Starting with a 1.3-liter GM 3-cylinder, Viking Aircraft Engines is developing a new 140 hp turbocharged design to compete with the Rotax 915/916 powerplants.
Following their standard procedure of reengineering lightly used auto engines for experimental aircraft, the new Viking is sourced from 2024 Chevy Trax, Trailblazer and Buick Encore vehicles. Currently the program is running on the test stand according to Viking’s Jan Engenfellner.
As a turbo engine suited for cross country flying Jan says the balance shaft 3-cylinder will be best paired with a controllable pitch propeller to take advantage of its altitude capability. Typical of modern auto engine design the GM mill employs direct fuel injection, an integrated exhaust manifold cast into the cylinder head and built-in oil-to-water oil cooler. Egenfellner is expecting a rpm range of 1000 to 5500 rpm from his new offering.
The other Viking news is the 110 hp engine is now out of production and no longer offered by Viking, but service and parts are still supported by them.