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F10 / F11 (2011 - Current)
The new chapter in the highly successful story of the BMW 5 Series Sedan (F10) and wagon (F11)

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  #26  
Old 08-09-2011, 03:53 PM
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I think BMW are making a mistake in giving up the venerable and perfected-by-BMW style N/A Inline 6. Seems the motor is super smooth, engaging to drive, and gets great MPG.

Giving the 5-Series a 4-Banger as an entry level motor diminishes the cars overall value IMO, although, in Europe, all Luxury Cars are usually equipped with 4-Bangers. However, they are also used as Taxis, whereas in the U.S, they need to maintain some sort of exotic image to go along with the prestigiousness. I for one hope that M-B doesn't introduce a 4-Banger into the U.S Market E-Class (probably inevitable at some point), and with their entry model having over 300 HP starting with 2012 MY's, that gives them a "perception advantage" right there.
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  #27  
Old 08-09-2011, 03:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raleedy View Post
For those interested, there are recently published road tests of the X1 with the N20 engine. AMS thought it was ok, but noticeably higher NVH than the N52. It's a big disappointment that BMW is leaving behind its most significant competitive advantage, at least for the US market. I can't imagine that the 3 series will be improved by the substitution of an engine that is equivalent to what most of the competition (all the way down to Hyundai) offers.
I think the problem long term for BMW is fuel economy requirements - which is why they are switching to turbos. Unfortunately, in the switch you loose some of the BMW character traits.
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  #28  
Old 08-09-2011, 05:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteVTEC View Post
Let me sum up:

F10/N55/8AT: No intake sound, no exhaust sound, no nothing. Practically had to look at the tach to know what the engine was doing. Also the 8AT felt way too shifty to me and never seemed to want to settle down. Any little maneuver and it was always hunting for gears. Didn't like it. With as much torque as the N55 has, it ought to just stick with whatever gear it's in and torque itself away rather than constantly shifting. The whole driving experience felt rather "numb" and uninteresting. Not what I was expecting.
I had an '08 335i 6MT and never considered the 528i. I would disagree with you though about the so-called "hunting" of the 8AT with the N55. Rather than hunting, I would characterize it as highly responsive, downshifts at slight throttle increases. This is fantastic, IMO, I can't stand waiting for an AT to finally decide to downshift. I went from 2 BMW 6MT's and when I test drove the 535i 8AT, I was all smiles just pulling out of the dealer's lot. The reason I won't agree with "hunting" is that that term typically means you're moving up a hill, it downshifts. A second later upshifts, back and forth. Even in D mode the gears hold long enough under throttle pressure to avoid the too-soon upshift. Sounds like you didn't even try DS mode -- that will hold each gear longer into the higher rpm level and will result in overall less shifting. For me, the 8AT in my 535i is the best tranny I've ever driven, again, instantaneous, multiple-gear downshifts -- yes!

I think many of us are "preset" to like one over the other, including me. The vast torque and overall responsiveness of the 8AT/N55 make it one fun drive.
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  #29  
Old 08-09-2011, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by markl53 View Post
I think many of us are "preset" to like one over the other, including me. The vast torque and overall responsiveness of the 8AT/N55 make it one fun drive.
100% agree.
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  #30  
Old 08-10-2011, 06:24 AM
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Originally Posted by markl53 View Post
I had an '08 335i 6MT and never considered the 528i. I would disagree with you though about the so-called "hunting" of the 8AT with the N55. Rather than hunting, I would characterize it as highly responsive, downshifts at slight throttle increases. This is fantastic, IMO, I can't stand waiting for an AT to finally decide to downshift. I went from 2 BMW 6MT's and when I test drove the 535i 8AT, I was all smiles just pulling out of the dealer's lot. The reason I won't agree with "hunting" is that that term typically means you're moving up a hill, it downshifts. A second later upshifts, back and forth. Even in D mode the gears hold long enough under throttle pressure to avoid the too-soon upshift. Sounds like you didn't even try DS mode -- that will hold each gear longer into the higher rpm level and will result in overall less shifting. For me, the 8AT in my 535i is the best tranny I've ever driven, again, instantaneous, multiple-gear downshifts -- yes!

I think many of us are "preset" to like one over the other, including me. The vast torque and overall responsiveness of the 8AT/N55 make it one fun drive.
Maybe a better term is "shift busyness". It felt too busy to me, and I simply didn't like it. I already have a car that's programmed with hyper-responsive downshifts, and while I loved that at first having come from a manual car, eventually it wore on me because it simply wouldn't settle down ever, and now I can't even stand to drive the car. It has other drive issues too, but that's a big part of it. I felt the 535i/8AT setup doing something similar and was turned off. The 335i/6AT setup will stay nice and settled in D mode even with a fair amount of throttle variance, which I like for cruising since it gives a nice smooth ride and doesn't jerk you around. The N55 has plenty of torque for maneuvering power in the upper gears without constantly needing downshifts, and that's better for fuel economy too. If I want hyper-responsive downshifts at any little throttle position change that's what DS mode is for, and that's how the ZF6AT in the 3er seems to be setup. A nice smooth ride without too many shifts in D, and "hyper mode" in DS.

