Viewer Requested Video: About the 1996 LT4
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Viewer Requested. Today's video is coming to you courtesy of several of our viewers who have requested that I do it. Specifically, today we're going to be talking about the 1996 Corvette LT4. Not only did you guys want to learn more about the LT4, but this week we ended up purchasing an LT4 six-speed Coupe in torch red with a black interior. I think it's a one-owner car with around 57,000 miles on it. Having this car here set off a signal in my head that I should do a video about that engine so that I knew more about it as we move forward prepping this car for sale. By the way, if you want a torch red '96 LT4 Coupe, message me in the comments. We can talk.
Now, as you're aware, Corvette used the LT1 engine from '92 through '96. But for the last year of 1996 Corvette C4 production, they introduced a high-performance version of the LT1 known as the LT4. That was available only with a stick shift. You could not get it with an automatic. And if you got any stick shift car in 1996, that was a Corvette, you got an LT4. Now, before somebody in the comments says it, I know that somewhere, somebody in GM had at least one, maybe two, '96 Corvettes made with the LT4 and an automatic. One or two of those cars does actually exist. It's not in any of the paperwork, but I'm aware that they exist. But 99.999% of LT4 cars were manuals.
Okay, what we're going to dig into today, and I'm going to warn you in advance, some of this gets pretty engine wonky. There are a lot of specialized terms and stuff I'm going to cover to delineate the differences between the LT1 and the LT4, some of which I've skipped over for brevity. Most of the things I'm going to go through today in the differences between the engines should make sense to anybody who understands an internal combustion engine, specifically a Chevy V8.
In 1996, there were 6,359 LT4 Corvettes made. The stock horsepower on an LT1 was 300 from '92 through '96. The factory rating for the LT4 in 1996 was 330 horsepower. Now, a 30-horsepower bump is fairly substantial. It's not world-beating, but it is better than nothing, and it takes about 30 horses for the average person to feel it in the seat of their pants when they're driving. So, it was definitely an improvement that could be felt viscerally.
Here's the thing: as we get into this, I'm going to go through all of the different changes they made and why they made them, and I'll have some pictures showing that so that you can visualize what I'm talking about.