BMW’s M division has lifted the veil of secrecy on the in-line six-cylinder engine bound for its upcoming M3 saloon and new-to-the-range M4 coupe and convertible, revealing a potent twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre direct injection petrol unit that produces an official 316kW at 7500rpm and what officials describe as “significantly more than 500Nm” of torque.
The newly developed engine, known under the internal codename S55 B30, shares its 84.0mm bore and 89.6mm stroke with BMW’s standard turbocharged 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder direct injection petrol mill, the M55 used across the German car maker’s line-up, endowing the aluminium block unit with an overall swept volume of 2979cc.
This represents a sizeable 990cc reduction on the engine BMW’s M division’s new unit replaces, the S65. The 4.0-litre V8 direct injection petrol unit, the last in an illustrious line of traditional naturally aspirated engines from BMW’s revered M division, has been resigned to the history books after just six years of service in the outgoing fourth-generation M3 coupe, saloon and convertible in a continuation of an engine downsizing program that has taken root throughout BMW M division’s line-up in recent years.
Significantly, the new S55 B30 is the smallest capacity engine to be used by the M3 since the discontinuation of the first generation model and its naturally aspirated 2.3-litre four-cylinder multi-point injected petrol unit, the S14 B23, back in 1991.
Yet despite the 25 per cent reduction in capacity and the loss of two cylinders, the new BMW M division engine delivers 7kW more than its predecessor thanks to patented induction process that is claimed to provide vastly improved levels of combustion efficiency, in the process preserving an illustrious 27 year tradition that has seen each incarnation of the M3, the ranks of which have now been reduced to a single four door saloon model alongside two door M4 coupe and cabriolets models, boast more firepower than its direct predecessor. But while the new S55 B30 develops its maximum power of 316kW at 7500rpm, the old S65’s 309kW arrived at 8200rpm.
Official figures are not yet being made available but the overall footprint is significantly larger than that of either the standard 3- or 4-series, requiring the use of widened fender panels to house forged aluminium wheels of up to 19 inch diameter shod with 255/35 ZR 19 front and 275/35 ZR19 rear Michelin Pilot Super Sport tyres. The steering is an electro-mechanical system, which is a first for the M3. “Our mission is to provide the best electro-mechanical steering. There is no doubt: it is better than the hydraulic system of the the old M3,” boasts Biermann.
As with the latest M5, the driver can choose between three different driving modes: efficiency, sport and sport Plus. Each mode provides differing mapping characteristics for the steering, throttle, gearbox (on models equipped with the optional seven-speed dual clutch unit) differential and threshold of both the traction and stability control systems. The damping also boasts three modes: comfort, sport and sport plus.
Meanwhile, BMW has revealed both the new M3 saloon and M4 coupe will a carbon fibre reinforced roof panel. The bonnet and front fenders are aluminium pressings with the doors and rear fenders made of steel.
Source - news.drive.com.au
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