Light-load unburned hydrocarbon emissions were studied experimentally in a spark-ignited direct-injection engine burning gasoline where the piston temperature was varied. The test engine was a single-cylinder Direct Injection Stratified-Charge (DISC) engine incorporating a combustion process similar to the Texaco Controlled Combustion System. At a single low load operating condition, the piston temperature was varied by 50 K by controlling the cooling water and oil temperature. The effect of this change on unburned hydrocarbon emissions and heat release profiles was studied. It was found that by carefully controlling the intake air temperature and pressure to maintain constant in-cylinder conditions at the time of injection, the change in piston temperature did not have a significant effect on the unburned hydrocarbon emissions from the engine. It was concluded that fuel wetting of the piston surface is not a significant source of hydrocarbon emissions from engines of this type when burning gasoline.