With thousands of show cars on display at this year’s SEMA Show in Las Vegas, there was no shortage of interesting engines under the hoods. EngineLabs walked most of the event to photograph the hottest, most powerful and best looking engines for your enjoyment and edification. We found old, new, exotic, pretty, bold, steam-punkish, oil burners, blacklights on the valve covers and even a 1969 Moto Guzzi.

A few trends were obvious from our visit to the annual showcase of auto products: 

  • More turbos: Car builders are finding the most ingenious methods of plumbing the air feeds, intercoolers and manifolds to take advantage of turbo power.
  • More engine covers: What happened to engine detailing? There used to be considerable pride in showing off a well-detailed engine with just the right balance between paint and polish. Sometimes there was too much chrome, then the monochromatic fad hit in the ’90s and there was too much paint. Now, the trend seems to be making a fiberglass cover and gluing on a few emblems. 
  • More LS: That’s to be expected, given the tremendous effort GM is pouring into Chevy Performance. It’s just so easy now to build a 400- or 500-horsepower LS engine.
  • More old-school: Some engines looked like they came right out of a time machine.
  • More 8-stack styling: You can never go wrong giving your V8 individual throttle bodies or individual runners.

Sorry we couldn’t photograph all the engines. Some of your favorites are likely missing, but go to our Facebook page and tell us your favorite of bunch. Click on any image for a full-size view. Enjoy.