Technology News: BMW Group unveil their new masterpiece, a 600 Horsepower Power-M Engine.
• The Power-M Division of the BMW M GmbH (previously: BMW Motorsport GmbH) which is a subsidiary of German car manufacturer BMW AG has introduced a new engine which produces high powertrain considering its engine size. Normally a 2000cc engine can yield up to 200-250 horsepower, however this newly designed Power-M engine reaches 600 HP. Such performance can drive speed lovers crazy.
BMW engineers have used a special alloy in Power-M engine that can endure such high pressures, otherwise the engine could have exploded.
BMW’s New 600-HP 4-Cylinder Engine Shows How Far Engineering Has Come Since 1969
* * * BMW is preparing to feature this new DTM racing engine model P48 at the Hockenheimring race in May. The P48 will power their BMW M4 DTM race car. Way back in 1969, BMW won the European Touring Car Championship with the 2002ti. BMW compared the engines from both cars to show what a difference 50 years makes.
BMW M engines were traditionally large displacement naturally aspirated high revving engines, particularly the S85 V10 in the E60 M5 and E63 M6 and the related S65 V8 in the E90 M3. These are the most powerful engines BMW has ever built (not including the BMW S70/2) without supercharging or turbocharging, with an output of 100 HP per liter of displacement, and each has won numerous International Engine of the Year Awards. As late as the early 2000s, BMW regarded forced-induction (supercharging or turbocharging) as low-tech shortcuts to boosting horsepower, stating that this adds weight and complexity while reducing throttle response. BMW purists have noted that while forced induction and/or large displacement does produce more torque for better day-to-day driving, most of them like the “character” and sound of low displacement naturally aspirated engines with high redlines.
At first sight, both P48 and 2002Ti engines have a lot in common. Both are 2.0 liter turbocharged BMW inline four cylinder engines. According to BMW, though, the new engine makes roughly twice the horsepower, with substantially better fuel economy and reliability.
DTM dates back to 1969, and the 2019 season of the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters kicks off at the beginning of May without Mercedes-AMG. Also surprising is that Aston Martin has accepted the challenge, the first non-German entry since Alfa Romeo in 1996.
Gary Paffett took the championship for Mercedes-AMG, but on this occasion, BMW celebrates 50 years of motorsport success by detailing the P48 power unit in the M4 DTM in comparison to the M121 from half a century ago. The Bavarians won the European Touring Car Championship with Dieter Quester and the 2002 TI in 1969.
The M121 was the first turbocharged BMW engine developed for motor racing. Fast-forward to the present, and the P48 is “more than 50 percent more efficient.” This goes to show what five decades of motorsport can do in terms of research and development.
The 600-horsepower unit revs to an ear-shredding 9,500 rpm and can support more than 36 pounds of boost from its turbocharger with ease
* * * Thanks to a special alloy, high-pressure fuel injection and “lean-burn mode” help the engine in the M4 DTM be as good as possible without breaking the regulations. The auxiliary units such as the starter and generator are not fitted to the engine, but on the transaxle gearbox behind it. The plenum chamber, on the other hand, utilizes CFRP instead of the aluminum weld-and-cast construction from the past.
BMW makes a case for “exceptionally good consumption” of the P48, because similar to Formula 1, the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters limits fuel flow. Drivers exceeding the limit during a race are excluded from the race results.
By comparison, BMW engineers had to find performance as much as possible without increasing the displacement of the M121. This is how BMW started to turbocharge their cars and racing cars, and the 2002 TI is much obliged to hit 240 km/h thanks to forced induction.
Class 1 regulations in DTM replace the previous V8 engines with four-cylinder turbo power plants. In the case of the M4 DTM, the P48 weighs in at 85 kilograms, an exceptional achievement considering that BMW managed to half the displacement while finding more power and superior efficiency.
The number of cylinders and displacement are the same compared to the original BMW 2002 Turbo, but power output has more than doubled.
The BMW 2002 Turbo was, in its time, a masterpiece at the cusp of technological innovation. In the world of motorsports, it featured BMW’s very first turbocharged engine—the M121—all the way back in 1969. Fifty years later, BMW is getting ready to unveil its brand new P48 engine to the world, and while they may share the same bloodline, the technology found in the company’s most recent racing power plant shows just how much engine development has progressed.
Both the M121 and P48 are built on the same principle: a turbocharged, fuel injected, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine designed for the race track. and while the engines may look alike, they are different in essence.
Back in 1969, the M121 was the epitome of a modern engine. The all-aluminum head and block were sand-casted and built to handle all 14.2 PSI of boost pressure thrown at it. The result was a platform which could produce 280 horsepower at 6,500 rpm, a staggering number at the time for such a small engine. BMW says that the turbo fitted to the motor was capable of delivering more than 25.5 PSI of sustained forced-air into the motor; however, it was dialed down to ensure that the motor didn’t lift the head.
