Honda is cooking something for its next generation of engines, and it’s going to be revolutionary.
When talking about displacement, pretty much every piston-based combustion engine adopts the same principle, using the same bore and stroke size on all its cylinders. The Japanese car manufacturer, on the other hand, came up with a solution that would vary the stroke of an engine, allowing less piston travel and diversifying the overall displacement of each cylinder as a result. Confused yet?
Autoguide discovered that Honda patented this idea on Japan’s office database, presumably aiming to increase fuel efficiency through cylinder deactivation. Basically, on a four-pot engine (combined with the aforementioned deactivation technology), the system would allow more than four different engine capacities, with 15 combinations of one-to-four cylinders firing, and 15 different displacements working at a time – based on the crank throw radius.
Furthermore, Honda’s concept would work on inline-two, three, four, and V6 engine layouts; with the cylinders distributed on the crankshaft to limit vibrations. It’s unclear (for now) if this plan will ever make it into production, and what exactly are its pros and cons, but Honda might just be on to something.
Differently sized cylinders just kicked in, yo!