BMW 3-Series

BMW 3 Series to feature three cylinders

BMW may be looking into giving old school brand enthusiasts yet another heart attack with their latest of announcements.

It would seem like the future of the BMW 3 Series, not sure when but it’s coming up next, would find us looking at a three cylinder engine underneath.

F30 BMW 3 Series

F30 BMW 3 Series

We’re not looking at some rumor or some spoof announcement like the sort we’re getting from Lamborghini, it’s the real deal.

The news comes from BMW’s engine development boss, Peter Nefischer. In an interview for Whatcar he leaked the information in a rather clear way. This wasn’t something accidental.

This probably means that BMW is well into the development of the new engine which will, apparently, be different from the three cylinder in the i8.

F30 BMW 3 Series

F30 BMW 3 Series

That said, the development part isn’t a surprise since the estimates for the new three cylinder powerplant finding way under the bonnet of the 3 Series come in at around two years time.

As we’ve gotten used to lately, in the pursuit of efficiency, the engines are downsized. In the pursuit of keeping performance levels high, forced induction will be employed.

The new three-pot BMW plans to stick in the 3 Series will be turbocharged, just like the rest of the engines under its bonnet.

F30 BMW 3 Series

F30 BMW 3 Series

Figures on fuel economy, pricing and such haven’t even been mentioned but what I suppose you should have in mind is the sort of stuff the BMW 316i offered not that long ago.

It would be very interesting to see what kind of turbocharging method BMW will use for their three cylinder engine since they will want to make it as smooth as possible.


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  1. I’m not very excited about this… I understand the need for ‘fuel efficiency’ but *for me* a car has at least 4 cylinders. These cars will have more and more turbo’s and electronic gizmos with higher risk of malfunction. :/

  2. Feelin’ your pain. A little bit of me died when the 3.0 liter inline six gave in to natural aspiration and got a turbocharger.

    Once you make such concessions, it’s easy to open the gate for many others.

    As you’d imagine, I’m not thrilled about this three pot turbo engine, but if it means BMW will keep on selling cars like hot cakes, they’ll have plenty of money to smooth out the rough edges in the big powerplants we love so much.

    Reliability isn’t necessarily related to a simple engine. These days construction techniques and materials have been refined to a point where it’s acceptable to have a turbocharger and electroinc gizmos in the long run.

  3. I’m not against turbo engines of course. I’m sure that BMW will make a good job as usual but I prefer the ‘real car’ feeling. 🙂 As you mentioned, the inline six OR the sound of the V8, etc. Whatever, I think that within 50 years we will lose the petrol cars anyway..

  4. 50 years is a bit too late by my mind. By then we’ll lose all sorts of thermodynamic engines, not just petrol powered ones.

    Even so, I’m not really worried about what people will be doing by then… What I care is what happens now that I’m still thrilled every time I get behind the wheel.

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