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1.8-litre to 2-litre
  BMW 2-litre twin-turbo diesel

“The most responsive, linear and eager-to-rev diesel that I've ever driven”
Dave VanderWerp, Car and Driver


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Image: - Dr Peter Nefischer, General Manager, Design Diesel Engines, BMW

The second twin-turbo victory for BMW in this year’s International Engine of the Year Awards, the 2-litre powertrain, is the world’s first fourcylinder engine with variable twin turbocharger technology.

This powertrain is finding fans around the world, and one such is Carl Cunanan from the Philippines, who said, “The engine that made gasoline-only buyers sit up and take notice is now proving its mettle, both on the road and at the filling station.”

This small yet punchy diesel from Bavaria uses two different-sized turbos deployed sequentially to dispense extra power right across the rev range. At lower revs, the small turbocharger works on its own to provide instantaneous throttle response, thus eliminating lag.

Third-generation common rail injection ensures high performance of 204bhp, in hand with a fuel consumption levels of 5.5 l/100km (51.3mpg) and CO2 emissions of 138g/km. Such expert engineering amounts to power output per litre of over 100hp. And thanks to the entire engine block now being made solely of aluminium, total weight is reduced by 20kg.

Even venerable competitors, such as Audi’s 2-litre TFSI heart, and high-performance units including Honda’s screaming 2-litre i-VTEC and Mitsubishi’s 295bhp 2-litre turbo, didn’t come close to BMW’s 2-litre diesel in the jury’s eyes.

One fan was Dave VanderWerp from Car and Driver in the USA, who stated the engine is: “the most responsive, linear and eager-to-rev diesel that I’ve ever driven. Plus it returns impressive fuel economy.”

Matt Davis, an international freelancer with outlets such as AutoExpress in the UK, also enthused: “Stunning how much this small-capacity diesel feels like the best V6 gas engine ever built.”

With praise from around the world, the message is clear: engines like this truly make one wonder how much better diesel technology can possibly become in the future.


1. BMW 2-litre Twin Turbo Diesel (123d, X1 23d) 293
2. Audi 2-litre four-cylinder TFSI (Audi A4, A4 Allroad, A5,
A5 Sportback, A6, Q5, S3, VW Scirocco, Jetta, Passat, Tiguan,
Golf, Seat Leon, Cupra R, Exeo, Skoda Octavia RS)
3. Audi 2-litre four-cylinder TFSI (Audi TT, VW Eos, Golf, Seat Leon, FR/Cupra, Seat Altea/XL/Freetrack) 156
4. Honda 2-litre four-cylinder i-VTEC (Civic Type-R) 150
5. Mitsubishi 2-litre Turbo (Evo, Lancer) 73
6. Subaru 2-litre Diesel (Impreza, Outlook, Forester, Legacy) 71



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