Difference Between Inline and V Engines

From cars to motorcycles containing multiple cylinders, inline and v engines are being used. The most significant factor that determines the efficiency and performance of a vehicle is its engine and its features.


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Inline vs V Engines

In inline engine efficiency is great, and it is also cheap and affordable. V engines are known for their power capacity and their compact nature. Based on what the engineer wants out of the vehicle, the engines are carefully chosen and used accordingly.

Inline vs V Engines

Inline engines are also called straight engines. It is one among the configurations of internal combustion in which the cylinders are placed in the same row and do not have an offset.

A v engine is also a commonly found engine configuration that is found in vehicles. Two cylinder banks are present in the v engine. The alignment of the cylinder resembles the letter v and thus the name.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonInline EnginesV Engines
 Resistance to VibrationsInline engines aren’t resistant and durable towards vibrations.  V engines can perform exceptionally well during vibrations.
Number Of Cylinders It has less number of cylinders comparatively. It has a larger number of cylinders.
DimensionsInline engines have a long structure.  V engines have a width dominant structure.
Alignment Of CylindersThe cylinders are perfectly aligned in a straight row.    The cylinders are aligned at an angle that represents the v shape.
Another nameThey are also called straight engines. They are also called inverted engines.

What are Inline Engines?

Inline engines are best known for their easy construction and assembling nature as it requires a very few cylinder heads. They are compact and smaller in dimensions. It is commonly used in its four-cylinder configuration for good efficiency.

It is a conventional type of engine, and the cylinders are aligned in a single straight row. Due to the easier and less time-consuming factor, it is extremely cheap when it comes to the manufacturing cost. Inline engines have a maximum capacity of up to 30 liters.

Passenger cars and automobiles with A, B, and C segments are built with inline engines. Removable liners are usually used in the cylinders of these types of engines. They are made out of metals and resist water.

Their single-row arrangement provides them with a narrow body. It does not need many camshafts. Their smaller body and lesser frontal area assist in reducing the drag and also improves visibility from the cockpit of an airplane.

inline engines

What are V Engines?

 These v engined or the inverted engines were found in aviation. Though the cylinders are aligned to form a v, the angle between them varies from engine to engine. V 12 engines have a perfect primary and a secondary balance.

Due to the style of construction, the height, length, and width reduce. Designing these engines is quite complex, takes more ti,e, and eventually, the manufacturing cost is also expensive.

Compared with all the other 8 cylinder competitors, they are smaller and compact. It supports better aerodynamics due to the low position in the bonnet. The indigenous design and construction reduces the vibrations and also enhances the primary balance.

Though it is high in speed and performance, it has a smoother operation. Since it occupies less space, it is best suited for race cars and sports vehicles. It has two planes in which the cylinders and pistons are aligned in the v position.

v engines

Main Differences Between Inline and V Engines

  1. Inline engines are called straight-line engines due to the layout of their cylinders, and the v engines are known as the inverted engines.
  2. Inline engines cannot perform effectively during vibrations, whereas v engines could.
Difference Between Inline and V Engines


  1. https://www.sae.org/publications/technical-papers/content/2013-01-2002/
  2. https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3136097
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