BMW Group Innovation Day 2012: Efficient Dynamics
Since 2007, the BMW Group has had an extremely successful concept for the reduction of fuel consumption and emissions at its disposal - the Efficient Dynamics development strategy. Efficient Dynamics is an integral part of all areas of vehicle development. Simultaneously, the BMW Group is relentlessly driving forward the electrification of its power units of its future vehicles. However, in the medium term, the internal combustion engine will remain the underlying technology, and thus the standard drive unit, for future series of volume production vehicles. The goal is to continuously reduce the fuel consumption of all the BMW Group's vehicles.
Completely new family of the BMW Group's Efficient Dynamics engines featuring BMW TwinPower Turbo technology
Against this background, the BMW Group decided to develop a completely new family of engines. On the one hand, the existing high-tech concept of TwinPower Turbo technology will be used more effectively while on the other hand, the new engine family will enable an unsurpassed degree of commonality. The latest member of this new generation of engines is an advanced 1.5 litre TwinPower Turbo engine, which will be introduced next year.
Today, BMW TwinPower Turbo technology is used in petrol and diesel engines of various powers and capacities. These engines enjoy the highest level of recognition, acclaimed by both customers and the world of professionals. Numerous prizes and awards testify to this fact. Recent examples include the four-cylinder petrol unit available in 1.6 and 2.0 litres, as well as the top-of-the-line, six-cylinder diesel power unit, the 3.0 litre diesel with Tri-Turbo charging.
BMW TwinPower Turbo technology combines variable load control, direct fuel injection and turbo charging, specifically configured to suit each individual engine. Thus both efficiency and dynamics are increased in equal measure. An important feature of the petrol engines is the VALVETRONIC variable valve control system. Comparable to a highly efficient dimming system, it works almost entirely without losses, controlling all of the cylinders simultaneously and ensuring that extremely low fuel consumption and emission values are achieved. In addition to the gains in efficiency, it also noticeably improves the responsiveness of the engine.
With the introduction of the new Efficient Dynamics family of engines, TwinPower Turbo technology has become the common feature uniting all of the brand's petrol and diesel engines. The high degree of commonality, a term which refers to the large number of identical components within the engine family, ensures ongoing, sustainable development of the full range of power units. In addition, the BMW Group has now created the conditions necessary to be able to offer even more body derivatives in future. The new engine concept will allow considerable savings to be made in development, integration and production, at an increased level of quality.
The new family of engines is based upon optimized cylinder modules, each with a capacity of about 500 cc, designed for thermodynamic efficiency, smooth, quiet operation and high-enjoyment - perfect for powering passenger vehicles. With the new three, four and six-cylinder engines, the BMW Group provides a range of engine capacities from 1.5 to 3.0 litres, thus adequately servicing a model portfolio consisting of very large volumes.
This new family of engines celebrates its premiere with a turbocharged three-cylinder engine of 1.5 litres. The compact in-line engine has the same genes as the six-cylinder and impresses with its remarkable smoothness.
The BMW Group has rounded out its range of engines in a unique way, adding a member at the bottom of the hierarchy. The new modular engine system exhibits a high degree of commonality between the petrol and diesel engines. Overall, the number of identical parts used in engines powered by the same type of fuel climbs to 60 percent, while the level of structural similarities between petrol and diesel engines is around 40%. Because in future, petrol and diesel engines will be produced on the same production line for the first time, the production process itself will be significantly more flexible.
Predictive capabilities optimize the vehicle
In addition to optimizing individual components, the BMW Group is always exploring other avenues to reduce fuel consumption and emission levels, and to increase the dynamics of the vehicles. One example of this is forecasting the driving conditions ahead. Just like an experienced driver traveling along a stretch of road he knows very well, this technology can optimize the functionality and operational strategies of the vehicle if it is informed of the driving situation it is about to encounter. This information is provided by the vehicle's onboard electronics from large amounts of sensor data and now also by the navigation system. This allows the great potential of the Efficient Dynamics combined functionality to be put to even better use. Some examples of these technologies, of great benefit to the customer, are the Predictive Power Management system and the coasting feature, with the Foresight Assistant.
The automatic transmission is given the gift of sight
The new Predictive Power Management system enables the automatic transmission to "foresee" the route ahead. The electronics utilize data pertaining to the route, drawn from the navigation system, to optimize the transmission control enabling it to deal with the driving conditions ahead. The transmission is aware of a bend in the road, even before the driver has taken his foot off the accelerator, and automatically selects the right gear. The vehicle can negotiate the bend under a light load and accelerate out of it far better.
ECO PRO mode with Foresight Assistant
The new Predictive Power Management system also supports an extremely economical driving style when ECO PRO mode is selected. The Foresight Assistant makes the driver aware of deceleration situations in good time, in order to avoid inefficient braking maneuvers and to reduce fuel consumption. Other efficiency measures include coasting, where the engine is decoupled from the powertrain, and the ECO PRO Route feature, which calculates the most fuel-efficient route for the driver.
Efficient Dynamics saves energy throughout the vehicle
Under the general heading of "Intelligent Energy Management", technicians at the BMW Group are working on a variety of individual solutions that reduce energy consumption. In battery electric vehicles (BEVs) or cars using plug-in hybrid technology (PHEVs), every kilowatt of stored energy (in this case as electricity in the battery) that can be saved by selectively operating ancillary systems, will be available to the electric motor for propelling the vehicle. Some of these techniques for reducing energy consumption are also applicable to vehicles with conventional internal combustion engines.
