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Mercedes-Benz AMG 6.2-liter V8 – Click above for all winners

The 2010 International Engine of the Year awards have been announced and ten different engines have been honored in 11 categories, plus an overall winner chosen. The engines were rated by a jury of automotive journalists from around the world and range in size from sub-1.0-liter three cylinders to a 6.2-liter V8 and go from mild to wild. Not all are available in North America yet but at least two more of these engines are expected to arrive here within the next year. Go ahead and view the gallery to check out this year's winners in each category and find out which engine the jury considered the best overall for 2010.

  • Best New Engine of the Year: For best new engine, the jury selected the new Fiat 1.4-liter Multi-Air inline-four. The Multi-Air technology was developed Fiat as a mechanism to provide infinitely variable valve timing and lift control and it can be easily adapted to existing engines. Fiat has plans to add Multi-Air to most of Chrysler's engine lineup in the next couple of years.
  • Green Engine of the Year: The top green engine award again went to Toyota for the 1.8-liter hybrid powertrain that debuted in the third generation Prius last year. Toyota has managed to get both improved efficiency and performance out of the latest iteration of its pioneering powertrain.
  • Best Performance Engine and Best Engine above 4.0-liters: In order to make a special car, you need to start with a special engine, and its hard to go far wrong with a high-revving V8. That's the path AMG chose when it decided to develop a new engine from the ground-up and the M156 6.2-liter V8 has been recognized as the best performance engine by the International Engine of the Year Awards.

    The V8 is used in all of Mercedes-Benz' rear-wheel-drive AMG models, from the C63 to the SL and even its SUVs, with power output varying from 478 horsepower to over 525 depending on the application. A modified version is even used in the SLS AMG with 571 hp. In addition to the performance award, the M156 was also honored in the category for engines over 4.0-liters. Over the next few years, AMG will be phasing out this engine in favor of a new twin-turbo 5.5-liter V8 that will be even more powerful and fuel efficient. Here's hoping it doesn't lose its character in the process...
  • Sub 1.0-liter: The 993cc inline three found in the European market Toyota Aygo, Citroen C1 and Peugeot 107 weighs in at a remarkably svelte 147 pounds and produces 67 hp. It's far more refined than the similar sized triple in the Smart and easily won the category.
  • 1.4- to 1.8-liter: The 1.6-liter turbocharged inline-four in the Mini Cooper S provides an outstanding combination of performance and fuel efficiency. With 175 horsepower it gives the Mini plenty of scoot while still delivering 30+ mpg.
  • 1.8- to 2.0-liters: The BMW twin-turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four diesel delivers 204 horsepower and a stump-pulling 295 pound-feet of torque. It powers the 123d to 60 mph in 6.5 seconds and delivers 37 mpg even when being thrashed. What more could you ask for? How about a 323d Touring?
  • 2.0- to 2.5-liters: The 2.5-liter TSI inline-five from the Audi TT-RS clearly demonstrates why most automakers are scrambling to develop turbocharged and direct injected engines. With a peak power delivery of 340 horsepower and a torque curve that flat-lines at 332 pound-feet all the way from 1,600 to over 5,000 rpm this engine slings the TT-RS to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds while returning 25.6 mpg.
  • 2.5- to 3.0-liters: The BMW N54 has been one of our favorite engines ever since it debuted with 300 horsepower and 300 pound-feet of torque. It provides seamless power delivery from its perfectly balanced inline-six layout and uses two turbochargers to give quick response and torque everywhere. The N54 is being phased out of most applications this year in favor of an equally powerful N55 with a single twin-scroll turbo, direct injection and valvetronic for even better response and fuel efficiency.
  • 3.0- to 4.0-liters: The BMW S65 4.0-liter V8 can only be found in the lovely M3. At idle and around town, it provides a pleasantly muted tone that won't draw undue attention to itself. But drop the hammer and it turns up the volume in the best possible way.
  • Overall best engine and best 1.0- to 1.4-liter: For several years now Volkswagen has offered a range of 1.4-liter TSI inline-fours in much of its European lineup. These boosted and direct injected engines deliver surprisingly robust torque for such small engines with great fuel economy. At the top of the range is the engine selected as overall best by the jury, the 1.4 TSI TwinCharger. While the lesser engines rely on just a turbocharger, this unit adds a mechanically driven supercharger to a larger turbocharger for an even broader response curve. The maximum output is 178 horsepower and combined fuel economy in the Golf is 38 mpg!

