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      10-13-2011, 07:35 AM   #1
LarThaL
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Is forced induction like an athlete on steroids?

With the next gen M3 going turbo, it got me thinking about this subject.

A highly tuned and meticulously engineered normally aspirated V8 is like an athlete who has trained diligently, watched his or her nutrition, and basically done everything "right" to achieve a high level of performance.

Now along comes the steroid user, who doesn't require anywhere close to the same amount of training discipline or dedication. Just inject a little juice and "bam", you can kick the ass of the "natural" athlete.

And yet, there is just something more pure and artful in the way the natural athlete achieves what he or she does.

It is really the same with car engines. There is just something more artful, purposeful and meaningful, in my mind, about a highly engineered naturally aspirated motor. I am not disputing the ease by which FI can give you big power, but there is something eerily unnatural about how the power delivery feels. I don't know how else to describe it. There is a disconnect between the throttle-engine response that isn't there with the NA motor.

There are a few holdouts in the Automotive world, but they are tending to be more the exotics. Ferrari, Lamborghini, Aston, are all still NA and have no intention of going FI.

Discuss.......
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      10-13-2011, 08:01 AM   #2
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I like the analogy!
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      10-13-2011, 08:04 AM   #3
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You can always add boost the S65 and get the best of both worlds
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      10-13-2011, 08:41 AM   #4
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In your analogy, I tend to think of a high strung NA engine as a highly focused/trained athlete who's sole purpose is the 500m (solely referring to the engine here, not chassis/brakes etc) where as a turbocharged engine is more like a decathlete who is more flexible when asked to compete in multiple events says "sure".

Lets not forget that just because a turbo is "cheating" that does not mean it is not highly engineered.

Based on your signature, did you test drive a Cayenne Turbo and the GTS before buying the GTS? There is no denying the GTS's torquey V8, but for torque and sheer sensation of speed, the turbo can't be beat.
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      10-13-2011, 10:18 AM   #5
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does this mean that my M3 was destined for me (being a Division 1 400m runner)?


I do like that analogy though. I have a 335i now as well and the throttle response is sh*t even though everyone says it isn't bad.
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      10-13-2011, 10:39 AM   #6
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Interesting analogy, but I don't fully agree. I think with steroids, there is an inherent sense of flat out cheating in a competitive sport, whereas FI is moreso just a different branch of technology, or exercise if you will. That is to say, I don't find anything inherently wrong with the idea of FI itself. I doubt anyone thinks a FI Accord is 'cheating', but there is a sentimental value amongst M3 owners that cries foul should the same be applied to their beloved M3's. I think BMW did a great job with the 335i engine, (HPFP / Roid Rage issues aside). The S65 is just as marvelous, but in a different way. Obviously these two engines serve a different purpose.

With the M3 going turbo, it just seems like BMW is responding to their market as well as their competition. I'm sure MPG has been a common complaint, and turbo is just their best option to respond to that. In the end, I wouldn't look at it like Ken Griffey Jr vs Mark McGuire, but Jack Nicklaus vs Tiger Woods. Difference being, Jack had to play with what he could at the time, and Tiger has access to technology Jack couldn't dream of, and that Tiger would be foolish to turn down.
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      10-13-2011, 10:41 AM   #7
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Not a bad analogy, but I always looked at Superchargers as making NA even better. I don't like Turbochargers much, but they have their advantages like better economy, more power at lower rpms (due to more torque) etc.

I wish BMW used SC for future M cars instead of being cheap and going all turbo...
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      10-13-2011, 10:52 AM   #8
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I think it's the perfect analogy for the S65. That engine was NEVER designed for boost. Boost significantly decreases engine longevity, just like steroids do to life. There'll never be concrete proof (on either case) some folks look for, but the sheer number of failed boosted engines so far is more than enough to prove that point . Heck, these engines seem to be marginal (main bearings mostly) even without boost . Good day gang.
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      10-13-2011, 11:01 AM   #9
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I never thought of engines that way, but it's an interesting comparison. I don't see turbos or FI as "cheating", though. Those aspects of engine design are merely technologies that increase performance in one aspect at some expense in others. FI is an advancement that lets you get more horsepower and torque from a smaller displacement engine.

