BMW's New Six-Cylinder Engines - In Depth

BMW 535d
BMW 535d

Composite crankcase, electric water pump, diesel twin turbo

Press Release

Page 1 - BMW engines enter a new era
Page 2 - The most innovative power unit of our time
Page 3 - BMW uses magnesium in high-volume production
Page 4 - Second-generation VALVETRONIC
Page 5 - World premiere of the electric water pump and further innovations
Page 6 - Specifications and torque charts
Page 7 - The use of magnesium in engine construction
Page 8 - History of the BMW inline six-cylinder petrol engine
Page 9 - Innovative Variable Twin Turbo technology
Page 10 - Premiere of 535d Saloon and 535d Touring
Page 11 - Efficient dynamics: the technology of driving pleasure
Page 12 - BMW engine production plant in Steyr

BMW engines enter a new era

The BMW Group enters new dimensions.

"We will keep our foot on the accelerator pedal, we will continue to forge ahead." With these words Dr. Helmut Panke, chief executive of the BMW AG, proclaimed at this year's Annual Accounts Press Conference in which direction the Bavarian premium manufacturer is moving - "straight ahead", as usual. New series, new models and the opening up of new markets - BMW has impressively underlined over recent years that when it comes to the brand with the white and blue badge, actions speak louder than words. In 2003, BMW achieved the highest sales figures ever, the number of vehicles sold reaching 928,151.

The inline six-cylinder engine.

When speaking of acceleration, Dr. Panke is not referring to just a short spurt, but "the lasting accomplishment of a higher speed". In aspiring to do this, a premium manufacturer requires the appropriate premium engines. Superior technology has rendered BMW the leading producer of power units.

BMW regularly receives the annual "International Engine of the World Award", BMW has initiated advancements in engine construction with the introduction of innovations such as VANOS and VALVETRONIC, successfully establishing them on the market.

For 71 years now the inline six engine has served as a basis of driving pleasure. And there is no reason to break with this tradition, a tradition that is probably unique in the field of engine construction. This is due above all to the fact that it is based on a proven physical principle (no free inertia forces and moments). Today more than half of all BMW automobiles are powered by either an inline six petrol engine or a diesel engine. Consequently, BMW is the world's largest manufacturer of inline six power units for automobiles.

Optimum balance of masses, silky-smooth turbine-like running characteristics, fast-revving - ideal genes, pioneering innovations, high performance, low fuel consumption and the engineers' constant meticulous attention to detail have optimized the BMW inline six engine and rendered it an icon. The principle of consistent innovation to raise its own standards has placed BMW in a pole position in technology, not only in the field of engine construction, but also as a carmaker as a whole.


The concept of efficient dynamics.

The BMW designers' main conflict of objectives arises from the customer's desire for more power, comfort and safety on the one hand and from the equally understandable desire for lower fuel consumption and reduced exhaust emission on the other: BMW subsumes this issue under the term efficient dynamics, and understands this as being considerably more than the mere improvement of a few test values. Consequently, BMW interprets the term dynamics as the general behaviour of the vehicle, as its performance offered to the customer as a part of the driving experience. Efficiency is equally as comprehensive, this being the overall ratio between input and output, including, for example, "on demand" and "just in time" production, as well as the sensible use of resources. It is particularly crucial to BMW that efficiency should not belittle dynamics - and vice versa.

Technology leader BMW forges ahead: engine construction reconceived.

Due to its specific location in the vehicle and its concentrated mass, BMW designers focus predominantly on the power unit when it comes to discussing efficient dynamics, weight and the distribution of weight in the vehicle within the framework of the concept. And this is precisely the point at which emotions are sparked among engineers, as the BMW power unit is not only a splendid example of technology, but also a matter of inner attitude. Hence the new challenges were taken up passionately. This resulted in the creation of typical BMW high-tech power units that fundamentally question previously known concepts and countless details - and respond with innovative, trendsetting solutions.

In the 75th year of the BMW automobile and 71 years after the first BMW inline six engine, BMW is taking a giant and fundamental step into the future of engine construction. BMW has radically reconceived both the internal combustion engine and the diesel engine, taking the BMW inline six power unit into a new era.


Source: Text & photos courtesy BMW AG
Published Jul 18th, 2004 9:24am
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