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      09-08-2011, 09:43 AM   #1
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Post BMW Patents Turbo V6 Engine. F80 M3 Application?

BMW Patents Turbo V6 Engine. F80 M3 Application?

UPDATE: We've added higher-quality schematics, including the shown variants.

Rumors of BMW considering V6 engines have been floating around for quite some while now. One possible future application often mentioned when talking about such an engine is the upcoming F80 M3 (F82 M4).

As we reported earlier, BMW was studying no less than four potential engine choices for the next M3.

To add to the speculation, we've just discovered that BMW has filed a patent for a unique twin-turbo V6 engine last year. Have a look at this schematic BMW submitted to the German patent office to describe the patent filing:

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As BMW describes in their patent application, this image shows "the principle of this turbocharger layout invention (#1) in a 6-cylinder internal combustion engine in V configuration (#2) with a first cylinder bank (#2a) -- pictured as 3 circles and labeled with Z -- and a second cylinder bank (#2b) -- also pictured as 3 circles labeled with Z."

Remarkable is the particular invention. According to these schematics, the exhaust gases of all 6 cylinders are routed into one turbocharger (#4) which BMW says may also be a twinscroll turbo (see images below, figures 3 and 5). After leaving the first turbocharger, the exhaust gases can be routed either into the exhaust system or into another turbocharger (#5). So this alludes to a sequential turbo layout. The patent application also mentions that this allows different sizes for both turbos.

*IF* this new engine was actually produced and used in the next M3, we would assume that BMW goes for a smaller twin-scroll as the first turbo, with a larger second turbocharger. All that being said, this patent filing doesn't necessarily mean they actually will use a V6 anytime soon, or at all. Patented inventions often get dismissed before making it to series production. At the very least however, this shows that BMW has (or is) actually considering V6 engines and how to make the related turbocharging as efficient and responsive as possible.

We'll try to update the subject as we get new information on possible F80 M3 engines.
Follow our F80 M3 coverage in the meantime:

BMW Bi-turbo V6 Patent Filing
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Source: German patent office