To continue the athlete analogy, I see it less as steroids than as a different training technique, nutrition protocol, or equipment. It's the interval training versus high yardage in 70's swimming, the high protein versus high carbs, and the high tech racing suit versus a conventional speedo (can you tell I'm a swimmer haha).

Yeah, it doesn't make everything better. In fact, it makes some things worse, but performance and regulatatory trends are leading companies that way.

As FI is more complex from an engineering perspective, it actually takes more work to get everything out of the engine than it would in an N/A unit. It just so happens that the engine has greater power, torque, and economy potential due to the additions.

That said, there's something wonderful about a motor that's been designed and tuned to get maximum performance without adding complexity or making compromises. I got my M3 in part because I wanted to get one of the last great engines made almost strictly for performance before environmental concerns changed the industry. I'll be enjoying my N/A S65 as long as I can.
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      10-13-2011, 11:27 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VVG View Post
Is forced induction like an athlete on steroids?
Nah. Forced induction on an engine would be more like an athlete with a tube attached to their mouth and nose. And then that tube fed a little turbine which pumped more air into their mouth and lungs. Or maybe the turbine is attached to a pump that pumps their blood faster. Or maybe its a food processor? I don't know yet, I haven't thought it through too much.

...but I think it has potential.

Quote:
Ferrari, Lamborghini, Aston, are all still NA and have no intention of going FI.
Ah, but don't bet on that to continue too much longer.
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      10-13-2011, 11:36 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
Nah. Forced induction on an engine would be more like an athlete with a tube attached to their mouth and nose. And then that tube fed a little turbine which pumped more air into their mouth and lungs. Or maybe the turbine is attached to a pump that pumps their blood faster. Or maybe its a food processor? I don't know yet, I haven't thought it through too much.
Thinking how the turbo works, the turbine needs to be hooked to your... butt so when you fart, you get boost.
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      10-13-2011, 11:53 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VVG View Post
With the next gen M3 going turbo, it got me thinking about this subject.

Discuss.......
I like the way you look at the issue, it also got me to think having driven the 2009 Z4 3.5i having a V6 and twin turbo.

When I think about it and compare my 1987 535is e28 and my 2011 M3 e92 I come to the conclusion that the now almost 25 year old car was well ahead of it's time as is our now M3.

Now comparing the power I got from my former Z4 compared to the M3 as far as driving the car on the street (not the track) I must say the Z4 has plenty of power to satisfy most everyone. Unless of course that individual likes to track the car. I am speaking purely when I compare the pick-up and go of both the V6 with twin turbo and the V8.

Now I think what has been happening over the years in the Automobile Industry is simply that each of them is trying to keep up so to speak with the Joneses ... I'm sure all of us are familiar with the term.

So it seams to me is also the case with BMW now going backwards as some of us see it when the plan is to go from a V8 down to a V6 and adding a twin turbo. Now turbos have been around for some time and the efficiency has been improved greatly over time.

BMW is simply (in my view) trying to keep up with the Joneses and upcoming regulations as to emission and fuel consumption competition etc.

In the end I think BMW will put a great engine into the M3 the Engineers and Designers at the ///M Division will not approve of anything less. I would not be surprised if BMW for the M3 not offer a choice of several engines to maintain the great reputation of this car.

anyway that is the way I see it ...
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      10-13-2011, 12:33 PM   #13
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like the way to think man .... and for the GTR that thing goes like hell but id say if your in a high gear and u floor it ( without downshifting ) i think itll have a lag of a small of time ( less than a sec ) but it does have it
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      10-13-2011, 12:40 PM   #14
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i can carleless about what BMW does, i won't own one again.
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      10-13-2011, 12:40 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VVG View Post
A highly tuned and meticulously engineered normally aspirated V8 is like an athlete who has trained diligently, watched his or her nutrition, and basically done everything "right" to achieve a high level of performance.
Now along comes the steroid user, who doesn't require anywhere close to the same amount of training discipline or dedication. Just inject a little juice and "bam", you can kick the ass of the "natural" athlete.
And yet, there is just something more pure and artful in the way the natural athlete achieves what he or she does.
It is really the same with car engines. ..
I would keep your thoughts to yourself -- cause you don't know anything about endocrinology, metabolism or how anabolic steroids work based on what you posted....