Enter BMW’s new P48 engine, a motor five decades in the making. While maintaining the same number of cylinders and displacement, the engineering put into it makes for a marvel of sophisticated German engineering. The 600-horsepower unit revs to an ear-shredding 9,500 rpm and can support more than 36 pounds of boost from its turbocharger with ease. Its fuel system is still mechanically operated, albeit now direct-injected, and its oiling re-engineered into a proper dry-sump setup.
BMW also says that longevity was an important factor when building the P48. The automaker expects the engine to last just over 3,700 miles between rebuilds, meaning that about 1.5 engines will be consumed during the course of a race season.
Sometimes, it’s important to look back at our roots and compare where we came from. BMW is doing just that as it shows the world the P48 without downplaying the influence that the M121 had on modern BMW cars as a whole. Now we sit back and wait to see what the next 50 years hold.
Facts about the P48:
• The application’s turbocharger flows roughly 400 liters of air per second, nearly 3,500 times what a human can breathe.
• The water pump flows 18,000 liters of coolant per hour, enough to fill an entire bathtub in 20 seconds.
More than 2,000 parts make up the entire assembly of the engine. If laid out side-by-side, the parts would cover the floor of a 2,690-square-foot apartment.
* * * • BMW M, “M” (for Motorsport) was initially created to facilitate BMW’s racing program, which was very successful in the 1960s and 1970s. As time passed, BMW M began to supplement BMW’s vehicles portfolio with specially modified higher trim models, for which they are now most known by the general public. These M-badged cars traditionally include modified engines, transmissions, suspensions, interior trims, aerodynamics, and exterior modifications to set them apart from their counterparts. All M models are tested and tuned at BMW’s private facility at the Nürburgring racing circuit in Germany. BMW M also remains the only performance based company to cater motorcycles at the same time, specifically the BMW S1000RR.
P48 Engine Front View
* * * Origins
Established in May 1972 with 35 employees, it grew to 400 employees by 1988, and is currently an integral part of BMW’s market presence. The first racing project was BMW’s 3.0 CSL.
After the success of BMW M products like BMW 3.0 CSL in racing venues and the growing market for high performance sports cars, M introduced cars for sale to the public. The first official M-badged car for sale to the public was the M1, revealed at the Paris Motor Show in 1978. The M1, however, was more of a racecar in domestic trim than an everyday driver. The direction of the M cars changed with the 1979 release of the M535i, which was a high performance version of BMW’s popular 5 Series mid-size sedan.
In 1993 BMW Motorsport GmbH changed their name to BMW M GmbH.
BMW Motorsport GmbH supplied the 6.1 liter V12 DOHC 48 valve engine that powers the McLaren F1, which, like its engine supplier and manufacturer, has enjoyed plenty of racing success, famously winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1995, the first year of competition for the GTR racing variant.
P48 Engine Parts
* * * Recent history
At present, BMW M has offered modified versions of nearly every BMW nameplate, except for the Z1, 7 Series flagship luxury sedan and the X1 and X3 compact crossover SUVs. There is no BMW M version of the 7 Series, as BMW did not want its flagship saloon to be powered by a high-revving engine, and as the recent top-performing versions (usually the BMW 760Li) have V12 engines which while powerful are considered too heavy for a sporty offshoot. So far the unofficial “BMW M7” is the Alpina B7, which is produced on BMW’s assembly line though its engine and finishing touches are done by auto tuner Alpina. However, as BMW M shifted to turbocharged engines, there are rumors that there is an in-house BMW M7 in the works, and it is speculated that its performance may exceed that of the BMW 760Li and Alpina B7.
The BMW X5 and X6 sport activity vehicles received M derivatives for the 2010 model year onwards. These are the first M vehicles with xDrive four-wheel drive and automatic transmissions, and also the first M-badged SUV models. However, the E70 and E71 X5 and X6 M were actually developed by BMW Group rather than by BMW M.
Although these are considered the most well-known in-house tuning divisions, BMW M has a considerably different philosophy than Mercedes-AMG. BMW M has emphasized tuning only vehicles with “Lateral agility” (which has long been the 3 Series, 5 Series, and roadsters), while AMG has created high-performance versions of many of its nameplates, including flagship sedans and SUVs. Accordingly, “an M car has to be responsive and fundamentally keen on turning as well as accelerating. The M5’s technical spec is all about connecting the driver to a car that reacts blindingly fast, whatever request the driver hands down.” Until the 2010 model year, BMW M has also never used supercharging or turbocharging, unlike Mercedes-AMG or Audi; for instance the E39 and E60 iterations of the BMW M5 (using naturally-aspirated engines) competed against the Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG (with a supercharged V8) and the Audi RS6 (twin-turbo).
