Car in bits again...
AO Silver Member
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Hampshire, UK
The BRM H16 was an amazing engine, but the main problem was with the enormous forces on the geared crankshafts - at the time the metallurgical technology just wasn't sufficiently advanced and it has only been in recent years that the H16 has been able to run reliably.
I did wonder about how you might go about making an H8 engine out of two Alfa boxers. But I think that flat-8 project is probably more realistic.
The aviation industry has always had some interesting engine designs, mainly as a result of the need for more POWER!!! The Napier Lion W12 (nothing like the silly Audi/VW stuff) had three inline 4-cylinder engine blocks displaced radially and sharing a common crank. But the ultimate for me was the Rolls-Royce Vulture engine, used on the Avro Manchester, a twin engined precursor to the Lancaster bomber from WW2. The Vulture was an X24 configuration, using two Merlin V12s on a common crankshaft. Very unreliable, by all accounts!
I believe BRM only had success in F1 when they replaced the unreliable H16 with a more conventional V12 engine instead. A fascinating history though!
Alfanauts are GO!!!