• Jan 28, 2011
BMW's four-cylinder turbocharged engine – Click above for high-res image gallery

BMW has been teasing us with little factoids here and there about its new 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, and we finally have official confirmation that it will, in fact, be coming to the United States later this year.

This new four-cylinder engine uses the same twin-scroll turbo technology found in the larger N55 3.0-liter engine. Maximum power is rated at 240 horsepower at 5,000 rpm, and peak torque – all 260 pound-feet of it – is delivered at 1,250 rpm. By switching to a smaller-displacement, turbocharged, direct-injected engine, we can expect that cars with this new 2.0-liter four will get a healthy bump in fuel economy over the current six-cylinder models.

BMW has yet to point out which models will be getting the new 2.0-liter turbo, but since the automaker specifically mentions that it offers more power and torque than the current naturally aspirated 3.0-liter inline-six, we wouldn't be shocked to learn that all cars with a 28i or 30i at the end of the name will now be powered by this four-pot mill. Earlier reports have suggested that the Z4 sDrive30i will now use four-cylinder power, and we're betting both the 1 and 3 Series, as well as X1, will get the turbo-four treatment. Follow the jump for the official press release.



[Source: BMW]
Show full PR text
BMW Four-Cylinder Engines Return to US in 2011

New 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder offers performance of a six


Woodcliff Lake, NJ – January 28, 2011... BMW announced the return of a four-cylinder engine to the US BMW line-up for the first time in since 1999. Like the company's latest 3.0-liter turbo inline six, the new 2.0-liter engine will combine twin-scroll turbocharging with high-pressure direct-injection and BMW's VALVETRONIC intake control. With 240 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque, it offers more power and torque than BMW's normally aspirated 3.0-liter inline six. It will arrive later in 2011.

Maximum output of 240 horsepower is achieved at 5,000 rpm, 1,500 rpm lower than in the normally-aspirated 3.0-liter inline six. The peak torque of 260 lb-ft, comes on stream at just 1,250 rpm. Not only is that 30% more torque than the aforementioned inline six, it also peaks 1,500 rpm earlier. The vigorous power comes on early and climbs steadily all the way to redline.

The four-cylinder engine with its all-aluminum crankcase is lighter and more compact than a six-cylinder engine of equivalent power. The turbocharger is a twin-scroll system. The exhaust streams leaving the two pairs of cylinders are kept completely separate as they flow through the exhaust manifold and the turbocharger, taking a spiral path to the turbine wheel. This configuration results in very low exhaust back pressure at low engine rpm, and allows the energy of the exhaust gas pulses to be optimally managed and translated into powerful rotation of the turbine blades, without a delay in throttle response.

The patented BMW VALVETRONIC system with seamlessly variable intake valve lift control dispenses with the throttle valve system typical of conventional engines. Instead, combustion air mass is controlled inside the engine, resulting in much faster response. Pumping losses are kept to a minimum, making the engine more efficient.

The High Precision Injection direct-injection system also helps to improve efficiency. Centrally positioned between the valves, solenoid injectors with a maximum injection pressure of 200 bar (2,900 psi) precisely control the supply of fuel. The fuel is injected very close to the spark plug, resulting in clean and homogeneous combustion.

The cooling effect of the injected fuel also allows for a higher compression ratio than might otherwise be possible. This results in further efficiency improvements.

US-specific model and timing information will follow at a later date, but this new chapter in the story of BMW EfficientDynamics will arrive later this year.


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 62 Comments
      • 3 Years Ago
      plenty of other automakers already have 2.0Ts with that much torque, vw, audi, mitsubishi, hyundai, kia, etc. What's impressive isn't the torque figure but rather the prospect that BMW might equip this at the bottom of their range forcing their competition to step up their turbo game.

      that is... IF this replaces the 328i and doesn't carry a price premium and isn't counter-balanced by some increase in weight as bmws have been getting unreasonably heavy of late.

      120i or 320i? yes plz.
        • 3 Years Ago
        moar like 123td plz

        It's a 2 liter diesel, 200 hp, 320 ft. lbs of torque and 40-50 mpgs!!
        ZOMFG
        • 3 Years Ago
        "BMW might equip this at the bottom of their range forcing their competition to step up their turbo game."

        Audi already has a turbo four at the bottom of their range, and has for years. And the current A4's base engine makes 258 lb-ft at 1500 rpm...basically the same as BMW's new engine.
        • 3 Years Ago
        OK, this does it. Zamafir is officially a BMW hater.

        At every opportunity, he trashes BMW's as being too heavy (especially in comparison to Audis) and he usually provides no information or, worse yet, false information to make his point.

        Example: He recently criticized the new 1M Coupe as being too heavy saying it should weigh no more than 3,000 lbs (it weighs in at 3,296 pounds). Yet in the same breath he said he'd prefer a TT-S but he conveniently forgets to mention that it weighs 3,241 lbs. Double standard.

        Now he says "BMWs have been getting unreasonably heavy of late." Newsflash, Zamafir -- you're talking out your ass again. All cars are getting heavier, and that's troublesome, but it's not a BMW only problem. Look at the facts:

        2011 BMW 328i Automatic RWD -- 3,428 lbs.
        2011 Lexus IS250 Automatic RWD -- 3,435 lbs.
        2011 Audi A4 Multitronic FWD -- 3527 lbs.
        2011 Mercedes C300 Automatic RWD -- 3,560 lbs.

        2011 Lexus GS 350 Automatic RWD -- 3,704 lbs.
        2011 BMW 528i Automatic RWD -- 3,814 lbs.
        2011 Mercedes E350 Automatic RWD -- 3,825 lbs.
        2011 Audi A6 3.2 Multitronic FWD -- 3,858 lbs.

