgia outside of Atlanta, Southern Performance Systems specializes in providing the most complete “Turn-Key” LS engine packages for classic cars, muscle cars and trucks. In addition to engine packages to make an LS conversion complete they offer upgrades for brakes, suspensions, rear ends, air conditioning, electronic gauges, radiators and headers. Years of being an install center, doing design work and testing have made them a leader in the LS conversion market. For more information visit


  • Custom Built LSX Block Engines
  • Capable of Being Built to Extreme Horsepower Ratings
  • Each is Custom Built for Customer’s Needs

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