There is something beautiful about the symmetry of an older BMW V12 engine. It could be the lack of shrouding that most modern engines are covered with, or the fact that each intake runner is exposed. Whatever it is, it strikes a chord amongst those that like to peek under the hoods.
The M73TU B54 you see in today’s Super Bild was “International Engine of the year” winner in 1999 and features an Alusil aluminum engine block and aluminum SOHC cylinder heads. While most other engines in the BMW range had switched to four valves per cylinder, the M73 used 2-valve SOHC heads and featured fracture-split forged steel connecting rods.
The M73tu produced 326HP and 361 ft/lbs of torque. It was capable of propelling the E38 750li from a standstill to 60MPH in 5.4 seconds, an accomplished feat even by today’s luxury cars.
The M73 was also the same engine used in the Rolls Royce Silver Seraph from 1998 to 2002. Having driven both the Silver Seraph and the 750il of that time; the 750il because of its reduced weight was definitely the sporting choice. You really get to experience the torque and power flexibility only a V12 can provide. It’s no wonder that to this day BMW still produces a V12.
The following N73 B60 in the E65 was already covered in the aforementioned shrouds and could not be fully enjoyed in all its glory. So today we pay tribute to the M73tu for being the last of the exposed V12s.
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