16 Powerful Types of Engines to Explore [PDF]

In this article, we shall be exploring the different types of engines. We have also provided a PDF download link for the same

Types of  engine

When we hear the word “Engine” that means delivering directly or indirectly Power, to run the system. The term Engine can be understood by taking a simple example, Considering, you going to market for buying a Motorcycle/Car. First thing you will see

  • Which Brand would be good
  • The Price of the Automobile
  • Types of Engine offered and Fuel Mileage
  •  Reliability, Durability
  • Service center and Brand Image.

Moving to Engines, Burning of Fuel how much Power it delivers (Power can be used for moving the vehicles forward, headlights, and more).

types of engines

Types of Engine

  • Internal Combustion Engine
  • External Combustion Engine.
Internal Combustion engine

We can broadly classify engines into two categories those are Internal Combustion Engine and External Combustion Engine.

Internal Combustion Engine: Fuel combustion takes place inside the engine system. For example Motorcycles, Cars, and buses (fuel burns inside the engine system). External Combustion Engine: Fuel combustion takes place outside the engine system. For example Steam Engines, Power Plants (In Turbine blade rotating and with the help of an induction motor produces electricity)

Further, the Engines has been classified into 10 different categories

  • Number of Cylinder Engine
  • Arrangement of Cylinder Engine
  • Valve arrangement 
  • Number of strokes per cycle
  • Methods of Ignition
  • Firing order
  • Types of fuel burn
  • Type of Cooling
  • Reciprocating or Rotary Engine
  • Thermodynamic Cycle Engine
Petrol Engine Types of Engine

Number of Cylinder

  • Single Cylinder Engine
  • Double Cylinder Engine
  • Multi-Cylinder Engine

Single Cylinder Engine

  • The single-cylinder means only one cylinder is used in the engine.  for example: Motorcycle, Scooters

Double Cylinder Engine

  • The double-cylinder means two-cylinder used.

Multi-Cylinder Engine

  • The multi-cylinder means more than 2 cylinders are used. Here it might be 3 cylinders, 4 cylinders, and more.

Arrangement of Cylinder

  • V type Engine
  • W type Engine
  • Inline or Vertical Engine
  • Horizontal Engine
  • Radial Engine
  • Opposed Engine

V and W type

  • Here cylinder is placed at some angle between each other because it prevents the problem of vibration and balancing.
V8 engine

Inline or Vertical

  • The cylinder is arranged or placed in a vertical position.


  • The cylinder is placed or arranged in a horizontal position.


  • This is a reciprocating type of internal combustion engine. Cylinders radiate outward from a central crankcase like the spokes of a wheel.

Opposed Engine

  • The cylinder arranged horizontally opposite to each other. This type of cylinder arrangement can be run smoothly at much higher speeds and gives higher outputs.

Valve arrangement

  • L-head
  • T-head
  • I-head
  • F-head
Types of engine Valve Arrangement

The inlet, exhaust valves are arranged side by side and operated by a single camshaft. The cylinder and combustion chamber forms an inverted “L”.


In I-head the inlet and exhaust valves are located in the cylinder head. A single valve actuates all the valves. These types of engines are used in automobiles.


It is a combination of L-head and I-head engines. One valve is usually an inlet valve which is in the head and the exhaust valve which is in the cylinder block.


It has inlet valves on one side and exhaust valves on another side of the cylinder. Therefore, two camshafts are required to operate them. 

The number of strokes per cycle

2 Stroke

In 2 stroke cycle the engine completes 2 strokes of the piston.

4 Stroke

In 4 strokes cycle the engine completes 4 strokes of the piston

Methods of Ignition

Spark Ignition (SI)

Spark Ignition (A homogenous mixture of air and fuel vapor is supplied to the engine and the combustion is initiated by spark plug)

Compression-Ignition (CI) Engine

Compression-Ignition (Air sucked inside the cylinder is compressed to a higher pressure and temperature, This temperature exceeds the self-ignition temperature of the fuel.) The engine cycle of both SI and CI engines can be completed in 2 strokes or 4 strokes of the piston.

Firing order

Firing order changes from cylinder to cylinder.

  •   Single Cylinder 1  
  •   Double Cylinder 1-2  
  •   Three-Cylinder 1-2-3, 1-3-2  

Types of fuel burn

  • Petrol (The engine works on Petrol fuel such as Motorcycle )
  • Oil or Diesel (engine works on Diesel)
  • Multi-Fuel Engine (Use gasoline or diesel oil for starting the engine and kerosene as there primary fuel)
Engine Exposed

Type of Cooling

Reciprocating or Rotary

  • Reciprocating
  • Rotary Engine

Thermodynamic Cycles

Otto or Constant Volume Cycle 

In this the energy released during the combustion of a fuel occurs at constant volume.

Diesel or Constant Pressure Cycle 

In this the energy released during the combustion of a fuel occurs at constant pressure.

Dual or Limited Pressure Cycle 

In this the energy released by combustion of a fuel partly at constant volume and pressure.

Engine Exposed view

Here’s how a car engine works

Video by Animagraffs


What are the types of Fire Engine

Fire engines come in various types, each designed for specific firefighting tasks. Common types include:

  • Pumper Trucks: Carry water and firefighting equipment.
  • Aerial Trucks: Equipped with ladders or hydraulic platforms for elevated access.
  • Tanker Trucks: Transport large quantities of water to fire scenes.
  • Rescue Trucks: Equipped for technical rescues and hazardous materials incidents.
  • Wildland Fire Engines: Designed for combating wildfires in rural areas.
  • Airport Crash Trucks: Respond to aircraft emergencies at airports.

What are the different types of V8 Engine

Different types of V8 engines include the following types of engine

  • Flat-plane V8: Balanced power delivery, commonly found in high-performance sports cars.
  • Cross-plane V8: Smooth power delivery, used in passenger cars and trucks.
  • Pushrod V8: Compact size, known for low-end torque.
  • Overhead cam (OHC) V8: Higher RPM capabilities, often used in performance vehicles.
  • Turbocharged V8: Enhanced power through forced air compression.
  • Supercharged V8: Exceptional performance with a supercharger for increased power.


In conclusion, there are two types of engine categories namely internal and external combustion. Internal combustion engines are commonly used and have various classifications based on factors such as cylinder number, ignition method, and cooling type. Compression-Ignition engines are a specific type of internal combustion engine that compresses air to ignite fuel. Knowing types of engines is essential for decision-making about vehicle and machinery use.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Comment