Demands for decreased environmental impact from vehicles are resulting in a strong push for decreased engine oil, fuel consumption and weight. New machining and coating technologies have offered ways to attack these problems. Engine oil and fuel consumption are to a great extent controlled by the topography of the cylinder liner surface and it is therefore important to optimise this surface. Recent engine tests have shown a reduction in oil consumption when using cylinder liners with a smoother finish than that given by the current plateau honing. However, engine manufacturers are hesitant to introduce smoother liner surfaces because of fears of severe wear and scuffing. There is also the possibility that smoother liner surfaces may be more sensitive to the choice of piston ring finishes. This paper therefore seeks to investigate the functional performance and resistance to wear of these smooth cylinder liners and the mating top ring surfaces.

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