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Unread 02-28-2012, 09:55 PM   #1
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Default Fundamental Automotive Question

So this may seem like a very fundamental question, but its been bothering me for some time now.

Try not to laugh too hard, but here goes.

Why does the tone of the engine while in gear differ from when it is in Neutral/Park?

An example. When I rev my engine to say 3000 RPM in Neutral, it sounds totally different than if I were to rev up to 3000 RPM, in a drive gear.

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Unread 02-28-2012, 10:06 PM   #2
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Because of the load and drag on the engine working compared to no load at all and free wheeling.
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Unread 02-28-2012, 10:10 PM   #3
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So would that also mean that, because there is no load, you theoretically have all the horsepower your engine can produce vs. whp when the engine is under load?
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Unread 02-28-2012, 11:17 PM   #4
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no real change on power. same crank horse power either way. one is going to the wheels another is wasting gas going nowhere.
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Unread 02-29-2012, 12:13 AM   #5
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Their is a real big difference between 3000 RPM in neutral and 3000 RPM in gear.

In neutral the throttle opening and ignition are much less than under load. Also the engine is not straining against the mounts. Also the drive is stationary and not spinning.

At 3000 RPM in gear timing and throttle are much more advanced and that alone increases air intake and exhaust noise. The transmission and rear axle if equipped are now contributing bearing and gear noise as well as engine and transmission mounts are now not in a relaxed position and will transmit more noise and vibration into the chassis.

All contributing to that wonderful driving experience
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Unread 02-29-2012, 12:53 AM   #6
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:drool: I love engine noise.

Thank you for answering my question too!
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