Norbert Reithofer, BMW company CEO, unveiled recently the car manufacturer's intentions of phasing out diesel V8 powerplants across its range. This may sound radical but it's just a small part of the big picture where the car manufacturer intends to revise its whole engine lineup in the future.
The revered M division of BMW could also be impacted as carmakers around the world are moving towards eco-friendliness with smaller powerplants and turbochargers in the performance models of the future.
It was revealed further by BMW high ranking officials that the 4.0-liter and 5.0-liter high-rev V8 and V10 units found in the present M range will be replaced by forced-induction powerplants as early as 2010.
The new engines are most likely to come in the new M variants of the X5 and X6 performance SUVs which have been recently observed road testing in the US and Germany.
These SUVs, which were intended to compete with the Porsche Cayenne and Mercedes-Benz ML63 AMG, will receive a new twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 which comes with performance figures higher than the present 5.0-liter V10 in the M5 and M6 lineup.
Information says that horsepower can reach up to 550hp (410kW) and torque as high as 516lb-ft (700Nm) for a sprint rate of under 5.0 seconds from 0-60mph, with a maximum speed of 155mph which is electronically limited. With regards to the next generation 3- and 1-series cars, new performance M variants are set to reach the streets in the 2014 MY.
Although this is too early in the game to say for sure what powertrain choices the vehicle with come equipped with, the M3 is expected to come with a turbocharged 6-cylinder, although a turbocharged 4-cylinder that can generate in excess of 300hp (225kW) will equip the enhanced 1-series.
However, a new M5 and M6 will be opened before any of these could be available. The new M5 and M6 will come with a more potent variant of the twin-turbocharged V8 powerplant seen in the X5 and X6 M versions. BMW will also put in an automatic start-stop and brake regeneration technology in addition to turbocharging in an attempt to further cut emissions and enhance fuel economy.