Normal car engines have their oil tank at the bottom in the so called sump. All oil is pumped from there all through the engine and then it is pumped back into the sump. This is a wet sump system.
Dry sump systems move the oil tank from beneath the engine to a location detached from the engine.
This allows you to lower the engine in the car, giving the car better performance capabilities through its lower CG (center of gravity).
By moving the oil tank to a separate location you positively influence the carís weight distribution, by placing the oil tank where you need its mass most.
Not having an oil tank at the bottom of the engine makes the oil less susceptible to g forces or disturbances by the crankshaft.
Because of these advantages, nearly racing cars employ a dry sump lubrication system.
The disadvantages of a dry sump system are:
- Higher complexity due to need of detached oil tank, oil conduits, pressure & scavenge pumps
- More components can lead to reliability problems
- Higher costs
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