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      10-10-2011, 02:12 PM   #89
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Originally Posted by W Cole View Post
Thanks for the kind words. Yes, the engine on the m3 was definitely the "weakest link" when I was making my purchase decision.

No, I didn't want a c63. The auto transmission is unacceptable and it handles like a brick. However that engine in the m3 would be the perfect car. Not sure why one of the brands can't figure out the entire package.
Congrats!! you are the only person on the face of the earth that bought an M3 IN SPITE of the S65 engine. So what was it that really hooked you?....lemme guess,.. it was the carbon fibre roof? No? how about the thunderdome on the hood? Hmmmmm, shit...I know what it was now...it was the M badge on the sides and back trunk lid. Cool bro. Me too
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      10-10-2011, 02:34 PM   #90
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I don't mean to be argumentative. But can someone explain to me why the engine in this car is so good? My buddy and I just purchased M3s recently and have been reading on the forums how great everyone says the engine is but we can't figure it out. Personally, both of us bought our cars despite the engine. It has an extreme lack of torque (which I am ok with, I purchased the car knowing full well what I was getting into) and gets horrible fuel economy.

To be honest, the first time I drove one I was a bit perplexed. The engine in the E92 feels like it has less power off idle than the E46s I have driven. However, the 7 speed transmission with its lightning fast shifts and short gearing does do wonders to make up for this defecit.

The archane pushrod engine in the base model C6 Corvette gets up to 28 MPG on the highway and it's powerband is SO much fun on the street. I would think that an engine with the level of sophistication found in the BMW would be lightyears ahead of one built based upon technology that is straight out of the stoneage?
I sincerely don't mean this as an insult, but if I have to explain it you then there is no point. If you can't drive it and see why it is great, then nothing I write will make a difference.

I would rather eat my own liver than have the base C6 engine in my car. Maybe you just want a low revving, high torque V8 - that is fine...you should buy one - many options out there.
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      10-10-2011, 02:41 PM   #91
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Originally Posted by alms211 View Post
Congrats!! you are the only person on the face of the earth that bought an M3 IN SPITE of the S65 engine. So what was it that really hooked you?....lemme guess,.. it was the carbon fibre roof? No? how about the thunderdome on the hood? Hmmmmm, shit...I know what it was now...it was the M badge on the sides and back trunk lid. Cool bro. Me too
Nope, it was the rich online community and "motorsports heritage.".

But seriously, I bought it because it was a good all around luxury sports car. Versus the other cars in it's segment it has better handling but a lesser powerplant. All cars have their pluses and minuses. All cars will be a compromise of some sort, none are perfect. Is that really that novel of a concept?

If you want a luxury sports car that turns the m3 is going to be on your short list.
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      10-10-2011, 02:49 PM   #92
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This argument is getting retarded. Name a car that has an engine AND handles like this at this price point. CTS-V, great motor but too damn heavy. Mustang, awesome effort from Ford but not refined. Great motor in the 'Stang. Archaic rear axle and cheap where it shouldn't be but at that price point it's tough to argue. C63, great motor(a recurring theme) but heavy,no manual transmission and can't turn. Straight line fun only. M3, "maybe the greatest all-around car ever." About 4 different publications have stated that and frankly I agree. I fall in love with this motor more and more each time I drive it. The S65 would have been considered exotic a few years back and never attainable at this price. 8400 rpm redline in a streetable everyday car, outstanding. Gas mileage is putrid(not for me though) but did I mention this is the most reliable car BMW makes. This car will be sorely missed because it is legendary. IT DOES EVERYTHING but make coffee.
I'm not comparing the m3 to other cars. I'm comparing it to what it could have been. All the cars you list have good motors but poor handling. Why couldn't BMW put a similar motor to the one found in the c63 in the m3? In my opinion the weakest link on the m3 is the engine and I'm not sure why it deserves so much praise.
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      10-10-2011, 02:54 PM   #93
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Quote:
Originally Posted by W Cole View Post
I'm not comparing the m3 to other cars. I'm comparing it to what it could have been. All the cars you list have good motors but poor handling. Why couldn't BMW put a similar motor to the one found in the c63 in the m3? In my opinion the weakest link on the m3 is the engine and I'm not sure why it deserves so much praise.
weight, power and size, you are talking about a 4 liter engine, cranking out 414hp, without any type of forced induction. It's like the little engine that could.

