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    • The return of the M four-cylinder? M exec states four-cylinder power for next generation M3/M4 is likely

      If you were upset about the M3 losing the V8 you are likely going to be even more angry about it losing the inline-6. As BMW continues to reduce displacement across the board in favor of smaller turbo motors its iconic M models are not immune. That is already seen in the new M3/M4 but BMW's head of project management over at M stated a four-cylinder motor for the next generation M3 and M4 models is likely.

      “We do not start our design process with a power output in mind. We have a set of characteristics that a new model must meet. For sure, you could see a future [M3] powered by a four-cylinder engine. Performance can be boosted with more power, but if we are to address issues like emissions and consumption [in the future], we have to look more at weight. We decided in this generation to address the [upward] weight spiral."

      What the M project management division head Carsten Prieds states makes sense. Except that they barely addressed weight issue this generation. If the car is much lighter, four-cylinder power is not a problem. It would have to be much, much lighter though. Cutting weight less than 100 pounds is not going to do it.

      If BMW were to do a 400 horsepower turbo four-cylinder motor at around 2.5 liters of displacement paired to a 3000 pound curb weight, this would work. The thing is, BMW already has the opportunity for a turbo four-cylinder motor in the upcoming M2. Instead of developing that engine now BMW is opting to save money by using the inline-6 they already have. A turbo four makes all the sense in the world for the M2 right now which could see a nice evolution by the time the next generation M3/M4 are ready to roll out.

      We will see what happens but it is no shock to anyone that BMW's engines are going to get smaller, less powerful, cheaper to produce, and cleaner. If only the cars were losing weight as quickly as BMW's engines were losing displacement.


      Source
      This article was originally published in forum thread: BMW States Future M3/4 Could be Powered by 4 Cylinder Engine? started by richpike View original post
      Comments 38 Comments
      1. G0TB00ST?'s Avatar
        G0TB00ST? -
        Instead of dropping cylinders how about they drop some actual weight! I don't mind the 4 cylinder (even though I think 6cylinders are perfect) but if they keep making whales and dropping displacement m cars are going to get even worse than what they are now. I mean come on they rely too much on turbos to make power, they ALL sound like sh!t, they use fake exhaust sound (even in the i8), instead of going on a real diet they drop a few pounds and play with the electric steering (which is retarded) to make the cars feel lighter than they are...etc
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        They seem to be struggling to drop weight.
      1. Dietcoke's Avatar
        Dietcoke -
        Electric Steering is an EPA/MPG concession. Got to get those average fleet #s up. Purpose has little to nothing to do with making a heavier car feel lighter, as it isnt exactly cheap compared to a run of the mill hydro pump.

        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by G0TB00ST? Click here to enlarge
        Instead of dropping cylinders how about they drop some actual weight! I don't mind the 4 cylinder (even though I think 6cylinders are perfect) but if they keep making whales and dropping displacement m cars are going to get even worse than what they are now. I mean come on they rely too much on turbos to make power, they ALL sound like sh!t, they use fake exhaust sound (even in the i8), instead of going on a real diet they drop a few pounds and play with the electric steering (which is retarded) to make the cars feel lighter than they are...etc
      1. B00stGeek's Avatar
        B00stGeek -
        Considering the next M3/4 won't be until about 2020, there is plenty time for BMW to figure things out. I wouldn't mind a lighter car with a smaller motor, as long as I can get more power from it. Seeing how e36 and e46 m3s have broken the 1000whp mark many times, I'm sure nice gains can happen with enough time. Exhaust note isn't the deciding factor for me.
      1. VargasTurboTech's Avatar
        VargasTurboTech -
        All this V8 talk and how its iconic M3 baffles me to no end, M3's have always been 4 or I6's and they go to a V8 for one model run, then ditch it, and all of sudden the E9X M3 has the iconic M motor. Um no
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by VargasTurboTech Click here to enlarge
        All this V8 talk and how its iconic M3 baffles me to no end, M3's have always been 4 or I6's and they go to a V8 for one model run, then ditch it, and all of sudden the E9X M3 has the iconic M motor. Um no
        The statement was iconic M models, not motors. Although if you want to apply that statement to the motors it would fit with the naturally aspirated high revving motors the M models always had.

        The M3 always had a motor that was motorsport derived. When they raced a four, it had a four. When they raced a six, it had a six. When they raced a V8, it had a V8.

