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Best engines in world?  BMW Turbos win title again
[Editor's Note: Turbo and Supercharged engines are becoming more common on passenger vehicles, largely because they are superior to normally aspirated engines.....so the rumors that the IRL's next car might have a turbocharged engine sits well with a lot of people.  NASCAR on the other hand still runs carburetors (hilarious) and it took years for them to get the lead out of their gasoline.  Clearly that is one organization out of touch with the rest of the world.  With gasoline prices hitting $4 per gallon and heading toward $5 and higher, newer technologies (including small displacement turbo and superchargers in increasing numbers) will make their way into passenger automobiles and NASCAR will fall further behind to the point fans will have little connection to NASCAR's formula and manufacturers a diminishing reason to use NASCAR to help sell cars.]

With six awards for five engines gained at this year’s “International Engine of the Year Awards”, BMW has successfully defended its position as the world’s leading manufacturer of efficient high-performance power units. For the second time in succession, the 3-liter inline six engine with Twin Turbo and High Precision Injection has won the overall ranking in this most significant international engine competition. In addition, the 300 hp engine employed in the BMW 3 Series and 5 Series, the BMW 1 Series Coupe and Convertible, as well as the new BMW X6, repeated last year’s victory in the 2.5 to 3-liter engine category.

Only one engine had previously ever succeeded in repeating overall victory at the “International Engine of the Year Awards”: the 5-litre V10 high-revving engine employed in the BMW M5 Sedan, M6 Coupe and M6 Convertible received top honors in 2005 and 2006. This year the 500 hp high-end power unit won the “Above 4-liter” category. BMW M GmbH was successful in posting another winner: the 414 hp V8 engine in the new BMW M3 won the category for engines in the 3 to 4 liter category. Furthermore, the 2-liter four-cylinder diesel with Variable Twin Turbo technology employed in the BMW 123d received the award for “Best New Engine” of the 2008. And the 1.6-liter four cylinder with Twin Scroll Turbocharger and direct gas injection employed in the MINI Cooper S managed to repeat last year’s win in the 1.4 to 1.8 liter class.

For the first time in the history of the competition, the title “Best New Engine of the Year” has been awarded to a diesel engine. The 204 hp four-cylinder diesel with Variable Twin Turbo has earned this award due to a unique combination of performance and efficiency. As the world’s first full-aluminum diesel engine, it delivers specific output of more than 100 hp per liter of displacement. At the same time, in the BMW 123d, it delivers average fuel consumption of 5.2 liters/100 km in an EU test cycle, equivalent to 45 miles/US gallon, and a CO2 emission level of 138 grams per km. This renders it a fine example of the BMW EfficientDynamics development strategy in action.

With its current win of six trophies, the BMW Group continues to dominate the engine competition which has been held now for ten years. The repeated success of the Twin Turbo inline six engine is the sixth overall victory for the company since the foundation of the “International Engine of the Year Awards” in 1999. The bandwidth of the BMW Group’s currently successful engines is also remarkable. They range from the 172 hp four cylinder of the MINI Cooper S to the two high-revving power units produced by the BMW M GmbH.

The “International Engine of the Year Award” has been presented since 1999 by an international jury consisting of highly prominent car journalists. This year the team of experts comprises 65 top journalists from 32 nations which include the USA, Japan, China, Russia, India, Germany, France, New Zealand, Korea and South Africa and, this year, Romania and Poland. Prizes are awarded for eleven categories as well to the winner of the overall rating. The award ceremony will be held on 7th May during the “Engine Expo 2008” in Stuttgart.

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