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W12 Engine Convertible Cars:
The W12 engine most often seen was developed by Volkswagen Group and is based on two compact VR6 engines combined. The narrow-angle VR6 has two banks of 3 cylinders staggered to produce a small block, high capacity engine (commonly 3.2 litres) which can fit in the engine bay of a small hatchback car such as the Golf or Audi A3 as well as larger saloons. The VR signifies that the engine is between V and inline configurations, the R staring for the German word ‘Reihenmotor’ meaning inline engine. By combining two of these engine blocks to share a common crank shaft a 12 cylinder engine is achieved within a relatively small size. The W12 engine has featured in the Audi A8 and VW Phaeton luxury saloons as well as Bentley saloons, coupes and convertibles. It was also used in the Spyker C12 super cars.
The main benefits of the W12 layout are compact size and the space underneath for a central prop-shaft allowing for a low centre of gravity and straightforward capacity for an all-wheel drive system. Unfortunately large capacity multi-cylinder engines have poor economy and emissions compared to smaller forced induction equivalents so W12 convertible cars are limited to expensive luxury cars and will become still rarer in the future.
Select from these W12 convertibles for more information:
W12 Convertible Car Buyer's Guide
The Convertible Car Magazine Buyer's Guide is a reference for all production convertibles currently available. Here we look at the best W12 powered convertibles on the market. See our News section for information on the latest convertible cars before they reach showrooms.