The difference betweens cars that are V4, V6, V8, etc.

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The difference betweens cars that are V4, V6, V8, etc.

In: Engineering

The number of cylinders that an engine contains is an important factor in the overall performance of the engine. Each cylinder contains a piston that pumps inside of it and those pistons connect to and turn the crankshaft. The more pistons there are pumping, the more combustive events are taking place during any given moment. That means that more power can be generated in less time.

V is the layout style. the number is the # of cylinders. V means that the cylinders form a V shape with equal number on both sides of the V in pairs of 2. the other common engine designs is the inline “l” where all cylinders are vertical in a line. the flat/boxer “h” where all cylinders are mounted horizontally towards each other in pairs of 2, or the “W” which uses two rows of “V” that is used in designs with larger number of cylinders, ie 8/12 cylinders. each design has it’s tradeoffs and advantages.

For a given combustion chamber total requirement- cubic capacity (example 2 litres) the pistons can be sized with a diameter and stroke length to give the capacity. This could be a single piston or multiple, the configurations of v4, v6, v8, v16 could all deliver the same 2 litres but by having smaller and larger diameter pistons engine character can be change this allows for smoother running, less fuel, higher torque, faster revolutions, the ratio of (total size of piston diameters added) and the total size of the inlet and exhaust valves also come into play a 60 valve 12cyl by 5valves would also add considerable complexity to engine design , and is normally reserved for large high power units. – edit – Oh I forgot the V can also be either hot allowing for the turbo to be centred within the V (unusual) but compact or classic.