Why modern cars hide their engine under a plastic huge?

Open the hood of a car was a primary experience for years. Got up a heavy piece of metal and a breath of heat you gave in the face. To you, a multitude of wires, hoses and metal parts surrounding an engine block is clearly visible. In the case of some sports, your engine was so beautiful as his body. Today, it is an experience aseptic: everything that you see in a modern car is a cover of black plastic. why modern cars hide their engine under this huge and unsightly plastic?

What is the role of the plastic covers?

Their function is primarily aesthetic, but also contribute to the acoustic insulation of the car.

The plastic cover that covers your engine today began to become popular during the 90’s. Cars started to become more reliable and refined, and the necessity of opening the hood and getting the hands – on part of the driver – decreased dramatically. The plastic cover was hiding engines are not too much pretty to our eyes, giving the car a more sterile, more clean. Instead of a tangle of metal and plastic curd in the dirt, our eyes saw a plastic cover clean and shiny.

bmw-x1-2016-prueba-66-mdmToday, these plastic lids are present in practically all engines on the market, except for a few exceptions. Gives equal that the engine is a V12 with two turbochargers or a rabid atmospheric V8: we will not see their collectors, the design of your valve cover or the wiring of their plugs, just a block of dark plastic. The main function of these covers is today the acoustic insulation of the engine. In search of a passenger compartment quiet, the car manufacturers don’t want us to hear the engine.

Yes I admit that the plastic covers will prevent the motor from soiling too much.

In direct injection engines, pumps, injectors, high pressure make a noticeable noise, and the turbo will also blow a perfectly audible. This cover – only in some cases – integrates the guiding of the wiring of the spark plugs and in some cases form part of the intake of the engine. But let’s not forget, their primary function is aesthetic. The trademark turn wants to lift up the hood and look at an object aesthetically pleasing. An object that is not want get hand.


Is it a good idea for the engine is clogged?

no, it is Not the best of ideas. In the first place, is a element that is interposed between a propellant that is heated to 100 degrees or more of temperature and air flow that you receive from the outside. Although the cooling of a modern engine is almost perfect, without this cover, the engine respiraría a little better. Another of the problems associated with this cover is its weight. Perhaps only weigh 2 or 3 pounds, but we live in an era in which we turn to solutions of the more pilgrim to to refer to our cars to weight-loss diets.

I don’t care that a diesel three-cylinder is hidden by a piece of plastic, but it bothers me that a V8 Biturbo.

These caps are anchored to the engine with screws or plastic clips, and can break with vibrations of the engine, generating parasitic noise and discomfort. Without a lid, we would not have this problem. However, the main problem with these caps is that we do not see what is happening under the same. Although we can lift them, we will only do this when really there is a problem that we are unable to continue the march. We will not see if any connector is loose, or if there is any loss of liquid under the hood.

opel-kadett-corsa-opc-2So that was what we saw under the hood of an Opel Kadett GSi.

And when we have to remove the cap, we will not know where to look, because I never have done. And very possibly, it’s too late. We can not deny the deterrent effect of these caps the driver in the middle, who prefer to take the car to the workshop rather than try to solve by yourself the problem, by trivial and simple as it is. Something as simple as a recharge of refrigerant or a change of spark plugs becomes in a mandatory visit to the workshop. “don’t go breaking something“, you say.

Some of the worst examples

Look at the the engine of the Mazda RX-8. Instead of having the rotary engine to the air, we find four black boxes. No trace of the mechanical.

tapas-motor-2Lexus is a brand name particularly a fan of the plastic covers. A sea of shiny plastic, greets us at open the hood of this Lexus LS600hL. No one would argue that there is a V8 under.

tapas-motor-mas-2 BMW 760Li from the previous generation he had a very powerful V12 engine with two turbochargers, but nothing I’d tell us if we open the hood.

tapas-motor-1Another case that offends me is the case of the Corvette ZR1 of the previous generation, a huge 6.2 liter V8 supercharged by compressor with a cover of the engine that prevented see a single detail of the mechanics. Do the icing? General Motors cut a trozó hood and installed a window made of methacrylate for we could see this plastic cover.


there is Still hope

In the Audi equipped with engine 2.5 TFSI, we can even see the valve cover of the engine and the connectors from each spark plug. A good insulation is compatible with a mechanics sexy. We want to enjoy with the hood open.

Audi_TT_RS_hperformance_DM_13In the Dodge engine equipped Hellcat a giant compressor silver greets us nothing more to open the hood. If we look a little, we may even be able to enjoy the engine block, painted in an intense orange color.

tapas-motor-5The engine of a Subaru BRZ. There is No plastic cover, only the engine components to the bare. Of course there are a lot of plastics, it is usual in any modern engine. But we can identify each and every component without having to lift a gigantic lid.

tapas-motor-3One last image: so was the engine bay of the Alfa Romeo 147 GTA, who was at the sale until not many years ago. A brilliant V6 cross with their collectors silver as protagonists. So, yes.


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