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V8 power:

lots of it! - for new M3

<font face="arial, geneva, helvetica" size="2">BMW has released – nay, trumpeted – details of the new, high-revving V8 engine that will replace the long-running, 252kW 3.2-litre straight six in its upcoming M3.<br><br>It's a four-litre, 90º Vee, (that's a near-ideal 500cc per cylinder) that revs to a howling 8300rpm and kicks out 309kW; that's 414bhp in the old language, well above the 100bhp/litre benchmark that used to define a "high-performance engine".<br><br>BMW also quotes 400Nm at 3900rpm, with at least 340 available from 2000 right through to the red line.<br><br>The aluminium/silicon alloy block is cast in the same foundry as BMW's F1 engines at Landshut in Germany; instead of using cast-iron liners the cylinders are honed to expose hard silicon crystals and the iron-coated aluminium pistons run directly in the bores.</font>

<font face="arial, geneva, helvetica" size="2"><br>BMW says the engine is one of the lightest V8s in series production at only 202kg; it's actually 15kg lighter than the straight-six it replaces.<br><br>It has a new variable cam timing mechanism using a "stepper" motor that controls the camshafts using normal engine oil pressure rather than a special high-pressure oil supply, fed by two volume-controlled oil pumps in a semi-dry double sump.<br><br>Eight individual throttle butterflies in two computer-controlled banks of four give crisp throttle response, and the stainless-steel exhaust system is made of thin-walled tubing (only 0.65-1mm thick!) by high-pressure forming.<br><br>Even the alternator gets in on the performance act; the engine's computer disconnects it under acceleration to obviate even that minuscule power loss, and uses its drag to increase engine braking (and generate lots of electricity) on the overrun.</font>

<font face="arial, geneva, helvetica" size="2">The <a href="http://www.motoring.co.za/index.php?fSectionId=751&amp;fArticleId=3718617" target="_blank">new M3</a>, seen in concept form at the 2007 Geneva auto show, is expected in 2008</font>

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