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Administrator 2009 SLK 55 AMG/Founding member 2006
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Premium Member 2001 SLK320/2000 SLK230
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2,644 Posts
Actually it is about the fourth in what I have been predicting: direct injection boosted engines with a vey wide torque band that can approach diesel efficiency.

Key is what usually gets buried somewhere and is really the most important part: direct injection. With timed direct injection running at 30,000 psi, detonation issues essentially go away since you are running at detonation anyway (suspect could turn the ignition off at max chat and it would keep running).

On the other hand with a sucking system (rather than blow though) horsepower losses from the turbo or belt driven supercharger can go very low at cruise since are operating in a near vacuum.

Also with a gas (petrol) engine you can "throw the Johnson bar" or tune the valve timing to create max torque over a very wide (under 2000 rpm to over 6000 rpm) band. In fact "horsepower" becomes a meaningless term and just depends on how high you put the redline.

So don't think in terms of a 160hp 1.3l 4 banger but rather scaled to a 370 hp 3 liter V6 or a 546 hp 4.0 V8 all with quite a few interchangeable parts and a 50,000 mile warranty on 87 PON.
 

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Super Moderator UK 2002 SLK320 Blue
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2,844 Posts
with quite a few interchangeable parts and a 50,000 mile warranty on 87 PON.
Are we getting to the point of disposable engines and no second hand car market after 5 years / 50,000 miles? .... The jury is seemingly still out on the actual longevity of these smaller engines - and indeed on the real-life fuel efficiency too.
 

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Premium Member 2001 SLK320/2000 SLK230
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2,644 Posts
"Are we getting to the point of disposable engines" I don't think so, if anything they are getting more precision and reliable than ever partly due to better lubricants.

I remember when a car was considered fit for a scrap heap at 100,000 miles and odos did not bother with any more. Nowadays I have bought several with well over 100k (one has 134k, another is "unknown") and sold with "more", all perfectly running. Also remember when 1 hp/cubic inch was unusual and wanted 103 Sunoco 260. Now my tow car has 1.3 hp/ci & runs on 87 PON.

My '01 170 has 68k miles and will probably outlive me. Cannot tell from new. OTOH the '73 Mini Cooper is not a car I like to drive. Horizontal steering wheel, primitive seating, turning 3k in 4th at 50 mph on 10" wheels. Might do well in an autocross but suspect my Crossie 6 speed would devastate it.

Personally do not miss having to pull cams and change the shims to get the lash right or having to periodically change timing belts.
 
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