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      05-03-2013, 09:52 AM   #1
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BMW M CEO Nitschke discusses electric steering for M3/M4, AWD for M, etc.

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This site has been posting (F80 M3 info) about electric power steering for the next M3/M4 for a while and BMW M CEO Friedrich Nitschke basically now confirms this in an interview.


Interview by CAR AND DRIVER

Car and Driver: The current M3 was fitted with a unique M engine. Will future vehicles be derived from existing BMW engines, or will you continue to afford yourself the luxury of bespoke M engines, like the naturally aspirated V-8 and V-10?

Friedrich Nitschke: At the core of their architecture, our engines will be closer to BMW AG engines. But they will be optimized for the specific needs of M customers, so we can still essentially speak of standalone engines.

C/D: Will you remain committed to high-revving engines despite turbocharging?

FN: Our V-8 turbo engines can easily top 7000 rpm, and it is safe to assume that there is room beyond that.

C/D: Will the upcoming M3 and M4 be fitted with electromechanical power steering?

FN: Without confirming any product speculation, it is safe to assume that we will offer electromechanical power steering in the future. The technology is now fully on par with a good hydraulic power-steering system.

C/D: Is it still possible to order a current-generation M3?

FN: Actually, it is sold out. We will build the coupe and the cabriolet for about another half year, but on principle, the cars are spoken for.

C/D: At Audi, all-wheel drive is at the core of the RS models, and now Mercedes-Benz AMG is launching all-wheel-drive models as well. Will you follow suit?

FN: We discuss the topic with our customers in a regular fashion, and it emerges that they are very happy with rear-wheel drive. For those who think otherwise, we offer the X5 M and X6 M and our M Performance models.

C/D: So you are ruling out all-wheel drive for the regular M models?

FN: Yes, at least for the current model generation. Of course, we will re-evaluate the topic when we define the next-generation M5. But that is a long way down the road.

C/D: Do you believe that driving dynamics would suffer from all-wheel drive?

FN: We are convinced that would be the case. An all-wheel-drive system means 150 to 200 pounds more weight, and a clear loss of precision in steering. Ultimately, the competition between the brands would be narrowed to straight-line performance. And, by the way, we do not believe that this would be a sustainable approach.

C/D: M5 and M6 are relatively heavy cars. What about the upcoming, more-compact models?

FN: The weight of the M5 and M6 is on a level with the competition. But it is safe to assume that a lightweight approach is at the core of our business, and there will be an unconventional mix of materials where you won’t necessarily expect it.

C/D: BMW is working on a compact vehicle architecture that will be fitted with three-cylinder engines. Is that a topic of discussion for you as well?

FN: The three-cylinder is an attractive engine. It is possible to reach around 185 to 200 horsepower per liter in a forced-induction three-cylinder and we have 1.5 liters of displacement. Such an engine, which, by the way, sounds very similar to a six-cylinder engine, would have over 310 horsepower. And we are not even at the limit there. Generally speaking, I could imagine such an engine.
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      05-03-2013, 02:51 PM   #2
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Glad to see he is still against AWD. Yeah, the 0-60 times would decrease, but thats not what M is about.

I hope M does do something with the b38. That would be awesome!
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      05-03-2013, 03:01 PM   #3
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thank goodness it stays RWD
never follow, just stick to the M way
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      05-03-2013, 03:16 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaehshim
thank goodness it stays RWD
never follow, just stick to the M way
+1
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      05-03-2013, 03:17 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bimmerjph View Post
Glad to see he is still against AWD. Yeah, the 0-60 times would increase, but thats not what M is about.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaehshim View Post
thank goodness it stays RWD
never follow, just stick to the M way
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      05-03-2013, 03:19 PM   #6
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All good things to see.
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      05-03-2013, 03:19 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bimmerjph View Post
Glad to see he is still against AWD. Yeah, the 0-60 times would increase, but thats not what M is about.

