Volkswagen has found renewed interest in its line of diesel engines as gas prices stay stubbornly high. With diesel engines growing in popularity, word has filtered out that a high-performance turbodiesel engine producing around 134 horsepower per liter is in development at the German automaker, and it will be hooked to a 10-speed automatic transmission.
Now this hi-po TDI engine could go into just about any car, and could could range in size from a liter or less to 3.0 liters or more. Being able to get more than 400 horsepower out of an engine that is just 3.0 liters in size is something that previously only automakers like Ferrari were capable of. Add to that a 10-speed automatic transmission, and we’re talking about one seriously potent and powerful oil-burner, perhaps even a new Audi RS4. Then again, this motor could be destined for the uber-efficient Volkswagen XL1 project, which is estimated to get 314 mpg.
That said, Volkswagen isn’t the only automaker squeezing more power out of smaller engines. Ford is already selling a 1.0liter, 3-cylinder gas-powered EcoBoost engine that makes 123 horsepower in production vehicles, and over 200 horsepower for track duty. Downsizing is all the rage these days it seems, keeping gas engines quite viable.
But diesel engines are famously efficient, and Volkswagen has decades of diesel experience; besides, no amount of turbochargers can make up for the natural torque found in diesel engines. Check out the next page for the full press release.