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Old 02-10-2007, 09:07 AM   #10
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There are several inherent advantages to the boxer engine layout. One being they are more balanced, especially in flat 6 and flat 12 configurations. Of note, the only engines that are perfectly balanced without counterweights and/or balance shafts are the straight 6, V-12, flat 6 and flat 12. This makes for a smooth running engine without parasitic loss from counterweights and/or balance shafts whch also tends to minimize engine wear and promote durability (this trait can be somewhat questioned in Porsche flat 6 and Ferrari flat 12 motors, but Subaru does VERY well with this).

When you start factoring in the forcres than a reciprocating, internal combusion engine undergoes, the 1G of gravity pulling the engine and its internals downward is a very minscule percentage of the lods that combusion forces place on the engine internals. Also, keep in mind that gravity is pulling on every part of the car and engine in a linear, constant force.

The other main advantage has to do with the motor's mass in the car. By placing the bulk of the mass low in the car, it promotes a lower center of gravity, which helps chassis balance and handling.

It is unfortunate that we are still fighting with IM and RMS failures in these motors after so many years, not to mention what is supposed to be stellar German engineering, however as a group, these motors have proven to be very reliable.

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