Latest rumor on the interwebs comes from the usual Scott26/27 BMW insider. His track record hasn’t been spotless so we always advise to take his statements with a grain of salt. His latest thoughts outlined in a forum say that the next generation BMW M5 will return to a V10 engine. As you would expect, the BMW community not only embraced this idea but are already thinking what kind of power it will deliver and whether will it be a naturally aspirated engine or a V10 TwinTurbo.
Before going all in, let’s take a closer look at this rumor.
Cons of a V10 Engine
Given all the downsizing, eco-friendly and environment happy news we’ve been getting lately from BMW, the idea of a V10 engine going back in the M5 and consequently the M6, doesn’t make much sense. Granted, things change a lot over the course of seven years (the lifecycle of a BMW product), so one would argue that anything is possible.
But the following question arises: why would BMW give up their high-performance V8 TwinTurbo in exchange for a less efficient V10? The 4.4 liter V8 TwinTurbo can certainly deliver more power than the 560 hp stock. We will already see this in the revised version of the upcoming BMW X5 M / X6 M. Without a doubt, the V10 naturally-aspirated engine sounds better than the V8 TwinTurbo, but is that enough for BMW to shift their engine strategy?
Also let’s not forget the 2020 target for CO2 emission across entire fleets, a good enough reason for any automaker to downsize their engines and make them more efficient.
It also needs to be noted that the BMW E60 M5 with a naturally aspirated V10 engine weighs 1,855 kilograms or 4,090lbs while the BMW F10 M5 with a twin-turbo V8 engine weighs 1,945 kilograms or 4,288lbs for example. While the increase can be attributed to certain advancements in comfort, handling and overall appearance of the car it still remains a fact that the BMW M5 is getting heavier by each model coming out now. And a V10 would certainly not help.
Pros of a V10 Engine
Now let’s take a look at the pros of a V10 unit. There are not too many, but worth digging into them.
While some may argue that a V10 is a waste of time, space, weight and energy, some people don’t agree with that. A smaller displacement V10 could prove useful, providing the same amount of horsepower (or more) by utilizing a 3.6 – 4.0 liter engine displacement and going with a twin-turbo technology for it. Combine that with an electric motor powering the front wheels, the added traction and handling improvements may prove valuable for a vehicle like this.
While it’s main competitors are either sporting a 4.0l twin-turbo V10, as the Audi RS6 does, or a 5.5 liter twin-turbo V8 as the Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG utilizes, it may prove worthwhile to drop the weight, add additional traction to the front wheels, downsize in displacement and increase the number of cylinders to combat any power loss seen there.
BMW is also known to be testing a wide range of powerplants before settling on the most balanced option, so without a doubt, the BMW engineers are constantly looking ahead and aligning their knowledge with the company’s strategy and the market demands. Does that mean a V10 engine will be coming back? Only Garching knows that answer…for now.