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  1. #1
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    Thumbs up Interview with ///M Director Fredrich Nitchke

    Interview with the ///M Boss. I put some interesting quotes in bold.

    He all but confirms the M2 will be a 6 cil.

    Paul Horrell July 19, 2013
    11 photos 20 Comments

    Q-and-A with Friedrich Nitschke, managing director, BMW M GmbH
    From i to M, itís an exciting time at BMW. We recently sat down with Friedrich Nitschke, managing director of BMWís M Performance Automobiles division (MPA), to talk about everything from the new M3/M4 to whether the automaker might consider a competitor to the Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG.
    Click here to enlargeMotor Trend: Would you agree that BMW M and Mercedes AMG and Audi Quattro RS cars are getting more similar Ė the move to turbos, the increasing prevalence of all-wheel drive?
    Friedrich Nitschke: Well, turbo engines greatly cut fuel consumption and add torque, and you canít do that with naturally aspirated engines. But the M philosophy is to combine the best high-rev features with the torque of a turbo. The M5 goes to 7400 rpm. Iím convinced that most race cars will have turbos. And the new M3 will have one of the best engines we have ever done.
    MT: And all-wheel drive?
    FN: As to all-wheel drive, we use it on M Performance Automobiles [and the X5 M and X6 M] but itís not necessary on M cars. On the new M3 it would add 80 kg [176 pounds] and the steering would not be pure any more. Itís not worth it. The car has 50:50 weight distribution and new traction management and a new differential, a development of the principle of the M5′s, with torque vectoring, so it has excellent traction.
    MT: Thatís twice you have called it the ďnew M3.Ē We were expecting M4.
    FN: Well the M3 is the icon, everybody is waiting for the fifth generation and I will bring one for absolutely certain, a sedan. Yes the coupe and convertible will be called M4.
    MT: But the M4 coupe is first?
    Click here to enlargeFN: I think both M3 and M4 will be at the Detroit Show.
    MT: Each M3 has always had fewer cylinders than the M5 of the same era, right?
    FN: Yes [smiles].
    MT: And I never heard of a seven-cylinder engineÖ
    FN: [Laughs]
    MT: Tell me about light weight. Is the new M4 lighter than a 435i?
    FN: Absolutely. We will use lightweight parts in the places where it matters, at the ends of the car and high up, and in high-rpm parts of the powertrain. A carbon fiber roof, of course, and aluminum and magnesium and carbon fiber in the crash zones. An aluminum hood, and a new carbon fiber trunk lid.
    Click here to enlargeMT: If the trunk is a different part it can be a different shape for aerodynamics, like the E30 M3, yes?
    FN: Yes.
    MT: What about below the M3 and M4?
    FN: Thereís no decision yet. But I absolutely want to develop a successor model to the 1 Series M Coupe. I have all the components I need Ė the powertrain, chassis. In the near future you will know. We canít call it the M1, because that number is for the special mid-engined car, but there is M2, isnít there?
    [Just as the coupe version of the 3 Series is now called 4 Series, the next-generation 1 Series coupe will be renamed the 2 Series.]
    MT: What about a four-cylinder M car?
    FN: Not in the near future. But itís possible. Our engines are modular.
    MT: But based off the new front-drive BMW platform? An M car to compete with the Mercedes A45 AMG?
    FN: What do you think of that car?
    MT: I think it understeers a lot on the road, and the powerband is too narrow Ė itís laggy below 4000 rpm and demands an upshift at just over 6000 rpm. And the shift paddles have far too much delay.
    FN: I had those troubles too. We drove it at the Nurburgring.
    MT: You can do better, surely.
    FN: [Nods, smiles]
    MT: Weíve just been driving the 435i. How soon do you start planning an M version and making sure the base car has the right technical qualities?
    FN: Very early. Look at the 5 Series. We had to make sure the body-in-white had enough stiffness, and that there would be space under the hood for our V8 M engine. But some of our parts are too expensive for the regular model, like our extra body stiffeners, special steering system and carbon roof, so they are installed only in the M. And the design: we have the base model, the Sport option, the M Sport, the M Performance automobile, and the full M model. We have to make sure at the beginning that there will be enough differentiation between them. Then we add our seats, our instruments, steering wheel, and so on.
    Overall, 60 to 80 percent of the parts on an M-car are different from the regular model.
    MT: I was looking at the i3 recently and thereís obviously no scope for an M model there Ė all the suspension parts are engineered right down to the minimum weight and strength for the grip generated by the skinny tires.
    FN: Absolutely. M and i are the two bookends at either end of BMW.
    MT: But isnít there useful technology to you in those cars?
    FN: I have known [head of the i brand Uli] Krantz [head of i] for a long time. The carbon fiber in the i8 and i3 is interesting for me. Reducing weight is interesting for both these bookend brands. M engineers and i engineers work together. Some solutions in the i8 came from M.
    MT: Could M do a hybrid?
    FN: Itís not necessary. The i brand represents those cars for BMW. Sure, a lightweight lithium-ion battery is useful, not for drive but for auxiliary functions and support systems. But thereís no M hybrid in the near future. But if, say, China passed regulations that meant I couldnít sell M cars there without hybrid, I would have to think about it.
    MT: And other powertrains?
    FN: Thatís what M Performance [is] for. We do other body types, like estates, and we do diesel, and we do all-wheel drive.
    MT: Could you do an M Performance diesel AWD 4 Series, or even 3 Series Gran Turismo?
    FN: Itís possible. Anything we would call MPA would have to have a proper engine, worked on by M. We wouldnít just do badges.

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  2. #2
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    Like how he carefully worded that. "and the new M3 will have one of the best engines we have done."

    Have confidence, you chose the eco friendly M direction. Just say it, it will be the best. Unless of course it isn't.

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