Hudson had the last new car flathead engine - now it looks like the last ICE

50C8DAN50C8DAN Posts: 2,556Senior Contributor
I saw this article today and although it is about union workers what really got my attention was the comment that by 2022, only 3 years from now the number of new families of internal cumbusti0n engines will drop to zero!  Yes the current designs will carry on for years to come, but we are going to drive electric vehicles whether we like it or not.  GM has said they are concentrating only on electrics, no hybrids (I think that is pretty stupid), Ford has stopped production of all cars except for the Mustang, all SUVs and trucks, and who knows what Chrysler will do.  As noted Hudson introduced the last flathead used in an automobile, the Jet 202, so now it may all come to an end in our lifetime!


  • ken1962ken1962 Posts: 323Member
    Interesting. I think we are repeating 1910 to 1930 in car development. If so it should be 2060 before electrical is common place. The real change will occur once they figure out how to replace 4 wheel suvs and big trucking rigs. When electric is common in the Congo or Uganda then it's won the race 
  • 50C8DAN50C8DAN Posts: 2,556Senior Contributor
    My opinion is that there should have been a jump to NG engines 10 or so years ago. T Boone Pickens tried to get the Obama admin to make the jump to NG in semis.  Cummins even had test engines that were originally diesel made to run on NG.  Lots cleaner than either gas or diesel!  We have a surplus of natural gas in the US.
  • GlowplugGlowplug Posts: 2,297Expert Adviser
    edited September 2019
    My partner and I were ready to pull trigger on NG conversion facility 1993.  Feds were funding school bus and city transport buses at that time.  But, there was an abrupt change of support from Fed/State governments to provide seed monies and candidate fleets.  The local NG supplier took it on and converted their vehicle fleets but the interest went to close to zero around 1995. Too many variables to juggle for us.  Glad we bailed when we did.  BUT this was a real opportunity to create alternative transport fueled vehicles. 
  • bob wardbob ward Posts: 1,329Senior Contributor
    I can't find a reference at the moment but I'm thinking that Ford UK produced a new 4 cylinder car engine in the late 50s.
    Lockyer Valley, Queensland
  • 50C8DAN50C8DAN Posts: 2,556Senior Contributor
    edited September 2019
    The last company to make a flathead in the US I believe was AMC.  Although it was not a new design.
  • 50C8DAN50C8DAN Posts: 2,556Senior Contributor
    Technically I guess as far as flatheads go they are still I believe used on lawn and some power equipment, although most of those have gone to OHV as well, or are still 2 cycle.
  • 50C8DAN50C8DAN Posts: 2,556Senior Contributor
    Here is a good article on last of the last info:

    Interesting that 3 on the tree was available through 1987!
  • cchancelcchancel Posts: 199Member
    Flatheads aren't going extinct just yet:

    Horizontally-opposed, flathead



    This is a new-production, flathead engine for light aircraft. The 6 cylinder version (244 CID) is 125 hp (@3000 RPM) and ~200 ft-lb torque.



    Starting around 5 minutes.

  • 50C8DAN50C8DAN Posts: 2,556Senior Contributor
    This is really pretty cool.  Who would've thunk a modern flathead engine!
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