100hp per liter, you realize how much hp the M3 would have it were an equivalent size to it's competitors like the mustang gt or the C63?
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      10-10-2011, 02:54 PM   #94
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I sincerely don't mean this as an insult, but if I have to explain it you then there is no point. If you can't drive it and see why it is great, then nothing I write will make a difference.
Well said. You know after owning this M3 the only car I'm intrigued by is still the 911. Which is special and legendary. I'm smart enough to know the 911 legend has more to do with engine location than anything else. Yes the driving dynamics are great and the engines themselves are wonderful and run like swiss clocks. If you can drive a 911 at 9.5/10ths of how it's designed to be driven then you really can drive. It's called rewarding the driver. For an M3 to be constantly mentioned in the same sentence as a 911 for $20k less is the stuff of legends. The engine is in the front BTW.
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      10-10-2011, 03:01 PM   #95
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I'm not comparing the m3 to other cars. I'm comparing it to what it could have been. All the cars you list have good motors but poor handling. Why couldn't BMW put a similar motor to the one found in the c63 in the m3? In my opinion the weakest link on the m3 is the engine and I'm not sure why it deserves so much praise.
For BMW to do what I believe you wanted would've turned this into a $90k car. IMHO
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      10-10-2011, 08:25 PM   #96
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Originally Posted by Nine View Post
weight, power and size, you are talking about a 4 liter engine, cranking out 414hp, without any type of forced induction. It's like the little engine that could.

100hp per liter, you realize how much hp the M3 would have it were an equivalent size to it's competitors like the mustang gt or the C63?
You realize that the engine in the Z06 weighs about the same or maybe a little less than the M3 motor, don't you. Displacement is not the correct measurement of an engine; weight is. The M3's engine is nothing special.

Don't get me wrong. There is nothing out there I'd rather have than my e90. I just don't buy into this "legendary" bs.
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      10-10-2011, 08:58 PM   #97
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I know the engine is very small and puts out over 100 hp/liter which is great. And if the car or the engine itself were extremely light as a result then I would totally understand the benefits. But I don't believe this to be the case.
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You realize that the engine in the Z06 weighs about the same or maybe a little less than the M3 motor, don't you. Displacement is not the correct measurement of an engine; weight is. The M3's engine is nothing special.

Don't get me wrong. There is nothing out there I'd rather have than my e90. I just don't buy into this "legendary" bs.
Exactly, hp per liter is great feat of engineering. But in this case it appears all for not?
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      10-22-2011, 02:23 PM   #98
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The E92 will be considered a legend when the V8 engine is replaced. Then ppl will "remember those days" when one could hear a proper roar down the road...
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      10-22-2011, 06:08 PM   #99
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Good topic OP!

I think the only way to judge a legend is with the passage of time. The car has some potential to be a legend but I would not make a call yet myself. Dominance, sure, legend, let's see.

Back to the engine...

The single most impressive thing about the S65 engine is the shape of its torque curve. Of course ultimately peak power is way more important than peak torque (how many times have we have that debate here...) but what the M3 achieves is roughly 90% of peak torque from 3000 rpm up to just a hair shy of redline. In that band the torque curve looks like a frikin' table top. There is not really a match for this achievement anywhere in the market and to get even close you have to spend about 300%. Of course the redline itself is impressive as well as it specific output (however, hp/l is more important from a technical perspective rather than from a what really matters in an engine perspective). When it came out I think there was one car (Ferrari) with a higher redline. What does this torque curve mean in the real world? It provides wonderful engine feel, control and incredibly linear (constant) acceleration. Choose the right gear and the engine provides the same punch across an enormous rpm range.

