Volvo Begins Production on New Four-Cylinder Engines

By Jason Davis | May 13, 2013
Volvo today began production on a new class of four-cylinder gasoline and diesel engines. They will be the exclusive future powerplant for all Volvo automobiles, from the smallest wagons and sedans, to the largest SUVs. It was a controversial decision at the time of its announcement almost two years ago at the Los Angeles International Auto Show, and one that remains curious even now, since most Americans associate luxury with "power," and traditional power has equated to large V-8 engines. But that American mindset, applicable when Volvo was controlled by Ford, is no longer congruent with the Swede's business model. There are several reasons given for the unique change. With this next generation of automobiles, Volvo will be completely free from all of the corporate influences that it has so long been constrained. The next generation Volvos will be lighter, and will feature extensive technological innovations to reach the 300-400 horsepower goal for the higher end models, including turbochargers, and multi-motor electrification (hybrid engines). Better yet, Volvo is promising segment-leading fuel efficiency. So, on paper, it's not hard to understand: In addition to finally having autonomous control of its future, Volvo will continue to be safe, environmentally responsible, fuel efficient, and powerful. "This marks a milestone in Volvo Cars' history. With our new engine family we are focusing on two additional vital properties - driving pleasure and fuel efficiency," says Derek Crabb, Vice President Powertrain Engineering. Best of all, Volvo's doing it all in house, which isn't cheap. But it gives the automaker the control and flexibility it needs to directly influence quality. "One of the biggest challenges was the remodeling of the line for cylinder block processing. 30 machining cells were replaced or converted at a cost of about half a billion kronor," says Oskar Falk, Vice President Global Engine Production. Volvo says the new engines, which will be introduced between 2013 and 2015, will deliver greater performance than the outgoing six-cylinder engines, and will also offer lower fuel consumption than the current generation of four-cylinders. Like we said above: It looks great on paper, but we can't wait to see how it plays out in the real world. Source: Volvo