What Is the Difference Between L98 & L76 Engines?


The L76 and L98 6-liter V-8 engines primarily powered Holden vehicles. GM Holden, Ltd. is an Australian subsidiary of the General Motors that produces Holden-branded cars and trucks. The engines were the most powerful in Holden's automotive lineup, with some modified L76s fitted in the performance Pontiac and Chevrolet passenger cars and in GM trucks and SUVs sold in the North American market. The L98 was a slightly modified version of the L76 and delivered more horsepower than the L76.

L6 Features

  • The L76 was GM's Generation IV V-8 designed for the Australian automotive market. The L76 did not feature the displacement on demand -- also called active fuel management -- feature, which shut down half of its cylinders under certain driving conditions as a fuel-saving measure. An active fuel management version of the L76, the more powerful Vortec 6000, found its way in the performance 2008 and 2009 Pontiac G8 GT and sold in the United States. Holden cars could also receive a specially fitted active fuel management version if equipped with 6L80 automatic transmissions. The non-active fuel management fuel-injected Holden engine version developed 354 horsepower and 376 foot-pounds of torque. Its compression ratio was 10.4-to-1. Both the L76 and Vortec 6000 versions allowed massive torque at lower revs that provided quick off-the-line acceleration and superior towing capability. Holden also enhanced the L76's performance with a sports exhaust system that provided better breathing. Holden matched the L76 with a Tremec T-56 six-speed manual transmission.

L76 Applications

  • Holden installed the L76 in the 2006 Holden, Holden WL Statesman and Caprice, the 2009 Holden Commodore VE, WM Statesman and Caprice, Holden VE Ute and the Pontiac. Other models included the Holden SV8, SS, Berlina and Calais four-door sedans.

Vortec 6000

  • The Vortec 6000 L76 was essentially the North American version of the Australian L76. All U.S. versions began production in 2006 and featured the active fuel management feature. It delivered 367 horsepower and 375 foot-pounds of torque with a 9.6-to-1 compression ratio. GM dubbed the engine the VortecMax. Buyers could order the VortecMax in the 2007 to 2009 Chevrolet Suburban, Avalanche, Silverado, the GMC Sierra, Yukon XL and the Pontiac G8 GT.


  • Holden modified the L98 by removing the internal components used for the active management fuel system. This boosted horsepower 362 horsepower and 391 foot-pounds of torque, which was an improvement over the standard L76 Holden V-8. The L98 featured different exhaust manifolds, performance-enhanced calibration and 2.25-inch dual exhaust with quad pipes and high-flow exhausts. It featured the same compression ratio and fuel injection system as the standard L76 Holden engine. The block, cylinder head and pistons were cast aluminum. The camshaft was billet steel, and the connecting rods were forged powdered metal. The L98 powered Holden passenger cars, the 2007 and 2008 Chevrolet Lumina Super Sport and the Chevrolet Caprice Super Sport.

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