40 kilo engine from Nissan = 400 horsepower

In June, Nissan will pack its tiny new three-cylinder engine in a 24 Hours of Le Mans racecar. Nissan’s don’t-call-me-DeltaWing ZEOD RC racecar will still be able to tackle a single lap under full electric power, but the rest of the time it will be powered by the new 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine.

Holding the lightweight engine is Nismo president Shoichi Miyatani, and he’s likely smiling because that 40-kilogram engine packs quite a punch with 400 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque. Nissan would like to take a moment to point out this engine’s power-to-weight is better than the engines currently used in Formula One racecars.

Mindboggling. Especially if you’re an old gearhead like me. Power-to-weight ratio has always been key to racing performance as well as economy performance. It seems like weeks ago when Porsche was letting the world know it had mastered the art of producing light alloy engine blocks – and here we are with a 400 horsepower mill that even an old fart like me could lug around the garage.

Click the link above to get to the Autoblog post and click their link at the bottom of the article – “show press release” – to get to specifications.

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