Say hello to your car’s Ollie Williams: The twin-turbo V6 available in the 2014 Cadillac CTS-V and XTS Vsport later this year will use an onboard “weather station” to detect weather conditions and make adjustments to the engine for better performance.
According to the press release from General Motors, the engine is equipped with a set of sensors that monitor air pressure, intake humidity and throttle intake temperature. They continuously send data to the engine’s wastegate and compressor bypass control system to make the most of the engine.
General Motors Twin-Turbo Engine Assistant Chief Engineer Richard Bartlett said, “Just as a meteorologist uses high-tech sensors to detect barometric pressure, humidity, air flow and temperature, our system can detect these conditions and modify engine performance and efficiency accordingly. In the same way the tools for meteorology have become more precise over the years, so have the technologies for monitoring engine operation.”
So, when your Caddy’s internal Ollie Williams is saying, “IT’S GON’ RAIN!” the engine adjusts combustion spark and cam timing to make the most of engine efficiency and performance, according to the release. Other ways the engine can adjust to varying conditions:
One of the conditions monitored by the Twin-Turbo V-6’s sensor set is compressor surge, an air flow phenomena leading to flow reversal that can limit power output and increase unwanted noise. To reduce surge, the system sensors continually measure air pressure in the compressor, and optimize the wastegate position to produce maximum power and eliminate unwanted noise. The wastegate regulates the pressure at which exhaust gases pass to the turbine by opening or closing a vent to the exterior.
“Co-surge” is another phenomenon unique to twin-turbo engines that results when an air flow imbalance exists between competing compressors, leading one compressor to surge. Co-surge is most common in high altitudes, where low barometric pressure can more adversely affect vehicle performance.
Compressor air flow sensors allow the Twin-Turbo V-6 to correct air imbalances by repositioning a pair of vacuum-actuated wastegates on each turbocharger. This process allows the exhaust to bypass the turbocharger’s turbine wheel and merge into the exhaust stream, allowing for the ideal turbine speed throughout the rpm band.
During spirited driving, compressed air temperature can exceed 265 degrees Fahrenheit. Cadillac’s onboard weather station detects temperature conditions and a unique charge air cooling system reduces the temperature by more than 130 degrees, increasing the air density to provide maximum power and performance.
The engine will become available on the CTS-V and XTS Vsport this fall, GM says.