We've also beat the horse to an absolutely bloody pulp on the issue of so called "lack of torque" in the M3. There is no lack of torque, there is insistence by some to be a "lazy driver", essentially in the wrong gear. Now to some, that type of performance has definite value but that is not the same as a lack of torque. Torque to the wheels is what counts, torque at the crank is a truly a meaningless spec, you can't feel it nor measure it, the transmission must be involved in addition to crank torque to be meaningful in any way. Then you are talking (more or less) about power. At the wheels the car has more torque than many Vettes (don't remember the details but the calculations have been shown here on the forum).

I am truly baffled by the credibility and opinion of someone who buys an E9X M3 despite the engine. Get that baby on a track or some good back roads and spend a few laps above 6000 rpm as much of the time as possible then please report back. Such a statement really does almost warrant some good old fashioned name calling...
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Last edited by swamp2; 10-22-2011 at 06:15 PM.
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      10-23-2011, 01:23 AM   #100
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I am truly baffled by the credibility and opinion of someone who buys an E9X M3 despite the engine. Get that baby on a track or some good back roads and spend a few laps above 6000 rpm as much of the time as possible then please report back. Such a statement really does almost warrant some good old fashioned name calling...
I have not had my M3 very long but I already taken it to an autocross and spent plenty of time above 6,000 RPM. Honestly, after the autocross I don't plan on doing a trackday with the M3 anytime soon. For the track I prefer my Yamaha R6 "streetbike" as I find it a lot more engaging.

Actually, my R6 is another great example of a vehicle I purchased despite its engine. The R6 has a 16,000 RPM redline but is notoriously gutless at low RPM. Even when compared to its direct competitors with nearly identical powerplants such as the GSXR (which also features an inline 4-cylinder engine with a similar redline) it lacks low end power. Obviously this is not optimal for the street but the R6 is the best handling bike in its class so I chose to sacrifice low end power for improved handling - see a trend developing here?

Every vehicle is going to be a compromise. Its up to the purchaser to decide which attributes are most important to them whether it be luxury, power, handling, etc.

Looking at the graph you posted, I concur the torque curve is quite flat. However, compared to an LS series engine I think the curve is about 200 (?) NM lower. Which, based on my real life experiences with the two powerplants seems to negate that benefit. The LS series engines make more torque just off idle than the M3's engine makes at its peak.
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      10-23-2011, 11:35 AM   #101
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...The single most impressive thing about the S65 engine is the shape of its torque curve. Of course ultimately peak power is way more important than peak torque (how many times have we have that debate here...) but what the M3 achieves is roughly 90% of peak torque from 3000 rpm up to just a hair shy of redline. In that band the torque curve looks like a frikin' table top. There is not really a match for this achievement anywhere in the market and to get even close you have to spend about 300%. Of course the redline itself is impressive as well as it specific output (however, hp/l is more important from a technical perspective rather than from a what really matters in an engine perspective). When it came out I think there was one car (Ferrari) with a higher redline. What does this torque curve mean in the real world? It provides wonderful engine feel, control and incredibly linear (constant) acceleration. Choose the right gear and the engine provides the same punch across an enormous rpm range.
Agree on everything, but the last line is bolded for a reason...

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We've also beat the horse to an absolutely bloody pulp on the issue of so called "lack of torque" in the M3. There is no lack of torque, there is insistence by some to be a "lazy driver", essentially in the wrong gear. Now to some, that type of performance has definite value but that is not the same as a lack of torque. Torque to the wheels is what counts, torque at the crank is a truly a meaningless spec, you can't feel it nor measure it, the transmission must be involved in addition to crank torque to be meaningful in any way. Then you are talking (more or less) about power. At the wheels the car has more torque than many Vettes (don't remember the details but the calculations have been shown here on the forum)...
Without trying to re-light another flamefest, one has to set a context here. Most folks equate torque with how a car feels at the low end of the rpm band, as opposed to some peak torque value.

