Depending on the vehicle, either an in-line, V-type,
slant, or opposed cylinder design can be used. The most popular designs
are in-line and V-type engines.
In-line Engine. In the
in-line engine design, the cylinders are all placed in a single row.
There is one crankshaft and one cylinder head for all of the cylinders.
The block is cast so all cylinders are located in an upright position.
In-line engine designs have certain advantages and
disadvantages. They are easy to manufacture and service. However,
because the cylinders are positioned vertically, the front of the
vehicle must be higher. This affects the aerodynamic design of the car.
Aerodynamic design refers to the ease at which the car can move through
the air. When equipped with an in-line engines, the front of a vehicle
cannot be made as low as it can with other engines designs.
V-type Engine. The
v-type engine design has two rows of cylinders located 60 to 90 degrees
away from each other. A V-type engine uses one crankshaft, which is
connected to the pistons on both sides of the V. this type of engine has
two cylinder heads, one over each row of cylinders.
One advantage of using a V-configuration ins that the
engine is not as high or long as an in-line configuration. The front of
a vehicle can now be made lower. This design improves the outside
aerodynamics of the vehicle. If eight cylinders are needed for power, a
V configuration makes the engine much shorter, lighter and more compact.
Many years ago, some vehicles had an in-line eight-cylinder engine. The
engine was very long and its long crankshaft also caused increased
torsional vibrations in the engine.
Slant Cylinder Engine.
Another way of arranging the cylinders is in a slant configuration. This
is much like an in-line engine, except the entire block has been placed
at a slant. The slant engine was designed to reduce the the distance
from the top to the bottom of the engine. Vehicles using the slant
engine can be designed more aerodynamically.
Opposed Cylinder Engine.
In this design. Two rows of cylinders are located
opposite the crankshaft. Opposed cylinder engines are used in
applications in which there is very little vertical room for the engine.
For this reason, opposed cylinder designs are commonly used on vehicles
that have the engine in the rear. The angle between the two cylinders is
typically 180 degrees, the crankshaft us used with two cylinder heads.