Anyways I did like the 8AT in the N52 528i, just not in the 535i.
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  #31  
Old 08-10-2011, 06:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raleedy View Post
For those interested, there are recently published road tests of the X1 with the N20 engine. AMS thought it was ok, but noticeably higher NVH than the N52. It's a big disappointment that BMW is leaving behind its most significant competitive advantage, at least for the US market. I can't imagine that the 3 series will be improved by the substitution of an engine that is equivalent to what most of the competition (all the way down to Hyundai) offers.
Unfortunately, I'd be willing to bet that the vast majority of BMW customers don't even know what an Inline-6 engine is and what makes them special. And I'm also guessing that BMW marketing knows this too, which is why they're subbing in this N20 in place of the N52. I have no problem with the engine's existance and understand that BMW might even "need" the engine to survive in a harsh regulatory environment especially in other countries, but just think it's a shame that they're dropping such a sweet and engaging to drive engine for a stinking 4-banger here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by K-A View Post
I think BMW are making a mistake in giving up the venerable and perfected-by-BMW style N/A Inline 6. Seems the motor is super smooth, engaging to drive, and gets great MPG.

Giving the 5-Series a 4-Banger as an entry level motor diminishes the cars overall value IMO, although, in Europe, all Luxury Cars are usually equipped with 4-Bangers. However, they are also used as Taxis, whereas in the U.S, they need to maintain some sort of exotic image to go along with the prestigiousness. I for one hope that M-B doesn't introduce a 4-Banger into the U.S Market E-Class (probably inevitable at some point), and with their entry model having over 300 HP starting with 2012 MY's, that gives them a "perception advantage" right there.
I don't understand why they couldn't have given us a "525i" with this N20 and maybe 220-230hp, an uptuned N53 530i for those that love the NA-I6 in full Euro spec 272hp/230tq, a 535i with the N55 cranked up to about 320hp for a little more 'horsepower marketing' separation, and then the V8 and M models. Let people decide what they want. There's zillions of choices in other markets. Does it really cost that much to certify powertrain combos for sale here in the U.S.??
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  #32  
Old 08-10-2011, 01:16 PM
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I personally don't think people in the market for a 5 series are willing to accept a 4 cylinder engine. I think it'll work well on the 3, the Z4 and other smaller cars, but not a 5.

If greater fuel efficiency was the goal, I think they might have been wiser to bring in the 530d or something along those lines.

Interestingly, Audi is also bringing in the 4 cylinder motor for the 2012 A6. Could Merc be far behind with a 1.8 liter E class?
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  #33  
Old 08-10-2011, 01:19 PM
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Fine, but why a 4 cylinder petrol motors instead of 6 cylinder diesels?

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I think the problem long term for BMW is fuel economy requirements - which is why they are switching to turbos. Unfortunately, in the switch you loose some of the BMW character traits.
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  #34  
Old 08-10-2011, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by SteVTEC View Post
I don't understand why they couldn't have given us a "525i" with this N20 and maybe 220-230hp, an uptuned N53 530i for those that love the NA-I6 in full Euro spec 272hp/230tq, a 535i with the N55 cranked up to about 320hp for a little more 'horsepower marketing' separation, and then the V8 and M models. Let people decide what they want. There's zillions of choices in other markets. Does it really cost that much to certify powertrain combos for sale here in the U.S.??
My thought exactly. Let's bring the engine from 2006 330i with 255hp. Some of us will miss the induction noise on i6 NA.

It does not matter how great 4-cylinder engine is, it will not give us enough "soul" compared to I6 NA.
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  #35  
Old 08-10-2011, 02:47 PM
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Fine, but why a 4 cylinder petrol motors instead of 6 cylinder diesels?
I really think that in addition to fuel economy it is also BMW simplifying the number of engines it builds. Since this engine is used accross the range, they can better utilize economies of scale.

I really wish that BMW would put a 6 cylinder diesel into the 5 series. However, from what I recall reading, aren't diesels a bit more expensive to build (at least most manufacturers have a slight surcharge for a diesel engine). I wish BMW would offer the 535 diesel in X-drive or even better the new 50d. For those really fuel economy minded, BMW should offer the 520 diesel.
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  #36  
Old 08-10-2011, 02:49 PM
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I have one of those engines -- in my 2007 530i. It's sweet -- but it is quite a gas hog in the city.

