BMW & Peugeot Announce New Engine Range

Here's some news that gives us a glimpse into the future of the MINI range. BMW and PSA have released preliminary information regarding the new range of engines (code named Prince) that will power, among other things, the next generation of MINIs. Here's the press release:

“BMW Group and PSA Peugeot Citroen have unveiled the state-of-the-art technologies deployed in their new gasoline engines, the first to be jointly developed and produced by their cooperative venture.

Announced in July 2002, the two Companies' cooperation in gasoline engines is now setting new standards for performance, driving comfort and reductions in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

Beginning in 2006, the engines will equip small and mid-size cars produced by the Peugeot and Citroen marques as well as future models of the MINI. Production is expected to eventually total roughly one million units a year.


At a special technology day at BMW Group's Research and Development Center in Munich, executives from both companies presented the technical features of two types of engines:

  • A 1.6-liter atmospheric engine with a variable valve timing distribution and a power output of 85 kW (115 hp).
  • A 1.6-liter direct injection, compressed turbo engine with a power output of 105 kW (143 hp). The new models are the first in a family that will eventually comprise engines delivering a range of power outputs from 55 kW (75 hp) to 125 kW (170 hp).

As a result of both group's expertise, these engines offer a large number of new features including:

  • Variable valve timing.
  • Fully controlled oil pump.
  • Single belt drive for all ancillary components.
  • Cylinder heads produced by lost foam casting.

In addition, several innovations have been developed, including:

  • Direct injection to optimize power.
  • Twin-Scroll turbocharger to improve response time and driving comfort.
  • Self-disengaging water pump to reduce fuel consumption and emissions.

The co-operation between BMW Group and PSA Peugeot Citroen clearly demonstrates that gasoline engines still offer a great potential of technological progress, thus contributing to the reduction of consumption and CO2 emissions while enhancing the car performances and its related driving pleasure.”


What's that? You swear you've seen these specs before? Well if you're a dedicated MotoringFile or MINI2 reader you did almost exactly a year ago.

While the specs very closely follow what was posted on previously, they differ somewhat from what we've read recently in AutoExpress. Specifically there's no mention of a 200hp engine as a 170hp version is the highest listed.


  • Mike

    As stated on MINI's own web site:

    Turbo shmurbo!

    I'll take a supercharger over a turbocharger any day. I think that MINI is making a big mistake on this one. Having the supercharger in a market overwhelmed with small turbocharged cars is one of the things that make the MINI unique in my opinion. I'll be very sad to see it go.

  • Nicholas P

    I love the supercharger and feel it is best for the MINI.

    Besides, if u have to sit there and let the turbo cool off when u get somewhere, u will have less time to motor around with long-cuts…

    who wants to wait 30 seconds or so after you get to work, running late for a meeting, just to let the turbo cool down?

  • I know it's really hard but I'd recommend holding off final judgement on this engine until we know a bit more … or until we can actually drive it 🙂 This won't be your typical 4 cylinder turbo.

  • I like super over turbo, because I like the smoother power curver of a super. But I do doubt that the new MINI engine will have the typical turbo feel. It just wouldn't make sense if it was. Would they then end up having to pull a Big Brother job of 'correcting' history?

  • Pocket_Rocket

    Twin Scroll Turbos are fast spooling smooth units. The Mitsubishi Evolution VIII currently uses a Twin Scroll turbo and it is VERY easy to get more power out of them.

    I can't wait to see what JCW does with this engine. This could be very promising if Chris Bangle can keep his evil crease cutting claws away from our baby.


  • Erik

    Modern turbos do not require a “30 sec cool down”. Turbo's are now both water and oil cooled to prevent bearing failure.

    Also, a properly tuned turbo engine can produce good low end torque. Tuners are going to have a field day ramping up the boost too ;).

    I second Gabe's wait and see approach.

  • RB

    Here's my question, since I don't know that much about turbos or supers….Why would they change a winning combination?…is it for weight reasons, cost cutting, better fuel economy???


  • Erik

    Engine efficiency wise, a turbo is hard to beat. It uses exhaust pressure /gas that normally would be wasted to spin the turbo and produce boost. The super charger is driven from the crank of the engine and therfore creates parasitic drag (like yr a/c).

