What is VTEC


“Honda B16A2 DOHC VTEC 1.6 160 Cv” by Mauro Prates is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

You might know about the “VTEC just kicked in yo!” meme but you might not know what is VTEC?, how does it work? and why is it so

you can find this at this link:https://www.facebook.com/actmarhonda/photos/pb.106512807682378.-2207520000../189470482719943


First of all, VTEC stands for:

V = Variable Valve

T = Timeing&Lift

E = Electronic

C = Control

Combined we have VVTLEC but that sounds weird so Honda shortened it down to VTEC witch is a lot cooler (in my opinion). It was invented by Ikuo Kajitani in the late ’80s. it was made to both make the engine more fuel-efficient and also have more power witch were two very different things back then and even a decade before during the 1973 oil crisis.

So How does VTEC work?

VTEC allows for differing cam profiles, meaning different valve lift and duration, depending on the engine RPM. We can see this in the photo below.

This is a photo from this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ukJ7Az1FtF8

As you can see that is the camshaft design in a VTEC engine but you might be thinking what is that red screw? that screw changes witch lobe is being used. At low rpm (Revolutions Per Minute) the two outer lobes (shown in picture) is being used and the screw is in the position shown. But when we reach the higher rpm’s the screw goes inside the center lobe making it being used making the openings bigger.


Now let’s find out why VTEC is so popular.

“bat-shit crazy” by Robert Couse-Baker is licensed under CC BY 2.0




The reason VTEC is popular is probably because of turbos. So why turbos? turbos are the reason because of the VTEC system itself. When the car is at low rpm the smaller lobes run abut at larger RPMs the bigger lobes come in taking out the extra pressure in the engine. now let’s pretend if a car didn’t have that it would be quite insufficient because at high rpm the turbo isn’t getting all the exhaust gasses which makes the turbo spin in the first place. But then why not bigger openings all the time? The reason for that is because at low rpm all the exhaust gas and intake would be sucked out due to timing and there would be a whole new problem. That’s why VTEC is so popular it has both big and small openings at the right time and is also turbo friendly. Witch is also the reason why you hear honda owners talk about B-series and K-series because those are the two best engines made by Honda and are widely respected and used to this date.