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Subaru six-cylinder engines

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Subaru six-cylinder engines are a series of flat-6 engines manufactured by Subaru, a division of Fuji Heavy Industries, made in three distinct generations. The ER27, derived from the Subaru EA first-generation flat-4, was used as the sole engine option in the premium model 1988–91 Subaru Alcyone VX (XT6 in the United States). The EG33, derived from the Subaru EJ second-generation flat-4, was used exclusively in the successor Subaru Alcyone SVX, again as its sole engine option, sold from 1991–96. The EZ series, consisting of the EZ30 and EZ36 models, was designed to be almost as compact as the EJ25 flat-4. The EZ30/36 were the first Subaru six-cylinder engines available outside the sport coupes, used as the uplevel option for Subaru Legacy (2002–19) and Outback/Lancaster (2001–19) as well as the sole option in the Subaru Tribeca (2006–14).


Subaru ER27
Subaru ER27 (Alcyone VX, XT6).jpg
Configurationflat-6 petrol engine
Displacement2.7 L: 2,672 cc (163.1 cu in)
Cylinder bore92 mm
Piston stroke67 mm
Block materialaluminium
Head materialaluminium
Compression ratio9.5:1
Fuel typePetrol/gasoline
Power output112 kW (150 hp; 152 PS) @5200 RPM[1]
Torque output211 N⋅m (156 lb⋅ft) @4000 RPM[1]
Subaru Alcyone VX
Subaru Alcyone VX

Created as a refined luxury engine with improved power over the EA82T, Subaru introduced the ER27 engine in November 1985 for the Subaru ACX-II concept car, shown at the Tokyo Motor Show and billed as the 'concept car of the near future.'[2] The concept went into production as the Subaru Alcyone VX (Subaru XT6 in North America) in August 1987,[3] the exclusive application for the ER27.

When the ER27 was introduced, it was the only water-cooled flat-6 automobile engine on the market.[4] The ER27 designation was the first time Subaru incorporated the engine's displacement into the engine designation and all subsequent engine codes have retained this nomenclature.


Like the EA series engines, the ER27 engine featured 2-valve cylinder heads with hydraulic lash adjusters and the ER27 and EA engines shared the same bore, stroke, and spacing. While recognised as bearing many similarities to the Subaru EA82 engine, there are numerous differences in design between the two engines and a large portion of parts are unique to the ER27. For instance, the oil and water pumps are unique to the ER27,[5][6] sharing similar bolt patterns and design to the EA82,[7][8] but being of a higher flow in both cases.[9]

The intake manifold uses a two piece design with a lower section bolting to the heads containing the coolant bridge, injectors and various vacuum lines.[10] The upper intake manifold then bolts to the lower section and is unlike the EA82 or EJ22 "spider" manifold designs in that there is no central plenum chamber.[11]

The valve timing system is belt-drive using two individual timing belts, curiously one belt uses a spring tensioner (like the EA82) whilst the other uses a hydraulic tensioner (like the EJ22).[12]

Both JDM and USDM versions of the ER27 used multi-point electronic fuel injection. In North America, the ER27 was slightly derated to 145 hp (108 kW; 147 PS) at 5,200 RPM and 156 ft⋅lb (212 N⋅m) at 4,000 RPM.[4]


Subaru EG33
Configurationflat-6 petrol engine
Displacement3.3 L: 3,318 cc (202.5 cu in)
Cylinder bore96.9 mm
Piston stroke75 mm
Block materialaluminium, cast-iron cylinder liners
Head materialaluminium
Compression ratio10.0:1
Fuel typePetrol/gasoline
Power output179 kW (240 hp; 243 PS) @6000 RPM[1]
Torque output309 N⋅m (228 lb⋅ft) @4000 RPM[1]
  • EZ30
  • EZ36
Subaru Alcyone SVX
Subaru Alcyone SVX

Similar to how the six-cylinder ER27 is related to the earlier four-cylinder EA82, the EG33 shared bore and stroke dimensions with the contemporary four-cylinder EJ22.[1] The EG33 was exclusively fitted to the Alcyone SVX, where it was paired with the 4EAT automatic transmission in both front- and all-wheel-drive configurations.[13]

After the SVX was discontinued, Subaru did not offer a six-cylinder engine until the EZ30 was developed and released for the Subaru Outback.