[Source: International Engine of the Year]
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Stuttgart/Affalterbach – The AMG 6.3-litre V8 engine took away two top accolades as part of the coveted "International Engine of the Year Awards 2010": the high-revving naturally aspirated engine developing up to 386 kW/525 hp comfortably took top spot in the "Best Performance Engine" and "Above 4 litres" categories. This is the second year running that the eight-cylinder engine from AMG has beaten off the competition.

Bearing the internal designation M 156, the AMG 6.3-litre V8 engine with its displacement of 6208 cubic centimetres produces between 457 hp and 525 hp, develops up to 630 Nm of torque and features in various AMG models, including the C 63 AMG, the E 63 AMG and the SL 63 AMG. The basis for the agile power delivery is the consistent technology transfer from motorsport, which has been an inseparable part of the company philosophy at Mercedes-AMG for over four decades. The verdict of juror Jason Cammisa from Automobile Magazine (USA): "The absolute epitome of a German hot rod V8 engine!" Carl Cunanan, editor of C! Magazine (USA): For its fantastic engine sound alone it deserved first place!"

The great potential of the award-winning AMG V8 is also reflected in its character-packed, powerful evolution: the engine – dubbed the M 159 – for the SLS AMG super sports car is based on the M 156; in the gullwing the AMG high-revving naturally aspirated engine develops 571 hp and delivers maximum torque of 650 Nm. Another outstanding vehicle is the C 63 AMG with Performance Package Plus and maximum output of 487 hp. The overhauled features inside the engine are responsible for the increase in output: the forged pistons adopted from the SLS AMG together with new connecting rods and a lightweight crankshaft make the engine three kilograms lighter. The reduced inertia enhances the agility of the eight-cylinder unit, which offers even more exhilarating responsiveness.

Mercedes-AMG beats off established rivals

The "International Engine of the Year Awards" rank among the most prestigious honours in the automotive sector and have been organised by specialist UK publisher, UKIP Media & Events, since 1999. An independent jury of 65 renowned motor journalists from 32 countries chooses the best engines of the year. Following on from the success in 2009, the AMG 6.3-litre V8 engine also managed to beat off prestigious rivals from Germany, Italy, the UK, USA and Japan this year, enabling Mercedes-AMG to demonstrate once again its consummate expertise in developing and producing exhilarating high-performance engines.

Friedrich Eichler, Head of Engine & Powertrain Development at Mercedes-AMG:

"Our renewed success this year in the two categories is testimony to the out-and-out positive test results for the AMG6.3-litre V8 engine in all the media. The top spots also reflect the great enthusiasm of our customers."

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      nothing for ecoboost motors? This is a Euro German fest
      • 5 Years Ago
      While that AMG motor is a beast, it just shows that pushrods with the right mix of weight and displacement are just as good if not better than "more technologically advanced" engines (i.e. the LS7 noted above).

      Can't wait to see Ford and GM's d.i. V8s in the near future.
      • 5 Years Ago
      There should be an award for the most reliable engine. That would interest me more.
      • 5 Years Ago
      America and Japan need to wake up and accept turbos.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Ford ecoboost, GM ecotec, engine in Acura RDX, Nissan GTR, Mazdaspeed 3 and 6

        you're not trying
        • 5 Years Ago
        You mean like GM's Ecotec they've offered for over 5 years now? Or do you mean the Acura RDX turbo that has been offered for longer than that? How about Ford's Ecoboost V6 and soon I4?

