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      08-31-2011, 08:48 PM   #1
Jason
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Automobile is All For the Turbo 4 Cylinder Z4 (Review)

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Automobile is All For the Turbo 4 Cylinder Z4
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Reviews of the 2012 Z4 sDrive28i featuring the new turbo 4-cylinder N20 motor have generally been positive overall. However, Automobile's recent assessment is the strongest endorsement we've seen yet for the new Z4, which represents the return of 4-cylinder BMW engines to the US.

Here are some of the great things the magazine had to say about the sDriv28i's engine, exhaust, and performance:

Quote:
While the N20 warms up, the Z4's exhaust note is loud, deep, and angry; exactly as a sports car's should be. The drama wanes a few seconds later as the engine management transitions to a smooth and quiet idle. The usual six-cylinder symphony has been replaced with a little four-banger anger -- not in a bad way, mind you, but it's a noticeable change. Under load especially, the N20 takes on a deep and purposeful note that's neither as refined as Volkswagen's benchmark 2.0T four-cylinder's nor quite as angry as a V-8's. The N20 is happiest, acoustically, in the mid range of the tach scale.

And this Z4 is seriously fast.... With the eight-speed automatic flinging gears down the driveshaft faster than you can ask "what turbo lag?," the N20 squeezes out enough juice for a 5.6-second run to 60 mph, according to BMW. That's almost a half second quicker than the old six-cylinder and six-speed automatic.

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The N20 is powerful right off idle, thanks to its high compression ratio -- and boost comes on smoothly and almost unnoticeably before the needle hits 2000 rpm.

Whereas some other turbocharged BMW engines are too shy to let turbo sounds out, the Z4 broadcasts them clearly. There's no WRC-inspired blow-off valve chirp, just a pleasant overlay of wooshing and swooshing as you build and release boost pressure. The N20 is redlined at 7000 rpm, but power peaks at 5000 and thrust starts to fall off noticeably after 6000.

The exhaust tuning is perhaps the best part about the Z4 sDrive28i's new engine. This is especially true at low engine speeds with the top lowered.
Catch the rest of Automobile's Z4 review at http://www.automobilemag.com/reviews...ive/index.html


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      09-05-2011, 10:36 AM   #2
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So far the Z4 reviews are all pretty nice. Now I just want to get behind the wheel.
It seems like BMW has done another great job
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      09-05-2011, 11:19 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wallstreet View Post
Has BMW announced the final pricing on N20 z4? I'm curious since most reviewers are indicating a base N20 z4 will cost more than the outgoing I-6 powered z4 30i.
BASE PRICE: $49,525
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      09-05-2011, 11:25 AM   #4
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Great review. How much lighter is the 4T than the I6? Is the 8-speed tranny noticeably heavier than the 6-speed?
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      09-05-2011, 11:26 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by 3XTR3M3 View Post
Great review. How much lighter is the 4T than the I6? Is the 8-speed tranny noticeably heavier than the 6-speed?
N20 is 22 pounds lighter than the N52.
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      09-05-2011, 12:20 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3XTR3M3 View Post
Great review. How much lighter is the 4T than the I6? Is the 8-speed tranny noticeably heavier than the 6-speed?
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Originally Posted by Jason View Post
N20 is 22 pounds lighter than the N52.
And the 8AT is the same weight as the AT6 it replaces.
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      09-05-2011, 12:33 PM   #7
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This is exciting. Can't wait to drive it.
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      09-05-2011, 01:00 PM   #8
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The article didn't seem to list the off-idle torque numbers, which are key indicators of the n54 and turbocharged n55. Their torque is available immediately at around 1100 - 1300. Many of you will remember about a year ago when BMW bragged that the n55 low end torque.

Note that manufactures tend to focus on horsepower and top RPM range because that tends to blow everyone's skirt up, but the real numbers to look at is the torque range. Turbocharged engines tend to have very flat torque ranges, and in the case of the n54 it has 400Nm/300 lb/ft of torque available at about 1200 RPM . Keep in mind that most cars idle around 800 - 900 RPM.
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      09-05-2011, 01:19 PM   #9
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Here's the graph for the N20:




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      09-05-2011, 01:27 PM   #10
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BASE PRICE: $49,525
Thats the same as we pay for stripped 118d
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      09-05-2011, 01:51 PM   #11
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$50,000? Really, BMW?
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      09-05-2011, 03:16 PM   #12
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Now that the I-6 has gotten to boot, replaced by the 4cyl. I would like the official weight distrubiton F/R with the 6cyl vs 4cyl. Anyone have this info?

last, $50K for this car? Seriously?
For people that really like this car, wait 2-3 yrs and buy it for half the price.
Then you could LOL all the way to the bank
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      09-05-2011, 03:54 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by southlight View Post
Here's the graph for the N20:




Best regards,
south
Appreciate that but it's still a fuzzy on the details. Looks like it tops out at 350 Nm, and it's a characteristically flat typical of a turbocharged engine. But I'm curious about what RPM that torque kicks in.

Thanks again, I'll search it out on the BMW site
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      09-05-2011, 05:07 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teagueAMX View Post
Appreciate that but it's still a fuzzy on the details. Looks like it tops out at 350 Nm, and it's a characteristically flat typical of a turbocharged engine. But I'm curious about what RPM that torque kicks in...
The graph's x-axis is RPM

By 1200-1300 rpm it has reached peak torque.
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      09-05-2011, 08:13 PM   #15
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Yet another overpriced Bimmer!! You know, loyal customers won't be buying the lower 4cyl. Models...why should I pay 50k for a car with a 4cil. When it used to have a 6. Not cool BMW, not cool!
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      09-06-2011, 08:52 PM   #16
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Yet another overpriced Bimmer!! You know, loyal customers won't be buying the lower 4cyl. Models...why should I pay 50k for a car with a 4cil. When it used to have a 6. Not cool BMW, not cool!
What matters how many cylinders it has? It seems that the 4cyl is going to perform better than the 6cyl engine it's replacing. You're paying for r&d, people's paychecks from the plant all the way to the dealer, marketing, and brand recognition.
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      09-06-2011, 10:06 PM   #17
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What matters how many cylinders it has? It seems that the 4cyl is going to perform better than the 6cyl engine it's replacing. You're paying for r&d, people's paychecks from the plant all the way to the dealer, marketing, and brand recognition.
True - it isn't the fact that 2 cylinders are worth or cost $10,000 to produce. The real question is where do you draw the line to be able to call it a sports car or not? What's an exotic car these days. The standard used to be 12 or 10 cylinders.

How about a 3 cylinder engine?

Are you OK with paying $65k (future pricing) US for a 2 cylinder "sports" car?

The environmentalists have us by the short hairs, but when is it no longer a sports car? Today, you'll say you wouldn't accept that, but mark my words - in five years you'll be applauding BMW and anxiously wait for that 2 cylinder marvel to roll out their doors.
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