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Pentastar repeats as one of Ward’s 10 Best Engines

by Bill Cawthon on

For the second consecutive year, The editors of Ward’s Automotive have named Chrysler Group’s Pentastar V-6 as one of 2011’s “10 Best Engines. The Pentastar powerplant is now standard or optional on the Chrysler 200, 300 and Town & Country; Dodge Avenger, Challenger, Charger, Durango, Journey and Caravan; Jeep Grand Cherokee and Wrangler. Ward’s tested the Pentastar in the Chrysler 300 and Jeep Wrangler.

“Every year, Ward’s Automotive recognizes the industry leaders in engine technology,” said Drew Winter, editor at Ward’s Automotive. “Chrysler has successfully demonstrated the breadth of this engine and how it delivers on all fronts including fuel economy, lower emissions and power.”

Though it was one of the few winners is not equipped with direct injection, editors noted the Pentastar returned better fuel economy than a similarly sized direct-injection V-6 in the competition. Editors hit better than 25 miles per gallon. The editors noted the Pentastar delivered “outstanding refinement and power.”

“Since the introduction of the Pentastar V-6 engine just 16 months ago, we have produced more than 900,000 engines for front- and rear- drive passenger cars, minivans and sport utility vehicles,” said Bob Lee, vice president and head of powertrain and electrified propulsion systems engineering, Chrysler group LLC. “We are continuing to look forward at adapting future technologies to the Pentastar V-6 as they become available for even more fuel efficiency and performance.”


Ward’s Ten Best Engines 2011
Engine Test Vehicle(s)
3.6L Pentastar DOHC V-6 Chrysler 300S/Jeep Wrangler
3.0L TFSI Supercharged DOHC V-6 Audi A6
2.0L N20 Turbocharged DOHC I-4 BMW Z4/528i
3.0L N55 Turbocharged DOHC I-6 BMW 335i Coupe
2.0L EcoBoost DOHC I-4 Ford Edge
5.0L DOHC V-8 Ford Mustang Boss 302
2.0L Turbocharged DOHC I-4 Buick Regal GS
1.6L DOHC I-4 Hyundai Accent/Kia Soul
2.0L Skyactiv DOHC I-4 Mazda3
3.5L DOHC V-6 HEV (Hybrid) Infiniti M35h

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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