Unlike the SOHC EJ22 it shared some dimensions with, the EG33 featured dual overhead cams; both engines used four valves per cylinder.[14] The EG33 used a single toothed timing belt which drove the exhaust camshafts on each bank in addition to the water pump (mounted on the right bank); the intake camshaft on each cylinder bank was driven in turn by a set of helical gears via the belt-driven exhaust camshaft.[15][16][17]

At the time, the EG33 was the largest naturally-aspirated engine that Subaru had ever made for regular production;[1][18] in the 1990s, Subaru branded the Subaru 1235, a 3.5 L flat-12 engine designed by Carlo Chiti and Motori Moderni, intended for Formula 1 racing, although Christian von Koenigsegg reportedly was later interested in the engine for his supercar.[19]

EZ30 and EZ36

Subaru EZ engine
SUBARU EZ36 001.jpg
  • 2001–2009 (EZ30)
  • 2007–2019 (EZ36)
Configurationflat-6 petrol engine
  • 3.0 L (EZ30): 2,999 cc (183.0 cu in)
  • 3.6 L (EZ36): 3,629 cc (221.5 cu in)
Cylinder bore
  • 89.2 mm (EZ30)
  • 92 mm (EZ36)
Piston stroke
  • 80 mm (EZ30)
  • 91 mm (EZ36)
Block materialaluminium
Head materialaluminium
Compression ratio
  • 10.7:1 (EZ30)
  • 10.5:1 (EZ36)
Fuel typePetrol/gasoline
Power output
  • 162 kW (217 hp; 220 PS) @6000 RPM (EZ30)[20]
  • 180 kW (240 hp; 240 PS) @6600 RPM (EZ30 II)[21]
  • 191 kW; 260 PS (256 hp) @6000 RPM (EZ36)[22][23]
Torque output
  • 289 N⋅m (213 lb⋅ft) @4400 RPM (EZ30)[20]
  • 297 N⋅m (219 lb⋅ft) @4200 RPM (EZ30 II)[24]
  • 335 N⋅m (247 lb⋅ft) @4400 RPM (EZ36)[22][23]
Subaru Outback H6-3.0 (BH)
Subaru Outback H6-3.0 (BH)

In the United States, the EZ30 was introduced in the Outback H6-3.0 in November 2000 for the 2001 model year.[25][26] In Japan, the EZ30 was introduced in the equivalent Lancaster 6 wagon in May 2000.[27] A twin-turbo version of the EZ30 was produced for the Subaru B11S concept car, unveiled at Geneva in 2003.[28] The EZ30 was refreshed in 2003, and when the Tribeca was introduced for the 2006 model year in January 2005, the EZ30 II was the sole engine option.[29]

The EZ36 was introduced with the restyled Tribeca for the 2008 model year,[30] and replaced the 3.0 L EZ30 in the Legacy and Outback starting in 2009 for the 2010 model year.[31][32]

Starting with the 2020 model year, the six-cylinder EZ36 was dropped as the uplevel engine option for Subaru Legacy and Outback automobiles and instead the premium engine offered was the turbocharged four-cylinder FA24F, which was previously introduced for the 2019 model year as the sole engine option for the Subaru Ascent, the successor to the Tribeca.

