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      12-08-2011, 11:13 AM   #1
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Thumbs up N20 and N55 Motors Make 10 Best Engines List by Ward's Auto (2012)

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N20 and N55 Motors Make 10 Best Engines List by Ward's Auto (2012)
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Ward's Auto has published its annual 10 Best Engines List and as always, some BMW engines make the list.

Here are the award winning engines for 2012:

Quote:
2.0L N20 Turbocharged DOHC I4 (F30 328i / Z4 sDrive28i / 528i / X1)
3.0L N55 Turbocharged DOHC I6 (F30 335i / E92 335i / 535i / 135i)
3.0L TFSI Supercharged DOHC V6 (Audi A6)
3.6L Pentastar DOHC V6 (Chrysler 300/Jeep Wrangler)
2.0L EcoBoost DOHC I4 (Ford Edge)
5.0L DOHC V8 (Ford Mustang Boss 302)
2.0L Turbocharged DOHC I4 (Buick Regal GS)
1.6L DOHC I4 (Hyundai Accent/Kia Soul)
2.0L Skyactiv DOHC I4 (Mazda3)
3.5L DOHC V6 HEV (Infiniti M35h)
Congrats to BMW!

The N20 has received great acclaim and reviews, especially in the F30 328i reviews.

And the N55 which first debuted in the 135i LCI models will continue on into the next generation BMWs by powering the F30 335i.


N20:


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N55:


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      12-08-2011, 12:05 PM   #2
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Ward's best engine list includes two Direct Injected Turbo BMW motors.

Looks like turbo and DI appear to be the future for an excellent blend of fuel efficiency and performance.
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      12-08-2011, 02:54 PM   #3
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BMW makes some very nice engines. Nicely done BMW. No S65 this year?
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      12-08-2011, 03:25 PM   #4
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      12-08-2011, 03:27 PM   #5
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BMW makes some very nice engines. Nicely done BMW. No S65 this year?
Yeah, it looks like they knocked their own engine off the list. It was a very nice run though.
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      12-08-2011, 03:28 PM   #6
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The S65 does not qualify because it comes in a vehicle over 55K.
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      12-08-2011, 04:08 PM   #7
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I hope Audi and BM can clean up their DI intake problems.
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      12-08-2011, 04:15 PM   #8
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The N20 is such a fine engineering beauty. It is a true upgrade to the old I6 N52. Unfortunately, the N55 is not much of an upgrade to the twin turbo N54.
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      12-08-2011, 06:11 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Questforpower View Post
The S65 does not qualify because it comes in a vehicle over 55K.
How come it won before? Was it ever under 55k (in the States I presume)?
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      12-08-2011, 06:14 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JulieDriving View Post
How come it won before? Was it ever under 55k (in the States I presume)?
Good question; if you read that article it clearly states 55K or below as base price so I presume; they changed the rules.
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      12-08-2011, 06:17 PM   #11
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Good question; if you read that article it clearly states 55K or below as base price so I presume; they changed the rules.
Thanks. Makes sense.
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      12-08-2011, 06:23 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samchoi604 View Post
Unfortunately, the N55 is not much of an upgrade to the twin turbo N54.
IMO that's why they threw a few kitchen sink techs into the N55 that weren't really necessary. If the N55 had dropped a turbocharger without adding twin scroll and Valvetronic it probably would have dropped off this and similar lists, even if the horsepower had come out the same (which is certainly possible, given the strength of aftermarket tunes and the general consensus that output from these blocks is conservatively rated).

BMW is an engine company that also makes cars. There's a lot of company image under that hood.
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      12-08-2011, 07:04 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Pangloss View Post
BMW is an engine company that also makes cars. There's a lot of company image under that hood.
Well spoken. May they never compromise on engine technology.
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      12-08-2011, 07:51 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pangloss View Post
BMW is an engine company that also makes cars. There's a lot of company image under that hood.
It would be even better if they can come up with a permanent fix for my N54, and I do not mean keep on replacing the hpfp.
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      12-08-2011, 08:26 PM   #15
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Nice job BMW.

I want to embrace the turbocharged era, so keep it up. I wasn't happy with the longevity of my N54, but I'll keep an eye on how things play out for the future. In the meantime I will drive my S65-powered M3 into the ground.
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      12-08-2011, 09:00 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samchoi604 View Post
The N20 is such a fine engineering beauty. It is a true upgrade to the old I6 N52. Unfortunately, the N55 is not much of an upgrade to the twin turbo N54.
I disagree, there's a reason I waited 2 months for my N55 135i to be built when I could have taken home an N54 that same day. It's a clearly superior engine, and the sound is just absurd. I fall in love with it all over again every time I put my foot down, can't say the same for all the N54s I've driven.

