- Triple Boost Technology takes Volvo’s four-cylinder Drive-E Powertrain petrol engine to 330 kW (450 BHP)
Following the successful introduction of Volvo’s Drive-E Powertrain range in 2013, Volvo’s powertrain team once again demonstrates its technological leadership in emissions-reducing turbo technology.
“When we launched the Drive-E powertrain family, our aim was to deliver the most advanced 4-cylinder engines in the industry based on emissions and fuel consumption relative to performance and drivability. We knew that the 242 kW in our petrol configuration was just a starting point. The 330 kW High Performance Drive-E Powertrain Concept, demonstrates this ambition and the versatility of the Drive-E Powertrains,” says Dr. Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President for Research and Development at Volvo Car Group.
The 330 kW High Performance Drive-E Powertrain Concept is based on a set of technologies not usually found in a four cylinder engine. The engine utilizes two parallel turbochargers, which are fed by an electrically powered turbo-compressor. The compressed air from this unit, rather than being fed to the cylinders, is instead used to spool up the two parallel turbochargers. Fuel is fed by a dual fuel pump working at 250 bar pressure. With this kind of power density, this triple boost installation and unique fuel system, enables a very dynamic drivability without any turbo lag, compared to a mono-turbo.
“There are several high power small size applications where one large turbo is used to create a high level of power available from other manufacturers, but the driving experience suffers due to slow engine response. We felt that with our heritage of being among the first car companies to embrace and offer a broad range of turbo technology since 1981, that we could improve this,” says Michael Fleiss, Vice President of Powertrain Engineering at Volvo Car Group.
The High Performance Drive-E Powertrain Concept attracted the attention and involvement of Volvo Cars suppliers AVL, Denso and Volvo Polestar Racing at an early stage, which allowed theories and technologies from racing applications to be infused in the development process.
“This was a very exciting project as we pioneered a combination of technologies in the same application, and the result is a quite unique engine with its high power yet quick response. Above all, its compact size improves weight distribution between the front and rear axle and lowers the centre of gravity – two factors that have a significant effect on the handling, whether it is a race car or a street car,” said Mattias Evensson, Race Engine Director at Volvo Polestar Racing.
“It may sound odd, but this 330 kW powertrain concept is an important part of the Drive-E development program. Down-sizing must offer customers attractive and usable power for broad scale emissions reduction to work. By developing compact powertrains we free up space and weight in the structure of the car, which can be used for electrification and even further emissions reduction. And that is our ultimate ambition,” concludes Dr. Mertens.
In South Africa, Volvo’s new Drive-E engines have been introduced across the range.
More about Volvo Cars’ DRIVE-E powertrains
Volvo Cars’ Drive-E range of powertrains takes efficient driving pleasure to a new dimension in which output and efficiency – rather than the number of cylinders – determine the quality of performance.
Why the big fuss?
With Drive-E, Volvo’s outgoing eight engine architectures are gradually being replaced by only two: a four-cylinder Drive-E petrol engine and a four-cylinder Drive-E diesel. These two engines can be configured to meet the power / output needs of the entire Volvo range.
Volvo Cars’ powertrain experts have developed the engines in-house. They are being built at Volvo Car Group’s high-tech engine plant in Skövde, Sweden.
Drive-E stats and facts:
- Replaces 8 existing engine architectures in three platforms.
- These engines are fully developed, tested and produced by Volvo.
- Developed by Volvo in Gothenburg and manufactured in Skövde.
- One architecture prepared for two fuels (Petrol and Diesel) in eight power derivatives
- New 8-speed Auto gearbox produced alongside the new engines
- Complies with all 2013-2017 emission legislations Worldwide
- Reduces fuel consumption by 15 – 35%
- Delivers powertrain weight savings of 30-50 kg
Prepared for electrification
The Drive-E engines are prepared for future electrification from the start. Key components, such as the Integrated Starter Generator, can be connected easily – and the compact size of the four-cylinder engines means that the electric motor can be fitted in the front or rear of the vehicle. The battery pack will be located in the centre of the car.
Downsizing without compromises
Volvo Car Group is highly confident that the focus on four-cylinder Drive-E powertrains is the right way to create the desirable blend of power, drivability and fuel efficiency.
*Descriptions and facts in this press material relate to Volvo Car Group’s international car range. Described features might be optional. Vehicle specifications may vary from one country to another and may be altered without prior notification