EZ series application
Engine Legacy / Outback Tribeca Power Torque
EZ30D mk I 2000–04 Outback H6 N/A 162 kW
217 hp; 220 PS
@ 6,000 RPM[20]
289 N⋅m
213 lb⋅ft
@ 4,400 RPM[20]
2000–03 Lancaster 6
2002–03 GT30
2002–03 RS30
EZ30 Turbo [a] 294 kW
394 hp; 400 PS
@ 6,400 RPM[28]
550 N⋅m
410 lb⋅ft
@ 3,600 RPM[b][28]
EZ30D mk II[c] 2004–09 3.0R 2006–07 (all) 180 kW
240 hp; 240 PS
@ 6,600 RPM[21][33]
297 N⋅m
219 lb⋅ft
@ 4,200 RPM[33][34]
EZ36D 2010–19 3.6R 2008–14 (all) 191 kW; 260 PS
256 hp
@ 6,000 RPM[23]
335 N⋅m
247 lb⋅ft
@ 4,400 RPM[23]
  1. ^ Fitted to 2003 concept Subaru B11S only, never produced in volume.
  2. ^ Torque peak between 3,600 and 4,800 RPM.
  3. ^ Sometimes misidentified as "EZ30R". Subaru never designated an engine with this code. Revisions include the addition of variable valve timing (intake) and three exhaust ports per cylinder head.


EZ30D mk I

The design of the EZ30 is credited to Noriaki Sekine.[35] Unlike prior Subaru flat-6 designs, the EZ30 has a significantly smaller bore pitch (the distance between adjacent cylinder centerlines on each bank of the engine block) than the contemporary flat-4 EJ-series. The bore pitch of the EZ30 is 98.4 mm (3.87 in),[36] compared to a bore pitch of 113 mm (4.4 in) in the EJ series.[37][38] The EZ30 also used a timing chain to drive the camshaft, while the earlier flat-4 EJ series uses a timing belt instead. These changes resulted in a more compact block; the external dimensions of the EZ30 are similar to the EJ25 four-cylinder engine, with length increasing by less than 1 inch (2.5 cm),[35] allowing for easier fitment in existing vehicles.[39][40]

In addition, the EZ30 was equipped with the Subaru Active Valve Control System (AVCS) for variable valve timing on the intake cam. A butterfly valve in the intake manifold opened at higher engine speeds, shortening the intake length and providing a passive supercharging effect through resonance.[20] The exhaust was also equipped with a valve which opened at high backpressure, increasing the effective muffler volume.[25]

In North America, the EZ30 was derated slightly to 158 kW; 215 PS (212 hp) and 280 N⋅m (210 lb⋅ft).[41]

EZ30D mk II

Cutaway of switching tappet for Subaru AVLS fitted to EZ30D mk II
Cutaway of switching tappet for Subaru AVLS fitted to EZ30D mk II

For the 2004 model year, the EZ30 was revised to add the Subaru active valve lift system to the intake cam, providing both variable valve timing and lift for the intake valves, which resulted in increased power, torque, and economy.[33][42] The cylinder heads for the EZ30D mk II were also revised to include three exhaust ports per head[43] instead of the single exhaust port used in the original EZ30D mk I, which gathered the exhaust from each cylinder bank into a single port.[44][41] Other detail improvements included a new block casting and a reduction in overall weight by 8.91 kg (19.6 lb), achieved through the use of hollow-journal camshafts, reducing the number of bolts in the timing chain cover, and switching to a plastic intake manifold.[41]


