Ward's 10 Best Engines, North America's only award program honoring engine excellence, have been announced for 2010. The list symbolizes the auto industry's swift movement toward downsized engines to attract consumers who now are making fuel efficiency a top priority.
Two turbodiesels (one each from BMW AG and Volkswagen AG) and two hybrid-electric vehicles (from Ford Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Corp.) made this year's list by achieving fuel economy of nearly 40 mpg in the VW Jetta SportWagen TDI and up to 55 mpg in the Toyota Prius in real-world driving.
This year's winners and the applications tested:
- 2.0L TFSI Turbocharged DOHC I-4 (Audi A4)
- 3.0L TFSI Supercharged DOHC V-6 (Audi S4)
- 3.0L DOHC I-6 Turbodiesel (BMW 335d)
- 2.5L DOHC I-4 Hybrid (Ford Fusion Hybrid)
- 3.5L EcoBoost Turbocharged DOHC V-6 (Ford Taurus SHO)
- 2.4L Ecotec DOHC I-4 (Chevrolet Equinox)
- 4.6L Tau DOHC V-8 (Hyundai Genesis)
- 2.5L Turbocharged DOHC H-4 (Subaru Legacy 2.5GT)
- 1.8L DOHC I-4 Hybrid (Toyota Prius)
- 2.0L SOHC I-4 Turbodiesel (Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen TDI)
"This year's list embodies how the industry is responding to demands for higher fuel economy and lower emissions without shortchanging performance," Ward's AutoWorld Editor-in-Chief Drew Winter said. "Auto makers are using innovative designs and advanced technology to boost horsepower and torque while downsizing engines and increasing efficiency."
To be eligible for the competition, each engine must be available in a regular-production U.S.-specification model on sale no later than first-quarter 2010, in a vehicle priced no more than $54,000, a price cap indexed to the average cost of a new vehicle.
Throughout October and November, six editors of Ward's Automotive Group tested 34 vehicles from 13 auto makers in their normal driving cycles in metro Detroit. They scored each engine based on horsepower, torque, refinement, technical relevance and comparative data. Each engine was evaluated because it was all-new, offered significant technology upgrades or was a returning winner from last year.
The awards will be presented at a Jan. 13 ceremony in Detroit during the North American International Auto Show. A full story on the Ward's 10 Best Engines is now available on Wardsauto.com.