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For over 70 years, BMW has employed a straight-six power unit in its cars. Why?

Because, say the engineers, the inline motor offers the optimum physical configuration for a six-cylinder.

Setting the Standard

One of BMW's greatest achievements is the construction of trend setting straight-six power units.

Compared with other engine designs, the straight-six power unit offers the optimum configuration for a six-cylinder.

The absence of free mass forces and momentum due to the perfect inner balance of this type of engine makes the configuration unbeatable.

The straight-six engine does not require balance shafts and elaborate engine mounts to overcome vibrations inherent in other designs, like the V-6.

No unwanted symptoms have to be eliminated, since the straight-six engine is perfect from the ground up.

With valve drive systems currently becoming more complex, the advantage of having only one cylinder head and only one valve drive system is becoming increasingly important in cost and performance.

Smooth and Powerful

The BMW straight-six is renowned the world over for its smooth operation.

BMW's straight-six power units have outstanding power and torque compared to the size of the engine. Gasoline/Petrol engines built by BMW can generate up to 105 hp from one liter capacity.

The free-revving characteristics of BMW sixes and the very wide useful speed range from 700 6500 rpm result from the superior level of output and torque versus engine size.

 

table

Engine Series

The following table identifies BMW 6-cylinder inline engines used through the years. Click on a highlighted link for more info.

Series

Original Model

Year

Capacity [cm3 ]

Output [bhp/rpm]

Torque [Nm/rpm]

Weight [kg]

Fuel Consumption [Nm/rpm]

M78

BMW 303

1933

1182

30/4000

68/2000

150

10.5

M328

BMW 328

1937

1971

80/4500

128/3500

160

14.5

M335

BMW 335

1939

3485

90/3500

221/2000

212

15,0

M337

BMW 501

1952

1971

65/4400

129/2000

168

12.5

M06

BMW 2500

1968

2494

150/6000

211/3700

204.5

16

M20

BMW 3.0Si

1971

2986

200/5500

272/4300

199.5

17.5

M60

BMW 320

1977

1990

122/6000

160/4000

170

9.5

M88/1

BMW M1

1978

3453

277/6500

330/5000

215

17

M102

BMW 745i

1980

3210

252/5200

380/2600

225

17

M50

BMW 520i

1989

1991

150/5900

190/4700

194

9.8

M50 update

BMW 520i

1992

1991

150/5900

190/4200

198

8.9

M52

BMW 328i

1994

2793

193/5300

280/3950

170

8.9

M52 update

BMW 328i

1998

2793

193/5500

280/3500

170

9.3

M54

BMW 330Ci

2000

2979

231/5900

300/3500

170

9.1


links

Links

Red Hot Engines Picture of the Week features the E46 M3 6-cylinder.

Performance Parts for your BMW 6-cylinder engine.

Repair Tips to keep your BMW 6-cylinder in top shape.

BMW engine and model codes.

Engine Technology:

Engine Cleaning. Be careful with your BMW 6-cylinder engine.

Wallpaper of BMW engines. More...

Z4 Roadster Engine is a BMW 6-cylinder.

BMW E34 Website has repair tips for the BMW M50 engine.



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