Rumor may have it that GM’s 1.4-liter gasoline-powered generator in the Chevy Volt and Opel/Vauxhall Ampera is slated for replacement, but that did not stop a worldwide panel of automotive journalists from just awarding it as tops in the “Green Engine” category.
The International Engine of the Year awards are intended to identify “great” engines in a dozen different categories, and the humble range extender – as the judges described the Volt’s gas-electric powertrain – found itself in the general company of powerplants offered in models by Ferrari, BMW, Audi, and others brands with generally higher perceived panache.
Of course those brands are all playing catch up to the Volt in the plug-in vehicle category, but that’s another story …
All told, this year’s categories were New Engine; Green Engine; Performance Engine; Sub 1.0-Liter; 1.0-1.4-Liter; 1.4-1.8-Liter; 1.8-2.0-Liter; 2.0-2.5-Liter; 2.5-3.0-Liter, 3.0-4.0-Liter and above 4-Liter.
But the Volt’s engine was not the only humble candidate to find itself in exalted company. Top honors for the International Engine of the Year actually went to the (also green) Ford 1.0-liter three-cylinder EcoBoost engine. This Euro-spec powerplant which displaces 999 cubic centimeters also just squeaked by with first place in the Sub 1.0-liter category, as well as the New Engine category.
Ford’s direct-injected baby turbo puts out either 99 or 123 horsepower (100/125 PS) – on par with a 1.6 liter – and in the more powerful version, its 250,000-rpm turbo spools up peak torque of 125 pound-feet (170 Nm) at between 1,300-4,400 engine rpm with “virtually no turbo lag.”
In any event, we don’t know for sure whether GM is really going to shelve the 1.4, but winning this award is another feather in the Volt’s cap.
This entry was posted on Thursday, June 14th, 2012 at 5:55 am and is filed under General. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.