In this context, your posted chart shows what every driver feels when driving a current M3, where the steep torque curve at lower rpm is definitely noticeable. It's sullen at 1500, willing at 2000, transitioning to eager at something below 3000 rpm (for me, the crossover seems to be somewhere around 2600), and absolutely joyous at 4000 and up.

Because of the steep gearing, it's easy to drive around this "weakness", and in fact I think most drivers simply don't notice it because they instinctively know that rpm is the solution to the problem at hand, and rpm is exceedingly easy to obtain in this car.

In addition, this "issue" is really only noticeable when one is comparing the car to others that are considered to be competitive to it in some way. The C63, Vette, etc. have low-end responsiveness in spades, but it's only in that context that the M3 shows a little weakness. In point of fact, there's no real weakness in everyday driving, and the car is a pleasure to pilot almost anywhere in the rpm spectrum.

Furthermore, with the auto there is simply no issue at all because of how responsive that box is to driver demands. It's only the six-speed cars where this relatively minor issue may show up from time to time - and then only when compared to other hot cars with more low end torque.

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      10-23-2011, 03:41 PM   #102
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Looking at the graph you posted, I concur the torque curve is quite flat. However, compared to an LS series engine I think the curve is about 200 (?) NM lower. Which, based on my real life experiences with the two powerplants seems to negate that benefit. The LS series engines make more torque just off idle than the M3's engine makes at its peak.
Yes there is a difference in how low of an rpm any appreciable torque is developed. However 3 grand vs. 8400 is not so different than 1500 vs. 6600. Again gear selection is the key. It also begs the question, in even loosely agressive driving why spend any time at all near idle?

Just recall that you CAN NOT measure nor feel crank torque, the transmission and rear end ratios are involved. Well, to be clear you could remove the engine and put it in a dedicated test fixture, but in the real world you NEVER feel the crank torque. Torque is always multiplied by the transmission and rear end ratios. Then that is what you feel (or measure in an acceleration test). That is why you should, more or less, ignore an engines crank torque specs.

Run the calculations yourself, it will be enlightening. Wheel torque = engine torque x transmission gear ratio x final drive ratio. You can take it one step further and actually get the accelerative force by also multiplying by the wheel radius, but as a very rough 1st pass you can even consider that a constant across different cars.
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      10-23-2011, 04:15 PM   #103
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bruce.augenstein@comcast. View Post
Agree on everything, but the last line is bolded for a reason...



Without trying to re-light another flamefest, one has to set a context here. Most folks equate torque with how a car feels at the low end of the rpm band, as opposed to some peak torque value.

In this context, your posted chart shows what every driver feels when driving a current M3, where the steep torque curve at lower rpm is definitely noticeable. It's sullen at 1500, willing at 2000, transitioning to eager at something below 3000 rpm (for me, the crossover seems to be somewhere around 2600), and absolutely joyous at 4000 and up.

Because of the steep gearing, it's easy to drive around this "weakness", and in fact I think most drivers simply don't notice it because they instinctively know that rpm is the solution to the problem at hand, and rpm is exceedingly easy to obtain in this car.

In addition, this "issue" is really only noticeable when one is comparing the car to others that are considered to be competitive to it in some way. The C63, Vette, etc. have low-end responsiveness in spades, but it's only in that context that the M3 shows a little weakness. In point of fact, there's no real weakness in everyday driving, and the car is a pleasure to pilot almost anywhere in the rpm spectrum.

Furthermore, with the auto there is simply no issue at all because of how responsive that box is to driver demands. It's only the six-speed cars where this relatively minor issue may show up from time to time - and then only when compared to other hot cars with more low end torque.

Bruce
Great post
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