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      04-27-2009, 09:53 AM   #1
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BMW and Mercedes Benz rethinking four-cylinders for U.S.

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Originally Posted by MotorAuthority
Overseas BMW and Mercedes Benz sell a range of powerful yet fuel-efficient four-cylinder petrol and diesel models, but here in the U.S. both carmakers only offer six-cylinder engines and above. With tougher fuel-economy and emissions regulations set to roll in, however, both carmakers are now rethinking their stance against selling four-cylinder models in the U.S. luxury market.

BMW and Mercedes have previously expressed a desire to bring four-cylinder cars to the U.S., especially considering the effect that impending fuel economy standards will have on their fleets but neither carmaker has made any moves yet.

For both, the move is taking them into uncharted territory - the last time BMW tried to sell a four-cylinder car in the U.S. was back in 1999 with the poor-selling 318ti hatchback, while Mercedes' last effort in that area was around 5 years ago with its C-Class and SLK convertible.

Speaking with Automotive News, BMW’s U.S. chief Jim O'Donnell said the company is considering a new twin-turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine with direct-injection technology for the 1 and 3-series models and upcoming X1 and next-generation X3 crossovers. The new engine family will have as much power as BMW’s current six-cylinder range but with better fuel-economy and lower emissions.

The advanced engines, however, cost more to manufacture than the current six-cylinder units and this premium would likely be passed on to consumers. According to O'Donnell, BMW is waiting to see what outcome on fuel-economy standards is determined by the U.S. government before it makes its decision.

