BMW Discontinuing Two Diesel Engines and Twin-Turbo V12, V8 Could Be in Trouble

BMW M760Li xDrive 10 photos
Photo: BMW
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First things first: BMW doesn’t plan on switching to batteries or hydrogen to the detriment of internal combustion anytime soon. Diesel engines will be relevant for the Bavarian automaker “for at least another 20 years” according to research and development boss Klaus Froehlich, while gasoline engines will soldier on for 30 years or thereabouts.
Speaking to the European edition of Automotive News, the BMW official has also acknowledged that some powerplants have to go. The most obvious choice is the N74, a family of V12 engines introduced in 2008 and currently employed by a handful of models. In addition to the M760i and M760Li with xDrive, Rolls-Royce also employs this dinosaur of a mill in pretty much all of the automaker’s lineup.

The N74 in the 7 Series will survive until 2023, which means that AMG’s loss will be BMW’s gain in the short term. Beyond that, heaven only knows if the V12 will ever come back to life.

Heading on over to turbo diesel realm, the 1.5-liter in the MINI and front-driven BMW models will be discontinued alongside the inline-six engine with a quad-turbo arrangement. Fret not, however, because the Bavarians will continue to develop four- and six-cylinder diesels – either as standalone units or with a little electrical assistance.

When asked about “big gasoline engines such as the V8 and V12,” Froehlich said that the eight-cylinder option is a bit of a headache in light of future emissions standards. Nevertheless, the head honcho of R&D finds it “difficult to create a strong business case to keep it alive given that we have a six-cylinder plug-in hybrid that delivers 441 kW (600 horsepower) and enough torque to destroy many transmissions.” What does it mean, though?

As everyone who has driven an M5 would tell you, the S63 still is a relevant engine despite its old age. An evolution of the S63 – bearing the S68 codename – will be introduced in a matter of time according to sources close to BMW, displacing 4.0 liters instead of 4.4 to please Chinese authorities and a few other markets where this matters.
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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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