With the ever-growing development to continuously push new innovations in the automotive industry to make today’s cars better, more fuel-efficient, lower emissions, and sometimes make more power, newer technologies are also used to develop new designs and new engines. But oftentimes, one of the biggest questions that come to mind when purchasing a vehicle is “how reliable is it?”. The common consumer wants something reliable that will not break down.
It’s our mode of transportation to get from point A to B, hopefully with a bit of fun as a bonus. If it can’t do its job, then why bother? Unless, of course, it’s a project car that is purposely built. Even then, you would have a daily driver, and you want that to be as reliable as ever. So here we are to show you the most reliable engines ever made.
10 Toyota 2AR-FE Engine
First up is no surprise. Toyota has always been known for being reliable. That’s why they have been very successful in leading the industry regarding the number of car sales. Other than being very reliable, parts are also cheap, and they are not hard to find at all. You can practically find a Toyota part at every parts store.
The Toyota 2AR-FE engine is one of Toyota’s most economical engines ever produced. It’s an inline-4 engine with a die-cast aluminum engine block and aluminum DOHC head. This engine incorporates the new technology which is the variable valve timing on both intake and exhaust or also known as the dual VVTi. This helps with the engines’ better fuel efficiency, and its engine applications are installed in the Toyota RAV4, Toyota Camry, Toyota Alphard, Scion TC.
9 Toyota 1ZZ Engine
Next up is another entry for Toyota — the 1ZZ engine. The 1ZZ is the first engine in the Toyota ZZ family, and it’s also an inline-4 DOHC engine made with the same materials as the 2AR engine. However, these offer a lower displacement which is optimized for fuel efficiency for their more economical cars.
This engine was such a success, they have decided to equip it in a variety of cars. Ranging from sedans, coupes, small SUVs, and even mid-engined cars. Applications for this engine are on the Toyota Corolla, Toyota MR2 Spyder, Lotus Elise, Toyota Wish, Toyota Allion, Toyota Matrix, or Pontiac Vibe.
8 Honda B Series Engine
This entry is from the Honda B-Series family. The B-series engines are notoriously known for the performance capability of the engine and the ingenious VTEC (Variable Valve Timing and Electronic Control) design. With different camshaft profiles, it offered maximum fuel efficiency at low rpms and better performance at the higher rpm range.
Because of this technology, race enthusiasts of all ages will have this engine in mind when building a Honda. With the proven reliability and tuning potential of the engine, it has earned an iconic status in the automotive industry. The B-series engine comes in different displacements from 1.6-liter to 2.0-liter DOHC and its applications come in the majority of the early Honda releases like the Honda Civic, Honda CRX, Honda Integra, and Honda CRV.
7 Honda K Series Engine
Another Honda entry is the K series. This is known to be the predecessor for the B series engine and was introduced in 2001. It’s also an inline-four DOHC engine, but with an improved i-VTEC system. Being the newer engine also offered new tuning possibilities while being able to maintain the reliability of the engine.
Since Honda has always been known for high-revving, reliable, fuel-efficient engines, this immediately became a hot topic for enthusiasts out there. It was initially nestled in the Acura RSX, Civic SI, and the CRV. The K series came in either 2.0-liter or 2.4-liter form, which Honda makes easy to identify by coding them as K20 or K24.
6 Lexus 1UZFE Engine
Of course, who could forget the ever-lasting Lexus 1UZFE engine? This engine is known to reach a million miles and remain smooth-running. The 1UZFE was known to be placed in Lexus’ flagship car, the LS400. Going up against the Mercedes-Benz S Class and the BMW 7-Series, this was certainly ahead of its time.
The engine demonstrated a very smooth ride with little to no engine vibration. This was very important for luxury vehicles, as it offers maximum comfort with more than enough power while being chauffeured around. There are no known common issues of this engine other than the fuel economy not being the best being a 4.0-liter V8. But with regular maintenance, this is one of the engines that will last forever.
5 Lexus 2UR-GSE Engine
Another big engine from Lexus is the 2UR-GSE. It is a 32-valve DOHC V8 engine. This was introduced in 2006 to replace the UZ engines as it was being phased out. It had better technology for fuel efficiencies, like having the dual VVTi and the direct injection (D4-S).
The 2UR specifically was built differently than the other average UR engine. While being reliable is still the primary goal for the UR engines, the 2UR was placed in the performance lines of Lexus like the IS-F, RC-F, GS-F, and the LC500. So this is definitely a reliable monster that can go beyond 200,000 miles with no problem as long as maintenance is on point. That is truly impressive for a performance-built engine.
4 BMW M57 Diesel Engine
Another very reliable engine comes from BMW. Normally when you hear BMW, reliability has always been questionable due to its complex engineering. But the M57 Diesel engine says otherwise. This is a 3.0-liter turbocharged water-cooled straight inline-6 diesel engine with common rail injection.
Given that it’s a diesel engine, this may not be the most popular engine to see, as some countries are gasoline dominant. Its applications were on the BMW E39 as the 525d, BMW E46 as the 330d, and BMW E90 as the 325d. This engine has been marked as one of the most reliable engines ever made.
3 Nissan RB26DETT Engine
The RB26DETT is a performance engine built by Nissan, and it is another engine that is known for its reliability… in its stock form, of course. You may hear owners tell some horror stories regarding the RB engines, but take note that the majority of these engines have already been modified to a certain point.
There are many versions of the RB26 engine, however what sets this apart from the other RB family is that the other RB engines do not have an oil port on the cylinder block. The port plays a huge part in protecting your engine, which in turn definitely helps with better reliability.
2 Mercedes-Benz OM617 Diesel Engine
The OM617 engine from Mercedes-Benz is definitely a legend when it comes to reliability. It’s an inline-5 diesel engine that can go over half a million miles without having to be rebuilt.
Now to be able to achieve this, you must of course perform regular maintenance to keep the engine in its tiptop condition. There are a lot of guides that need to be replaced like timing chains at a certain mileage, motor mounts, and constant oil changes. However, this goes for all cars, as there is no maintenance-free vehicle.
1 General Motors LS Engine
Last but not least is the General Motors LS engine. This has been marked arguably one of the greatest V8’s ever made. This has been in production for over 20 years and is still being currently used today. It has delivered consistent power, durability, and reliability over the course of time.
It’s such a great engine, General Motors still continues to produce them, making them readily available for people who would want to get one. Another thing is that part replacement will not be an issue for this, especially if you want to make the engine much more powerful than it already is.
Japan is responsible for producing some of the best vehicles in the world but sometimes their creations are a little on the strange side.
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