2012 BMW 528i Gets Turbo Four, Stop-Start, AWD

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The turbo four-cylinder (re)invasion is picking up its pace, with the luxury ranks gaining the 2012 BMW 528i. The balanced, capable sedan platform also gets some other nice powertrian features that promise to make the 528i one of the most fun in the segment, even if it is the "entry-level" version.

More on the turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder first, however. With 240 horsepower, it rates the same as the previous naturally-aspirated inline six-cylinder, but hits peak horsepower 1,500 rpm sooner. It also creates 30 percent more torque, at 260 pound-feet, and does it 1,500 rpm sooner, too. What's not to like? The previous inline six was fun to drive--the four should be even more so.

Helping to get the most out of the four-cylinder's propensity toward greater efficiency is a stop-start system, fitted as standard here in the U.S. despite its relative lack of advantage in EPA testing compared to EU testing. The system might not test well, but it should show good results in the real world, particularly if your driving involves a lot of standing at lights or being stuck in traffic. For squeezing the most out of every gallon, there's an ECO PRO mode, activated by the "driving experience" switch, that adjusts the engine map, heating, air conditioning, and mirror/seat heating to further reduce fuel consumption. A display tracks how much range is increased as a result. Official fuel economy estimates for the 528i haven't been released yet.

Finally, xDrive all-wheel drive is available on the 528i, boosting its all-weather capability. Working with BMW's Integrated Chassis Management system to minimize understeer by sending up to 80 percent of torque to the rear wheels, it also improves handling and safety.

So, BMW now offers a turbo, four-cylinder, all-wheel drive luxury sedan. Let the cheering commence.

The 2012 528i goes on sale this fall. For more on BMW's turbo four-cylinder plans for the U.S., check out the 2012 Z4 sDrive28i and the 2012 BMW X1 xDrive28i.

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Comments (3)
  1. The specs look great for the new 5 series, and I like all the moves towards efficiency. It is great to see luxury auto makers shifting some of their efforts into making efficient cars; that within itself is a luxury.

  2. Is BMW doing more 4WD versions of other cars? It seems to derail from the original BMW ethos.

  3. the thing that bugs me about this move by BMW isnt the 4 cylnder engine nor the ever expanding waistline of its models. NO its the naming convention that they now employ. The ID would define the engine capaity int he past, just so you knew that 528i was a 2.8l in line 6 sedan. now the numbering doesnt mean a thing and they shodl jsut call their cars I5. But that woudl then step on the toes of their new future devision. / rant over

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