BMW will be making a return to four-cylinder engines on U.S. shores soon. It has officially announced that we will receive the 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four later this year.
The new engine is based on BMW’s turbocharged inline-six found across its model line under the “35i” badge. The smaller four is rated at 240 horsepower at 5000 rpm and 260 pound-feet coming as early as 1250 rpm, offering more power and 30 percent more torque that the 3.0-liter inline-six it is replacing. It is also lighter and more compact than the outgoing six, thanks to an all-aluminum crankcase.One twin-scroll turbo forces induction into the little four-banger and allows for low exhaust back pressure at lower rpms, and BMW claims that this setup will help to eliminate turbo lag.
As we have previously reported, the new engine will most likely be seen first this fall in the Z4 roadster, and we can guess that most -- if not all -- of BMW’s “28i” models with the old inline-six will probably receive the turbo-four in its place going forward. We hope that the turbocharger will help to make up for lost displacement in terms of power output, but we’re also looking forward to potential gains realized at the pump. BMW has yet to dish any estimated EPA mpg figures; however, in the Z4, the 3.0-liter six is rated at 18/28 city/highway mpg for both the automatic and manual transmissions. We expect the new, smaller engine to easily top those numbers.
BMW promises further application and timing information for the U.S.-spec four-cylinder to emerge at a later date, although our source at BMW told us that it will not be in the X1 small SUV when it launches later this year. Until then, stay with Automobile Magazine/ Motor Trend for the latest news on BMW’s new four-banger.