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Automotive Engineering MEng

Placement Offered This course has a Placement Year option
Available in Clearing


Automotive Engineering is one of Brunel’s most active areas for research. Our Centre for Advanced Powertrain and Fuels (CAPF) is one of the largest, most active engine research groups in the UK, focusing on experimental and modelling aspects of engine research to minimise pollutant emissions and improve fuel efficiency.

Brunel University London’s impact on the future wages of its graduates is among the best in the country compared to other universities, according to a new analysis of government data by The Economist (2017).

About the course

Low carbon vehicle technologies are at the cutting edge of innovation within the automotive industry - one of several exciting areas of study for students on this MEng course.

The course develops the key technical and managerial skills that graduates need to excel within a fast-moving industry, with a curriculum designed to give a good balance between fundamental mechanical engineering subjects (including maths and engineering science) and the applied engineering disciplines (such as vehicle design and performance).

We have one of the largest and most active engine research groups in the UK and strong links with industry to provide a vibrant, commercially-focused environment for our students' learning.

View the Brunel Engineers graduate showcase video.


The UK automotive industry is historically known for highly innovative engineering, with various technical centres of excellence recently set up by global car manufacturers and suppliers.

The main challenge for these engineering centres is to design, develop and manufacture the next generation of road vehicles capable of providing improved environmental impact whilst maintaining acceptable vehicle performance, reliability and cost.

The overall aim of Brunel's MEng programme is to provide our graduates with excellent understanding of the fundamentals which, coupled with in-depth knowledge of the technical workings of current and future automotive systems, will allow them to become future technical or managerial leaders.


Contact our Enquiries team.
Course Enquiries: +44 (0)1895 265599 (before you submit an application)
Admissions Office: +44 (0)1895 265265 (after you submit an application)

Course content

Both Automative Engineering programmes at Brunel (BEng and MEng) cover the same topics in Levels 1 and 2, allowing students to transfer between them at the end of Level 2. The courses cover the fundamentals of mechanical engineering and design, providing an excellent grounding in key subjects common throughout the mechanical engineering disciplines.

The first two years/levels also provide exposure to other related engineering subjects, such as electrical and electronic engineering, and commercially important topics, such as management and related law.

Further levels progressively introduce a greater degree of specialisation. Strong emphasis is placed upon achieving a good balance between practical and theoretical engineering skills, making best use of the excellent facilities available.

Typical Modules

Level 1

  • Fundamentals of Solid Body Mechanics
  • Fundamentals of Thermofluids
  • Analytical Methods and Skills
  • Engineering Materials, Manufacturing and Electrical Machines
  • Introduction to Engineering Design
  • Automotive Laboratories, Technical Drawing and Workshop Experience.

Level 2

  • Automotive Vehicle Design and Performance
  • Solid Body Mechanics
  • Thermofluids
  • Computing, Analytical Methods, Control and Instrumentation
  • Professional Engineering Applications and Practice.

Level 3

  • Major Individual Project
  • Vehicle Performance
  • FEA, CFD and Numerical Modelling
  • Professional Engineering Practice.

Level 5 (MEng only)

  • Major Group Project
  • Advanced Vehicle Dynamics, IC Engines, Materials and Manufacturing
  • Automotive Team Management and Vehicle Testing
  • Strategic Management, Innovation and Enterprise
  • Advanced Thermofluids
  • Advanced Solid Body Mechanics.

MEng final year project

All final year MEng students participate in a team project of 5-6 people, which develops not only their transferable skills, but also their ability to design, manufacture and test an automotive product, typically aimed at low carbon use. For example, current projects underway include one with UK industry support concerned with the use of mechanical kinetic energy recovery to help eliminate the feel of turbocharger “lag” in future fuel efficient road vehicles.

Computer Aided Design image of a road car turbocharger fitted with a novel kinetic energy recovery system being designed, made and tested by automotive students at Brunel (Copyright Zorro 2011)

Read more about the structure of undergraduate degrees at Brunel and what you will learn on the course.


Brunel's Automotive Engineering graduates have an excellent record of employment soon after graduating - with many currently working in key technical and managerial positions within the automotive industry.

If you opt for a sandwich course, you will have the added bonus of putting your academic study into practice and developing ideas about future careers. Some graduates are offered full-time graduate posts at the companies where they carried out their work placements. Students who complete the thick-sandwich course will be awarded their degree ‘with Professional Development’.

Some of our graduates go directly into such sponsored research at Brunel, leading to the award of a Doctor of Philosophy degree (PhD), whilst others spend several years in industry first.


Automative companies that our recent graduates have joined include Jaguar Land Rover, Aston Martin, McLaren Automotive, Bentley Motors, Ford, Nissan Technical Centre Europe, BMW (Mini), Lotus Cars, SAIC (MG), Changan, Tata Motors, BP, Ricardo, MAHLE Powertrain, Cummins, JCB, Perkins and Delphi.

At Brunel we provide many opportunities and experiences within your degree programme and beyond – work-based learning, professional support services, volunteering, mentoring, sports, arts, clubs, societies, and much, much more – and we encourage you to make the most of them, so that you can make the most of yourself.

