Torque Tips | Difference between in-line cylinder and a V-cylinder

Difference between in-line cylinder and a V-cylinder

-practical vs performance-

You don’t need to be a vehicle buff to open up a vehicle’s bonnet and wish to know more about what’s going on inside, what everything is and how it works. If you’ve ever been in the situation where you were speechless after you’ve had a peak beneath a sports car or an old classic American Muscle’s bonnet - don’t worry, you’re not alone. We are here today to explain the difference between an in-line cylinder and a V-cylinder engine, so keep reading and let your knowledge about vehicle mechanics broaden.

A vehicle cylinder is formally described as a piston chamber in your vehicle’s engine. Your cylinder is responsible for your vehicle’s power output. How your vehicle cylinder system works is that, in short, a compressed mixture of oxygen and petrol mist is ignited to diffuse and push the piston rod down and so create the force that drives the vehicle. You can find four, six or eight cylinders in an everyday vehicle.

The biggest difference between an in-line cylinder and a V-cylinder engine is its arrangement. When you look at it you will see that the in-line cylinder is arranged in a straight line and a V-cylinder is arranged in a V-shape as its name suggests, and is configured into two rows. You will only see the V-shape when you look at the engine from the side or a ninety-degree angle.

You will find a V-cylinder configuration in most performance vehicles such as supercar or American Muscle vehicles. So, it’s natural to assume that V-cylinders offer better performance and you would be right. A V-cylinder is described as a compact engine for each individual cylinder, because V-cylinders have two rows instead of one row in-line cylinders. This means that when the same length fits a 6 in-line cylinder, it will also fit a 12 V-cylinder. This also means that these compact cylinders can be used for either rear-wheel drive or front-wheel drive vehicles. V-cylinders are designed to produce way more torque than an in-line cylinder and at a lower rev count. This is due to the fact that its power comes from two sides instead of just one.

The biggest disadvantage of a V-cylinder configuration is that its more complexly designed and therefore cost much more money to maintain and repair not to mention longer, and only highly-qualified mechanics can repair these intricate engines. They are also much bulkier and heavier which also means that they guzzle up more petrol due to the additional weight of the vehicle, and the engine that needs more petrol to function (they are high-cost to own and drive in general).

You will find an in-line cylinder configuration on most vehicles on the road. It’s designed as a single long row of cylinders and offer you more than adequate amount of power for your daily driving. This cylinder configuration type is designed with less metal bulk and complexity which means that the vehicle is lighter. This also means that a vehicle with an in-line cylinder configuration is easier and cheaper to maintain, repair and have better fuel efficiency than a V-cylinder configuration vehicle.

We hope that this Torque Tip was informative and have shed a bit of light about what’s happening under your vehicle’s hood.

Written by: Ashley Roos
Edited by: Pearl Mwale