Tuesday, March 16, 2004

What's the point of multi-valve diesel engines?

I've recently noticed more and more diesel and turbo-diesel cars and trucks boasting of 16 valves or more (4 per cylinder). My understanding has always been that the extra number of valves only helps increase power at higher revs but at lower revs, power suffers.

Given the extra cost and complexity (both in manufacturing and maintenance) of 4 valves per cylinder, the fact that diesel engines don't rev as high as petrol engines, and the fact that most of these engines are in utility vehicles, what's the point?

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