Still the new (2011) 528i has an EPA rating of 22 mpg, and there are other high-efficiency options available including the diesels.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bodonx View Post
My thought exactly. Let's bring the engine from 2006 330i with 255hp. Some of us will miss the induction noise on i6 NA.

It does not matter how great 4-cylinder engine is, it will not give us enough "soul" compared to I6 NA.
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  #37  
Old 08-10-2011, 06:47 PM
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I really wish that BMW would put a 6 cylinder diesel into the 5 series. However, from what I recall reading, aren't diesels a bit more expensive to build (at least most manufacturers have a slight surcharge for a diesel engine). I wish BMW would offer the 535 diesel in X-drive or even better the new 50d. For those really fuel economy minded, BMW should offer the 520 diesel.
+1 to all that.

BMW is dropping something great, the NA Inline-6, and replacing it with a yucky sounding and feeling no matter how good it is 4-cylinder all for what, a pathetic 1-2 mpg improvement? The 520d or 525d would be perfect. 525d does 0-60 in about 7 seconds which is enough, and would probably get on the order of 40+ mpg on US highway EPA tests. 40+!!!!!!! Not 33 or whatever. Whooptie-do!

The technology exists to bring diesels here to the U.S. mainstream and meet all emissions regs, so it's sad that there's still such a tiny selection. Diesels are more expensive than naturally aspirated petrol engines by a few grand, but not any more expensive than turbo petrols. There really isn't a huge difference in price between gas/petrol and diesel either. Whatever extra they'd cost, it would easily pay for itself within just 2 years (calculated based on a Benz E320 Bluetec a year or two ago including gas vs diesel price differentials)
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  #38  
Old 08-11-2011, 12:43 AM
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Unfortunately, I'd be willing to bet that the vast majority of BMW customers don't even know what an Inline-6 engine is and what makes them special. And I'm also guessing that BMW marketing knows this too, which is why they're subbing in this N20 in place of the N52. I have no problem with the engine's existance and understand that BMW might even "need" the engine to survive in a harsh regulatory environment especially in other countries, but just think it's a shame that they're dropping such a sweet and engaging to drive engine for a stinking 4-banger here.


I don't understand why they couldn't have given us a "525i" with this N20 and maybe 220-230hp, an uptuned N53 530i for those that love the NA-I6 in full Euro spec 272hp/230tq, a 535i with the N55 cranked up to about 320hp for a little more 'horsepower marketing' separation, and then the V8 and M models. Let people decide what they want. There's zillions of choices in other markets. Does it really cost that much to certify powertrain combos for sale here in the U.S.??
Sometimes in threads on this forum US people give the impression not really knowing what is going on in the world around them.
It is in my book that in 10 years time all of you over there will have stopped driving unrealistic overpowered cars. If it is not while technic advances make them dinosaurs, it will be enviromentally driven or out of pure economic pressure on you. With the raid your road system seems to collapse it might be even impossable to find a stretch of tarmac to use these cars on. Normally aspirated cars with to many cilinders ... They are being beaten by other sytems. It is called progress which is a good thing. Although the steam engine had lots of torque at low refs I am happy these are no longer in use. Stop whining about the technic from the sixties and seventies. Prepare for using newly developed technics and keep the US in front of the world!

Last edited by Sophisto; 08-12-2011 at 03:31 PM.
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  #39  
Old 08-11-2011, 06:19 AM
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Comparing the N52/N53, with their magnesium alloy blocks, double-VANOS valve timing, direct injection (N53), and "throttleless" Valvetronic systems to a steam engine and 60's/70's technologies, oh please!!

I'm perfectly aware of what's going on in the world, and did you not just see my "whining" and agreement about why BMW won't bring a 520d or 525d or any 5er diesel here? If there's going to be a 4-cylinder engine in a 5er here, at least make it a good one that gets awesome fuel mileage like 40+ highway like a diesel could, and not the pathetic 1-2 mpg increase the N20 will get over an N52/N53. That's all.

A turbo petrol 4-banger getting a whole 33/34 mpg highway at the expense of the N52/N53 engines:

