BMW is working on a four-wheel-drive version of new M5

Article by Christian Andrei, on May 3, 2011

BMW revealed that a four-wheel-drive version of the new M5 is in the works. Expected to rival the Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG, BMW’s version features a 552bhp twin-turbocharged V8 motor and a typically conservative body kit with a set of ominous-looking 20in wheels. BMW doesn’t want to share much about the car just yet but officials have acknowledged that there is a plan to build a four-wheel-drive version of the M5.

But according to insiders, BMW is thinking about building a long-wheelbase version of the car particularly for the Chinese market. One source said that the long-wheelbase platform is reserved for standard versions of the 5-series that’s offered in China.

He said that are no current plans for an M5 on this structure. The new M5 is set to be delivered in the UK in April 2012, after the unveiling of the definitive production version at the Frankfurt motor show in late 2011.

The new M5 features greater straight-line performance than its predecessor while offering an amazing 25% reduction in fuel consumption. These gains are partly the result of the adoption of a Getrag-engineered seven-speed, dual-clutch gearbox and a series of other measures from BMW’s Efficient Dynamics portfolio such as brake energy recuperation, automatic stop-start, and on-demand ancillary functions for the water pump.

Displayed on the BMW M5 are a number of unique features but these have an attractive and modern twist added to the model. This is applicable not just to engine technology but also to the fifth generation vehicle concept. Like the previous models, the BMW M5 delivers outstanding dynamics and this is all due to the turbocharged engine. With the use of the 4.4-liter V8 engine and the M TwinPower Turbo technology, this brings in a new passion when it comes to the powerful thrusts that are present even when the vehicle is running at higher rev ranges.

This is what the M models are in fact known for. Maximum output of the engine is at 412 kW/560 hp, coming in between 6,000 to 7,000 rpm. Meanwhile peak torque is at 680 Nm (502 lb-ft), available from 1,500 and up to 5,750 rpm. Once it reaches 7,200 rpm though, the rev limiter kicks in. Since the rev band is able to deliver dynamic acceleration from the time the car reaches maximum torque and once the maximum output becomes available, this means that its width had to be three times as wide when compared to the previous unit.

In fact, the drive unit inside the M5 delivers the highest output produced even for an M car. Even then, it continues to give the right balance when it comes to fuel consumption and performance. When compared to the previous drive unit, the new engine inside the M5 offers output at 10% higher with torque also higher by more than 30%. At the same time, both the fuel consumption and the CO2 emissions have been lowered by at least 30%.

This shows advancement in efficiency and driving dynamics. Clearly, the M5 is a good example of a high-performance premium saloon. On the center console is a button that the driver can use to adjust the performance characteristics of engine in order to meet the current condition or the driver’s very own preferences. Three modes are available which are "Efficient", "Sport" and the "Sport Plus."

The reason why the M5 has that unbeatable efficiency and maximum output is owed mainly to the unequalled development expertise and racing knowledge. The engine that powers the M5 comes with the M TwinPower Turbo package which includes features that clearly originated from motor racing. It even has innovations that were a result of the thorough implementation of the brand’s Efficient Dynamics strategy. The turbocharging system meanwhile is grounded on what is known as the Twin Scroll Twin Turbo principle. There is also the VALVETRONIC variable valve control, petrol High Precision Injection direct injection, and cross-bank exhaust manifolds.

A very powerful cooling system was even added to the engine. This particular mix of features has no equal in the world and it results in an exclusive set of performance characteristics that are to be expected from an M model. It also offers impressive torque and instantaneous responses which are a result of the low revs and which are then maintained once the engine speed enters the higher ranges.

With the turbochargers placed in the V-shaped space that is between the cross-bank exhaust manifold and cylinders, it gives out a concentrated power. Specifically, the two turbochargers are placed at an angle of 90 degrees with each other. In the same V-shaped space with the turbochargers lie the catalytic converters. This particular arrangement results in a compact construction and ensures a model-specific positioning when it comes to the intake ducts and even the exhaust ducts. By decreasing the length of the pipe and increasing the cross section, the pressure losses experienced by the engine’s exhaust side is minimized.

In addition, the catalytic converters and the combustion was placed nearer each other, it allows the former to get to its optimum operating temperature once the engine has been started. By having the cross-bank exhaust manifold, the brand’s very own and a patented one at that, this helps optimize the gas flow as it goes to the two twin-scroll turbochargers. It is composed of four different exhaust ducts that are then connected to the exhaust ports of its two combustion chambers.

One chamber can be found on the right-hand cylinder bank while the other is on the left. The combustion chamber and identical pipe lengths echo a firing sequence and thus the gas flow is channelled across its exhaust ducts under an even rhythm. In each case, two exhaust gas ducts supply each turbo as it has been channelled together before it manages to reach the turbine. The end result is that there is a steady pressure level on these two turbochargers and no counter-flow is experienced. The turbine can thus respond faster with the charge pressure continuing to be constant.

Topics: bmw, bmw m5, awd

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