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BMW leads turbo charge

Seven of the 11 winners in Germany last week were turbo-charged units, which reflects the major part the technology is now playing in efforts to improve fuel economy and curb emissions.

Six companies collected prizes, but one brand had more reason than most to celebrate.

BMW dominated the competition, claiming half of the awards including the top honour, International Engine of the Year.

That accolade went to its 3.0-litre twin-turbo six-cylinder unit available in the 135i, 335i and X6.

It is the second year in a row the engine has won the top gong.

The German firm also claimed the New Engine of 2008 title with its 2.0-litre turbo-diesel, available in the 123d.

Other winners for the company were the 4.0-litre V8 found in the new M3 and the 5.0-litre V10 in the M5 and M6.

BMW's joint venture with French company PSA also paid off. The 1.6-litre turbo-charged four-cylinder used in the Mini and Peugeot 308 won its class.

“BMW rightly views these awards as the highest industry recognition of its outstanding achievements in engine technology and manufacturing,” BMW director of power-train Peter Langen says.

“It is an honour for our 3.0-litre twin-turbo engine to have earned the highest accolade for the second year running. And we are truly delighted that so many of our other engines have been judged class leaders.”

The other multiple winners were Toyota and Volkswagen/Audi.

Toyota's hybrid synergy drive, which powers the Prius, won the inaugural Green Engine of the Year prize.

It's not the first time the engine has been honoured, though. It has previously won 10 gongs in the annual awards.

Toyota's other winner — the 1.0-litre unit that powers the Toyota Aygo, Peugeot 107 and Citroen C1 — came in the under 1.0-litre category.

Like BMW, Volkswagen/Audi was honoured for its forced induction engines.

The 1.4-litre TSI engine, which uses super-charging and turbo-charging, won its category. It's other winner was the 2.0-litre turbo motor in the Audi A3, VW Golf GTi and Skoda Octavia.

That engine drew particular praise for not only its performance and economy but its flexibility.

The 2.0-litre unit comes in a variety of tunes — 125kW, 147kW, 195kW and 200kW — to suit different vehicles, including the new Audi TTS.

“The benchmark for efficiency and performance in its category,” was one comment from the judges. “A great example of an engine that's so flexible it can deliver the right solutions for a variety of vehicles.”

Porsche won the performance engine award with its 3.6-litre turbo from the 911 turbo and 911 GT2.

Subaru was the only other winner with its 2.5-litre turbo.

British specialist magazine Engine Technology International is responsible for the awards, which are voted on by 65 motoring journalists from 32 countries, including Australia.

The ceremony was held as part of the 2008 Engine Expo in Stuttgart, Germany.

The awards are held in high regard by the automotive industry because the judges consider the full range of engine criteria: performance, fuel consumption, driving behaviour, driving comfort and the use of technology.


The highest industry recognition of its outstanding achievements

The Winners of the International Engine of the Year 2008

BMW 3.0-litre twin-turbo

Best new engine

BMW 2.0-litre diesel twin-turbo

Green engine of the year

Toyota 1.5-litre hybrid synergy drive

Best performance-engine

Porsche 3.6-litre turbo

Best sub 1.0-litre

Toyota 1.0-litre

Best 1.0-litre to 1.4-litre

Volkswagen 1.4-litre TSI twincharger

Best 1.4-litre to 1.8-litre

BMW-PSA 1.6-litre turbo

Best 1.8-litre to 2.0-litre

Volkswagen/Audi 2-litre turbo

Best 2.0-litre to 2.5-litre

Subaru 2.5-litre turbo

Best 2.5-litre to 3.0-litre

BMW 3.0-litre twin-turbo

Best 3.0-litre to 4.0-litre

BMW 4.0-litre V8

Best above 4.0-litre

BMW 5.0-litre V10


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