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Four, Six or Eight: How Many Cylinders Do Today's Families Need? Page 2

2011 Hyundai Sonata

Other models are offered in 2011 with four-cylinders. They include the Honda Accord, Chevrolet Malibu, Kia Optima, Mazda MAZDA6, Suzuki Kizashi, and Toyota Camry, among others. Some, it should be noted, are more fun to drive than others.

Suffice to say, there are many cars available today with peppy four-cylinder engines, some turbocharged. Why pay more for a V-6 engine when a four-banger can get you the same or better horsepower and better fuel economy?

And forget about the V-8s – you won’t find them in mid-size sedans. They’re better suited to sports cars, SUVs, large cars, and trucks.  Unless you just have to have all those horses (and pay the premium, in more ways than one), check out the more fuel-efficient engines available pretty much across the board.

Four or six or eight – according to many reviewers, U.S. consumers are increasingly turning to four-cylinder-powered cars to carry the family.

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  1. V6s are becoming rare here in Australia. 10 years ago they were common in large SUVs, now everything is switching to diesel. Both Pathfinder and Santa Fe just dropped V6s for diesel 4-cylinders recently, as did Grand Vitara. There are a few holdouts remaining but in 10 years time I predict they will be gone from SUVs, and much less common in passenger cars. It's not really about the fuel consumption, it's about emissions. The large displacement means a V6 will never be able to match a 4 cyl for CO2. The future is all diesels, turbos, and direct injection.
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