Engine Upgrade – Carlos Chow


Sophia Fatchett

Chow posing with his car.

Sophia Fatchett, Staff Writer

As he contemplated what he could do to make his 1977 Corvette even better, junior Carlos Chow settled on an engine swap.  His process began with a 350 small block Chevy and ended with a whopping 355 small block Chevy.  To those not car enthusiasts, this may seem like a minor change, however, this engine upgrades more than doubles the horsepower of this classic Corvette.


Chow’s love for cars, specifically corvettes, began with the Transformers.  He believes the most iconic character is Bumblebee, who is similar to his Corvette.  When Chow was given his Corvette at age 15, he knew he wanted to get more out of it than the stock design.  He began his journey by adding new Hooker headers and side pipes. However, this was not enough for him.  Chow wanted to learn more about his first car and give it a new life; an engine swap allowed him to do just that.


“I choose to swap my engine instead of buying a new car because that car is my baby,” Chow said.  “I can’t give her up like that so I would rather put in the time and effort to make her even better and faster than buy something new.”


For Chow, his love of cars goes beyond mechanical technology.  The feelings and connections cars have unleashed within him are what resonate with him the most.  Through his journey with his Corvette, he gained many mentors and a new sense of accomplishment. 


“My father instilled in me the need for speed,” Chow said.  I can come to my neighbor Mitch with any questions or problems about my Corvette.  I love the connection I feel between my Corvette and my skull.”