BMW M vehicles typically used manuals and semi-automatic transmissions (the most recent type being a dual clutch transmission), in contrast to Mercedes-AMG which largely has automatic transmissions (the 7-speed AMG SpeedShift MCT dual clutch transmission was used on new models from 2009 onward). However, the BMW X5 M and X6 M were the first M-vehicles offered with automatic transmission, a 6-speed Steptronic unit, since this works with xDrive.
P48 Engine Plain View
* * * International regulations during the late 2000s trends on reducing CO2 emissions and fuel consumption are cited as the reasons not to continue further development on naturally aspirated high redline engines. The N54 twin-turbo inline-6 which debuted in the 2007 BMW 335i (E90) gives almost equivalent performance to the E46 and E90 iterations of the BMW M3, while being much more practical and fuel-efficient as a daily driver. Starting with the X5 M and X6 M, and featured in the F10 M5, BMW used the twin-turbocharged S63 which not only produces more horsepower and torque, but is also more efficient than the S85 V10. Also unlike the S85 and S65 which do not share a design with non-M BMW engines, the S63 has significant parts commonality with the base N63 V8 engine (which is also has twin turbochargers) making them less expensive to build. In 2012, BMW had not considered supercharging yet.
As of the 2013 model year, the BMW M3 (E92/E93) was the only “traditional” M car left, as the rest of the M lineup features turbocharged engines, and the next iteration of the M3 (F80) and M4 (F82/F83) featured a twin turbo straight-6 engine.
M-Cars vs. M-badged cars
P48 Engine Side View
* * * There are several BMW models which BMW Motorsport made changes on, without them becoming M-Cars. This succession of styling (M-tech I, M-tech II) and performance cues came from BMW Motorsports; e.g. BMW 530i M packet or 325i M packet etc.
Vehicles which have been modified by BMW Motorsport, but are not full M Cars, may feature “M” badges, whilst full M Cars will have “M” badges with the model number (e.g., “M4” or “M5”). Two exceptions would be the M Roadster and M Coupe models, both Z3, Z4 and 1 Series variants, which only have an “M” badge with no number displayed on the trunk. These cars are full M Cars.
In recent years, there have been ‘M’-badged accessories available on BMW’s standard fleet as factory options or as part of the “M Sport” package (which is more expensive than the optional Sport package). Examples of this include the E39 and E60 5 series sedans which had optional aerodynamic packages that were strongly influenced by the M5’s styling (for example, bumpers with larger intakes). It is not unusual to see “standard” BMW vehicles with “M” badges or ribbons accenting their design. The plain motorsports badge simply stands for the ‘M-tech’ upgrades equipped on the vehicle (e.g., suspension, brakes, looks or any other modification that has been developed by the M division), therefore the ‘M’ badge on these vehicles should not be confused with the true ‘M’ vehicles (except the Z-cars, as mentioned), as they are not fully fledged ‘M’ cars, just equipped with ‘M’-tech upgrades. BMW has offered these ‘M’ options on their standard vehicles since the late 1970s which explains why these vehicles carry ‘M’ badges straight from the factory. In comparison, vehicle maker Audi also employs this same type of nomenclature. There are fully fledged ‘S’ models (S4, S5, S6, S7 and TTS), as well as an optional “S’-line package that can be equipped to their standard vehicle lineup.
An example of ‘M’-badged vehicles in recent times include the E60 BMW 550i and E63 BMW 650i. The standard BMW 5 Series and 6 Series only had a choice of either a manual or automatic transmission, but the ‘M’ Sport package had an optional Sequential Sport Gearbox (SSG) (a gearbox similar to M5 and M6 (SMG) until after the 2007 model year.
M Performance models
In 2012 BMW introduced a new category for ‘M’ cars, which was branded as the ‘M’ Performance. They are the first M diesel cars that BMW produces.
To date this includes the M550d in touring and saloon variants, the X6 M50d and X5 M50d which all share a 381 bhp 740NM triple turbo diesel engine, the former pair are only LHD drive markets currently due to the xDrive layout in the F10 series not being compatible with RHD markets (a RWD F10 M550d was mentioned by Auto Express but has not been confirmed). Official figures put the M550d xDrive’s 0-to-62-mph time at 4.7 seconds and top speed at 155mph (limited).The first petrol M Performance car is the M135i which is a 320 bhp 1 series car. M135i is available with rear- or all-wheel drive.
