Jeep Wrangler driving off-road with a 4BT Cummins engine
Call us

Cat 3208 Engine

CAT 3208 Engines For Sale

CAT 3208 Marine EngineThe Caterpillar 3208 is an eight-cylinder, four-stroke diesel engine with a V-8 configuration. The 3208 Cat engine was released in 1975 when Cat collaborated with Ford, the 3208 proved to be extremely popular during its production run that ceased in the early 1990’s. The very first Caterpillar 3208 engines offered 225hp with 636 cubic-inch capacity V8 design. In fact, the 3208 did not have cylinder liners which owners would answer by re-boring the blocks and fitting oversized pistons and rings instead of scrapping the engine itself. The 3208 Cat was reportedly known as a ‘throw away’ engine that the creators claimed was part of the design criteria. 1973 saw the 3208 reborn as a turbocharged version, then 1981 revamped again with more design modifications.

Caterpillar’s 3208 was frequently chosen by yacht and leisure boat owners, also larger vessels would be powered with twin turbo charged engines. However, the 3208 was known to get through quite a lot of fuel, consequently meaning it did not meet the criteria of the internal combustion exhaust emission laws which were due to come into force. Therefore, the 3208 was discontinued in 1999.

Engine Applications and Uses

  • Trucks
  • Marine
  • Buses
  • Construction

Common CAT 3208 Engine Problems & Failures

Itemized Below are a handful of engine problems and malfunctions commonly experienced by customers who wish to replace their either deceased or problematic 3208 Cat engine. Unfortunately, some of the issues listed could in fact lead to the death of your engine, but some can be alleviated if caught in time.

AERA Association Member

  • Camshaft Failure
  • Crankshaft Failure
  • Lifter/Roller Failure
  • Connecting Rod Failure
  • Cracked Cylinder Head(s)
  • Extreme Blow By
  • Lack of oil or oil pressure
  • Over Fueling
  • Scored Pistons and Liners
  • Spun Crankshaft Bearings
  • Dropped Valves

Caterpillar 3208 Engine Replacement Options

When it comes to the wellbeing of your engine there could be an excess of issues and mishaps, worst case scenario, you could be left with an issue where you are cornered in replacing your engine. However, some circumstances may just require you to replace some parts or components, or maybe your engine just needs a mere refreshment. Of course, cost, time, and availability will play a part in your decision making, so let us inform you of the pro’s and con’s of a new Caterpillar 3208 engine from the dealer.

Remanufacturing Process

A remanufactured 3208 Cat long block engine is a great replacement for someone who has been the victim of a catastrophic internal engine failure, but luckily escaped with good re-useable external components that can be salvaged from their old motor. Long blocks are also a good alternative when trying to reduce costs in when faced with such an issue.

Our team of machinists and engine builders come to do a full core tear down, cleaning, inspection, and machining of the engine before it leaves our facility to ensure perfection each and every time.

However, it is crucial to note that all of our Caterpillar 3208 remanufactured long blocks are constructed with a combination of both reman and new parts. However, we do not just recondition or refurbish former engine parts but rather completely rebuild the old 3208 motor to OEM specs.

Thorough Cleaning

Firstly, every 3208 Cat engine is initially stripped. Blocks, heads, rods, crankshafts and camshafts are thoroughly cleaned in a chemical jet wash or hot tank to get rid of any impurities that could hasten both early component and engine failure.


Prior to being thoroughly inspected by our quality control department, crankshafts are precision machined to exact tolerances, polished & magnafluxed.

Cylinder Heads

Heads are resurfaced to ensure a proper sealing surface with the block and a finish consistent with today's new gasket materials. Valve height is mic-d and every head is vacuum tested to assure an accurate valve seating.

Cylinder Blocks

By using magnetic particle, the blocks are carefully inspected for cracks and defects. Cylinders are then bored, honed and inspected to precise tolerances. Torque plate honing is performed on some engines to prevent the chances of cylinder head distortion after the head is bolted and torqued to the block. This process stops a major cause of engine blow-by. Block surfaces are machined and then inspected to ensure proper finish and good quality.


Camshafts are carefully inspected and precisely machined to provide correct lift. Lobs are measured with a micrometre to make sure OEM tolerances are met.

Connecting Rods

Connecting rods are first cleaned, then machined to O.E.M. specifications prior to being honed to the standard diameter of previous equipment for the even distribution of stress on the bearings. New bushings are installed and machined in all bushed rods. Every rod is carefully inspected for bend and twist.

New Parts

Our Caterpillar 3208 long block engines receive a standard set of new parts such as pistons and rings, bearings, gaskets and seals, and liners. These new parts guarantee excellent performance and consistency throughout the lifetime of the 3208 Cat. The new parts are a combination of both OEM and Aftermarket parts when available.

Request a Quote

Please fill out the form below with your information and request. A member of our staff will be with you shortly.

Remanufactured Engines Standards

The definition of remanufacture, is to make as close to new as possible. Wearable parts are automatically replaced. All Caterpillar 3208 engines core materials are thoroughly inspected and examined against the original equipment specifications ensuring correct dimensional tolerances. Replacement parts are new or requalified. If new, parts are made in the same production procedures as original equipment. Testing is then carried out to manufacturer specifications and original production standards.

CAT 3208 Long Block Parts List:

  • Intermediate Cover
  • Timed Front Gear Group
  • New Upper and Lower Gasket Set
  • Complete Loaded Cylinder Head
  • Camshaft
  • Connecting Rods
  • Crankshaft
  • Cylinder Block
  • Followers/Lifters
  • Pistons
  • Liners
  • Rings
  • **1 Year Warranty

*Note: We can provide new oil pumps, oil coolers, water pumps, turbos, injectors and fuel pumps for additional cost with the long block but will not come assembled to the engine.

**First 6 Months Parts & Labor, Second 6 Months Parts Replacement Only. Ask your sales representative for a full copy of our remanufactured long block warranty.

CAT 3126 Spec

Engine Data 

ConfigurationFour-Stroke-Cycle Diesel
EmissionsIMO Compliant
Bore114.3 mm (4.5 in)
Stroke127 mm (5.0 in)
Displacement10.4 L (636 cu in)
Rotation (from flywheel end)Counter-Clockwise
Compression Ratio16.5:1 435
Cooling System (engine only) 
DINA47.3 L (12.5 gal)
DITA56.0 L (14.8 gal)
Lube Oil System (refill) 
DINA12.0 L (3.2 gal)
DITA15.0 L (4.0 gal)
Oil Change Interval250 hrs
Engine Weight, Net Dry (approx)722 kg (1592 lb)
375 hp772 kg (1702 lb)
435 hp899 kg (1982 lb)

Give us a call today at 844-340-4114 for immediate sales and support for the Cummins 4BT, Cummins 6BT, 6CT, ISC, 855, QSB 4.5 L or CAT 3306. If you have any questions check out our FAQ Page. We are always ready to help or just listen to your crazy off-roading adventures!

Request A Quote


Got an Engine Down?

Discover your best options!
Get our FREE 8-Page Diesel Engine Replacement Guide

    I am looking for an