Crazy Russian gearheads weld together two 4-cylinder engines to create a giant inline 8-cylinder.
For making a tire out of nails to welding the two back ends of a car together, Garage 54 is no stranger to strange ideas. Their latest twisted abomination is an inline 8-cylinder engine--a layout that is exceedingly rare as it’s fairly space inefficient.
What’s even more inefficient is that this isn’t just a purpose-built motor with all 8-cylinders in a row. This engine is actually two old Lada engines placed end to end and then welded together.
Why do this? Just to see if they could? Or is there a deeper reason behind this madness?
Step one is to source an old Lada--not a hard task in the former Soviet Union where Ladas were more common than bread. Step two is to test the base Lada to see how it performs. Zero to sixty-two miles per hour is done in a brisk 21.1 seconds. That’s apparently typical of Ladas, which rarely broke the 100 hp mark even when they were new. Now that they’re all 30+ years old, getting one with even a hint of performance is essentially unheard of.
Not that they ever had any performance to begin with.
However, the benefit of these old Russian cars is that they take a lickin’ and keep on tickin’. Or in this case, they can have the crankshaft pulley of one engine connected to the other’s pressure plate and then have the flywheel welded to create a single massive motor.
Of course, Ladas aren’t the biggest cars, so getting a second engine to fit right next to the first one requires some ingenuity. Garage 54 cuts out a space for the second engine by removing the radiator and most of the bumper between the two headlights and then creates a cradle to hold the second engine with steel bars welded to the original frame.
The final product is somewhat intimidating.
It works, although we have no idea if the second engine will create an actual performance boost. That will be on the next episode, where Garage 54 makes a custom hood with a giant nose and then goes back on the highway to see how fast she goes.
Our guess is: not fast.