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Car Engine Types: Explore the Types of Automotive Engines

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Published on :
  • 31/08/2023

When you start your car, you need to use the car keys and start the ignition. This is something most car owners and drivers do without a thought. However, at some point, you may have wondered how this process involves your car engine and helps your car run.

So, let us break down this process for you! Simply read on to learn more about how your car engine works and the different types of engines available.

How do Motors in Automobiles Work?

Most cars in India use internal combustion engines or ICE. These motors convert chemical energy from fuel to mechanical energy that helps power the engine and the vehicle.

The engine burns the air-fuel mixture within the combustion chamber, which generates high-pressure gases. These gases push a piston back and forth; another part also controls the piston, called the crankshaft, which makes the piston spin fast. This quick piston motion is what helps the wheels of the car move.

Combustion cycles in modern engines are known as four-stroke engines. They are described as:

Intake: The intake valve will open in the first stroke piston moves down. This will release the air-fuel mixture from the combustion chamber. Then the camshaft regulates the valve’s opening and closing motion. At the same time, the piston moves forward and downward, pushed forward by the crankshaft.

Compression: As the term suggests, in the second stroke, the piston follows an upward motion and compresses the air-fuel mixture.

Power: In the third stroke, also called the power stroke, the spark plug ignites the compressed hot air-fuel mixture with a spark. This mild explosion helps release the energy that moves the piston downwards and gives the vehicle the energy to move.

Exhaust: At the same time, when the piston moves downwards, the exhaust valve opens. Vapours are present from the earlier explosion that is expelled as the piston moves upwards. As the cycle keeps repeating at the speed of tens of thousands of times per minute, this process powers the vehicle.

Different Types of Automobile Engines

Here is a list of the different types of car engines used in Indian automobiles.

Motor with natural aspiration

  • A motor with natural aspiration also called a normally aspirated engine or NA is propelled by an internal combustion engine.

  • The atmospheric pressure affects how much air is injected into this type of engine.

  • This type of car engine does not need to induct air into the intake manifold.

  • It has less power when compared to forced air induction (turbocharged/supercharged) engines.

  • The structure of the engine is simpler and more dependable than forced air induction engines.

Turbocharged engine

  • Turbocharged engines have an internal combustion engine and forced air induction. A turbocharger is a distinct component used for forced air induction.

  • This engine comprises an air compressor and a turbine located on opposite ends of a shaft. The components are housed in an inlet port and a snail-shaped covering.

  • The input port allows highly pressurised waste exhaust gasses to enter. The exhaust gases moving through the turbine cause the compressor to spin.

  • The air compressor pulls in more compressed air, which is released through the air outlet port. Air is fed into the cylinders and cooled down by an intercooler. Since the pressure is higher than the atmospheric pressure, the engine generates more power.

CRDi engine

  • It is a diesel engine of the Common Rail Direct Injection (CRDi) variety. A fuel injection system known as CRDi is used in modern diesel engines.

  • It has one common rail to supply fuel to each fuel injector (line). Due to the use of a common rail, CRDi engines maintain a constant fuel injection pressure.

  • Due to the constant pressure, the gasoline spray disperses uniformly and is exceedingly fine. It helps to boost power and effectiveness.

  • The ECU (Electronic Control Unit) regulates the fuel injection pressure in response to the engine's speed and load.

Motorised PFI

  • The term "multi-point fuel injection engine" is used to describe a specific type of gasoline engine. MPFI is a fuel injection system used in gasoline engines and is similar to the CRDi technology used in diesel engines.

  • The MPFI system makes use of gasoline injectors to provide the appropriate amount of fuel to each cylinder accurately. The fuel economy is better, and there are fewer carbon emissions due to the use of the exact fuel distribution system by the MPFI.

  • The MPFI helps boost the engine's output to a greater extent. This is why MPFI engines start up easily, even in moderately cold weather.

  • Did you also know that your automobile engine type will influence your car insurance cost? With the help of this information, you can choose which car you want to purchase. And once you buy the car of your choice, you can also purchase suitable four-wheeler insurance to secure your car against a range of natural and human damages, along with third-party and accidental damages!

  • Moreover, if you buy a comprehensive car insurance policy from Tata AIG, you can also include an Engine Secure add-on cover to protect your engine from damage. This can be necessary to protect your engine against damage caused by waterlogging, accidents, etc.


How many different types of car engines are there in India?

Diesel and gasoline engines are the two main types of car engines in India. The engines can be categorised into a variety of groups according to their design, fuel injection technique, and air induction system.

What all types of car engines can you find in modern cars?

Modern autos employ internal combustion engines (ICE). Compression ignition is used in diesel engines, whereas spark ignition is used in gasoline engines.

Which engine configuration is the most common in modern vehicles?

The inline 4-cylinder engine is one of the types of automobile engines which is used most often in modern cars. Some cars, particularly those with gasoline engines, have three cylinders.


The engine is rightfully called the heart of the car since problems in the engine will not allow your car to start or function properly. Therefore, it is important to have adequate car insurance coverage for your four-wheeler, along with the inclusion of an engine protection add-on. But it is also equally crucial to be a safe and responsible driver so that your car and the engine do not suffer any damage!

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