Originally Posted by klipseracer
Almost all modern cars using powdered metal forged. There are a lot of different processes loosely called "forging" and with widely varying alloys. The net result is the word forged as applied to con rods and people's understanding of it's value IMO are often misunderstood/exaggerated.
OEM rods are designed to meet a strength target and engineers will juggle alloys and processes to get the rod to handle the load while keeping price down. Metal is a commodity and as prices vary, I expect designers will vary alloys and processes to fit their budget and goals. So what went into the N54 may be slightly different than N55 but the rod designers are likely targeting the same rod strength in each application.
The opposite could be also true- rod alloy, process and supplier could be the same but a dipshit designer trying to cut cost too much could have cut too much material from the design and you wind up with a strength target too low which could lead to broken parts e.g. cracked N20 head.
IOW, I wouldn't worry about the metal or the process in isolation, look at the whole rod. Same thing goes for pistons and other parts. "