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S60 to debut downsized Volvo turbo-petrol

Familiar ring: Volvo's new GTDi turbo-petrol engine is not to be confused with the turbo-diesel engine in VW's Golf GTD.

New downsized four-cylinder turbo engines to debut on latest Volvo contender

2 Sep 2010

VOLVO is the latest car-maker to offer a downsized turbocharged petrol engine in the interests of fuel economy, announcing a pair of new 1.6-litre direct-injection turbo-petrol four-cylinder engines armed with its DRIVe fuel-saving technologies.

The all-aluminium engines will debut in the new mid-sized S60 sedan and its wagon variant, the V60, in Europe this year, alongside existing five-cylinder petrol and diesel powertrains.

Volvo Australia is preparing to launch the S60 to the media in Australia in December, but it might not hit showrooms until January.

The local engine line-up is still under wraps, with Volvo public relations manager Laurissa Mirabelli this week declining to disclose if either of the new T3 and T4 four-cylinder petrol engines would make it into local showrooms.

A logical line-up could be the more powerful 132kW/240Nm T4 four-cylinder engine, alongside a choice of premium five-cylinder petrol and diesel powerplants.

All could be expected to be matched to Volvo's six-speed dual-clutch Powershift gearbox.

18 center imageLeft: Volvo's new 110kW (T3) and 132kW (T4) GTDi turbo-petrol engines.Volvo Cars senior vice-president product development Magnus Jonsson said the new, smaller high-performance petrol engines were part of Volvo's bid to get more energy out of smaller powertrains without compromising performance.

Strangely, Volvo has not released fuel economy figures for the engines, but says the engines should cut both fuel consumption and exhaust emissions by about 20 per cent compared with a larger engine of similar performance.

Both engines are Euro 5 emissions compliant.

The T3 engine produces 110kW/240Nm, while the T4 steps these figures up to 132kW at 5500rpm and 240Nm from 1600rpm. On the latter, a brief turbo overboost can push torque up to 270Nm.

Both engines use Volvo's GDTi (gasoline direct injection turbo) technology, with fuel injectors positioned directly above the piston, beside the spark plug. Each Bosch-sourced injector has six holes for finely atomised fuel distribution.

Volvo says this set up allows precise fuel control, including in cold starts when the fuel can be sprayed in the middle of the combustion chamber so less fuel clings to the cold cylinder walls, for cleaner emissions.

It says this technology also contributes to quick heating of the catalytic converter, which in turn speeds up the exhaust cleaning process, while the high-pressure spray and more efficient combustion is said to contribute to faster turbo start-up for improved driveability.

"This is the most modern injection technology in existence and Volvo played a major role in its development," Mr Jonsson said.

"Our cooperation with Bosch, which manufactures the system, has been ongoing for a number of years and is highly successful."The engine uses variable valve timing on both inlet and exhaust valves.

The manual transmission, which is unlikely for Australia, is equipped with idle-stop, while the dual-clutch Powershift automated gearbox comes with a coast facility that disengages the gears when the driver lifts off the accelerator.

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