Volvo Three-Cylinder Drive-E Engine to Be Extremely Efficient

The looked-for new three-cylinder Drive-E engine has undergone testing. Volvo Cars aims at decent power output with improved fuel consumption and lower emissions. It more than 80 years of its history, the automaker has made various four-, five- and six-cylinder engines, but the new three-cylinder gasoline Drive-E will be something special. Made to accompany the already well-known four-cylinder Drive-E mill, which was released back in 2013, the latest addition to the automaker’s range will be a very interesting engine. The four-cylinder Drive-E is in use in some of the recently released Volvo models and, based on that experience, we can expect a really efficient and reliable three-cylinder mill to offer even better EPA fuel economy ratings. Of course, we can anticipate really impressive fuel economy, but this doesn’t mean the engine won’t be powerful enough. According to the automaker’s announcement, the gasoline three-cylinder Drive-E engine will be able to deliver up to 180 horsepower.Volvo Three-Cylinder Drive-E Engine

But, how did they decide to come with a three-cylinder engine? It’s true that the Swedish manufacturer’s history is written with four-, five- and six-cylinder engines, as we already said, so this might seem like a sudden turn. However, three-cylinder engines aren’t that uncommon. Of course, they aren’t as numerous as the other engine configurations, but their advantages are well known in the industry. Volvo aims to develop a new engine whose efficiency and performance will be amazing. The three-cylinder mill is going to be something the manufacturer will be proud of. The Drive-E technology brings highly-efficient engines, but without sacrificing performance or driving pleasure. The recently disclosed specs of the Volvo XC90 T8 plug-in hybrid are a perfect example for that. This SUV is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder Drive-E engine. It is a hybrid, but it accelerates from a standstill to 62 mph in 5.9 seconds, and it returns 59 MPGe (European cycle). The Drive-E engine with just two liters of displacement delivers 318 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. Volvo Cars’ Vice President Powertrain, Mr. Michael Fleiss, said:

“We have learned a lot from the development of our 4-cylinder Drive-E engines and translated this into a highly responsive, compact and powerful premium-quality 3-cylinder engine.  The engine is being developed primarily with our new CMA architecture in mind but will also provide power for our 60 Series cars thanks to Volvo’s advanced turbo technologies, while also meeting Euro 7 emission targets.”

The fact that the Euro 7 emission standard is expected sometime around 2020 speaks for the automaker’s thoroughness and dedication. It’s been speculated that the Euro 7 standard will focus on CO2 emissions, so the engines will probably have to be highly efficient. If the upcoming Volvo three-cylinder Drive-E mill meets the Euro 7 standard, this means that it will join the Drive-E family with hard-to-imagine efficiency. Of course, as Mr. Fleiss said, the engine will work together with the CMA platform (Compact Modular Architecture) in order to increase the future vehicles’ efficiency.

After the testing phase, we’ll be able to tell more about the new engine, its efficiency, and the ways how it’s going to improve the forthcoming Volvo vehicles.

Photos: Volvo

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