Revving up for trophies...
C AR makers are holding their breath for the results of the increasingly prestigious International Engine of the Year award which this time sees 39 all-new powerplants in contention and an astonishing 46 'green' entrants too.
Industry experts are waiting to see if a diesel or one of the new all-electric engines can be crowned the winner for the first time in what is the 14th time the event has been staged.
Last year the 875 cc Fiat TwinAir was the stand-out engine and scooped the lion's share of trophies.
This year's entry list is about as wide ranging as possible. Contenders vary from mighty petrol engines such as McLaren's downsized V8 and BMW's turbocharged 'M' power V8 unit, to the diminutive three-cylinder engine from Ford and the all-electric engines of the Nissan Leaf and Renault Fluence.
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Dean Slavnich, editor of Engine Technology International and co-chairman of the International Engine of the Year Awards, says: "As ever, the judging panel has assessed every new engine to the market in the past 12 months, and we firmly believe that this year's judging has been the toughest ever.
"Last year, Fiat's fabulous little TwinAir scooped four awards, so it will be interesting to see if it can still impress as much in the face of some seriously talented opposition."
With fuel prices being so critical to motorists the small, green and electric powertrains have never been more important to the international automotive market.
The burgeoning 'Green' category this year will see last year's winning Fiat 875cc two-cylinder turbo take on GM's innovative 1.4-litre range extender from the Chevrolet Volt and Opel Ampera and Ford's incredible 999cc, three-cylinder turbo engine is also a top contender for the category.
The 'Performance' engine award always gets a lot of attention and with Ferrari's stunning Ferrari 4.5-litre V8 taking on new units such as McLaren's 3.8 V8 from its MP4-12C supercar and BMW's 4.4 twin turbo V8 that powers the magnificent M5 and M6, competition in this class has never been hotter.
Of the all-new engines, Mazda's impressive 2.2 SkyActive' diesel engine will be hoping that it can take the overall crown.
The results will be revealed on June 13 at Engine Expo 2012 in Stuttgart, Germany.