Fiat is widely recognized for its achievements in several automotive-related technologies. The company is credited as the creator of the common rail diesel engine, which is employed by virtually all automakers now, and they are credited with the automated manual transmission, also in widespread usage. The company says its newest crowning achievement – the MultiAir induction technology – will make its way here to the States with the release of the Fiat 500 and the company believes that the technology will prove so valuable that all automakers will once again follow its lead.
According to Fiat, a million of its engine will utilize MultiAir technology within the next three years, but they don't see the application of the technology ending there. As Fiat vice president of communication Richard Gadeselli said, "Eventually all gasoline engines will have this."
Initial testing has shown that the MultiAir technology can boost power by 10 percent, increase low-end torque by 15 percent and improve fuel economy at the same time. The technology could be applied to diesel engines and larger gasoline engines. Currently, Fiat is employing the technology on 4-cylinder engines. However, the company notes that gains would be even larger on bigger engines and the system is fully compatible with turbocharging. Fiat claims MultiAir can give an efficiency boost of up to 25 percent on some vehicles.
Though Honda is credited with variable valve timing, Fiat has been working on the MultiAir setup for 15 years. MultiAir takes variable valve timing to new heights and the company is so confident in the design, they are willing to bet virtually everything on it.
[Source: Ward's Auto]