Automotive

Ferrari takes home 2017 International Engine of the Year

Ferrari takes home 2017 Intern...
The overall winner, the 3.9-liter turbocharged engine from the Ferrari 488 GTB
The overall winner, the 3.9-liter turbocharged engine from the Ferrari 488 GTB
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The hybrid powertrain in the Honda NSX 
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The hybrid powertrain in the Honda NSX 
The overall winner, the 3.9-liter turbocharged engine from the Ferrari 488 GTB
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The overall winner, the 3.9-liter turbocharged engine from the Ferrari 488 GTB
The five-cylinder engine in the Audi TT RS and RS3
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The five-cylinder engine in the Audi TT RS and RS3
The twin-motor electric powertrain in the Tesla Model S and Model X
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The twin-motor electric powertrain in the Tesla Model S and Model X
Porsche won an award with the turbo engine from the Boxster and Cayman 
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Porsche won an award with the turbo engine from the Boxster and Cayman 
The Ferrari 488 GTB won International Engine of the Year
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The Ferrari 488 GTB won International Engine of the Year
Ford has won plenty of awards for its 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine 
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Ford has won plenty of awards for its 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine 
View gallery - 7 images

As emissions standards get tighter, you might think International Engine of the Year would go to a clever compact powertrain, or an engine that mixes miserly fuel consumption with punchy performance. Turns out the panel of 58 automotive journalists in Stuttgart weren't thinking that way, and instead handed this year's top award to the a twin-turbo Ferrari V8.

Overall winner

The Ferrari 488 GTB won International Engine of the Year
The Ferrari 488 GTB won International Engine of the Year

That's right, the International Engine of the Year was awarded to the twin-turbo 3.9-liter V8 from the Ferrari 488 GTB. Even though it's 600cc smaller than the naturally aspirated engine it replaces, the bi-turbo V8 makes a whopping 492 kW (660 hp) of power and 760 Nm of torque. Claimed fuel consumption is 11.2 l/100km (21 mpg) – impressive for a supercar, but not particularly parsimonious by any other measure.

"This blend of heart-thumping performance on both road and track, with a glorious V8 Maranello rumble and an ultra-sophisticated design that's loaded with advanced technologies, makes the Ferrari V8 unbeatable," says Dean Slavnich, co-chairman at the International Engine of the Year Awards.

Best New Engine of the Year

The hybrid powertrain in the Honda NSX 
The hybrid powertrain in the Honda NSX 

The high-end madness continues with Best New Engine of the Year, awarded to the hybrid powertrain in the Honda NSX. It makes use of three electric motors that are hooked up to turbo V6 engine. The first electric motor is hooked up to the crankshaft to provide instant torque to the rear wheels and filling any torque holes potentially created by turbocharging.

Backing the crankshaft-mounted motor are a pair of motors on the front wheels. They're integral to the (deep breath) Sport Hybrid Super Handling All-Wheel Drive system, and allow Honda to cut understeer through proper torque vectoring. Total system output is 573 hp (427 kW), 500 hp (373 kW) of which comes from the turbocharged V6 gasoline engine.

Best Green Engine and Best Electric Powertrain

The twin-motor electric powertrain in the Tesla Model S and Model X
The twin-motor electric powertrain in the Tesla Model S and Model X

Although green engines and electric motors are two entirely different things, the judges have given both awards to the Tesla Model S and Model X. Don't worry, we're confused too. The Model S/X can be configured with two or four electric motors, and both cars offer battery capacity between 75 and 100 kWh. Maximum range is 315 mi (623 km).

