In the thread A Chemists View on Gasoline
in the fuel additives section, a chemist weighed in on various gasoline strategies, etc. But in his message (you have to go to his paper to read this), he stated:
"My Corvette is a 1979 that is on its second trip through the odometer (and its second engine...)"
This struck me as a bit short lived for an American V-8. Many Vette owners take very good care of their rides, but maybe the Chemist is a weekend racer or something else.
I posed this same question to a local acquaintance who opined that 100k on an older Chevy engine was about right - older Ford V-8s lasted a bit longer - mabye 150k. Newer engines last longer. It was unclear exactly what "newer engines" means, but let's say 1997 or later - basically 'clean air act' or 'computer controlled' engines.
So, how long should an engine last?
By lasting, I mean no major repairs
. A tear-down for new rings or bearings is a major repair. Ditto for a thrown rod. Those engines are goners but for the repairs - end of life.
How about a leaking head gasket? Should a new head gasket constitute a major repair? How about a required
head job, presumably because a valve burned, or maybe the valve stems seals started pumping oil like Texas?
How about replacing front or rear engine seals (because of major oil leakage)? End of life?
Are there other engine failures which would constitute major repair (and therefore mark the end of that engine's lifespan, but for the repair)?
I would not consider a new intake or exhaust manifold gasket a major repair, since it does not require tearing down the engine or removing the cylinder head - it's more like out-patient surgery. But if it was your vehicle and the shop just handed you an $800 bill, you might disagree.
How long should an engine last?