How V8 engine works

How V8 engine works

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Hello Guys today I will explain what is V8 engine and how it works. V8 engine get their names from having a cylinder block in shape of a ?V?. With four-cylinder in one side and 4 in another. All 8 pistons ride on the same crankshaft. The piston are arranged opposite to each other like 1 and 2 are opposite to each other.


The setup is 90 layout because for every 90 rotation of crankshaft a cylinder will be fired. The firing order will be 1?8?4?3?6?5?7?2. V8 is just set 4 of these 2 cylinder devices matched together.


V8 works similar to normal inline 4 cylinder engine. V8 engine also has 4 strokes Intake, Compression, Power and exhaust, i.e 4 strokes per cylinder means 32 strokes in total. In inline 4 cylinder engine only one cylinder fires in one crankshaft rotation, but in V8 there is a cylinder firing at every 90 rotation which means 2 cylinder fire in one crankshaft rotation. This means more smooth power delivery compared to inline 4.

To know how petrol or diesel engine works click here, and to know how valves work click here. The difference in inline engine and a V engine is you need to balance the engine and maintain a center of gravity. We balance the engine by adding weight to crankshaft. There is 2 piston in every one crankshaft bearing.

When one piston reaches top the counter balance is directly opposite to it and balances the force, and as it rotates another 90 it balance other piston connected to it. With another 90 rotation the first piston has reached the bottom and the counter weight balance the downward force with an upward force, it is repeated for the second piston. The weights are balance the rocking movement from the pistons movement.

Types of Crankshaft

  • Cross-Plane Crankshaft


On a cross-plane crank, the connection point on the crankshaft is offset 90, means each piston operates on 2 plane.

  • Flat-Plane Crankshaft


On a flat-plane crank, the connection point on the crankshaft is offset 180, means each piston operates on a single plane.


  • They produce more power
  • Compact for a large engine with big displacement
  • Very little vibration
  • Higher center of gravity compared to some engines


  • They are complex, because they need two seprate cylinder heads compared to an inline enigne which requires only one
  • Heavier than smaller style engine

V8 are widely used engines in perfromance cars, they are more reliable when compared to inline engines which take up more space for these number of cylinders. I am going to soon write about all engine types currently used.

Originally published at ReviewStories.


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