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Motor Authority reports that a senior engineer has said that if a hybrid proves to be more economical in the real world than its diesel counterpart, then BMW will build one. Speculation is that such a car would be the next-generation 5-series, and then a hybrid X5 in 2010, both of which would utilize diesel-hybrid powerplants.

What was once a clear-cut hybrid vs. gasoline-powered fight has morphed into hybrid vs. a range of new and traditional alternatives (such as the responsibly driven and maintained economical gasoline engine, as this Autoblog Green piece points out). BMW hasn't been alone in supporting diesels over hybrids, seeing as hybrids are only superior in stop-and-go traffic. As soon as highway driving or sheer driving distance is included, hybrids lose their advantage.

BMW is working with DaimlerChrylser to develop its hybrid drivetrains.

[Source: Autocar]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      A diesel-hybrid 5 series wagon with RWD (not awd) would rock my world.
      • 8 Years Ago
      What about ZF's 7p 7 speed auto 7.28:1, or the rumored 8 speed auto to be launched in the next 7-series.

      That dual mode dealie doesn't look fun to drive, and isn't that BMW's M.O.?
      • 8 Years Ago
      Why not combine diesels with hybrid power?
      • 8 Years Ago
      BMW has been working with GM and DCX on a two-mode full-hybrid system, primarily for the US market. The message here is, BMW might put its gasoline full hybrid plans on ice if it turns out that clean diesel will give US consumers similar benefits at a lower price point.

      The only reason BMW - or anyone else - would ever marry a diesel engine with a fully hybrid system in a LDV is to make a political/PR point. The approach is not just stupendously expensive but also heavy, bulky and the torque curves don't complement one another well.

      That said, diesel microhybrids are a completely different story. Indeed, BMW has already introduced idle stop and intelligent alternator functionality on its European 1 and 5 series.
      • 8 Years Ago
      This story first appeared in this week's edition of Autocar. Motor Authority have lifted it from there.
      • 8 Years Ago
      "BMW’s first hybrid vehicle will most likely be the next-generation 5-series sedan, which may be followed by a hybrid X5 in 2010, and both cars are expected to run a mild-hybrid system utilizing a diesel engine rather than a petrol unit."
      • 8 Years Ago
      3. Why not combine diesels with hybrid power?

      Because you would combine the expensive diesel parts with the expensive hybrid parts. At least that is one reason.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Otto cycle hybrids may lose their efficiency on the highway, but the Atkinson cycle used by the Prius is almost as efficient as a diesel. While the hybrid part of the drivetrain isn't technically doing anything to boost efficiency, you can still get diesel-like economy numbers.