        I think that is what you are missing. The decision is no longer Motorsport based, it is fuel economy and emissions based. Not to mention cost cutting is factored in.
      1. B00stGeek's Avatar
        B00stGeek -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        The statement was iconic M models, not motors. Although if you want to apply that statement to the motors it would fit with the naturally aspirated high revving motors the M models always had.

        The M3 always had a motor that was motorsport derived. When they raced a four, it had a four. When they raced a six, it had a six. When they raced a V8, it had a V8.

        I think that is what you are missing. The decision is no longer Motorsport based, it is fuel economy and emissions based. Not to mention cost cutting is factored in.
        So a turbo M car can't be "Motorsport based"?
      1. G0TB00ST?'s Avatar
        G0TB00ST? -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Dietcoke Click here to enlarge
        Electric Steering is an EPA/MPG concession. Got to get those average fleet #s up. Purpose has little to nothing to do with making a heavier car feel lighter, as it isnt exactly cheap compared to a run of the mill hydro pump.
        The electric steering setup BMW is using definitely makes the cars feel lighter than they really are, and I'm not saying its a bad thing. All I am saying is actually drop weight and stop with the trickery.
      1. boostedmaserati's Avatar
        boostedmaserati -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by B00stGeek Click here to enlarge
        So a turbo M car can't be "Motorsport based"?
        No. Current motorsport cars run a P65 which is obviously S65 based.
      1. BuraQ's Avatar
        BuraQ -
        Might as well just tune my damn Mini and call it an M car....haha
      1. Dietcoke's Avatar
        Dietcoke -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by G0TB00ST? Click here to enlarge
        The electric steering setup BMW is using definitely makes the cars feel lighter than they really are, and I'm not saying its a bad thing. All I am saying is actually drop weight and stop with the trickery.
        While that may be true, it is not the reason for integration of electric power steering.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by B00stGeek Click here to enlarge
        So a turbo M car can't be "Motorsport based"?
        I haven't seen one yet since the switch, have you?

        If anything all I've seen it do is put non M motors in 'M' cars.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by BuraQ Click here to enlarge
        Might as well just tune my damn Mini and call it an M car....haha
        Well they kind of already did that with the Active Tourer M-Sport didn't they?
      1. singletrack's Avatar
        singletrack -
        A turbo 4, or 3 cylinder, does not bother me at all if the car is very light. Has to sound decent and be a solid motor with a usable power band though. I've just accepted that they are going smaller displacement+turbo. Doesn't bother me as long as the cars get lighter and they do their best to eliminate turbo lag (anti-lag + torque fill from batteries).
      1. mjmarovi's Avatar
        mjmarovi -
        Hey it's fine...just make it rev to 10k RPM and make 500+hp
      1. mjmarovi's Avatar
        mjmarovi -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by VargasTurboTech Click here to enlarge
        All this V8 talk and how its iconic M3 baffles me to no end, M3's have always been 4 or I6's and they go to a V8 for one model run, then ditch it, and all of sudden the E9X M3 has the iconic M motor. Um no
        Tony, clearly it became iconic the second the dyno read 773 whp and only needing a lower compression build and a YSI S/C to do it...and don't forget IT'S GOT REVS TONY! $#@!ING REVS!
      1. mjmarovi's Avatar
        mjmarovi -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        The statement was iconic M models, not motors. Although if you want to apply that statement to the motors it would fit with the naturally aspirated high revving motors the M models always had.

        The M3 always had a motor that was motorsport derived. When they raced a four, it had a four. When they raced a six, it had a six. When they raced a V8, it had a V8.

        I think that is what you are missing. The decision is no longer Motorsport based, it is fuel economy and emissions based. Not to mention cost cutting is factored in.
        Yup, totally get it, and it sucks. //M doesn't seem to be race track inspired anymore. The exhaust note would still be good though if you can get some crazy high revs out of it
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by mjmarovi Click here to enlarge
        Tony, clearly it became iconic the second the dyno read 773 whp and only needing a lower compression build and a YSI S/C to do it...and don't forget IT'S GOT REVS TONY! $#@!ING REVS!
        Seriously? Idiotic.
      1. chrisisnapping's Avatar
        chrisisnapping -
        4,6,8, whatever. At the end of the day the m3 should be NA from the factory.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by chrisisnapping Click here to enlarge
        4,6,8, whatever. At the end of the day the m3 should be NA from the factory.
        Amen.

        I say give it an S85 and adopt the polar bears.