A story in Autocar dated April 19 claims that Jaguar is planning to re-introduce a straight 6 cylinder engine soon. The new engine will essentially add two cylinders to the company’s latest Ingenium 4 cylinder engine. The resulting power unit will displace 3.0 liters and could be turbocharged.

Jaguar inline 6 cylinder engine

Some may see this as a backwards step in an age when all the chatter is about electric cars. Why is Jaguar developing new internal combustion engines instead of building better electric motors? There is a one word answer to that — marketing. For generations, Jaguar cars have been defined by the dual overhead cam straight 6 engines found under the hoods of its cars. By looping back to that prior era, the company could leverage its winning heritage in international motor racing as a way to build its brand identity.

The Ingenium engine is a modular design, which allows multiple engine configurations to be built on the same assembly line. The Ingenium engines all utilize a basic 500 cc cylinder design, which is the same as BMW uses for its inline 6 cylinder engine. Mercedes also uses an inline 6 cylinder engine in some of its cars.

Jaguar plans on  making a 1.5 liter Ingenium three cylinder engine as well as the 2.0 liter 4 cylinder engine and the upcoming 3.0 liter. All engines in the Ingenium series can be configured to run on gasoline or diesel fuel. When will the new engines get here and what cars will they be installed in? “We can’t comment on future product one way or another,” company spokesperson Nathan Hoyt told Autoblog.

The Ingenium engines all feature lightweight aluminum castings and reduced internal friction techniques. Both oil and water pumps are electric and can be computer controlled to operate in the most efficient way possible. The engines can be adapted to front, rear, or all wheel drive propulsion systems. Autocar says the straight 6 engine will fit into the engine compartments of several Jaguar models, including the  XE, XF, and the forthcoming F-Pace SUV. The new engine would replace the V-6 engine left over from when Ford owned the company.

Jaguar at Monaco

Jaguar with straight 6 cylinder engine on track at Monaco Historic Races, 2012. Photo by the author.

Source and photo credit: AutoBlog