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Old 08-26-2009, 11:30 AM   #1 (permalink)
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BMW Steps Up Luxury Fuel Efficiency Game with 57 MPG Diesel 3-Series

Luxury brands from across the globe have been working hard to offer fuel efficiency and and low emissions without compromising the creature comforts that define the luxury segment. Not only will efficient vehicles quiet some of critics of luxury brands, but they will help keep the American and European regulators from levying heavy fines on [...] Related posts:
  1. One Global Emissions and Efficiency Regulation to Rule Them All
  2. Audi Cross-Country Rally Touts Diesel Economy
  3. Why Diesel is Not Going to be a Hit in Japan Anytime Soon


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Old 08-26-2009, 11:36 AM   #2 (permalink)
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BMW is also claiming a 0.26 drag coefficient for this car through subtle aero tweaks:

- lowered ride height
- more aero friendly wheels

... and probably a few other things that aren't mentioned in the official press release I've seen.
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Old 08-26-2009, 02:46 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Looks great. Of course, not available in the USA.
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Old 08-26-2009, 10:13 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Patiently waiting for America to cure its self-imposed case of Dieselphobia...

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still waiting...

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Old 08-26-2009, 10:51 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Buy a Jetta TDI and send BMW a message!
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Old 08-26-2009, 11:37 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
BMW is also claiming a 0.26 drag coefficient for this car through subtle aero tweaks:

- lowered ride height
- more aero friendly wheels

... and probably a few other things that aren't mentioned in the official press release I've seen.
This is cool! It sounds like a bunch of small diffusers in the front directing air through the wheel wells so flow doesn't separate there.
Quote:
Air curtain

The big aerodynamic step forward for the 2011 3-series is the ‘Air Curtain’. This uses narrow, upright intakes in the lower bumper which channel air through the bumper and out of a slot inside the front of the wheel well.

As it exits the wheel well, this high-speed airflow runs across the face of the wheel, creating what is in effect a ‘curtain’ over the wheel face.

Smoothing the turbulent flow across this part of the car helps reduce the Cd of a 5-series from 0.28 to 0.27.
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Old 08-27-2009, 12:05 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
Buy a Jetta TDI and send BMW a message!
I drove a Golf TDi in 2003-ish and nearly bought it, but the running cost and reliability killed the deal (Synth oil, timing belt, curse of Bosch, etc.) The Jetta gives me the same impression. I still have $$$ concerns with long-term ownership of BMW and Mercedes. It would make a good TSX upgrade as the family cruiser...


Quote:
Originally Posted by roflwaffle View Post
This is cool! It sounds like a bunch of small diffusers in the front directing air through the wheel wells so flow doesn't separate there.
I agree. I'm already thinking of how to implement it. A closer look is required

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Old 08-27-2009, 01:06 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
Buy a Jetta TDI and send BMW a message!
I would rather chew my own arm off. BMW brought a diesel to america. 2 in fact but they're the wrong ones.
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Old 08-27-2009, 10:02 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjts1 View Post
I would rather chew my own arm off. BMW brought a diesel to america. 2 in fact but they're the wrong ones.
I agree. (Well, not the part about chewing one's own arm off, I didn't quite get that. But I agree with the bit about the 'wrong' diesel.) The problem was that they wanted to run a diesel in the X5. Because of the tortuously expensive process to certify diesel engines for sale in the USA (thanks, CARB!) BMW decided to only bring one engine, so it had to do double duty in both the 3-series and the X5.

The 4-cyl turbodiesel from the 123d coupe/hatchback sold in Europe seems to be tailor-made for America's fascination with 0-60 times, while still providing great fuel economy. But they couldn't re-purpose it for use in the X5, so they didn't bring it. Also, BMW USA is a bit gun-shy about 4-cylinder engines after their last one (the 318ti) didn't do so well in the marketplace.

As for the VW.... I was strongly considering a VW/Audi TDI for our next car, because I think they drive great and are very practical, but it seems that every time I screw up my courage and say that VW has really improved their reliability, they save me from myself with a story like this one:

VW DSG Transmission Problem Leads to Recall - Wheels Blog - NYTimes.com

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