Advanced tech of 4-cylinder designs offers additional pep
Volvo released a series of environmentally friendly engines on Feb 26, in response to growing concerns over air pollution nationwide.
The 4-cylinder 2.0-liter engines, one diesel and two gasoline options, were developed based on its Drive-E philosophy, which the Sweden-headquartered automaker said encompasses "all innovations made to reduce the impact on the environment".
Sharing the same architecture, the engines are some 50 kg lighter than their predecessors, according to a promotional video at the press conference.
According to Volvo, the engines will be coupled with either a new eight-speed automatic gearbox or an enhanced six-speed manual, and they can cut fuel consumption by 13 to 35 percent depending on the engine to which they are compared.
The automaker said they will help achieve Volvo's target of lowering its model's carbon dioxide emission to 95g/km by 2020 and realize its ultimate goal of "zero emissions".
The first vehicles to use such engines in China will be XC 60 crossovers, and they will hit the market within the year.
By introducing the new powertrains, Volvo said it hopes to reshape the landscape in China's premium car market. Its sales in China surpassed 60,000 units in 2013, a 46 percent surge from the previous year.
Some experts at the press conference said that fuel economy will prove to be a new selling point of Volvo vehicles to potential buyers as the National Development and Reform Commission announced on Feb 26 to raise prices of gasoline and diesel by 205 yuan and 200 yuan per ton.
Derek Crabb, a senior research and development adviser at Volvo, said the 4-cylinder engines offer performance equivalent to six and even eight-cylinder powertrains by allowing more air going through them.
Crabb, who worked on the Formula-one engines, said Volvo used the drive-E prototype in racing in 2011.