Mercedes, on the other hand, is considering bringing a new 2.2L four-cylinder diesel for the E-Class, C-Class and GLK onto the market. The new engine, which develops 204hp (150kW) and returns fuel-economy of 40mpg (5.88L/100km) on the highway, has already been previewed in last month’s E250 Bluetec concept. Like BMW, Mercedes is also yet to make a decision on the issue.
http://www.motorauthority.com/bmw-an...rs-for-us.html
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      04-27-2009, 10:27 AM   #2
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Wow an E Class with a 2.2L? To me bringing a 4 cylinder undermines both BMW and MB, I know I personally will not be buying a 4 cylinder car anytime in the near future. There is obviously a market for a 4 banger BMW, but then you could make the argument that BMW could introduce a car that shares Chevy Cobalt underpinnings and sells for $15k and someone would say a market exists for that as well...
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      04-27-2009, 10:44 AM   #3
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Id better be getting a huge discount for the 4 Cylinder 3 Series if i should be persuaded, think $25,000 base.
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Being a fan of Honda engines, I requested that they consider building for the F1 a 4.5 liter V10 or V12. I asked, I tried to persuade them, but in the end could not convince them to do it, and the McLaren F1 ended up with a BMW engine.
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      04-27-2009, 11:15 AM   #4
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Id better be getting a huge discount for the 4 Cylinder 3 Series if i should be persuaded, think $25,000 base.
Not happening.
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      04-27-2009, 03:40 PM   #5
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Doubt any BMW will be under 30k
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      04-27-2009, 05:02 PM   #6
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There is no reason why BMW should not offer anything smaller than I6 with speed limits on all roads in the US.
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      04-27-2009, 05:22 PM   #7
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This is a great idea, especially with how well the Germans have been at cutting the weight in the their cars with the development of aluminun and composites. A 4 banger should be able to easily power the next generation cars. EDIT: I have been informed my 3 series is a porky SOB that weighs 3,800 lbs and the 1 series is no better. A snowball has a better chance in hell than the US does of BMW coming out with a 3,200 lb or less car that could be powered by a 4. The only car rumored ot be near this is the Z2 and I thought I heard that just got canned. Confirm?
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      04-27-2009, 06:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cougfan335 View Post
This is a great idea, especially with how well the Germans have been at cutting the weight in the their cars with the development of aluminun and composites. A 4 banger should be able to easily power the next generation cars. EDIT: I have been informed my 3 series is a porky SOB that weighs 3,800 lbs and the 1 series is no better. A snowball has a better chance in hell than the US does of BMW coming out with a 3,200 lb or less car that could be powered by a 4. The only car rumored ot be near this is the Z2 and I thought I heard that just got canned. Confirm?
Indeed, the Z2 is no more.
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      04-27-2009, 07:31 PM   #9
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We've had the 4-cylinder B200 and B200 Turbo here in Canada for a few years now, they're really quite popular.
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      04-27-2009, 11:04 PM   #10
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We've had the 4-cylinder B200 and B200 Turbo here in Canada for a few years now, they're really quite popular.
yes...but now with the performance oriented crowd. Typical drivers seem like young women that probably like it becasue it is "cute" (...that's why my gf likes it!); refugees from Subarus and Volvos that like the saftey and utility and are looking for a bit of status; and Asians that will pretty much drive anything MB.
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      04-27-2009, 11:26 PM   #11
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its not like they're doing away with the 6's and just running 4's. yes, an NA 4 would be weksos, but a turbo 4 should be able to pull cars like the 3 nicely. hell, it would make a ton more torque than the 328i. audi's 2.0T makes 258 lb/ft...much more than the 200 lb/ft in the 328i.
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      04-28-2009, 01:59 AM   #12
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Quote:
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Not happening.
European base models are very stripped down, if they ever offer the same spec here, i hope they do it for much less that the 328's $33,000.
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Being a fan of Honda engines, I requested that they consider building for the F1 a 4.5 liter V10 or V12. I asked, I tried to persuade them, but in the end could not convince them to do it, and the McLaren F1 ended up with a BMW engine.
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      04-28-2009, 02:01 AM   #13
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They seem to be thinking along the lines of what Audi have already done. Even the US of A realize that gas guzzlers have no place in the modern world and they too need to do there bit for the environment.
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      04-28-2009, 02:04 AM   #14
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Quote:
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We've had the 4-cylinder B200 and B200 Turbo here in Canada for a few years now, they're really quite popular.
And I thought us Europeans are the only ones punished with seeing these cars every day. How long have they been selling the B-class over there?
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      04-28-2009, 11:27 AM   #15
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And I thought us Europeans are the only ones punished with seeing these cars every day. How long have they been selling the B-class over there?
I think it came out in 2005 as MY2006, while the Smart Fortwo started selling in 2004. I personally don't mind the B, it's not pretty but it's not ugly in my opinion, got one as a loaner a couple of times and they're ok. The first-gen Smart Fortwo with the 40hp diesel was absolute garbage though, worst...transmission...ever... I have yet to try the new body with the 3-cylinder Mistubishi gas engine but they're supposed to be much better.
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Last edited by GregL; 04-28-2009 at 01:39 PM. Reason: Typo
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      04-28-2009, 11:50 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by cougfan335 View Post
This is a great idea, especially with how well the Germans have been at cutting the weight in the their cars with the development of aluminun and composites. A 4 banger should be able to easily power the next generation cars. EDIT: I have been informed my 3 series is a porky SOB that weighs 3,800 lbs and the 1 series is no better. A snowball has a better chance in hell than the US does of BMW coming out with a 3,200 lb or less car that could be powered by a 4. The only car rumored ot be near this is the Z2 and I thought I heard that just got canned. Confirm?
My 128i manual coupe is listed at ~3250 lbs with the NA six cylinder. So they are not too far away. Any idea how much a turbo 4 would weigh relative to the inline 6?
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      04-28-2009, 01:42 PM   #17
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The engine itself would probably be pretty comparable as far as weight goes unless they made the block out of magnesium (which would mean all the piggybacks would be potentially more risky). Just because it has 2 less cylinders doesnt mean its going to weigh a lot less because you have to factor in the weight of the turbos, the piping, the intercooler etc.
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      04-28-2009, 04:48 PM   #18
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Audi has been doing that for years...if bmw do offer 4 cylinder they will sell tons...Theyre tons of 323I (E90), C230(08+) in Montreal(I bet its the same in vancouver and Toronto) status symbol seekers will not care what they drive.
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Its because a lot of BMW owners are housewives or business professionals and know little about cars other than BMW's are a status symbol in their own circles so that have to have one. But exotic car owners know cars, that's why they are willing to spend for a killer car and they know something different when they see one.
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      04-28-2009, 06:42 PM   #19
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Audi has been doing that for years...if bmw do offer 4 cylinder they will sell tons...Theyre tons of 323I (E90), C230(08+) in Montreal(I bet its the same in vancouver and Toronto) status symbol seekers will not care what they drive.
The E90 323i and W204 C230 are both 6-cylinder...
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      04-28-2009, 06:55 PM   #20
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The E90 323i and W204 C230 are both 6-cylinder...
Yes I know Im just saying that people dont care whats under the hood
C230 Compressor were selling well even the C240
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Originally Posted by corneredbeast
An engine from a Z06 Corvette. A differential from a Vespa. Damn

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Its because a lot of BMW owners are housewives or business professionals and know little about cars other than BMW's are a status symbol in their own circles so that have to have one. But exotic car owners know cars, that's why they are willing to spend for a killer car and they know something different when they see one.
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