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FA20D Subaru Engine


The camshaft timing gear assembly contained advance and retard oil passages, as well as a detent oil passage to make intermediate locking possible. Furthermore, a thin cam timing oil control valve assembly was installed on the front surface side of the timing chain cover to make the variable valve timing mechanism more compact. The cam timing oil control valve assembly operated according to signals from the ECM, controlling the position of the spool valve and supplying engine oil to the advance hydraulic chamber or retard hydraulic chamber of the camshaft timing gear assembly.

To alter cam timing, the spool valve would be activated by the cam timing oil control valve assembly via a signal from the ECM and move to either the right (to advance timing) or the left (to retard timing). Hydraulic pressure in the advance chamber from negative or positive cam torque (for advance or retard, respectively) would apply pressure to the advance/retard hydraulic chamber through the advance/retard check valve. The rotor vane, which was coupled with the camshaft, would then rotate in the advance/retard direction against the rotation of the camshaft timing gear assembly – which was driven by the timing chain – and advance/retard valve timing. Pressed by hydraulic pressure from the oil pump, the detent oil passage would become blocked so that it did not operate.

When the engine was stopped, the spool valve was put into an intermediate locking position on the intake side by spring power, and maximum advance state on the exhaust side, to prepare for the next activation.

Intake and throttle

The intake system for the Toyota ZN6 86 and Subaru Z1 BRZ included a ‘sound creator’, damper and a thin rubber tube to transmit intake pulsations to the cabin. When the intake pulsations reached the sound creator, the damper resonated at certain frequencies. According to Toyota, this design enhanced the engine induction noise heard in the cabin, producing a ‘linear intake sound’ in response to throttle application.

In contrast to a conventional throttle which used accelerator pedal effort to determine throttle angle, the FA20D engine had electronic throttle control which used the ECM to calculate the optimal throttle valve angle and a throttle control motor to control the angle. Furthermore, the electronically controlled throttle regulated idle speed, traction control, stability control and cruise control functions.

Port and direct injection

The FA20D engine had:

  • A direct injection system which included a high-pressure fuel pump, fuel delivery pipe and fuel injector assembly; and,
  • A port injection system which consisted of a fuel suction tube with pump and gauge assembly, fuel pipe sub-assembly and fuel injector assembly.

Based on inputs from sensors, the ECM controlled the injection volume and timing of each type of fuel injector, according to engine load and engine speed, to optimise the fuel:air mixture for engine conditions. According to Toyota, port and direct injection increased performance across the revolution range compared with a port-only injection engine, increasing power by up to 10 kW and torque by up to 20 Nm.

As per the table below, the injection system had the following operating conditions:

  • Cold start: the port injectors provided a homogeneous air:fuel mixture in the combustion chamber, though the mixture around the spark plugs was stratified by compression stroke injection from the direct injectors. Furthermore, ignition timing was retarded to raise exhaust gas temperatures so that the catalytic converter could reach operating temperature more quickly;
  • Low engine speeds: port injection and direct injection for a homogenous air:fuel mixture to stabilise combustion, improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions;
  • Medium engine speeds and loads: direct injection only to utilise the cooling effect of the fuel evaporating as it entered the combustion chamber to increase intake air volume and charging efficiency; and,
  • High engine speeds and loads: port injection and direct injection for high fuel flow volume.

FA20/4U-GSE direct and port injection at various engine speeds and loads
The FA20D engine used a hot-wire, slot-in type air flow meter to measure intake mass – this meter allowed a portion of intake air to flow through the detection area so that the air mass and flow rate could be measured directly. The mass air flow meter also had a built-in intake air temperature sensor.

The FA20D engine had a compression ratio of 12.5:1.

Ignition

The FA20D engine had a direct ignition system whereby an ignition coil with an integrated igniter was used for each cylinder. The spark plug caps, which provided contact to the spark plugs, were integrated with the ignition coil assembly.

The FA20D engine had long-reach, iridium-tipped spark plugs which enabled the thickness of the cylinder head sub-assembly that received the spark plugs to be increased. Furthermore, the water jacket could be extended near the combustion chamber to enhance cooling performance. The triple ground electrode type iridium-tipped spark plugs had 60,000 mile (96,000 km) maintenance intervals.

The FA20D engine had flat type knock control sensors (non-resonant type) attached to the left and right cylinder blocks.

Exhaust and emissions

The FA20D engine had a 4-2-1 exhaust manifold and dual tailpipe outlets. To reduce emissions, the FA20D engine had a returnless fuel system with evaporative emissions control that prevented fuel vapours created in the fuel tank from being released into the atmosphere by catching them in an activated charcoal canister.

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