It’s been 98 years since Cadillac first mass-produced the V-8 engine which it promptly sold 13,000 units in its first year of production. Some of the most iconic cars to ever grace planet earth were powered by a V-8 engine but one less automaker will now be using the robust mill. Who? Infiniti has announced it will be moving away from the V-8 engine in favor of hybrid, boosted V-6, and four-cylinder technology. This is a result of ever-increasingly strict emissions and fuel economy standards put forth by the United States.
Johan de Nysschen is senior VIP over at Infiniti. Since jumping ship from Audi, de Nysschen has been no stranger to voicing his opinion on the soon-to-be-defunct V-8 engine. He’s made it no secret that Infiniti will no longer use a V-8 in vehicles like the FX SUV and the M sedan. There has been no word if the QX56 SUV will continue to use a V-8 mill. Nissan has also been mum if it will drop the V-8 from its vehicles like the full-size Titan truck and NV van. The latter two still rely on Nissan’s 5.6-liter V-8 engine. V-6 engines in a truck isn’t unheard of: Look at Ford and it’s EcoBoost engine, or Chrysler and its new (to Ram) V-6 Pentastar engine which is currently the best in its class.
“I don’t think any car that is on Infiniti drawing boards from here onwards we should expect a V8 to be included in that plan,” de Nysschen said to motoring.com.au. “Powertrains have to have a relatively long lifecycle, and we have to think about 15 years from today and the future unquestionably is going to see the downsizing of engines.”
Andy Palmer, Infiniti’s executive vice president, echoes those sentiments. Palmer stressed that the brand’s performance would not suffer though with the departure of the V-8 engine.
“I am afraid CAFÉ regulations and emission regulations around the world make the development of V-8s as part of a new family of engines almost impossible,” said Palmer. “V-8 [engines do not] determine performance,” Palmer continued. “F1 has gone [to the] V-6 for example. You can get the performance out of a V-6 or an [inline-4} and you can get the fuel consumption out of it.”
Only time will tell if the death of the V-8 engine is the way to go so stay tuned.
What do you think? Is the V-8 engine a thing of the past or will there always be a market for it? Tell us your thoughts in the comment section below.