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Engine Layout Types | Engine Layouts Explained

Automobile engine Layouts

Engine is the most fascinating mechanical system. Different types of engines are available in the market. They are differentiated based on working, size, construction and a lot more aspects. Similarly the engines can be distinguished by its layout. Different configurations give us different characteristics. All different types also have there own Pros and Cons.

This blog is all about different types of Engine Layouts. We will througly discuss about its construction, applications and much more. So lets get straight into it.

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1. Straight Engine

Engine Layout Types | Engine Layouts Explained

A straight engine is evidently known as inline type. In this type of internal combustion engine, all cylinders are aligned in one row. This are decidedly used in three, four and six cylinder configurations. A straight engine is compartively easier to build and cost effective. Fewer parts of construction and simple manufacturing techniques made this Car makers favourite. Inline types are also used in locomotives and aircrafts. In automobile most four cylinder configuration is most commonly used.

Since 2000, nearly half of all new vehicles sold have a straight or inline engine. Toyota 2JZ, Toyota Prius, Honda Civic Type R are some famous instances. The straight engine have both advantages and disadvantages. Have a look at them.

Inline engine are Simple in constructionEngine area increases with increase in number of cylinders
Its mechanical simplicity makes them cheap and easy to maintain.Need heavy engine block to support the force of the cylinders

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2. Boxer Engine

The boxer engine is also know as the Flat engine. In this, the pistons of each opposed pair of cylinders move inwards and outwards at the same time. In 1897, Karl Benz made the first flat engine. Flat engine are widely used in motorcycles and aviation. Although, it is not often seen in automobiles. Significantly, Porsche and Subaru are the dominant manufacturers of flat engines. Subaru Impreza STI 22B, Porsche 911 (997) GT3 RS 4.0 are some famous examples. Below we have tabulated its advantages and disadvantages.

Low centre of gravity gives better handlingIt is a wide engine.
Forces are well balanced, smooth engineComplex design and difficult for maintenance

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3. Rotary Engine

The rotary type are the oldest type of internal combustion engine. Earlier it were widely used in cars, trucks, boats and planes. These were the most dominant engine around the1920s. The rotary engine works similar to our piston engine. But the only difference is it employs a triangular shaped rotar instead of a piston. The rotar draws air into the combustion chamber and also form gas tight seals. The rotary engine are widely seen in Mazda cars. Mazda RX-8 and Yamaha RZ201 are the popular one. Pros and Cons of the rotary type are as follows.

Smooth and quit operationSlow combustion and bad fuel economy
Fewer moving parts therefore easy to maintainDifficult to meet emissions requirements i.e High emissions

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4. V Type

The most popular type is the V engine. It consists of two cylinder banks. Each bank comes with se number of cylinders in each bank. The cylinder banks are arranged in such a way that it forms ‘V’ shape. The V6 and V8 are the most famous engines among the enthusiasts. V engine is mostly used in sport cars. Aston Martin Vantage and BMW M5 uses V8 engine. Below are its advantages and disadvantages.

Increases primary balance & reduces vibrationsIncreased parts means increase in cost
Smoother operation for high-speed performanceComplex and construction and increased weight

5. W Type

The W type engine got its popularity when Bugatti used it in Veyron in 2005. The W type is a massive engine. It consists of four cylinder banks which are arranged togather to form a ‘W’ shape. It features a total of 16 cylinders. Infact, only Volkswagen group designs and build W engine. Chiron, and Divo also features a W engine.

Optimum for high speed and heavy duty vehiclesIt has a wide construction
Balanced weight distributionLess fuel efficient
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