We are just finished viewing the live webcast of Chevrolet’s 1.2 Smartech engine launch in Delhi. The new 1.2-litre petrol engine is a development by the company’ Bangalore R&D center over the Beat’s current engine. The new Smartech engine has been tuned by the company to offer better low-end torque, better driveability and has been optimized for better efficiency as well. The company claims that their internal tests have shown an improvement for the earlier ARAI certified fuel efficiency figure of the car. However, since ARAI has not accredited the new numbers yet, the company is not making the new fuel efficiency figure public.
GM have worked on the common grouses about their Beat engine – poor low end torque, high noise after 3000 rpm and not so appreciable smoothness. The SMARTECH engine features aluminum cylinder heads, deep skirt cylinder block and lightweight pistons with low tension rings, which decreases weight and maximizes fuel economy. The engine also features a DOHC valve-train with direct acting valve actuation to further improve the efficiency, a long runner plastic intake manifold for good low-end torque and lightweight counterbalanced crank shaft for great NVH.
The engine has a maintenance-free inverted tooth timing chain drive system. The chain links engage at a lower impact speed, which decreases the noise generated for quiet operation. Durability is ensured through the application of an epoxy coating on the cylinder block and anti corrosion coating on cam cover baffles, and the use of stainless steel core plugs and bay to bay ventilation. Extensive testing and validation were carried out in India to guarantee top-of-the-line performance in all vehicle models that will adopt the engine.
The new engine will be available on all Chevrolet Beat cars starting February 2011. So if you are planning to buy the Beat, better wait for a few more days. Apart from the Smartech engine, Karl Slym, the Chevrolet top boss for India has also cleared the air on the new diesel engine which will power the Beat. He said that the new engine will be ready in the next couple of weeks, which would mean that we shouls expect the much awaited diesel Beat in a couple of months’ time!
We have managed to derive a whole load of information from the press conference. We will analyze the entire data in a bit, and get back to you with some more information about GM India’s new products and strategies for the Indian market. Stay tuned!