As with past years, forced-induction reigns supreme, with seven of the ten engines featuring a turbo or supercharger. This year is slightly different, though, as two of the seven blown engines are turbocharged three-cylinder mills, from the Ford Fiesta and Mini Cooper. They're joined by the 2.0-liter turbo four from the Volvo S60, the 1.8-liter turbo four from the Volkswagen Jetta and the 2.0-liter boxer from the Subaru WRX.
BMW and Chrysler were the only marques to be named to this year's list twice, with the electric motor from the i3 joining the Mini's three-pot, and the 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 in the Ram 1500 and Jeep Grand Cherokee repping the diesel crowd, alongside a certain supercharged monster. Hyundai also took a prize with a zero-emissions powertrain, with the Tucson FCV's 100-kilowatt fuel cell making the list (apparently Ward's is quite generous with what it deems an "engine").
Rounding out the list are two Autoblog favorites, each displacing 6.2 liters, but producing their power very differently. On the one hand, Chevrolet's overhead-valve, 455-horsepower V8, found in the Corvette, makes its power the old fashioned way. And in the other corner, we have one of the most exciting engines of the year – the 707-hp, 6.2-liter, supercharged Hellcat V8, featured so prominently in the Dodge Challenger and Charger SRT Hellcat.
"We spend a lot of time reading the powertrain tea leaves throughout the auto industry, and we're proud that this year's list is a microcosm of all the latest innovation coming from automakers," said Ward's Editor-in-Chief Drew Winter in a statement. "It's not just a list for enthusiasts or for environmentalists," he says.
"There's something for every vehicle shopper and every budget. All the powertrains on this list deliver a first-rate driving experience," Winter added.
Scroll down for the full list from Ward's, and let us know which engines you think belong and which should have been included in this year's rankings.
Honorees span most diverse and technically advanced engines in 21 years of recognized powertrain excellence
SOUTHFIELD, Mich., Dec. 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Penton's Wards 10 Best Engines of 2015 have been announced. A 707-hp fire-breathing V-8 and a hydrogen-powered fuel cell emitting nothing but water vapor were among all-new or improved powertrains evaluated by the editors of WardsAuto to produce its annual Ward's 10 Best Engines list.
To be eligible for the Ward's 10 Best Engines competition, an engine or propulsion system must be all-new or significantly re-engineered and available in the U.S. market with a base price not exceeding $60,000. This year's pool of 37 nominees includes last year's 10 winners and 27 new entries. Eight WardsAuto editors drove the vehicles in October and November in their routine daily commutes around metro Detroit. Editors scored each engine based on power, torque, technology, observed fuel economy, relative competitiveness and noise, vibration and harshness characteristics.
The 2015 Ward's 10 Best Engines are:
127-kW Electric Motor (BMW i3 electric vehicle)
6.2L OHV V-8 (Chevrolet Corvette Stingray)
6.2L Supercharged OHV V-8 (Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat)
1.0L Turbocharged DOHC 3-cyl. (Ford Fiesta)
100-kW Fuel Cell (Hyundai Tucson FCV)
1.5L Turbocharged DOHC 3-cyl. (Mini Cooper)
3.0L Turbodiesel DOHC V-6 (Ram 1500 EcoDiesel)
2.0L Turbocharged DOHC H-4 (Subaru WRX)
1.8L Turbocharged DOHC 4-cyl. (Volkswagen Jetta)
2.0L Turbocharged DOHC 4-cyl. (Volvo S60)
"We spend a lot of time reading the powertrain tea leaves throughout the auto industry, and we're proud that this year's list is a microcosm of all the latest innovation coming from automakers," says WardsAuto World Editor-in-Chief Drew Winter. "It's not just a list for enthusiasts or for environmentalists," he says. "There's something for every vehicle shopper and every budget. All the powertrains on this list deliver a first-rate driving experience."
The awards will be presented to top powertrain executives from the winning automakers at a January 14 ceremony in Detroit during the North American International Auto Show. In the coming weeks, WardsAuto.com and the January issue of WardsAuto World magazine will provide commentary, profiles of the winning engines, videos and more information about the 2015 Ward's 10 Best Engines.
WardsAuto is a world-leading provider of automotive insights and analysis, having served the industry's information needs for more than 90 years. A Southfield, MI-based division of Penton, WardsAuto provides a forward-looking perspective on all aspects of the automotive business, from the tech center to the plant floor to the showroom. Its services include the premium WardsAuto.com resource and suite of customizable data reporting tools, the WardsAuto Interiors and WardsAuto Outlook Conferences, and digital newsletters and magazines. Subscribe to WardsAuto and attend its events by visiting http://www.wardsauto.com.
Penton drives performance for more than sixteen million professionals each and every day. They rely on us to deliver: Insights, information & workflow tools to inform critical business decisions; networking & community to engage them with industry peers & partners; and data & marketing services to advance their business performance & deliver ROI.
Penton is a growth company with a track-record of strong performance and success and is backed by its co-owners: MidOcean Partners and U.S. Equity Partners II, an investment fund sponsored by Wasserstein & Co., LP.
For additional information on the company and its businesses, visit www.penton.com.