A turbodiesel 4-banger getting 40+ mpg highway at the expense of the N52/N53 engines, now your'e talking!
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  #40  
Old 08-11-2011, 06:49 AM
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Quote:
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Sometimes in threads on this forum US people give the impression not rally knowing what is going on in the world around them.
It is in my book that in 10 years time all of you overthere will have stopped driving unrealistic overpowered cars. If it is not while technic advances make them dinosaurs, it will be enviromentally driven or out of pure economic pressure on you. With the raid your road system seems to collapse it might be even impossable to find a stretch of tarmac to use these cars on. Normally aspirated cars with to many cilinders ... They are being beaten by other sytems. It is called progress which is a good thing. Although the steam engine had lots of torque at low refs I am happy these are no longer in use. Stop whining about the technic from the sixties and seventies. Prepare for using newly develloped technics and keep the US in front of the world!
The cars in the US might be overpowered. However, I wonder if they would not be the same way in Europe if the government would not overtax them (tax on displacement, tax on emissions, high tax on gasoline). You have to remember the difference between Europe and the US is that in many places in Europe you can get by without a car. In the United States, there are very few place where you do not need a car. Thus, in the U.S. a car is a necessity while in Europe it is a luxury. Also, in the US a fair share of people drive long (several day long) trips in the cars - crusing at 3,500 rpm for days on end sure would get annoying - hence the preference for more powerful engines.
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  #41  
Old 08-11-2011, 10:53 AM
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There's a reason that they and the other European automakers are doing this. Not sure if it's for cost reasons, CAFE, or emissions. BMW has never in the history of the 5 series brought in a 4 cylinder engine.
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Old 08-11-2011, 11:44 AM
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There's a reason that they and the other European automakers are doing this. Not sure if it's for cost reasons, CAFE, or emissions. BMW has never in the history of the 5 series brought in a 4 cylinder engine.
I'm guessing CAFE. Although the diesels would get significantly better mileage, I'm guessing that BMW fears the take rate wouldn't be high enough on them to really put a dent in their corporate average and thus are going with the 1-2 mpg they might be able to get out of the N20 knowing it would have much higher acceptance. I think BMW has always payed CAFE penalites though, so what's the big deal? Maybe just looking to pay less in penalties?? Shrug. Their 1.5T, 2.0T, and 3.0T engines are all going to be based off of a common architecture though. The N52/53 are different, so yes probably economies of scale as well.
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Old 08-11-2011, 11:49 AM
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Are CAFE penalties based on how far the manufacturer deviates from the current requirements?
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Old 08-11-2011, 11:54 AM
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There's a reason that they and the other European automakers are doing this. Not sure if it's for cost reasons, CAFE, or emissions.
"JRC Auto News

BMW is downsizing the engine in the 2012 model 528i, but increasing performance and fuel economy. The current 3.0-liter in-line six-cylinder engine is being replaced with a new TwinPower Turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. Like the companys latest TwinPower Turbo 3.0-liter turbo inline-6, which is used in the 535i, the new 2.0-liter engine will combine high-pressure direct-injection and BMWs Valvetronic intake control (hence the name: TwinPower) with a forced induction system consisting of a single twin-scroll turbocharger. The new engine is mated to BMWs newest eight-speed automatic transmission. The new 528i accelerates from 0-60 mph in 6.2 seconds, 0.4 seconds quicker than the 2011 model, and will deliver up 15 percent better fuel efficiency (final EPA results are pending). The BMW 528i will also feature Engine Auto Start/Stop. This feature switches off the engine when the car is stationary at traffic lights or in slow-moving traffic in order to minimize idling. The xDrive all-wheel drive system is offered as an option for the first time, too, when the new model arrives at U.S. dealership in Fall 2011"



We'll find out how great it is after it's been in service for a year or two. Let's hope it doesn't have the turbo-related problems of some of the currently produced models.
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Old 08-11-2011, 01:59 PM
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While American buyers may not understand much about cars, but they do understand what 4 cylinders means. Unless this engine is something miraculous, I just don't see 5 Series buyers going for it, especially given that the competition coming out of Japan is offering more cylinders.

It reminds me of the early 80s when Cadillac introduced the V8-6-4 engine. It was a down-sized idea for down-sized times, and it ultimately failed.
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  #46  
Old 08-12-2011, 11:58 AM
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raleedy raleedy is offline
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If you want a turbo 4, a Hyundai Sonata is a much better deal for the money.
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Old 08-12-2011, 09:57 PM
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SteVTEC SteVTEC is offline
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So have there been any road tests of the F10 with the N20 yet? I just googled for 2012 BMW 528i road test and all I found were just press release snippets.
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  #48  
Old 08-15-2011, 09:09 PM
e46_325xi e46_325xi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteVTEC View Post
So have there been any road tests of the F10 with the N20 yet? I just googled for 2012 BMW 528i road test and all I found were just press release snippets.
Good point. I find it surprising that the 4 cylinder cars are arriving stateside for sale in a month and no auto mag/site has yet posted a road test review. My dealer said they could take an order now for delivery in october.
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Old 08-15-2011, 09:16 PM
Robert A Robert A is offline
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There have been reviews of the X1 with the 4 cyl.
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Current
2014 535d, M Sport, Space Gray/Mocha Nappa
Prior
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2001 530i, Orient Blue/Beige, 5MT
1994 325is, White/Black 5MT
1984 325e, White/Black 5MT
1983 318i, Delphin/Beige 4MT
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Old 08-15-2011, 09:24 PM
Rafa Rafa is offline
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Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
There have been reviews of the X1 with the 4 cyl.
Could you please post a link, if possible?
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