Engine of the Year
Volvo T6 Drive-E
As governments around the world ratchet up fuel-economy and emissions standards over the coming years, automakers will need to find a way to lessen environmental impact without trimming power or refinement. After all, customers appear unwilling to part with either for increased efficiency. For us at Digital Trends, no automaker has seen the writing on the wall and stepped forward with an engine family that meets future standards better than Volvo with the Drive-E.
Specifically, we love the twin turbocharged and supercharged T6 variant for its ability to offer six-cylinder levels of power – an impressive 306 horsepower – while returning the emissions and economy of a much smaller engine. We also applaud Volvo for its foresight in designing the Drive-E family to also pair with electric motors, for easy hybridization of its current and future models, which will further the engines’ enviable efficiency.
With the T6 Drive-E engine, Volvo has proved that an automaker can embrace efficiency, technology, and performance and also use the challenges of future mobility to define and enhance its brand identity.
Displacing 6.0 liters, and producing more than 620 horsepower, one might think that Bentley’s W12 engine would be a gargantuan thing. Amazingly, however, it’s actually shorter in overall length than Bentley’s 4.0-liter V8. And though the W12 isn’t exactly new, like the Drive-E, in its latest iteration, it does deserve major kudos.
You might think that the Hellcat HEMI was nominated simply for its staggering 707 horsepower rating. And you’re nearly right. Luckily, the Hellcat is more than just a performance figure; it’s also a demonstration of Dodge’s engineering prowess, as it not only produces over 700 ponies but also returns an EPA-estimated 22 mpg on the highway.