Engine "Facelifts"

This probably would get explained in the next updates anyway, but in the facelift LDU, I saw the engine part and was a little confused. Now I can understand the facelift procedure for a car body, but an engine seems trickier. So if I want a DOHC inline-six 2.0 liter engine (just to give one example), with the original development starting in 1962, what would be the line between it being more practical to make a new engine of a similar size and type or to just keep updating the “4V6C2 Family”?

The downside of continuously updating your old engine is that the block and valvetrain will remain on the original engine’s standards, while the internals, fuel system, and all other parts are updated. That means you end up with a somewhat less potent engine compared to making a new one.


Honestly, the single biggest use of engine facelifts I expect is people freaking out about emissions standards coming when they completely forgot about it.

So that means if you develop full AlSi DOHC 5V engines as soon as AlSi becomes available in 1996, you can basically reuse them with the latest techs up to 2020 without ever building a new family again?

Yes. And if you build a full alu DOHC 4v engine in 1960 you can use it until 1989 and it will still be as modern as possible. And I’d say viable even up to late 90s/early 00s (from my give-me-all-the-tech point of view)… Though 4v DOHC in 1960 is a hardcore overkill.

More on the topic itself - I don’t understand the topic.


Another reason you would facelift an engine is to increase or decrease displacement. Its very common to see a manufacturer make several different displacements of the same engine eg Chevy small block V8, BMW M20 / M30, Toyota ZZ, just to name a few. This is a major cost cutting measure as you can easily make a more efficient or more powerful engine for differing applications without needing a whole new engine.

I think part of what he’s asking is to what extent an engine can be facelifted; which parts can change and which cannot?

Actually I’ve had this question myself because there are many real world examples of engines that have their head and valvetrain revised which is something we currently can’t do in Automation. The Ford Modular V8 comes to mind which has been produced in 2, 3, and 4 valve per cylinder configurations as well as single and double OHC but its all the same block and bottom end. Will the engine facelift mechanic come to include head revisions as well?

inb4 thats overpowered, this is more a curiosity about what the devs have and have not considered. I realize that in terms of gameplay, such a mechanic might totally defeat developing new engines.


I think the Modular is kind of cheating a bit, because that motor is basically a bunch of different engines, not really updates. Though I’ll give you that it did have 2V, 3V and even a 4V head, they weren’t “updates”, rather they were higher performance versions of the same motor, as the 2V and 4V came out almost simultaneously. The Coyote that came later could be considered a bit of an update, though it’s pretty radically different. Same goes for the switch from the original small-block Chevy to the LS series. Superficially similar, but too different to truly consider an “update” to the engine. I think any major kind of redesign should be barred from being considered an update, otherwise we might as well call the Coyote an update to the original Windsor, given that it’s the new small-block Ford.

I think what Killrob was implying is more akin to something like the Chevy 454 that was basically the exact same motor from beginning to end, but went from carb, to TBI, to port injection, the heads got updated over the years and the intakes got revised.

1 Like

Well even with the current system the displacement can be varied quite much, it just needs some prediction at the start if one wants to increase it later - IIRC the minimal variant of a family can have 68.8% of the maximal one’s size, meaning for example 1.4-2.0, 2.0-2.9, 3.4-5.0 families. Yeah, that’s less than some real world examples, but AFAIK many of them actually used different blocks and thus shouldn’t be considered one family in Automation terms.

Different valvetrains in one family have been discussed long ago and multiple times IIRC and were clearly stated to not be coming into the game, as that would make the engines too different in one family. Also I remember an explanation that in fact Automation engine “family” and “variant” might not be the best terms and “engine” and “variant” would describe that division better.

As for the “facelifts”, I’ll repeat what I suggested once somewhere - ability to clone the engine family and then just change a single or few things to create a related, but separate family, with engineering time reflecting to that in such way that the exact clone would cost no (or almost no) engineering and every single change would increase that cost, up to 100% for changing everything but the basics that can be covered by just the familiarity. For example, I have a complete I4 engine family and then I clone it and switch to I6 and don’t change anything besides that - basically an equivalent of th real world modular design philosophy. This should give me a new family for the engineering cost of creating a new block and head (still reduced a bit by having the same parameters except the cylinder count), new crankshaft, intake and exhaust - maybe also new carbs or new injection in case of SPFI. Pistons, conrods, block and head parameters (including cams), injectors - they could all be the same and thus should cost no additional enginnering.


To go with this, think of it this way: what would stop me from dumping a bunch or tech pool and R&D into one engine family in 1946 or whenever it starts and then making variants with every valvetrain type on and on and on until the end of the game? It would never be uncompetitive in the campaign markets.


Oh yes, I am familiar with Automation’s displacement variation on a per variant basis and I was actually referring to that feature specifically :grinning:. That being said, I realize where you’re coming from since I am certain it goes ignored by many new players. The first question I ask myself when I make any new engine is What might I conceivably use this for?. When it comes to the valvetrains, I suspected as much and to clarify my position I am by no means an advocate for allowing arbitrary revisions because:

Again, I was more curious than anything else.

As for your suggestion on how to handle actual modular design philosphy, that seems reasonable. The only thing I would say is that with the tech pool gained for certain engine configurations and the engineers gaining experience, this is sort of partially implemented.

1 Like

Exactly this! Modular engines where you’d be able to replace heads at will etc would break the way the campaign works so familiarity is instead used.