Anabolic steroids basically improve protein synthesis and recovery -- they cause muscle hypertrophy but you do not grow more muscle tissue. You have to train the shit out of those muscles too -- they don't just grow themselves. In order for the muscles to grow (hypertrophy) there has to be concomitant change in blood flow and nutrition intake.

Forced induction is not "cheating" - it is simply a way of passing more air and gas through the motor -- at the expense of heat creation.

Forced induction is more like enlarging your digestive system so you can eat 60 hotdogs, taking extra digestive enzymes to help convert the hotdogs to ATP (energy) and having an extra large poop chute to crap out all the waste
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      10-13-2011, 01:31 PM   #16
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I would keep your thoughts to yourself -- cause you don't know anything about endocrinology, metabolism or how anabolic steroids work based on what you posted....

Anabolic steroids basically improve protein synthesis and recovery -- they cause muscle hypertrophy but you do not grow more muscle tissue. You have to train the shit out of those muscles too -- they don't just grow themselves. In order for the muscles to grow (hypertrophy) there has to be concomitant change in blood flow and nutrition intake.

Forced induction is not "cheating" - it is simply a way of passing more air and gas through the motor -- at the expense of heat creation.

Forced induction is more like enlarging your digestive system so you can eat 60 hotdogs, taking extra digestive enzymes to help convert the hotdogs to ATP (energy) and having an extra large poop chute to crap out all the waste



This.
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      10-13-2011, 01:43 PM   #17
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stupid.. just plain stupid

Even our V8 isn't technically "all natural" induction. Tuning the intake and exhaust can achieve resonance "charging" that will yield greater than 1.0 efficiency. In simple terms this means you're getting a supercharging effect in the combustion chamber that you would not get under normal atmospheric conditions.


If anything you're supercharged at 1 bar all the time.

I should stop talking now and not even post, but I'm just appaled by the ignorance of 400 years of scientific discovery. Fucking barometric pressure man, W T F..
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      10-13-2011, 02:01 PM   #18
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Analogy makes no sense IMO

how is a n/a motor harder to develop than a direct injected fi car?

The software programming alone, not to mention development of a quality coolin system is much more difficult in an fi car.

Both are good, but fi motors are more efficient and powerful.

Fi cars can also have excellent throttle response and pull hard to redline while also maintaining excellent low to midrange tq. See a 997 turbo for example.

I love both types of motors, but fi cars have a lot to offer IMO and I am excited to see one in the new m3. Just wish it was a tt or sc v8 instead!
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      10-13-2011, 02:04 PM   #19
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A turbo, exhaust gasses go into the turbocharger and spin it, with a supercharger, air goes in,witchcraft happens and you go faster.
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      10-13-2011, 02:05 PM   #20
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Quote:
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i can carleless about what BMW does, i won't own one again.
After the e9x, a lot of people are calling it quits.
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      10-13-2011, 02:10 PM   #21
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After the e9x, a lot of people are calling it quits.
Right. Until the next m3 comes out, has 450 hp, runs a 12.0 sec 1/4 mile at 120mph and gets 25mpg highway. Not to mention is a tune away from mid to low 11s.
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      10-13-2011, 02:36 PM   #22
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Quote:
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I would keep your thoughts to yourself -- cause you don't know anything about endocrinology, metabolism or how anabolic steroids work based on what you posted....
1. You appear to be interpreting my post in a way that I never intended. That's okay, it happens.

2. All other things being equal (genetic potential, etc.) , the anabolic steroid user will have greater gains with less overall effort than the non-user.

3. Please refrain from making things personal. You have no clue who I am and what I may or may not know. This is light topic for discussion on an internet car forum, after all, not a doctoral thesis.
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