There is no replacement for displacement. Before forced induction became such a large part of the automotive industry this statement may have been true. Back in the day it was always about with had the most cubic inches.
Nowadays companies are making hundreds of horsepower per cylinder with forced induction. So how is it that Honda can make 700hp out of a little 2.2L engine?
The 2.2L engine, used in Honda’s Indycar, boasts more than 700hp. Honda uses compression, higher revs and different fuels to help push their cars to the limit.
The 2.2L V6 is twin turboed. With the combination of boost and higher compression they are able to fill the cylinder with more air and fuel (More one this later) for more power. Also because of the small stroke the car is able to operate at over 12,000 RPM. This means that combustion can happen at a much quicker rate.
Because of the shorter stroke the travel distance for the piston is greatly decreased. This allows for larger valves. Increased airflow is the result of the larger intake and exhaust valves. With a better flow you can get more bang for your buck.
Thirdly the type of fuel that the vehicle runs can increase the power, Running race fuel or e85 can boost performance. With e85 having a higher detonation resistance you can advance the timing and squeeze out more power.
With the constant discoveries in engineering its amazing how engineers can make so much power out of a smaller package.
In Engineering Explained‘s video he shows in further detail how on how everything works. You can check out his video below.