Saab Camless Engine

The future of the internal combustion engine is Camless!Camless Saab Engine

Within Koenigsegg there’s a small company called Freevalve (just renamed from Cargine). The Freevalve engine gets rid of the camshaft and the throttle body, replacing it with pneumatic actuators on top of each cylinder. This is something that has also been toyed with for a long time with electromagnetic valve openers, some ships use them now. That means the concept is proven, but now it’s about reducing that scale to something smaller and more usable than a huge ship.

What that does is give completely independent control over each cylinder and each valve. If you have four valves, sometimes it only opens two. You can’t do that with a regular camshaft, since the lobes are set to open all the valves. In order to get that sort of variability that Freevalve has, you’d have to totally switch cams. Freevalve can also shut down one cylinder, two cylinders, three cylinders, etc. It has that square cam profile that makes engineers all wet in the trousers

In a brief ride in the Saab 9-5 that Freevalve is using to develop the new power plant, what I can say is that it felt exactly like a car, which is truly a high compliment for any technology that claims to do what this does. At lower revs, the engine feels a bit diesely, but it smooths out as you go along. The tech works, what is still nascent is the engine mapping software. They need to perfect it, but they have time. This was also their Generation V technology, and Generation VI is on the horizon.

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