I hope M does do something with the b38. That would be awesome!
Increase? Don't you mean decrease?
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      05-03-2013, 03:27 PM   #8
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310 out of 3 cylinders...I would drop the brand out of principle if they attempted that.
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      05-03-2013, 03:28 PM   #9
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Very exciting stuff. Can't wait!
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      05-03-2013, 03:29 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonjt

Increase? Don't you mean decrease?
I have no idea what you're talking about.
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      05-03-2013, 03:53 PM   #11
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Mostly good news all around except for the "[we're] on a level with the competition" when asked about the weight of the M5 and M6. //M needs to go on a diet not a comparison chart.

I wholly agree with a prior commenter, M should keep doing their own thing and strive to make a unique product rather than slotting a vehicle in every range to compete with what the competition is doing.

Keep it up!
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      05-03-2013, 04:00 PM   #12
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Hope they won't consider AWD for next gen M5 :S
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      05-03-2013, 04:04 PM   #13
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PR BS!
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      05-03-2013, 04:07 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shivaswrath View Post
310 out of 3 cylinders...I would drop the brand out of principle if they attempted that.
Efficiency is not one of your principles I take it.
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      05-03-2013, 04:11 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ramuman View Post
Efficiency is not one of your principles I take it.
It sure as hell isn't one of mine if it means a three cylinder car.
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      05-03-2013, 04:15 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AWESOM3 View Post
C/D: Will the upcoming M3 and M4 be fitted with electromechanical power steering?

FN: Without confirming any product speculation, it is safe to assume that we will offer electromechanical power steering in the future. The technology is now fully on par with a good hydraulic power-steering system.
I call big, huge BS on this one
show me one car that has electric power steering that is anything like hydraulic steering

the car companies love it because its more efficient
so it saves them 1-2 mpg or something
but to say it's "on par" is either a blatant lie, or you know nothing about cars
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      05-03-2013, 04:18 PM   #17
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I don't know...I think ///M has already lost it...its not special anymore

I have an E92 ///M3 Lime Rock Park Edition 6MT and it just feels special, it feels different, feels natural......

I drove a friends ///M5 and then my 650 or compared to my old 750 it just feels too similar to those cars...is it faster? sure it is...does it handle better? Yes it does....BUT it just does not give me that huge smile on my face that the Naturally Aspirated V8 does....

I am afraid BMW is just making their M-cars more powerful and better handling version of their regular cars instead of making a totally different special feeling car...

This is just my opinion and like A**holes, everybody got one....

I just hope that they come back to their core customer base of true enthusiasts...
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      05-03-2013, 04:20 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmarei
Quote:
Originally Posted by AWESOM3 View Post
C/D: Will the upcoming M3 and M4 be fitted with electromechanical power steering?

FN: Without confirming any product speculation, it is safe to assume that we will offer electromechanical power steering in the future. The technology is now fully on par with a good hydraulic power-steering system.
I call big, huge BS on this one
show me one car that has electric power steering that is anything like hydraulic steering

the car companies love it because its more efficient
so it saves them 1-2 mpg or something
but to say it's "on par" is either a blatant lie, or you know nothing about cars

And the MPG reason is likely just a smokescreen for the real reason - electric steering is cheaper to make than hydraulic steering. I think it's mainly a business decision, because the best EPS certainly is not currently as good as the best hydraulic steering.
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      05-03-2013, 04:31 PM   #19
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>> FN: Our V-8 turbo engines can easily top 7000 rpm, and it is safe to assume that there is room beyond that.

So Mr. Nitschke why you guys do not keep using it in the new M3/4 and add to it??
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      05-03-2013, 04:33 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaehshim View Post
thank goodness it stays RWD
never follow, just stick to the M way
+1, deff
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      05-03-2013, 05:06 PM   #21
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Gone are the days of the s54's, 8000+ redlines, and real ///M engines
Sure turbo charging is the future but I don't want to know a future that has 3 cylinders in it
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      05-03-2013, 05:13 PM   #22
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I am not so sure what he is talking with regards to weight. The M5 and M6 were the light weights of the group and they no longer hold that distinction. Being on par with others is not M division thing. It is leading the pack of its competitors.

The electric steering wheels on M5 and M6 suck

I hope they do not do to M3/M4 what they have done with M5 and M6.
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