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BMW Z4 Roadster
First turbo four model will arrive this fall

Earlier this year, we reported that BMW's normally aspirated inline-6 engines will be ushered out and replaced by a new family of turbocharged four-cylinder engines. BMW today confirmed that four-cylinder power would return to U.S.-bound BMWs after a 10+ year absence. 

The first model to get BMW's new 2.0-liter TwinPower Turbo four-cylinder engine will be the Z4 sDrive28i Roadster (say that five times fast). The engine develops 240 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque (30 percent more torque at 1,500 fewer RPMs than the naturally aspirated 3.0-liter inline-6).

BMW says that the new turbo four will be 20 percent more fuel efficient than the inline-6 when paired with the 8-speed automatic transmission. We're sure that there are fuel efficiency gains to be made with the 6-speed manual transmission as well, but it's likely nowhere near 20 percent (or else BMW would have mentioned it in the press release).

The Z4 sDrive28i Roadster will arrive in showrooms this fall, and the turbo four will likely filter down to other BMW models soon after.





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Nice engine but...
By Beenthere on 4/18/2011 4:44:00 PM , Rating: 3
This engine may appease those who have never driven a silky-smooth six cylinder, but even the best turbo four engines have coarse power delivery compared to a six or eight due to the 180 degree cylinder firing. VW/Audi's 2.0T engine is very similar and nice but not close to the sixes as far as smoothness of power delivery and NVH.




RE: Nice engine but...
By steven975 on 4/18/2011 5:15:42 PM , Rating: 2
It'll appeal to the F&F types who think they can just up the boost and maintain reliability and get a "free" 335i upgrade. Of course, these cars are well outside their price range.

Of course, the 4cyl motors in the 250hp (except just one that's normally aspirated) class are usually starting with over 1bar(14psi) of boost...and really can't handle much more than that without significantly shortening their lives.

There are not nearly as many VW 1.8Ts and SRT4s on the road as you would think based on the number sold vs current ones you see on the road. Many of those died early deaths.

I think the appeal of the BMWs was in the inline 6. Going with a turbo4 has some benefits, but it's not a smooth inline 6 anymore. You can hide much of the turbo boost, but it's still there and the power delivery is not nearly as smooth. Its trading down refinement to cut costs...and this isn't going to result in a price decrease. I'd expect the resale to not be nearly as good (or should I say worse) as the already pretty bad resale value on out-of-warranty BMWs.


RE: Nice engine but...
By Spuke on 4/18/2011 8:20:10 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Its trading down refinement to cut costs...and this isn't going to result in a price decrease
They're not doing it to cut costs, they're doing it to improve fuel mileage. About the NA six, very true indeed! Silky smooth power delivery. Even the boosted six in the 335i is super smooth. No 4 cyl can match that (yet) although they're MUCH smoother than even a few years ago.


RE: Nice engine but...
By FITCamaro on 4/18/2011 10:15:54 PM , Rating: 1
The 335i is a 6 cylinder.


RE: Nice engine but...
By zzatz on 4/18/2011 7:26:51 PM , Rating: 3
Yes, inline sixes are smooth, as are V12s and boxers. But mileage is more important now.

Taxes based on displacement, common everywhere but the US, encouraged small high-revving engines. The same effect occurs in racing, where displacement limits reward designs that get the most power out of a given displacement.

But the most power per displacement is not the same as the most power per fuel burned. For that, you want fewer but larger cylinders, running at lower speeds and higher boost.


RE: Nice engine but...
By YashBudini on 4/19/2011 12:31:36 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Taxes based on displacement, common everywhere but the US, encouraged small high-revving engines.

Hence such wonders in the 60's and 70's in Europe of 2 liter 6 cylinder engines. I once saw a Honda motorcycle, a 400cc in-line 4. I always wondered how smooth that ran. The closest we ever got to that was the V30 Magna.

Did Porsche make a 2 liter flat 6 in one of their 914 models decades ago?


RE: Nice engine but...
By Spuke on 4/19/2011 12:57:16 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Did Porsche make a 2 liter flat 6 in one of their 914 models decades ago?
I believe so. Not to mention, early 911's also had 2.x L flat 6's. I sure would love one of those but the prices are going up and up on them.


RE: Nice engine but...
By YashBudini on 4/19/2011 7:37:06 PM , Rating: 2
RE: Nice engine but...
By Spuke on 4/20/2011 12:12:11 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
And you didn't even ask.
Didn't know there were some out there with actual 911 engines!!! Nice! Thanks for the link.


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