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10 Legendary and Iconic Engines On Indian Cars

Different people have different preferences when buying a vehicle. Out of many prime preferences, the engine is among the favourite petrolheads. An engine is a machine that takes care of the driver’s needs. For which, it has to be inclined either towards power or efficiency. As the engines rock back literally and between these two mentioned, they don’t have much to work with, right? Or is it? Well, Soul:Human::Engine:Car:Human. Hence, there are some legendary and iconic engines, that had or have been serving in today’s cars. Here are 10.

  1. Maruti Suzuki 1.2L K-Series

    Maruti Suzuki Swift
    Maruti Suzuki Swift

    One of the most used engines in the cars are the various 1.2L K series engines. In India, the two most commonly used engines in the modern Maruti Suzuki line-up are the K12M and K12N. Both the engines displace 1200cc and come with an I-4 configuration. Talking about power, the K12M engine generates a peak power of 82bhp and a max torque of 113Nm.

    Engine Specification (K12N)

    Capacity 1197CC
    Power 88 Bhp
    Torque 113Nm
    Transmission 5-Speed MT / 5-Speed AMT

    On the other hand, the K12N just makes 8hp over the M as it supports dualjet technology. That said, in the tuners community, these engines are among the favourites. Because of the availability of JDM parts, people tend to modify and increase the power output of the engines.

    Read to know the 10 Car Manufacturers And Their Most Powerful Petrol Engines

    Adding to the fun there is a wide range of cars that are powered by the K12M engine, Maruti Suzuki WagonR, and Ignis. K12N powers Swift Dezire and the new Baleno.

  2. Honda 1.5-litre i-VTEC

    2020 Honda City
    2020 Honda City

    One of the well-engineered engines that India has ever witnessed is Honda’s 1.5-litre i-Vtec. The motor offers the best of all the worlds that the driver or the owner of the vehicle is looking for.

    Engine Specification

    Capacity 1498CC
    Power 119 Bhp
    Torque 145 Nm
    Transmission 6-Speed MT / 7-Step CVT

    This 1.5-litre gem is frugal, and powerful and offers the top NVH (Noise Vibration and Harshness) levels. That said, the engine has witnessed a couple of updates in its lifetime.

    Here are the 10 Car Manufacturers And Their Most Fuel-Efficient Engines

    The latest one was launched in 2020, with the launch of the next-gen Honda City. The new engine is similar to that of the previous model but comes with a DOHC (Dual Over Head Cam) setup versus the SOHC in the older model. Speaking of specifications, the new engine generates a peak power of 121 ps and 145Nm of torque. The engine comes mated to either a 6speed MT or a 7-step CVT gearbox.

  3. Hyundai 1.6-litre CRDi

    Hyundai Verna 2015
    Hyundai Verna 2015

    Up next, is the engine that dates from pre covid times. It was one of the best-selling diesel engines in the Indian market to date.

    Engine Specification

    Capacity 1582CC
    Power 126bhp
    Torque 260Nm
    Transmission 6-Speed MT / 6-Speed (TC)

    The 1.6-litre CRDi motor was a part of Hyundai Verna, Hyundai Creta and Hyundai Elantra. But because of the BS6 emission norms, the engine was shelved after April 2020. Now, these cars come with a 1.5-litre CRDi motor that is no match for the 1.6.

    Informtive Read: What Is DPF And SCR In BS6 Diesel Cars? | Explained

    Why? To begin with, the 1.6-litre motor was powerful. Powerful, with the (P). The engine was capable of generating a max power of 127ps and peak torque of 260Nm. For you to know these figures are close to the first-gen Skoda Octavia 1.8 TSI in India.

  4. Fiat MultiJet 1.3 litre diesel /Maruti Suzuki DDiS 200

    The Maruti Ciaz offers one of the best mileage figures in its segments
    The Maruti Ciaz offers one of the best mileage figures in its segments

    There was a time when the majority of the diesel cars running on the road had this engine. Hence denoting the motor as the national engine of India will not be wrong. Now, moving on to the technical specs, this engine was available in two states of tune. One, that was available with cars like Swift and Baleno and the more powerful was the DDIS200.

    Engine Specification

    Capacity 1248CC
    Power 89bhp
    Torque 200Nm
    Transmission 5-Speed MT

    The latter was the one that did duties in vehicles like Ciaz and Vitara Brezza. The less powerful engine produced 74bhp of max power and 190Nm of maximum torque. The DDiS 200 was healthy enough to generate 89hp of peak power and 200Nm of sheer torque.

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    When driven carefully and also depending upon the vehicle, this engine was capable of returning a mileage of 25kmpl – 26kmpl. In addition to that, many users owning a car with DDiS 200 and SHVS tech claimed that they got 28kmpl – 30kmpl. Uff that’s a lot efficient.

  5. Volkswagen 1.2-litre TSI

    Polo GT Tsi 2020
    Polo GT TSI

    The German car maker Volkswagen was among the first car makers in India to slap on a turbo on a petrol engine. And you guessed it write, it is the 1.2-litre 4-cylinder TSI motor that is among the first from the brand.

    Engine Specification

    Capacity 1197CC
    Power 105bhp
    Torque 175Nm
    Transmission 6-Speed MT / 7-Speed DSG

    This engine was a part of the affordable cars from the brand, which includes Volkswagen Polo and Vento. Additionally, this is the exact same engine with which the company also introduced the craze of DCT (Dual Clutch Transmission) with their own DSG.