    It's not to say one is better than the other fuel efficiency wise. Alot of other factors can contribute to these numbers.

  • BMW was keen to get out of the Chrysler joint venture the minute Mercedes swallowed them up several years back.

    Further BMW has wanted to extend some of their own engine technologies in the MINI range. With technologies like direct injection and variable valve timing they will soon have that.

    The problem with developing engines is always development costs. With MINI, BMW doesn't have the volume to justify the cost of developing an entirely new line of engines. However with BMW partnering with PSA they can share those costs and in the end offer a hi-tech engine with loads of development expense that they otherwise wouldn't have been able to offer.

    And these engines will be built in the UK and not in Brazil.

    It really seems like a win win.

  • Whoa whoa whoa… I love the supercharger, too… but you guys seem to have missed one very important feature on this new engine: Direct Injection!

    The engine pulls in only air during the intake stroke, which means it compresses only air in the compression stroke (Knock? What's that? You can't detonate without fuel!). As the piston reaches top dead center, the injectors spray fuel directly into the combustion chamber at high pressure.

    So, what does this mean? There's no possibility of knock, so you can run extremely high boost levels on pump fuel! As long as the mechanicals are sufficiently beefy, you should be able to pull quite a bit of power out of this little direct-injection unit!

  • Like I said- this won't be your run of the mill 4 cylinder turbo 🙂

  • Nicholas P

    well that's good news, re: no more 30 second cool down…i'll give it a look then, if that's the case…i just hope they don't twin-headlight the new MINI!

  • Brian

    People, I think what we like most about the supercharger is the sound. I'm sure the New engine will sound as pleasing as the current one. That has to be on the MINI Engineers minds.

  • Brian

    In which model year will the MCS have the new engine?

    (sorry for double post)

  • I will miss the supercharger sound, but I'd be willing to forgive them if they put in a WRC-style sequential gearbox, with its tasty gear whine. 😉

  • petsounds

    Brian – Having owned an Audi A4 1.8L turbo in the past, I can say that the biggest reason I love the supercharger in the MINI is the lack of turbo lag (although I guess that advantage is somewhat neutralized by my MINI's stumble problems). I have no doubt that the new Peugot engine will be powerful (although I'm worried about the 170hp number..I thought we'd see over 200), but I'm concerned about the power band and instant access to that power.

  • Wayne

    Gee, variable valve timing. Hasn't Honda had that for what seems like decades?

  • Rodney

    Here is some more info on Direct Injection:

    What is the large chamber after the turbo?

  • michael Boice


    Variable turbo, not valvetrain.

    This type of turbo – in theory – takes advantage of a small turbo's quick spool-up time (less spinning inertia), and, a large turbo's ability to produce bigger power than a smaller turbo at top end.

  • Michael, twin-scroll (variable geometry) turbo AND variable valve timing.

  • Wayne – BMW has been a leader in variable and infinitely variable valve timing for many years.

  • Evan

    Isn't the Honda VTEC only between two different length runners- one for high rpm and one for low? The newest variable valve timing is for the whole range of the rpms. The current Civic only has VTEC (and the only EX model). The Accord may have the new iVTEC (for infinite).

    A little more on the exact meaning of the above jargon would be appreciated Gabe. Espeically since I've never heard of a twin scroll turbo and how it differs from the standard turbo.

    Plus, the newest turbo engines, when the boost is moderate and tuned appropriately, exhibit little if any “lag” as was common with turbo engines. From the sounds of it, this engine will be a real screamer. Especially since BMW had more direct input here. The current engine was mainly a Chrysler design- which has proven to be a very good lump.

    More tech info would be appreciated for the neophites!

    Motor on!

  • pete

    I found it most interesting that the horsepower ratings e much lower than expected. I would assume that BMW will be able to improve these numbers but still…

  • Aruna

    Erik – 30 second cool down? I encountered it for the first time in a 2004/5 Volvo S40 T5.. It definitely sucked having to sit in the car for 30 seconds waiting for the silly thing to cool down. I had no idea turbos needed that (The MCS being my first FI car). The S40 definitely had low end torque, but I'm wondering where you got it that modern turbos don't need cooldown. Or is the S40 an anomaly?

