Friday, March 25, 2022

Brazilian Chevrolet S10 with underbody CNG kit and roof-mounted spare wheel

Compressed Natural Gas is the most common gaseous fuel for street-legal motor vehicles in Brazil, and Liquid Petroleum Gas is actually outlawed for such use, and for some it's easier to retain the stock cargo space fitting the CNG cylinders under the body. This is quite usual for body-on-frame trucks such as the Chevrolet S10, with the cylinders installed where the spare wheel is originally located, yet only smaller ones would fit there. Usually the CNG cylinders are placed transversely, yet once in a while I see some with them mounted longitudinally. Such position would be more favorable for a vehicle with a longer wheelbase where the cylinders could be saddle-mounted in parallel with the frame rails, which wouldn't be much rocket-science considering how the stock fuel tank is positioned in parallel to the driver's side frame rail.

Saturday, March 05, 2022

3 reasons why it could make sense to use a copy of the Suzuki F10A engine in some versions of the Opel Corsa B

One of the most iconic cars of the '90s, the Opel Corsa B was available with at least one variation of the Family 1 engine on each market where it was sold, even in Brazil where the 1.0L was offered before its European counterpart offered a 3-cylinder engine within that very same displacement. So it was quite predictable even the version assembled in China from CKD kits from '93 to '96 rebadged as Jilin Jiangbei Meilu JJ7090 would retain some other Family 1 engine with a larger displacement, in that case the 1.2L which had been the base engine in Europe until the '97 model-year. It actually does intrigue me some random Chinese copy of the Suzuki F10A engine had not been fitted to the Chinese-assembled units. At least 3 factors could be favorable to the Suzuki F10A engine copies:

1 - easy availability: many Chinese factories still make copies of the Suzuki F10A engine, which used to be widespread in the early days of entry-level car manufacturing in China and retain a foothold in the light-duty commercial vehicle market;

2 - torque output not much worse than the Brazilian 1.0L engine: even when Chinese copies of the Suzuki F10A engine resorted to carburettors, the torque rating was roughly the same as the Brazilian 1.0L engine which resorted to a single-point electronic fuel injection at the same time;

3 - ease to overcome the more stringent rules enforced against the Guandong-based CKD assembly operations: with such an essential component being sourced inside China, qualifying for a lower taxation would remain possible for a longer time.