Best engines between 2.0- and 4.0-liters

The five-cylinder engine in the Audi TT RS and RS3
The five-cylinder engine in the Audi TT RS and RS3

The judging panel clearly has a penchant for sports car engines, awarding the prize for the best engine between 2.0 – 2.5-liter to the turbocharged five-cylinder from the Audi RS3 and TT RS. Best engine between 2.5 and 3.0-liters went to the turbocharged flat-six from the Porsche 911 Carrera, which beat the twin-turbo six from the BMW M3 and M4.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the 3.9-liter twin-turbo Ferrari V8 won the award for the best engine between 3.0 and 4.0-liters, and the naturally aspirated 6.3-liter V12 from the Ferrari F12 Berlinetta was given the award for engines displacing more than 4.0-liters.

Best engines between 1.0- and 2.0-liters

Porsche won an award with the turbo engine from the Boxster and Cayman 
Porsche won an award with the turbo engine from the Boxster and Cayman 

Porsche was awarded best engine between 1.8 and 2.0-liters with the four-cylinder from the Boxster and Cayman, while the three-cylinder hybrid powertrain from the BMW i8 won the award for engines between 1.4 and 1.8-liters. The three-cylinder turbo engine shared across the PSA Peugeot Citroen range took out the award for best engine between 1.0 and 1.4-liters.

Best sub 1.0-liter engine

Ford has won plenty of awards for its 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine 
Ford has won plenty of awards for its 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine 

Ford has locked this category down in recent years – the 999cc EcoBoost engine has won its category six times in a row now. The engine has been constantly revised over that period, and will come with cylinder deactivation from early next year. It's available in everything from the entry-level Fiesta to the family-hauling Grand C-Max.

Source: International Engine of the Year

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8 comments
swaan
It's only after getting an EV I realized what kind of Rube Goldberg machines those internal combustion engines are these days. Elaborate systems to make heat that is partly harvested and turned into mechanical energy. They even have all the parts of an EV just to make it start. Carefully tuned piping like on a musical instrument to deal with the wastes. Modulation of rotational energy via clutch plates or a hydraulic torque converter to enable you to stop without stalling. They will be very popular in museums one day!
Rocky Stefano
@swaan - You keep driving your electric whoosh on four wheels and I'll keep driving a car that sounds like a car.
KennyReed
It must be the politically correct thing to include sub-classes and motors so that every child takes home a trophy. Not long ago the awards were to the best engines overall based a combination of characteristics such as reliability, mileage, and technical prowess. They just had to make a shelf just for Tesla. Is it any wonder that Germany has pledged to have only electric cars one day in the near future so there is a bend to broaden the term engine so wide as to include an electric motor? Soon there will be a shelf for batteries, capacitors, etc. Ten best engines should be ten best engines. Otherwise, change the name to our ten favorite sizes of transportation.
Martin Hone
I'm with Kenny. Everyone is a winner. Let's go back to awarding real innovation.....
Captain Danger
@swaan
Lets wait a couple of decades and see how you feel about that car. My "Rube Goldberg" vehicles are still running strong after 15-20 years and 300 K miles.
MartinVoelker
As an EV driver I can tell you I much prefer having a quiet conversation or listening to high fidelity music than some primordial rumble of an engine. That and the instant torque and the lower operating cost. The average internal combustion car has about 2000 moving parts, the transmission alone has 800, each and every one likely to go poof! at some point. An EV has under 100, depending on number of motors. Replacing a Tesla motor which weighs in at 70lbs, the size of a popcorn tub, takes 15 minutes, but Tesla is aiming for a million miles life for the motor, so chances are it'll never need service. Unlike a Ferrari engine which requires frequent tending and tuning.
nick101
Truly we have arrived at 'peak automobile' where they can build just about anything they want. 200+ hp per litre? No problem! Ceramic brakes that will slow your 300 kph car again and again without overheating? Sure! Carbon fibre everything? Oh yeah! What we DO need are cheap electric cars (a Model E?)
Rumata
"The Model S/X can be configured with two or four electric motors, and both cars offer battery capacity between 75 and 100 kWh. Maximum range is 315 mi (623 km)." False. The maximum range that can be configured for the Model S/X is 335 mi (539km), and it is for the Model S 100D.