» More about Employability

Entry criteria 2018/19

  • GCE A-level ABB, including Maths and Physics (General Studies not accepted).
  • BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (QCF)/BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (RQF) Not accepted for the MEng entry. BTEC Extended Diploma students are encouraged to apply for the BEng degree in this subject and if they achieve sufficient grades on year two of the course they can discuss transferring to the MEng.
  • BTEC Level 3 Diploma (QCF) DD in Mechanical Engineering only, with distinctions in Further Mathematics for Technicians and Further Mechanical Principles modules, AND A-Level Maths at grade A.
  • BTEC Level 3 National Diploma (RQF) DD in Mechanical Engineering only, with Distinctions in Engineering Principles, Calculus to Solve Engineering Problems, Further Engineering Mathematics, Static Mechanical Principles in Practice, Dynamic Mechanical Principles in Practice, Principles and Applications of Fluid Mechanics and Thermodynamic Principles and Practice, AND A-Level Maths at grade A.
  • BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma (QCF)/BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate (RQF) D in any subject with A-Levels grade AB in Maths and Physics.
  • International Baccalaureate Diploma 31 points including 5 in Higher level Maths and 5 in Higher level Physics.
  • Access to Higher Education Diploma Applicants should apply for the BEng. Those who achieve the progression requirement can transfer to the MEng at the end of Level 2.
  • Foundations of Engineering courses For Brunel Foundations of Engineering progression requirements, see the course page.

Five GCSEs to include grade B or grade 5 in Maths, and grade  C or grade 4 in English Language and two science subjects.

Please check our Admissions pages for more information on other factors we use to assess applicants as well as our full GCSE requirements and accepted equivalencies in place of GCSEs.

Entry criteria are subject to review and change each academic year.

International and EU entry requirements

If your country or institution is not listed or if you are not sure whether your institution is eligible, please contact Admissions

This information is for guidance only by Brunel University London and by meeting the academic requirements does not guarantee entry for our courses as applications are assessed on case-by-case basis.

English language requirements

  • IELTS: 6 (min 5.5 in all areas)
  • Pearson: 51 (51 in all subscores)
  • BrunELT: 60% (min 55% in all areas)

You can find out more about the qualifications we accept on our English Language Requirements page.

If you require a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK, you must prove knowledge of the English language so that we can issue you a Certificate of Acceptance for Study (CAS). To do this, you will need an IELTS for UKVI or Trinity SELT test pass gained from a test centre approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) and on the Secure English Language Testing (SELT) list. This must have been taken and passed within two years from the date the CAS is made.

Should you wish to take a pre-sessional English course to improve your English prior to starting your degree course, you must sit the test at an approved SELT provider for the same reason.

We offer our own BrunELT English Test and have pre-sessional English language courses for students who do not meet requirements or who wish to improve their English. You can find out more information on English courses and test options at the Brunel Language Centre.

Teaching and learning

Teaching is by a mixture of lectures, laboratories, design studios and one-to-one supervision. There are written examinations in May of each year and some assignments appropriately spread throughout the academic year and designed to aid student learning.

Use of our modern and well equipped laboratories and standard industrial computer software plays a major role in the learning process.

The practical aspects of automotive engineering are introduced as early as Level 1 in the form of laboratory experiments on existing vehicle sub-systems, which then lead to more advanced laboratories in Level 2.

Advanced computer software in design, structural analysis, dynamics and mathematics are used from Levels 2 to 4, with our laboratory facilities also made available for experiments undertaken by students individually.

In Level 3 all students undertake a major individual project, often involving experimental work and sometimes with industrial support. This is worth a third of the overall marks for the year.

All final year MEng students participate in a team project of 5-6 people to manufacture and test an automotive product, typically aimed at low carbon use.

Special features

  • Our Centre for Advanced Powertrain and Fuels (CAPF) is one of the best academic research facilities within the UK for this specialism.
  • Our recent research projects have been in partnership with companies including Ford, Jaguar Land Rover, Lotus Cars, SAIC (MG), BP, Shell, Ricardo, MAHLE Powertrain and Delphi.
  • The University was also recently awarded a multi-million pound contract from the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council to accelerate the introduction of future low carbon and lightweight vehicle technologies specifically in close collaboration with industry.
  • We have 11 test engines housed in two laboratories at CAPF.

Brunel Automotive Lecture Series

Brunel’s Automotive Lecture Series is a special feature of the taught programmes in the areas of automotive and motorsport engineering. The Series consists of talks on technology and careers by industry leaders, alumni and expert technologists appropriate not only for late stage undergraduate and postgraduate students but also for researchers in the these areas. Topics include themes from the broader automotive and motorsport industry and its technologies including advanced powertrains, vehicle testing and advanced components.

For more information and the programme of talks this year please download the programme

Women in Engineering and Computing Programme

Brunel’s Women in Engineering and Computing mentoring scheme provides our female students with invaluable help and support from their industry mentors.


Facts and figures

The domestic auto industry is resurgent, presenting fresh job opportunities for talented specialists, according to the Chief Executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, Paul Everitt: "The UK automotive industry is leading economic recovery with increased manufacturing output, growing export volumes and new jobs being created on the back of major international investment in the sector. Our engineering expertise, workforce flexibility and renowned motoring heritage, combined with top level collaboration between industry and government, makes the UK an important location for the global automotive industry."

Fees and funding

Fees for 2018/19 entry

UK/EU students: £9,250 full-time; £1,000 placement year

International students: £18,000 full-time

Some courses incur additional course related costs. You can also check our on-campus accommodation costs for more information on living expenses.

All students applying for MEng/MMath courses from September 2018 entry will be awarded a £3000 tuition fee waiver in the final year of their MEng/MMath programme.

Fees quoted are per year and may be subject to an annual increase. Home/EU undergraduate student fees are regulated and are currently capped at £9,250 per year; any changes will be subject to changes in government policy. International fees will increase annually in line with RPI, or 5%, whichever is the lesser.

There is a range of financial support available to help you fund your studies. Find out about undergraduate student funding options.