        It's OK to have opinions, but can you please, please, please try to keep you posts based in the realm of factual reality?
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Mitlov - i'm aware, this engine is more akin to the unit found in the golf r, tt-s, etc than the base 211/250 mill. given the 328i and a4 2.0t provide comparable performance I've no doubt a 3 series with the 2.0T will drop below 6 into the high 5s on the way to sixty which audi will have an issue matching unless they move towards the golf r and tt-s spec 2.0T.
        • 3 Years Ago
        what a hater. can you stop whining already?
      • 3 Years Ago
      BMW Ecoboost.
      • 3 Years Ago
      120i with a turbo? Add a Juicebox... Weee
      • 3 Years Ago
      Sounds like a good engine. Be prepared to be disappointed with the fuel economy though. Turbos aren't magic, you have to pay to play. I'd say 31mpg highway, tops.
      • 3 Years Ago
      This is not a clear-cut improvement.

      Positives (over the inline 6's) include potentially better fuel econ, lighter weight in the nose (to the improvement of handling) more low end torque, improved crash safety, lower cost for an entry model (doubtful, as this IS BMW after all...)

      Negatives are equally numerous: loss of characteristic inline 6 smoothness, and sound. Potential for negligible real-world economy improvements, further diminishment of "classic" BMW naturally aspirated character, likely cost to be similar to outgoing 6 cylinder models (due to initial R&D and development), etc.

      I'm in the pro camp for this engine, I just hope BMW builds a car that highlights its potential right away: low weight, telepathic handling and timelessly styled.
        • 3 Years Ago
        I'm in violent agreement with both of these posts. In America, BMW has long been known for smooth, great sounding, naturall balanced inline 6s. That is a major part of the soul of the BMW brand.

        If BMW wants to offer the 2.0T as the entry level engine to replace 80% of the inline 6s for people who don't care, that's fine, but if BMW doesn't offer a naturally aspirated inline 6 in the 3 Series, they'll certinaly lose me as a customer.
        • 3 Years Ago
        I'm in the negative camp on this one, especially if this replaces / eliminates the 328i. I grew up admiring the 3-series in the 80s and 90s, largely because of the inline six, and am now on the cusp of being able to properly afford to buy a brand new one. But now they go and raise the price of entry for a six-cylinder 3-series to well over $40k for the 335i. In my opinion the inline six is the heritage of the brand and a major point of differentiation with Audi. As someone already in that family (numerous VWs including 1.8T and 2.0T Passats (I'm already familiar with a good turbo 4, thanks)), why would I bother switching? Perhaps an A4 is my next car after all.
      • 3 Years Ago
      hmmm 2011 Sonata 2.0t has 274 why cant BMW squeeze out a little more to match.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Of course it could put out more. But the question is, at what cost (drivability). The Mitsubishi and GM 2.0Ts make a ton more horsepower than the VW 2.0T, but they lacks the refinement and smooth power delivery of the VW mill. Horses for courses and all that. For a base engine instead of a performance upgrade, especially in the luxury car context, I think smooth and seamless power delivery is more important than an extra 50 horsepower.
        • 3 Years Ago
        I'll admit Hyundai is no BMW and that they BMW does not want to come to close to the output of its 6cyl. Something tells me that that engine is capable of putting out more.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Good points, wish I could afford one.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Isn't this the first time that BMW has sold 4 cyl vehicles in the last decade or so? I had a 4cyl BMW 2002 once. Great gas mileage and fast!
      • 3 Years Ago
      Pay for a BMW. Get a VW. Any *gas turbo* vehicles famed for their longevity and realiability? None.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Plenty ownders of older Volvos, Saabs, and Subarus from the 80s that still chug along will disagree with you.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Good morning, BMW. About time you woke up. I still won't buy a BMW, but will at least give it serious consideration.
      I routinely do 34 mpg highway pushing my B7 A4 2.0T at 80 mph. And if I really try (cruise control@65), I manage 37+ mpg, and that's with AC on in the summer and a full load of driver+3 passengers.

      So, welcome to the game.
        • 3 Years Ago
        You can keep your Audi with it's light steering and wishy washy handling (the S4 and S5 both felt this way). I'll keep my lowly, better handling 3.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Yes, because we all know fuel economy is what enthusiast motoring is all about.

        Indeed -- why did BMW spend all those wasted years building sweet sounding, smooth reving Inline 6s when they could have jammed a buzzy, pedestrian 2.0T in its place?

        Audi's 2.0T is a fine engine for innocuous daily transport, but it hardly gets the blood boiling. This only represents progress if you're a bean counter or an EPA hack. For those of us who care about the soul of a driver's car, this is not a day to celebrate.
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'm conflicted on this engine. I absolutely love the buttery smoothness of my 128i's straight six, but I've often wished it got better milage. I think I filled out several surveys encouraging them to bring something over with a smaller displacement. Now this turbo four seems great, but will probably lack that smoothness. I wish it was more in the form of a smaller displacement straight six.
        • 3 Years Ago
        I wish they would have brought over the 2.5 N52 engine when the 3-series was launched in '06.

        I wish BMW would have upgraded the N52 to direct injection & compact Valvetronic (basically the cylinder head of the N55)
      • 3 Years Ago
      1250 thats a new for me !
      • 3 Years Ago
      Again BMW does more... with less. Sounds like a great engine, plenty of snort to shove a 3 series around.
        • 3 Years Ago
        C'mon now Craig, I hope you don't think the 240hp version is the best Bavaria can do? And who gives a sh!t about a 260hp Cavalier anyways?

        /rollseyes
    • Load More Comments