        GM and Honda have been offering turbos in the US market longer than any European company except for VW/Audi has.

        I do wish Toyota and Nissan would offer more turbos in the US. They offer more turbocharged engines in their home market than they do here.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Yeah especially Subaru and Mitsubishi. :P
        • 5 Years Ago
        Subaru has won the engine of the year award a few years ago and they have turbos.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Or the MR2 turbo. Or the Grand National. Or the 1.4L Cruze that is just about to come out. The new Fiesta engine (already mentioned).
        • 5 Years Ago
        The idea that turbos magically increase horsepower out of thin air is a myth that refuses to die. Creating a given amount of power requires a given amount of fuel and air, whether that fuel/air mixture is in a 4.0 L NA engine or a 2.0 turbo engine at 15 psi boost. The only time a turbocharged engine will be more efficient is when it is off boost and behaving like a 2.0 L NA motor. So unless you granny around town keeping your revs low so your turbo doesn't spool up, you're probably not going to get that much better fuel economy.

        If you happen to live in a country that taxes cars based on displacement, then turbos are a wonderful idea since they can increase power without increasing engine displacement. I like the idea of automakers like Ford introducing new NA engines with upgraded technology in addition to their turbocharged motors. Turbos have come a long way in the past few years and I wouldn't mind owning a turbo vehicle, but when it comes right down to it, it still adds weight and complexity to an engine and are enormously expensive to replace if not taken care of.
        • 5 Years Ago
        or like nissan with turbo Zs in the 80s 90s, the supra turbos, or perhaps the 4.9l Turbo 8 found in the 81 TransAM? The SVO mustang, or perhaps an omni GLH or turbo caravan?

        there have been plenty of turbo cars, and we can list off many SC 'american' cars as well.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Even though not really accepted by the public, Chevy Corvair offered a turbo flat six in the mid sixties. Just pointing out an oft overlooked footnote.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Explain why.
      • 5 Years Ago
      What, no awards for the pushrod gang?
        • 5 Years Ago
        naggs has it right about how the multi-air works. dondonel, rcavaretti and MikeW, the valves are certainly not hydraulically nor solenoid driven.

        Another simple description is this:

        The engine has a much lumpier cam, one that is tuned for maximum power output. It's a very aggressive high lift, wide open cam that normally would not be tolerated in a street vehicle. It uses a variation of ordinary hydraulic lifters on the cam followers in that the cam followers push through a chamber of engine oil (the hydraulic fluid in this system) to drive the valve open.

        But in the multi-air engine, the hydraulic lifters have an electronic "dump valve" in them that lets the engine computer precisely release some of the hydraulic fluid from the lifters and therefore lets the valve act as if it is running on a much softer, tamer cam even though it's not. Further, each one is controlled independently of all the others.

        The hydraulic lifters are constantly being refilled from engine oil pressure, and the dump valve can open and shut many times during each cycle. Therefore the computer gets very fine control over each individual valve's position at any time.

        The control is so complete that there isn't even a throttle valve in the engine; it's all done by the multi-air intake valve system.

        I agree completely with naggs's comment that this is both a breakthrough and a revolution in engine design.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Multiair is hydraulically actuated.
        • 5 Years Ago
        multi air is still a primarily mechanical system
        both intake and exhaust valves open and close because of a turning cam
        on the intake side, there is a small valve and cylinder filled with oil
        this pizo electric valve is controlled by the ECU and decides how much of the cam motion will result in actual valve motion and when

        this results in complete and total valve control down to each individual cylinder and each individual combustion event. no other system gives you the almost non-existent response time needed for that, including other vvt and cam phasing systems

        multi-air is a revolution, really is an amazing breakthrough
        • 5 Years Ago
        None, of course, this is an European selection. Pushrods are as irrelevant on the European market as the 1 liter engines and diesels are on the American market.

