440 Cop Motor Upgrades

Tech Question


Rick Nelson, Mötley, MN, 1967 Dodge Polara 383

Oh Wise Guru,
I recently came across a rotten 1977 PlymouthFury police car, and have the opportunity to buy the engine. (It’s a 440) Imlead to believe that these later engines are less desire able with theirlower compression ratios and poor flowing heads, but I was also told of a”440 interceptor” engine used in police cars that are built stronger and areexempt from smog equipment, like my M880 dodge pickup has. I guess I’mwondering if any of this is true, and if so what makes the “interceptor”better than a run of the mill Imperial or Winnebago 440? I’m just a kidtrying to go fast for cheap so any help is appreciated! Thanks



The ’77-78 440 cop motor did have some durability upgrades, roller chain,better valves, springs, etc. etc. compression was lower (7.8:1 as I recall),so pistons are pretty useless. Just as much smog equipment as anything else,cops were not exempt. Still, all you’d need to do is find or fab and EGRblockoff and standard distributor.

Heads are A-OK, flow great, hardened seats, etc. Cam was the same grind as1967 440 HP. Block is fine, crank was better cast. Intake manilfd was A-OK,exhausts about halfway between the old HP ones and logs. Motor home engines,on the contrary, were pretty poor choices for performance buildups.

Trans was also very good, as was 9-1/4” rear axle


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