Some engines are famous. They get all the love, all the glory, all the medals. They have chrome inlet pipes and their own stands at auto shows. And some of them are not. They toil away for many hundreds of thousands of miles, unappreciated, but still pretty great.

When I talk about underrated engines, I'm not necessarily talking about engines that had more power than advertised, though you can include that. I'm talking about engines that you loved, that had great qualities, that nobody seemed to notice. If the engine was a person, this one would be the strong, silent type.


You never forget your first love. My first love was the Honda K24A4, the little 2.4-liter four-cylinder that powered my first car, a 2003 Honda Accord that already had about 60,000 miles on the clock when I first drove it. It was nothing really special on paper, with 160 horses and 160 torques, but to me it was underrated. It made a great noise, pulled well at the top, and got well into the 30s in MPG on the highway. And it drove forever without complaint. To some it was a boring four-cylinder in a Japanese family sedan, but I loved it.

Which engine do you think is unappreciated? Let us know below in the comments!

Photo credit: Luke Jones

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