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GM RACING TECHNOLOGY: ECOTEC

Not since the debut of the GM small-block V-8 in


1955 has an engine created such excitement in the
performance community. The inline four-cylinder
Ecotec is poised to become the next big thing
from GM in high-volume production cars,
high-performance specialty vehicles and
high-horsepower competition applications.
The Ecotec engine has many of the virtues that
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previously propelled the small-block V-8 to
The turbocharged Ecotec four-cylinder
greatness: simplicity, versatility, reliability, innovative
engine that powers GM Racings frontwheel drive sport compact drag racer
design, smoothness and boundless potential. The
produces more than 1,450 horsepower
Ecotec engine family GMs first truly global engine
from 132 ci.
design is a class leader in power, torque and
refinement. With lightweight aluminum construction, four-valve cylinder heads and dual
overhead camshafts, Ecotec has the right stuff to engage a new generation of performance
enthusiasts. As Ecotec production accelerates, the supply of these sophisticated yet affordable
GM four-cylinder engines is growing rapidly.
GM is expanding Ecotecs performance envelope in production applications and showcasing
its potential in competition. GM has developed several high-output production Ecotec
engines: a supercharged 205-horsepower Ecotec in the Saturn Ion Red Line and Cobalt SS
Supercharged, and a turbocharged 210-horsepower version that powers the Saab 9-3.
GM is introducing the Ecotec 2.0-liter Turbo engine in the 2007 Pontiac Solstice GXP,
GMs first engine in North America with direct injection. The Ecotec 2.0-liter Turbo produces
260 horsepower and 260 lb.-ft. of torque (SAE certification pending) making it the most
powerful production engine in the Ecotec family. It is also GMs highest specific output engine
at 2.1 horsepower per cubic inch of displacement.
GM Racing has established Ecotecs performance credentials on the track by setting speed
records on the Bonneville Salt Flats with race-prepared turbocharged Ecotec engines and
winning championships in NHRA and NDRA front-wheel drive sport compact drag racing
classes with turbocharged Ecotec engines that produce more than 1,450 horsepower.
Race-prepared versions of the Ecotec engine propelled Vauxhall to four consecutive titles
in the British Touring Car Championship.
GM Performance Parts offers a supercharged Ecotec crate engine to meet the needs of sport
compact enthusiasts and street rodders. Competition-proven Ecotec components developed
by GM Racing are available through GM dealers and aftermarket suppliers. In short, the
pieces are now in place for Ecotec to star in the sequel to the small-block V-8s remarkable
success story.

Designed for efficiency and performance


The Ecotec engine, GMs first truly global
powerplant, was designed and developed by an
international team of 230 engineers and technicians
that included personnel from Opels International
Technical Development Center in Rsselsheim,
Germany; GM Powertrain in Pontiac, Mich.; and
Saab in Trollhttan, Sweden. All of the engine
components were modeled in three dimensions
using GMs advanced computer-aided design
software. The Ecotec is manufactured in modern
GM Powertrain facilities in Tonawanda, N.Y., Spring
Hill, Tenn., and Kaiserslautern, Germany.
Ecotecs architecture offers tremendous versatility.
Introduced in 2000, the Ecotec now powers 16
GM vehicles worldwide, including Saturn, Pontiac,
Chevrolet, Saab, Opel and Vauxhall models. It is
produced in 1.8-, 2.0-, 2.2- and 2.4-liter versions.
Ecotec engines are available with naturally
aspirated, supercharged and turbocharged induction
systems; power ratings range from 140 to 260
horsepower. Although each engine has different
specifications, all share the Ecotec familys basic
architecture.
In all-out racing trim, the Ecotec delivers prodigious
horsepower. The turbocharged Ecotec engines that
propelled a modified Saturn Ion Red Line to a
212.684-mph speed record on the Bonneville
Salt Flats and a Cobalt SS Speedster to 243 mph
produced more than 700 horsepower under
sustained full-throttle operation. GM Racings pro
front-wheel drive entry in the NHRA Summit Sport
Compact Drag Racing Series sprints the quarter-mile
in 7.1 seconds with its 1,450-horsepower raceprepared turbocharged Ecotec engines.
With the GM Ecotec global powerplant, were
producing 1,450 horsepower, and many of the
engine components are production parts, said
Carmen Smith, GM Racing sport compact drag
racing program manager. Were using a production
block, production main bearing girdle, production
cylinder head, a production oiling system and a
production drive chain. Its simply amazing what
we can do with this basic engine package.

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A 2.0-liter turbocharged and intercooled
Ecotec engine propelled GM Performance
Divisions Cobalt SS Speedster to 243 mph
on the Bonneville Salt Flats. Ecotec engines
also powered a streamliner and a vintage
roadster at the speed trials, demonstrating
the versatility of GMs world-class fourcylinder engine.

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The versatile Ecotec engine family GMs
first truly global engine design is a class
leader in power, torque and refinement. Its
performance attributes include lightweight
aluminum construction, a robust block,
four-valve cylinder heads and dual overhead
camshafts.

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GM Racings record-setting Ecotec engines

All Ecotec blocks share a rigid structure that


retain the production four-valve cylinder
head design. Dual overhead camshafts and
emulates a classic racing engine, with a one-piece
production roller finger follower rocker
bottom end casting that incorporates five main
arms operate the matched pairs of intake
bearing caps and mounts a cast-aluminum oil pan.
and exhaust valves.
The Ecotec 2.0-liter Turbo that powers the 2007
Pontiac Solstice GXP uses a stronger Gen II Ecotec engine block, which was developed with
input from racing experience to support increased horsepower and torque. The cylinder block
bulkheads the areas where the main bearing caps are attached and the bore walls are
enlarged for strength. This architecture is shared with the 2.4-liter Ecotec engine that debuted
in the Pontiac Solstice roadster.
The Ecotec cylinder head takes breathing to the next level with dual overhead camshafts and
four valves per cylinder. Ecotecs spark plugs are centrally located in pent-roof combustion
chambers to provide fast, efficient combustion with the shortest possible flame travel.

Technology transfer
Lessons learned in the NHRA and NDRA sport compact drag racing series were applied to
the production Saturn Ion Red Lines and Cobalt SSs supercharged Ecotec engines to improve
durability. Upgraded components include sodium-filled exhaust valves, a forged-steel
crankshaft, forged connecting rods, heavy-duty pistons, a block-mounted oil cooler and
a high-capacity seven-quart sump.
GM Racing is filling the parts pipeline with factory-engineered components for performance
enthusiasts. GM Performance Parts has released an over-the-counter Ecotec crate engine that
is based on the supercharged Saturn Ion Red Line/Cobalt SS engine. This addition to GMs crate
motor portfolio makes it possible to install an Ecotec in a sport compact coupe or a high-tech
street rod. Heavy-duty Ecotec components developed by GM Racing are also available through
GM Performance Parts. These include a race-prepared block, ported cylinder head, billet steel
crankshaft, copper head gasket, aluminum intake manifold and racing camshafts.
GM Racing has also published the GM Sport Compact Performance Build Book. This publication
provides information on modifying and preparing the Ecotec engine, Hydra-Matic 4T65
transmission and the Cobalt Phase5 race car for competition in sport compact classes. The
book is available at the GM Tuner Tour and on-line at www.gmtunersource.com. Customers
can also order books from GM Performance Parts dealers as part number 88958646.
Just as the legendary GM small-block V-8 became the cornerstone of Americas speed
equipment and racing industries, GMs Ecotec engine promises to become the small-block
of four-cylinder engines.
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