Development of an empirical correlation for combustion duration is presented. For this purpose, the effects of variations in compression ratio engine speed, fuel/air equivalence ratio and spark advance on combustion duration have been determined by means of a quasi-dimensional SI engine cycle model previously developed by the authors. Burn durations at several engine operating conditions were calculated from the turbulent combustion model. Variations of combustion duration with each operating parameter obtained from the theoretical results were expressed by second degree polynomial functions. By using these functions, a general empirical correlation for the burn duration has been developed. In this correlation, the effects of engine operating parameters on combustion duration were taken into account. Combustion durations predicted by means of this correlation are in good agreement with those obtained from experimental studies and a detailed combustion model. (C) 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.