Both the turbocharged four-cylinder 2.0 TFSI engine, as featured in the A4, and supercharged six-cylinder 3.0 TFSI engine, for the sporty upgrade S4 model, impressed the Ward's editors.
"This year's list embodies how the industry is responding to demands for higher fuel economy and lower emissions without shortchanging performance," said Ward's AutoWorld Editor-in-Chief, Mr Drew Winter."Auto makers are using innovative designs and advanced technology to boost horsepower and torque while downsizing engines and increasing efficiency."
Audi is the first car company to sell 100 per cent of its petrol engines with FSI direct injection technology, starting with model year 2010. The Audi S4 sedan, new for 2010, ushered in a new era of downsizing while enhancing performance and handling over the previous generation 2008 sedan model. Audi engines have been on the Ward's "10 Best Engines" list for six consecutive years and a total of eight times in the decade.
"Audi fuel-efficient powertrain technologies excel at delivering exceptional driving performance with reduced environmental impact," said Mr Johan de Nysschen, President, Audi of America."The well-rounded approach the brand is undertaking will keep Audi in a leading position for the foreseeable future."
To be eligible for the competition, each engine must be available in a regular-production US-specification model on sale no later than first-quarter 2010, in a vehicle priced no more than $54,000, a price cap indexed to the average cost of a new vehicle.
Throughout October and November, six editors of Ward's Automotive Group tested 34 vehicles from 13 manufacturers in their normal driving cycles in metropolitan Detroit. They scored each engine based on power, torque, refinement, technical relevance and comparative data. Each engine was evaluated because it was all-new, offered significant technology upgrades or was a returning winner from last year.
The awards will be presented in Detroit during the North American International Auto Show at a ceremony on January 13, 2010.