Compared to the EZ30, the EZ36 has larger bore and stroke; the EZ36 uses slightly thinner iron cylinder sleeves to increase bore, and uses asymmetric connecting rods to increase stroke. A change to the cam drive resulted in an engine that was slightly longer than the preceding EZ30 by 0.83 in (21 mm), but maintained the same width.[45] A revised cooling system and variable valve timing (AVCS was now fitted to both intake and exhaust valves) allowed the EZ36 to run on regular unleaded fuel, instead of the premium unleaded required by the EZ30.[42][45]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Knowling, Michael (5 May 2006). "The Subaru Six-Cylinder Engine Guide". Autospeed. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  2. ^ Dole, Charles E. (August 18, 1987). "DO DREAM CARS REALLY COME TRUE? 'Cars of the future' help automobile manufacturers test public opinion as well as new engineering concepts". Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved 21 July 2019.
  3. ^ Subaru Corporation: Fact Book 2016 (PDF) (Report). Corporate Communications Department, Subaru Corporation. 2016. p. 41. Retrieved 21 July 2019.
  4. ^ a b Kucinski, Leonard (February 27, 1988). "The Sporty Subaru XT6 is a Car for All Seasons: Road Test". The Morning Call. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
  5. ^ "Oil Pump & Filter, 2700CC". Subaru Parts. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  6. ^ "Water Pump. Cooling system, 2700CC". Subaru Parts. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  7. ^ "Oil Pump & Filter, 1800CC". Subaru Parts. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  8. ^ "Water Pump. Cooling system, 1800CC". Subaru Parts. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  9. ^ "Oil Pump & Water Pump differences EA82->ER27". March 16, 2010. Retrieved 2011-05-06.
  10. ^ "Intake Manifold, 2700CC". Subaru Parts. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  11. ^ "Intake Manifold, 1800CC". Subaru Parts. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  12. ^ "Camshaft & Timing Belt, 2700CC". Subaru Parts. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  13. ^ "Specifications: Subaru SVX 1992" (PDF). Subaru. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  14. ^ Schuon, Marshall (September 1991). "With Bells and Whistles, It's Subaru!". The New York Times. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  15. ^ "Camshaft & Timing Belt. Belt & Sprocket". Subaru Parts. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  16. ^ Johnson, Phillip. "Subaru EG33 Conversion". Canard Aviation. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  17. ^ "Engine". Subaru SVX 1992 Technical Manual (PDF) (Report). Subaru Corporation. Retrieved 22 July 2019.
  18. ^ Fitzgerald, Craig (October 19, 2013). "Sports Car Face Plant: Subaru SVX (1991 – 1997)". motor1. Retrieved 22 July 2019.
  19. ^ Orlove, Raphael (1 January 2017). "How Koenigsegg Nearly Built Subaru's Flat-12 F1 Engine". Jalopnik. Retrieved 22 July 2019.
  20. ^ a b c d e "Subaru Legacy: Engines". Subaru. Archived from the original on July 9, 2001.
  21. ^ a b "Fuji Heavy Industries Will Unveil New Legacy and Outback at the 60th Frankfurt International Motor Show" (Press release). Fuji Heavy Industries, Ltd. August 8, 2003. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  22. ^ a b Pope, Byron (June 4, 2007). "Subaru Tribeca More Mainstream, Powerful". Wards Auto. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
  23. ^ a b c d "Subaru Introduces All-New Outback at New York International Auto Show" (Press release). Subaru Corporation. April 9, 2009. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  24. ^ "The Subaru B9 Tribeca Makes its World Premiere at the 2005 North American International Auto Show" (Press release). Subaru Global Media. January 11, 2005. Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  25. ^ a b Spitz, Joe. "Subaru 2001 Outback information, options, prices, colors, specs, history, links". Retrieved 24 July 2019.
  26. ^ Knoll, Bob (February 25, 2001). "Subaru Outback H6-3.0 L. L. Bean Edition; A Melting Pot With all-Wheel Drive". The New York Times.
  27. ^ "Subaru Introduces the New Legacy Series in Japan" (Press release). Subaru Global Media. May 22, 2001. Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  28. ^ a b c "B11S: Specifications" (Press release). Subaru Corporation. March 2003. Archived from the original on 16 April 2003. Retrieved 31 May 2017.
  29. ^ "The Subaru B9 Tribeca Makes its World Premiere at the 2005 North American International Auto Show" (Press release). Subaru Global Media. January 11, 2005. Retrieved 22 July 2019.
  30. ^ Swan, Tony (October 1, 2007). "2008 Subaru Tribeca Limited". Car and Driver. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  31. ^ Swan, Tony (August 24, 2009). "2010 Subaru Outback 3.6R". Car and Driver. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  32. ^ Gall, Jared (July 22, 2011). "2010 Subaru Legacy 3.6R Limited". Car and Driver. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  33. ^ a b c "Outback 3.0R a new Subaru star" (Press release). Subaru of Australia. October 16, 2003. Archived from the original on January 6, 2004.
  34. ^ "Exhibition outlines of the Mondial de l'Automobile 2004 (Paris Motor Show)" (Press release). Subaru Global Media. August 20, 2004. Retrieved 23 July 2019.
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External links

This page was last edited on 17 December 2019, at 22:23
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