Why is a cylinder the strongest shape

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Two-cylinder: 0.9 Turbo Twinair from FCA

We start our top list of the most powerful engines with the two-cylinder engines. They are very rare in cars. In addition to the 83 hp V2 of the Morgan three-wheeler, currently only the in-line two-cylinder turbo gasoline engine from FCA (Fiat Chrysler Automobiles) exists. With a displacement of 875 cubic centimeters, the rather rough-sounding engine is also the unit with the smallest displacement ever. It is available in hp levels from 80 to 105 hp.

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The most powerful engines

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Two-cylinder: 0.9 Turbo Twinair from FCA

The small double row is used in the Alfa Romeo MiTo and in the smaller Fiat models, namely 500 (including 500C), Panda, Punto and 500L. The small 500 with the 105 hp Twinair needs exactly 10.0 seconds for the sprint to 100 km / h, the comparatively huge 500L wagon (picture) takes 12.3 seconds.

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Three-cylinder: 1.5 Ecoboost from Ford

The most powerful units of the three-cylinder engines have changed very often recently. Until recently, 140 hp was the ultimate, in the 1.0 Ecoboost from Ford (our picture) and 1.5-liter turbo in a number of 18i models from BMW. Both were overtaken by the new T3 in the Volvo XC40, which gets 156 hp from 1.5 liters, the first three-cylinder from Volvo. And now Ford is in the lead again, with its new 1.5-liter turbo that produces 200 hp.

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Three-cylinder: 1.5 Ecoboost from Ford

The 1.5 Ecoboost offers more than just a lot of power. Above all, it has a cylinder deactivation system that puts one of three cylinders to sleep and is said to save up to eleven percent fuel. The new engine will be used in the new Fiesta ST from July 2018. The sprint time: 6.5 seconds.

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Four-cylinder: 2.0-liter turbo from Mercedes-AMG

Mercedes has been building the most powerful four-cylinder for some time. You know it, it's the unit from the AMG 45 models. From 1,991 cubic centimeters of displacement, it generates an unbelievable 381 hp, making it one of the engines with the highest power density. However, its lead in horsepower is not as big as you might think: The 2.0-liter turbo from the Polestar versions of the Volvo S60 and V60 has 367 horsepower.

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Four-cylinder: 2.0-liter turbo from Mercedes-AMG

The powerful 2.0-liter turbo is currently used in the AMG CLA 45 and GLA 45. The AMG A 45 (our picture) recently expired because the A-Class is currently in the process of generational change. It will be interesting to see whether the new A 45 will stop at 381 hp (we don't think so), whether the engineers will get even more hp from the same displacement (we don't think so either because of the new WLTP cycle) or whether a hybrid system will be added - The latter is our tip.

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Five-cylinder: 2.5 TFSI from Audi

Five-cylinders are not often found under the hood, they never have been. Since Ford no longer has one (the current Focus RS only runs on four pots), there are only two manufacturers who list one in the range: Audi and Volvo. With 400 hp, the Audi one is more than twice as powerful as the 190 hp unit from Sweden.

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Five-cylinder: 2.5 TFSI from Audi

The Ingolstadt-based company only builds its five-in-line into small, sporty models, namely the RS 3 and the TT RS. The more bourgeois models (like S4 and RS 4 or SQ5 TFSI) are powered by a more "serious" V6.

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Six-cylinder: 3.8-liter boxer from Porsche

Despite the downsizing trend, there is (still) no shortage of six-cylinder engines. Porsche builds the strongest. It is the twin-turbo boxer with a displacement of 3,800 cubic centimeters. The 911 Turbo S has 580 hp, which is only enough for third place, but there is also a version with 700 hp. By the way, second place is occupied by the 3.8-liter V6 of the Nissan GT-R Nismo, which produces 600 hp.

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Six-cylinder: 3.8-liter boxer from Porsche

But now we urgently need to solve the riddle: The 700 hp six-cylinder works in the 911 GT2 RS presented in 2017. The bolide is currently the most powerful model from Zuffenhausen. Interesting: Neither the hybrid models (like the Panamera S E-Hybrid, 680 PS), nor the eight-cylinder models (like the Cayenne Turbo, 550 PS) come higher.

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Eight-cylinder: 4.0-liter V8 from McLaren

Price question: If the most powerful six-cylinder has 700 hp, what value do you get with two more pots? The answer has recently been 800 hp. A downright eight-cylinder specialist company is responsible for this: McLaren only offers V8 engines. In the vast majority of models, a smaller 3.8 liter displacement is installed. Only two models get the 4.0-liter engine. Do you know which ones?

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Eight-cylinder: 4.0-liter V8 from McLaren

Right, the McLaren Senna (which, by the way, will only start in summer 2018) is one of them. With 800 hp, it has the most powerful eight-seater under the hood. The second model with the four-liter engine is the 720S, but it only has 720 hp. By the way: The Senna engine is currently also the series unit with the highest power density, it has left the four-cylinder from the AMG-45 models from Mercedes behind. The Senna offers over 200 hp per liter of displacement, the AMG engine only has 191 hp per liter.

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Ten-cylinder: 5.2-liter V10 from Lamborghini

Ten-cylinder models are again a relatively rare species. Ten are only available in V-shape, at least for land vehicles (and that's what we're talking about here). If we also leave tanks, trucks and motorcycles aside (yes, there is a bike with ten cylinders, the Millyard Viper V10 with a Dodge engine), only Lambo and Audi remain as manufacturers. Both use the same 5.2-liter V10, but the horsepower figures vary. Lambo has the edge with 640 hp.

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Ten-cylinder: 5.2-liter V10 from Lamborghini

Wait a minute, 640 hp from ten cylinders? After 800 hp from eight pots, that seems really poor. So be it. The Huracán Performante has the most powerful V10 on board. Acceleration time: 2.9 seconds. The McLaren Senna needs a tenth of a second less with its V8. The ten cylinders are an example of how more cylinders are not always better than fewer. Our forecast is: The ten-cylinder will die out, just like the twelve-cylinder. But more on that in a moment.

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Twelve-cylinder: 6.5-liter V12 from Ferrari

The twelve-cylinder V-shape has the advantage that (as with the V6) the free inertia forces of the moving cylinders are perfectly balanced. So it runs extremely smoothly. So if six cylinders aren't enough to get a certain performance, it's not a bad choice. But let's leave the engineering chatter, this is about horsepower and only about horsepower. Ferrari is currently building the most powerful V12. The 6.5 liter engine delivers 800 hp. That's more than the most powerful V10, after all, but the most powerful V8 also has 800 hp, as you will recall.

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Twelve-cylinder: 6.5-liter V12 from Ferrari

Ferrari currently only builds one twelve-cylinder model, and that is the 812 Superfast. So it is the most powerful twelve-cylinder model on the market. The sprint time is again 2.8 seconds, which is exactly the same as the McLaren Senna. The V12 doesn't even deliver more torque: the 812 has 718 Newton meters, the Senna has 800 Newton meters. So with a quartet of cars, you'd rather have the McLaren than the Ferrari.

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Sixteen-cylinder: 8.0-liter W16 from Bugatti

What's better than twelve cylinders? 16 cylinders. Bugatti builds the only engine with this almost ludicrous number of cylinders. Eight liters of displacement are also a record, as are the 1,500 hp and 1,600 Newton meters that come out of this monster engine.

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Sixteen-cylinder: 8.0-liter W16 from Bugatti

The sprint time of 2.5 seconds is currently not undercut by any other production car. You have long known which model we are talking about, after all, Bugatti doesn't build that many. The Chiron is unlikely to be topped so easily in the future either, unless by its successor.