Honda engine patent has different sizes for the pistons image

The Japanese automaker has been tipped off by a recent patent filling, with the company apparently working on completely new engine setup involving a variable piston stroke.

The patent filling has been recently discovered in Japan’s patent office database, with the diagrams depicting what appears as a next-generation engine using pistons of different heights. Using this variable piston stroke technology, alongside the already known cylinder deactivation, might help Honda’s engineers come up with an engine with different displacements. The theory claims the engine with four cylinders could sport up to 15 different displacements based on the differing height of each of the four pistons and considering which of the cylinders are in active use. That means the same engine design would become incredibly versatile and Honda could offer different displacements and power levels in a wide range of models.

Having such an engine would be way more flexible than a regular 2.0-liter Honda engine which uses four 500-cc cylinders, giving it a range of four displacements: 500cc, 1000cc, 1500cc, and 2000cc. Coming up with such a neat engine that brings multiple displacement levels by simply varying the height of the pistons could yield crucial savings in terms of research and development costs and time. And the patent hints at the adoption of the variable piston stroke technology into two-, three-, and four-cylinder engines, meaning this could be the future line-up of next generation engines found inside Honda vehicles.