Car Engines Types

With the ever advancing development of technology over the last century, engines have been modified and refined and many different methods for powering cars catch on and from time to time change the way we drive. Despite the mass amount of differing types of cars that are available on the market today, most cars still use the same basic engines, underneath is the types of engines most commonly used with a little bit of information about each type.

Internal Combustion Engine

different type of engine - internal-combustion-engine1The majority of all modern vehicles have an internal combustion engine powering them. These engines use fuel, such as petrol, which is ignited to produce the power stroke that then drives the vehicle. An internal combustion engine in essence creates a series of small explosions before transferring it’s power to the driveshaft via the transmission.  Most internal combustion engines are four stroke engines, with four different procedures:

  • Intake
  • Compression
  • Ignition
  • Exhaust

Rotary Engines

different engine type - rotary-engine-1A rotary engine is an alternative to the standard reciprocating piston engine, developed in the 20th century, the rotary is still an internal combustion engine that uses a rotating plate within the engine to seal off sections of the engine, which serve as the compression or combustion chambers rather than the up and down motion of a piston. A rotary engine weighs less than a piston engine with similar volume, however the rotary engine is uncommon today but are still used in the Mazda RX series of sports cars.

Hybrid Vehicle Engines

Some modern hybrid vehicles use an electric motor to produce the forward motion, the electric motor is  powered by a petrol engine or by conserving and storing energy during braking or travelling downhill. The electric engines are supplied by battery packs which adds to the complexity and cost of  these hybrids, however the advantages are that cars that primarily use electric power produce very few emissions and can achieve fuel economy far greater than even the most modest of petrol or diesel engines.

Alternative Fuel Engines

Most other alternative fuel cars, some of which are no more than prototypes, use a different type of fuel to power the same sort of electric engine as used in gasoline-electric hybrids. This is true of solar cars, hydrogen fuel cell cars, so-called plug-in hybrids and fully electric vehicles. These electric motors have the advantage of providing their full power at all vehicle speeds, instead of needing to be “revved up” to produce peak power as with an internal combustion engine. They are also flexible, being able to receive their fuel from a variety of sources.

*Information on these engines was provided with thanks from www.ehow.com

 

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