I don’t understand why large-displacement engines are more efficient than small-displacement ones. The gasoline contains the same amount of energy when it gets burned, after all, and neither engine is spewing loads of unburned hydrocarbons out of the exhaust ports.
Is it that the ratio of combustion chamber volume to the frictional surface area of the piston rings is smaller in a large-bore engine? (That is, more cubic inches to square inches.)
This has puzzled me for years. Any book recommendations would also be appreciated.