Matt Robinson profile picture Matt Robinson 6 years ago
News

Infiniti Has Built A Variable Displacement Engine And It's Spectacularly Clever

The new 'VC-T' engine from Infiniti is able to alter its own compression ratio by varying the length of the piston stroke

Remind me later
Infiniti - Infiniti Has Built A Variable Displacement Engine And It's Spectacularly Clever - News

The idea of a variable displacement engine is something that’s been around for years. Through cylinder shutdown technology, engines like Bentley’s W12 and Aston Martin’s new 5.2-litre V12 can turn off a whole cylinder bank under certain situations, temporarily giving a smaller, more efficient engine. However, the sort of variable displacement tech Infiniti has come up is way, way more clever.

What the company’s new ‘VC-T’ engine can do is change the stroke of the pistons automatically depending on the driving situation, in the process varying the displacement and compression ratio. The con rods are made of two parts, with an actuator connected to the lower ‘multi-link’ part. An electric motor moves the actuator, raising and lowering the piston height where required.

Infiniti - Infiniti Has Built A Variable Displacement Engine And It's Spectacularly Clever - News

Using this jolly clever tech, the VC-T can have a compression ratio anywhere from 8:1 for the best performance, to 14:1 for the highest efficiency.

Power-wise we can expect around 270bhp, all while giving what Infiniti claims is diesel-rivalling efficiency. Oh, and apparently it’ll be as smooth as a V6. Those are some lofty claims, so we’re fascinated to see how this thing works in reality.

Expect the engine to replace the company’s 3.5-litre V6, making an appearance in multiple Infiniti vehicles. It’ll make its public debut at the Paris motor show.