Review: Volvo Penta D3-220 marine diesel

By: Tim van Duyl

Presented by
  • Trade-A-Boat

We review and rate a Volvo Penta D3-220 marine diesel engine on the back of a new Whittley CR 2600 Cruiser.

The crew head to East Gippsland in Victoria and spent time on a brand new Whittley CR 2600 Cruiser. Fitted with a Volvo Penta D3-220 marine diesel, the Whittley Cruiser gave an excellent account of itself, with the new-tech marine engine being a particular stand-out.

 

Volvo Penta D3-220 marine diesel

Volvo Penta D3-220 marine diesel engine

The Volvo Penta D3-220 is a turbocharged inline four-stroke, five-cylinder common-rail diesel displacing 2.4 litres. It is rated to 220hp at its maximum 4000rpm and according to Volvo makes as much as 200hp as early as 3100rpm. A motor plus Volvo Penta DPS leg and Duoprop weighs from 353kg and – uncommonly for marine diesels – it’s an aluminium block helping achieve that low weight.

It uses piezoelectric injectors with fuel pressures as high as 1800 bar. This allows the engine management to inject fuel at different parts of the stroke cycle, reducing vibration and enhancing economy and lowering emissions.

It’s not the smoothest in and out of gear but does not vibrate or shake the hull. The propping could have been a touch lower as the Whittley 2600 Cruiser took longer than expected to make it to its peak 4000rpm, with only three on board and a light load. Sacrificing some top speed for acceleration would be welcome – and likely needed when heavily loaded.

Electronic Vessel Control and a system using CANbus technology reduces the amount of wiring needed – imagine it as a single plug and play wiring loom between engines, displays and controls. It connects harmoniously to Volvo Penta’s Glass Cockpit or existing NMEA 2000 systems.

The D3-220 is best suited to planing hulls around 8m and 2500kg. Lighter hulls will perform better but as the engine is low-revving and efficient, it is more likely to find favour in cruisers, or in pairs in displacement catamarans.

Whittley CR2600 Cruiser video

See the Whittley CR2600 Cruiser in action.

 

Economy

Volvo Penta prides itself on building the most efficient and green engines in the marine market. The D3-220 is cutting edge in its use of aluminium construction, high-pressure direct injectors and state-of-the-art engine management. The outcome is an engine with a strong torque curve (up to 470Nm from 2200rpm), clean emissions and low fuel burn.

At a comfortable 21kt cruise we achieved 27 litres per hour, giving a range of 140Nm (with 10 per cent reserve) from the 200-litre fuel tank – more than enough for most weekenders. At troll (7kt) she burned 14 litres per hour while flat-out at 4000rpm on the calm lake water, the hull delivered as much as 31.8kt and 47L/h. Although the hull felt like it could do more, we’d reached maximum revs and it felt as if a larger engine would be a waste. Rather, a smaller option would save some money and be fine if propped correctly.

 

Volvo Penta D3-220 marine diesel sea trials

Whittley CR 2600 Cruiser with a Volvo Penta D3-220hp sterndrive, DPS drive and FH4 Duoprop propellers. 200l fuel tank (range calculated leaving 10 per cent reserve)

RPM

SPEED (KTS)

FUEL BURN (L/H)

RANGE (NM)

700

2.7

0.8

607

1000

3.8

2.1

325.7

1500

5.4

6.5

149.5

2000

7

14

90

2500

13.5

22

110.5

3000

21

27

140 (best cruise)

3500

26.4

38

125

4000 (WOT)

31.8

47

121.7

* Sea-trial data supplied by the author

 
Whittley CR 2600 Cruiser

 

Volvo Penta D3-220 specs

TYPE Inline five-cylinder marine turbo-diesel

RATED HP 220

DISPLACEMENT 2400cc

WEIGHT 353kg (inc DPS drive)

GEAR RATIO 1.85

PROPELLER FH4 Duoprop

 

MORE INFORMATION

Whittley Marine Group

99 Freight Drive Somerton, VIC

Phone (03) 83391800

Email info@whittley.com.au

Web whittleymarinegroup.com.au

 

See the full version of this review in Trade-A-Boat #479, on sale June 16, 2016. Why not subscribe today?

 


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