Also, and this is definitely nitpicking, but the N55 did not debut with the LCI 1 series but came out the year before. Mine is a pre-LCI N55 powered 2011 135i, 2012 MY cars got the LCI refresh.
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      12-08-2011, 09:18 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Remonster View Post
It's a clearly superior engine, and the sound is just absurd. I fall in love with it all over again every time I put my foot down, can't say the same for all the N54s I've driven.
Clearly superior in what aspect? I wonder why BMW didn't put this superior engine in the 1M, 335is, Z4 35is.
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      12-08-2011, 09:40 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samchoi604 View Post
Clearly superior in what aspect? I wonder why BMW didn't put this superior engine in the 1M, 335is, Z4 35is.
Because people assume that having two turbos is better than having one.

I don't know that I would agree with Remonster that the N55 is superior to the N54, though. It might be, if for no other reason than the fact that engines generally improve over time and with proper attention, as is generally the case with BMW. But it's clearly no worse, and it does include technologies that were not present in the N54.

I don't even think (edit: samchoi604) was wrong in saying that it was "not much of an upgrade". From a consumer perspective it's a total shrug. The only people who seem to have really noticed are enthusiasts and engineering awards committees like Ward's Auto.
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Last edited by Pangloss; 12-09-2011 at 12:45 AM.
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      12-08-2011, 10:12 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pangloss View Post
IMO that's why they threw a few kitchen sink techs into the N55 that weren't really necessary. If the N55 had dropped a turbocharger without adding twin scroll and Valvetronic it probably would have dropped off this and similar lists, even if the horsepower had come out the same (which is certainly possible, given the strength of aftermarket tunes and the general consensus that output from these blocks is conservatively rated).

BMW is an engine company that also makes cars. There's a lot of company image under that hood.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pangloss View Post
Because people assume that having two turbos is better than having one.

I don't know that I would agree with Remonster that the N55 is superior to the N54, though. It might be, if for no other reason than the fact that engines generally improve over time and with proper attention, as is generally the case with BMW. But it's clearly no worse, and it does include technologies that were not present in the N54.

I don't even think Remonster was wrong in saying that it was "not much of an upgrade". From a consumer perspective it's a total shrug. The only people who seem to have really noticed are enthusiasts and engineering awards committees like Ward's Auto.
Completely agree.
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      12-08-2011, 10:20 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pangloss View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by samchoi604 View Post
Clearly superior in what aspect? I wonder why BMW didn't put this superior engine in the 1M, 335is, Z4 35is.
Because people assume that having two turbos is better than having one.

I don't know that I would agree with Remonster that the N55 is superior to the N54, though. It might be, if for no other reason than the fact that engines generally improve over time and with proper attention, as is generally the case with BMW. But it's clearly no worse, and it does include technologies that were not present in the N54.

I don't even think Remonster was wrong in saying that it was "not much of an upgrade". From a consumer perspective it's a total shrug. The only people who seem to have really noticed are enthusiasts and engineering awards committees like Ward's Auto.

I think the reason for the N55 is emissions quality and fuel economy. The N55 is cleaner burning and also more fuel efficient. They needed those two things because of EPA and CAFE standards that kick in in 2012. The cars that use the N54T engine are low enough volume enthusiast cars that they they can afford to put the less efficient engine in it and not hurt CAFE averages.

As evidence of how much more efficient the N55 is, especially in bigger cars, my girlfriend got her new F25 X3 with the N52 engine. The N55 powered model of the X3 actually got 3 MPG better than the N52!
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      12-08-2011, 11:54 PM   #21
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Nice work bMw
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      12-09-2011, 12:41 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samchoi604 View Post
The N20 is such a fine engineering beauty. It is a true upgrade to the old I6 N52.
False.
The N52 in de-tuned form can be felt to be weak vs. the N20 in highly tuned -28 form. But the N52 in either 255 or 272hp is a thing of beauty. To compare this with a stressed 2.0T is like a featherweight on roids vs. Mike Tyson in his sleep.
It's sacrificing longevity and realiability for performance and economy figures.

There is nothing beautiful about the N20. If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, then this would require one to be blind.
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