The M550d is available in both sedan and touring chassis, with a ZF 8HP eight-speed sport automatic transmission including auto start/stop function. Manual and non-sport automatic gearboxes are not available. Unique features on the M550d are the twin trapezoidal exhausts in dark chrome and both wing mirrors and air-intake bars in ferric grey. Other 5 series models have wing mirrors in the same color as the rest of the vehicle. The front fog lamps, standard on all other F10/F11 5 series models are removed, to make space for additional air-intakes. The door-sill plates are also unique on this vehicle, having an “M550d” inscription. In addition, the F11 Touring model features air suspension on the rear axle, with automatic self-levelling.
Nothing yet has been announced as regards the F30 3 Series M Performance line up but BMW have trademarked (amongst many other monikers) M335, M340 and M350. Further to this M President Friedrich Nitschke has confirmed that the new triple turbo diesel engine will “easily fit” within the F30 engine bay but did not elaborate any further.
• The 2010 X5 and X6-based M vehicles bore their normal model designations followed by the “M” stripe badge (the X5 M and X6 M). Had the nomenclatures followed tradition, the vehicles would have an MX5 and MX6 model designation, already used by Mazda.
• The Z3/Z4-based M Roadster and M Coupe bore numberless “M” badges as standard fitment.
• The M635CSi followed the M535i naming tradition but was a fully-fledged M-Car (the M6).
• The BMW 1 Series-based M vehicle is called the BMW 1M Coupe to avoid confusion with the original BMW M1.
Current Full M cars
• M2 – F87 Coupe (2016 to present)
• M4 – F82 Coupe, F83 Cabriolet (2014 to present)
• M5 – F90 Sedan (2018 to present)
• M8 – Gran Coupé (TBA)
• X3 M – F97 (2019 to present)
• X4 M – F98 (2019 to present)
• X6 M – F86 (2015 to present)
Current M Performance models
• M140i and M140i xDrive – F20 five-door hatchback and F21 three-door hatchback (2016 to present)
• M240i and M240i xDrive – F22 Coupe and F23 Convertible (2016 to present)
• M340i xDrive – G20 Sedan (2019 to present)
• M550i xDrive and M550d xDrive – G30 sedan and G31 wagon (2017 to present)
• M760Li xDrive – G12 sedan (2017 to present)
• M850i xDrive – G14 Convertible and G15 Coupe (2019 to present)
• X2 M35i – F39 (2019 to present)
• X3 M40i – G01 (2018 to present)
• X4 M40i – G02 (2018 to present)
• X5 M50d – G05 (2019 to present)
• X6 M50d – F16 (2014 to present)
• Z4 M40i – G29 (2019 to present)
M badged cars
All these cars are true BMW Motorsport models, not M-line sport models that bear BMW Motorsport features such as sport body kits, and interior specs.
• E12 M535i (1979–1981) – Often considered the first mass production vehicle built by BMW Motorsport
• E31 850CSi (1992–1996) – An M car in all but name; it had a BMW M–sourced engine and its VIN indicated that it was developed by BMW Motorsport, like all other M cars.
In the late 80s, due to prohibitive taxes for cars above 2.0 liters of engine displacement in Italy and Portugal, BMW decided to build the E30 320is as an alternative to the 2.3 liter M3. This car was equipped with a shorter stroke S14 engine and produced 192 PS. BMW produced a total of 3648 units between 9/1987 and 11/1990 of which a majority of 2542 units were made available in two door form (code name AK95). No catalytic converters were installed on this limited version. The steering rack, springs, shock absorbers, and brakes were similar to the normal E30 6 cylinder models (i.e. 325i) with sports suspension. The engine was mated to a Getrag 265 five-speed gearbox in dog-leg configuration.
Audi’s RS models, Mercedes-Benz‘s AMG models, and more recently Lexus F model(s), are often reviewed in direct competition to a similarly-sized BMW M car, such as the Lexus IS-F vs. Audi RS4 vs. Mercedes C63 AMG vs. BMW M3.
In contrast to aftermarket tuners, Alpina BMW-based automobiles are currently mostly built by BMW on its production lines and are more comfort-oriented. Alpina is recognized as an automobile manufacturer and works very closely with BMW, sometimes participating in the development of BMW models and engines. Some Alpina models are even sold in North-America by BMW and either compete with the BMW M6 Gran Coupé, in the case of the Alpina B6 Gran Coupé, or replace them, in the case of the Alpina B7 as there is no M7 variant of the 7 Series to compete with the model.
BMW M also faces competition from several independent companies offering their own performance versions of BMW models; some performance packs can be retrofitted to existing cars while others are applied to new cars bought directly from BMW AG and converted prior to first registration. Such companies include Hamann Motorsport, Dinan Cars, G-Power, AC Schnitzer and Hartge.
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Technology News: BMW Group unveil their new masterpiece, a 600 Horsepower Power-M Engine.