Audi will be bringing their cylinder deactivation technology to smaller engines, possibly as soon as 2013.
Cylinder deactivation has been popular for a while now with American carmakers, particularly on big V8 engines. Audi, who call their version of the system "cylinder on demand", have now begun putting it on their own V8's. Stupid name aside, this technology can offer impressive increases in fuel economy, especially when highway cruising. We should see a practical demonstration of this with VW Group's new and highly advanced 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8.
Word is that Audi will now be bringing this same technology to smaller cars, with 2013 A3 slated to use a new VW Group 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine featuring cylinder on demand. This means that the engine will run off of just two cylinders under light load. The system is expected to deliver fuel savings of about 10 percent, or 3.9mpg. While Audi may have gotten into the cylinder deactivation game a bit late, it's good to see that they have firmly committed to the technology, and we're curious to see how it will be implemented across the rest of their line.