        On the other hand, I think the only interesting technology on the list remains the MultiAir. Half of the valves are actuated by solenoids, not by camshafts. Imagine when all the valves are going to be actuated by solenoids instead of camshafts (this is going to happen pretty soon, since MultiAir sells for a couple of years already), then the distinction between OHV and OHC will be irrelevant - sad days are comming, all those OHC vs OHV threads forever lost... :D
      • 5 Years Ago
      This ranks with that all time favorite and world renowned "International Toilet of the YEAR."
      • 5 Years Ago
      No VQ? Useless list.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Really had my fingers crossed to see the 5.0L "Coyote" V8 from the 2011 Mustang GT. Under-rated at 412bhp, a plethora of torque, and a 7k rpm redline? What's not to love!?
      • 5 Years Ago
      This list of award-winning engines seems biaesd to me. I think they got the Car and Driver staff to make this list seeing how many German (mostly BMW) engines are on this list.

      The VQ 6 cylinder is a great engine. Yeah it is not incredibly smooth, and its NVH is at acceptable levels but, you are actually going to criticize the engine based on how smooth it is? Please, give me a break, that counter-point is getting old. Don't hate the engine because GM didn't build it. The VQ can actually put out up to 350 horse with the NISMO package. For a V6 it is extremely strong, revs high and has a broad powerband. It is clear that those who criticize it do not own, or drive a car that has the VQ in it.

      But of course, who am I kidding. American's just love those cheap, pushrod engines and do not appreciate anything that comes from another country. Ford learned a thing or two by building a new DOHC V8, which is probably more powerful than any pushrod. Ford's new 5.0L hits a 7 thousand redline when GM's revised LS3 engine doesn't. The power in a pushrod dies off once you start to rev it. It is only good until 4 thousand RPM. I had a GM pushrod vehicle before and they simply suck. A DOHC keeps building power the more it revs. Besides, how can a high-performance vehicle like the Z06 have a redline of only 7 thousand, when other cars of that horsepower category have significantly higher redlines?? The VQ, a V6 I might add, redlines at 75 hundred by the way..........
      • 5 Years Ago
      How is that Benz engine better than the one in the LFA?
        • 5 Years Ago
        I should have expounded on that - I meant Fur'n v8, which is the inclusion criteria most likely for that.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Was Toyota's 1lr-gue engine even tested?
        Even if it was, it has little impact. MB's 6.2 V8 is in many different vehicles.

        If Toyota would have introduced that engine five years ago...
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ PanchoVilleneuve , the Yamaha engine in the LFA is outdated, the F458 engine on the other hand is a better choice.
        • 5 Years Ago
        It's Fur'n, which is the main criteria for inclusion.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Ways you can tell the press release wasn't intended for North America:

      "Mercedes-AMG beats off established rivals"
      • 5 Years Ago
      This list shows how meaningless is to split the engine categories by displacement when the list is populated with turbo/supercharged engines of various boost levels. Weight is a much better/fair measurement.

      The smallest engine in the list produces 67hp and weights 147 lb, that is 0.45 hp/lb. LS7, an almost decade old engine, gets 1.1hp/lb, more than twice as good. Manufacturers should be forced to publish the engine weights, otherwise we get engines like the BMW 2.0 liter diesel engine that is promoted as being sporty, though I bet it has problems to beat the .45lb/hp figure of the engines installed in crappy hatches.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Have to add in package volume too. But in reality, those numbers are only 'cool' for engine engineers. Once you plop that engine into a car, they become less meaningful as there's so much other weight built into a vehicle. The weight disparities between engine packages becomes a much lower percentage in overall vehicle weight.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Weight or dip volume would be great.

        Classing the engines by displacement just doesn't work. The BMW 2.0 D is heavy, largish and expensive but hey, it only displaces 2.0 liters! It does get good mpg, I can't deny that.
        • 5 Years Ago
        +1 spdracerut

        I was just about to say that.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Every bit helps.
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