The heat pump: heating energy savings of around 50 percent
A particular challenge in BEVs and PHEVs is the efficient delivery of the required heating capacity to heat the passenger compartment. If only energy from the battery were to be used for heating, this drain of electrical energy would greatly limit the range of the vehicle. By using a heat pump in these types of vehicle, around 50 percent of this electrical energy or even more can be saved, depending on driving conditions. The extension of range which is gained can be up to 30 percent, when the outside temperature is at freezing point, depending on the driving cycle.
Infrared heating surfaces emit "healthy" radiant heat
Conventional heaters and air conditioners today heat the air inside the vehicle, which then transfers its heat to the driver and passengers. In contrast, in systems employing infrared heating surfaces, energy is converted into infrared radiation, which then warms the occupants' bodies directly. The heating effect is operational only one minute after the system is switched on. In addition, the heat generated by infrared heating surfaces is distributed without any need for drafts of air and is completely silent. In the field of vehicle heating systems, modern infrared heating surfaces are a new solution that not only promotes low power consumption but also provides a noticeable improvement in the passengers' level of comfort. Particularly when used in battery electric vehicles (BEVs), which are purely electrically-driven, in future infrared heating surfaces will yield gains in efficiency, since the electrical energy will be used to directly warm the occupants. Apart from rapidly warming the passengers, infrared heating surfaces can be used as an additional feature to create an agreeable, cozy climate within the vehicle. Separate regulated circuits, analogous to seat heating, with which the occupants can individually set their own degree of comfort are another possibility. Since each passenger can be provided with his own individual heating system, it is also possible to selectively heat only those seats that are occupied and thus reduce energy consumption.
The new second-generation air vent control is variable
Back in 2003, the air vent control was already being fitted as standard equipment to several models, as a part of the Efficient Dynamics strategy. The system, which is positioned between the cooling air intake and the radiator, operates with movable slats, which can be closed if necessary, thereby improving the aerodynamics of the vehicle. With the second generation of this technology, a number of positions can be set in order to better control the flow of cooling air in an even more flexible, demand-controlled manner. The upper air slats are normally closed and when in this position make the largest contribution to a reduction in aerodynamic drag. Overall, the air vent control system reduces the drag coefficient cW by 0.015.
Optimizing the operating temperature of an internal combustion engine
In conjunction with the navigation system, predictive thermal management helps maintain the temperature balance within the engine, by means of predictive thermal conditioning of the coolant. The engine's power delivery is improved and thermal operational reliability is further optimized.
Energy management is an area of growing importance
Intelligent Energy Management is an integral part of the BMW Group's Efficient Dynamics strategy. The goal of saving energy in all of the vehicle designs and the details of all of the automotive components has high priority, both now and in future.
Since the spring of 2007, the BMW Group has had the most comprehensive concept for the consistent reduction of fuel consumption and emissions at its disposal - the Efficient Dynamics development strategy. As the world's most successful manufacturer of premium automobiles, BMW has taken the lead in introducing innovative technologies that support the responsible use of natural resources. Back in 2000, sustainability was defined as a key corporate policy. Since then, the Efficient Dynamics strategy has become a guiding principle in all areas of vehicle development.
The pillars of this development strategy include fuel-efficient combustion engines and transmissions delivering a particularly high level of efficiency, the continuing development of the BMW ActiveHybrid technology, innovative concepts for electro mobility as well as intelligent lightweight engineering and optimized aerodynamics. At an early stage, the BMW Group placed great confidence in its pioneering technical innovations and has now developed into the world's most sustainable automobile enterprise. The goal is to reduce the consumption and emissions of every new model compared to its predecessor, while at the same time delivering increased performance.
The state-of-the-art petrol and diesel engines, equipped with BMW TwinPower Turbo technology, optimized efficiency transmissions, ancillary equipment controlled on an "as needed" basis and the introduction of the Auto Start Stop feature - also available in vehicles with automatic transmissions - are at the heart of the solutions BMW provides, raising overall efficiency to new heights. In addition, measures such as brake energy regeneration, air vent control, gear shift indicator, electric power steering, as well as reduced rolling resistance tyres, contribute to reducing fuel consumption even further.
Thanks to Efficient Dynamics, vehicles bearing the BMW and MINI badges set the standard in terms of reduced fuel consumption across the world for premium segment vehicles. At the European level, fleet consumption was reduced by significantly more than 25 percent between 1995 and 2008. The BMW Group is the only manufacturer to not only have met the self-imposed commitment made by the Association of European Automobile Manufacturers (ACEA) back then, but also to have exceeded it.
In total, over the last 15 years the BMW Group has reduced the CO2 emissions of its European new vehicle fleet by approximately 30 percent. At the beginning of 2012, the range of BMW and MINI models consisted of 73 vehicles with CO2 emissions of no more than 140 grams per kilometer, including 30 BMW models with emissions not exceeding 120 grams per kilometer (07/2012).
The BMW Group has announced that it intends to reduce CO2 emissions worldwide by a further 25 percent by the year 2020.
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