    Interesting Read: 5 Reasons Why India Will Miss The Volkswagen Polo

    But after the implementation of BS6 norms, things changed. The engine lost a cylinder and the DSG box instead the cars started coming with a 1.0-litre 3-cylinder motor with a torque converter automatic (but the power figures were increased despite losing a cylinder and displacement). Shifting back to 1.2 TSI, the engine was capable of generating a peak power of 104ps with 175Nm of peak torque.

  6. Fiat 1.4-litre turbo petrol

    7 Indian hot hatchbacks we wish would make a comeback
    Punto Abarth

    Not all small cars are boring. Having said that, one perfect example of a pocket rocket is the Abarth Punto. And apart from the cosmetics, Abarth Punto was not similar to conventional punto.

    Engine Specification

    Capacity 1368CC
    Power 145bhp
    Torque 212Nm
    Transmission 5-Speed MT

    The Punto launched under the Fiat’s sub-brand Abarth was a hatch for hooligans. Launched in 2015, this hatchback came with a 1.4-litre T-Jet turbo petrol engine.

    Know more about the 15 Most Powerful Cars In India Under ₹20 Lakh in 2022

    The Abarth Punto was launched into the market to rival the likes of the hot hatches in India (Volkswagen Polo GT TSI). Discussing the Punto’s USP, this turbo petrol engine was capable of generating 145bhp and about 212Nm of peak torque. This powertrain made the hatch *THE* most powerful hatchback in its segment and many cars sitting above it. With some minor mods, the Abarth Punto can be the right weapon for time attack events.

  7. Tata 2.2-litre DiCOR

    Tata Safari Dicor
    Tata Safari Dicor

    Tata Motors collaborated with AVL to develop the 2.2L VTT DiCOR engine utilized in the Sumo Grande, Xenon, and Safari. The engine has some unique features and is one of the greatest diesel engines produced by an Indian automaker.

    Engine Specification

    Capacity 2179CC
    Power 140bhp
    Torque 320Nm
    Transmission 5-Speed MT

    The engine was validated in Spain for high altitude and high temperature, and in Switzerland for low temperature and high altitude validation at an ambient temperature of -20 degrees.

    These are the 7 Key Things To Know About The New Tata Safari

    All non-hazardous components, such as hexavalent chromium-free components and asbestos-free gaskets, are used in the engine, which fulfiled European requirements. The one in Tata Safari produced a peak power of 140bhp and 320Nm of peak torque. The motor was mated to a 5-speed MT gearbox.

  8. Mahindra 2.2-litre mHawk

    2014 Mahindra Scorpio
    2014 Mahindra Scorpio

    The first vehicle to come powered by this legendary engine is the Mahindra Scorpio, back in, 2009. Then the new Mahindra Scorpio came powered by a  2.2 litre, 4-cylinder, 120 horsepower mHawk diesel engine.

    Engine Specification

    Capacity 2179CC
    Power 137bhp
    Torque 319Nm
    Transmission 6-Speed MT

    The 4-valve per cylinder and fuel spray design of the mHawk engine, as well as its revolutionary 2-stage chain drive system and hydraulic lash adjuster, improve fuel efficiency and reduce engine noise.

    Know more about the 10 Reasons Why The Mahindra Scorpio has a Special Place in our Hearts

    According to Mahindra, the new Scorpio can accelerate from 0 to 60 km/h in 5.7 seconds. Later in post-2015, the company did launch a 2.0-litre mHawk engine but was discontinued before anyone could ever know.

  9. Hyundai’s 1.0-litre Kappa Turbo GDi

    Hyundai Venue IMT Front End
    Hyundai Venue IMT Front End

    Now let’s talk about the first turbo petrol engine from Hyundai to enter the Indian market. Like the other turbo petrol engine, this too is a 3-cylinder motor that generated a little higher 118hp of max power and a similar 172Nm of peak torque.

    Engine Specification

    Capacity 998CC
    Power 118bhp
    Torque 172Nm
    Transmission 6-Speed iMT / 7-Speed DCT

    It was the Hyundai Venue that first used this engine. In addition to that, this 1.0-litre T-GDi engine is refined when considering other 3-cylinder engines.

    Informative Read: Turbocharged Or Naturally Aspirated | What Indians Want?

    But after Indians became familiar with this engine, Hyundai started offering this powerhouse in other cars. Next, in the Hyundai’s portfolio to come with this engine was the next-gen Verna and later the Hyundai i20. Although we were expecting the sedan to come with 1.4 T-GDi (We’ll save this for some other day).

  10. Skoda/Volkswagen 1.8-litre TSI

    Skoda Octavia. (Skoda Laura)
    Skoda Octavia

    Ending this read about engines is another TSI motor. This time it is among the most powerful 1.8-litre engines on the planet. It is the Volkswagen 1.8-litre 4-cylinder turbo petrol engine.

    Engine Specification

    Capacity 1798CC
    Power 177bhp
    Torque 250Nm
    Transmission 7-Speed DSG

    This engine is powered by various cars in a plethora of tunes. In India, this motor is used to power cars like Skoda Octavia, Skoda Superb, Skoda Kodiaq and more. However, after the implementation of BS6 emission norms, Skoda upgraded the engines to 2.0-Litre TSI.

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    This 1.8-Litre petrol engine was capable of generating peak power of 177hp and 250Nm of max torque. Setting the power-down to either the front wheels or all wheels, depending on the vehicle, the engine was mated to a 7-speed DSG.

So, these were the 10 of the iconic engines that India witnessed in some well-engineered vehicles. Let us know in the comment section, which engine is your favourite. Also, which engines should we include in part 2?

Utkarsh Bhardwaj
Utkarsh Bhardwaj
Technical Content Strategist at GoMechanic | Big Time Petrolhead with the passion for building cars and driving those beauties.



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