GM revealed its new line of EcoTec small gas engines that includes 11 variants of three and four-cylinder engines that’ll service 27 different models. Ranging from 75 to 165 horsepower and designed to integrate alternative fuels and hybrid drivetrains, these new engines are among the most important projects in GM’s portfolio.
The first production application of the new EcoTec engines will be a 1.0 liter three-cylinder in the new Opel Adam, an engine that could also serve the next-generation Chevy Volt. GM also mentions a turbocharged 1.4 liter and a naturally-aspirated 1.5 liter tailored specifically to China. The new EcoTec engines are designed with a modular nature allows greater flexibility among the engine line, while making tooling a lot simpler as well.
Other enhancements include less noise and more fuel economy, with the new 1.4 liter turbo being 5% more efficient than the engine it replaces. That means in most cases an extra 2 MPG or so on the highway, and it’s hard to find anything to complain about that. At 148 horsepower the new 1.4 liter engine makes as much power as the outgoing motor, but is rated at a much-better 173 ft-lbs of torque…at least in China.
Ultimately GM plans to fit EcoTec engines into 27 models across 5 different brands, including the next-generation Chevy Cruze, which should also debut sometime in the next few months. I’m most excited to see the improvement in MPG and all-electric range a new engine gives the next-generation Volt.
It’s a competitive lineup of motors that helps GM keep pace with other automakers, but nothing really jumped out and grabbed me either. What’re your thoughts on GM’s new line of little engines?