  • Dean

    I had a SAAB 9000 Turbo. It needed the 30 seconds to cool down the turbo. Also, with a turbo, you better make damn sure of the engine oil maintiance. Wait too long betewwen changes and you will fry out the turbo bearings, (as I did). As for “turbo lag”, that car didn't have that problem. With varible boost, you can get some of the turbo action way down low on the rpm range.

  • Bill Lawrence

    I will reserve judgement until I hear more. But, I will find out the last day to order a current model Supercharged MCS, just in case the reviews are bad.

  • RB

    My wife has a new A4 1.8. I turn it off and get out of the car, am I doing something wrong? Seems to be fine…don't know about nor was I told by the dealer to wait for 30 seconds.


  • Paul C. Norton

    How about this:

    Going through the first year while they try to get this motor right? My wife has a policy: No first year builds period. I can see her point. So at minimum I'm looking at 2010.

  • Supercharged

    I definitely agree with those here who believe that the new engines won't just be your average 4 cylinder turbo engines, but I wish BMW could have found a way to make everything work without replacing the supercharger with a turbo. It's just nice to have a supercharger in a small car like the MINI. It is the only car in its class that I know of that has a supercharger.

    Aside from that, I still think that the next generation MINI will live up to the standards that the current one has set.

  • Paul C – totally understandable. However there are many of us out there who have had great luck with early year '02s.

    I guess one (of the many) positive things about the current engine… it has proven to be bulletproof.

  • Bill

    I've got a twin-turbo Audi S4 and, believe me, there's very little lag, and with AWD you can put down most of the power, all of the time. Out the box the car had 250 bhp and 250 lb/ft torque and with a remapped ECU (actually an ECU swop which took 5 mins and cost $1300) the power was upped to 320 bhp and 360 lb/ft (with a catback exhaust). If MINI produce an AWD equipped turbo MCS, my name will definitely be on the waiting list.

  • GSKChicago

    So if the Mini goes Turbo, will it then become the MCT?

  • JiminVirginia

    The main things about a turbo are:

    –They are the easiest platform to mod for high output (as noted above). As long as the engineering and construction are sound, you can do a lot, modifying the boost with a boost controller and new software or an air flow converter. A 170-hp motor can easily become a 240-hp motor or more. The issue will be the rest of the drive line.

    –The power will be nonlinear, even if lag is moderate. The more you mod the engine, the more non-linear it will get.

    Personally, I'd prefer a more advanced supercharger.


  • They'll keep the “S” if only due to the fact that there was a Cooper S back in the 60's… so there's brand recognition there.

  • mike

    lol.. well technically it's still “sport” so it should still stay as an MCS, although MCT doesn't sound all that bad.

  • ryGuyMCS


    Twin Scroll Turbos have an inlet which literally has two openings. These take advantage of the firing order exhaust pattern in order to maintain a more constant pressure and spool faster/better. Additionally, some twin scroll turbo literally have 2 scrolls… much like sticking two fan blades together, rather than just one… and then add some engineering to tune the thing…

    Everyone Else-

    There is no sweeter automotive sound then that of a turbo spooling under a load in my own unprofessional/hobbyistic opinion… a gas turbo that is, I'll pass on the sound of a turbo diesel 18-wheeler.

  • ryGuyMCS


    That large canister is a catalytic converter. For years, major manufacturers have been avoiding turbocharging due to emissions issues. Turbos have a tendency to heat soak before the cats get a chance to, which leades to increased emissions. by placing that cat right next to the turbo, they can A) heat soak together, and B)Sometimes(i.e. I think Saab tried this) actually actively heat during engine startup to avoid a delayed heat soak.

  • GSKChicago

    It's all of these technical points/discussions that remind me of when I was in my first year of college taking Engineering 101… I quickly realized Engineering was not the career for me (let alone the major). I can barely spell Engineering. :o)

    Which leaves one to question… Can one retrofit the new engine? JUST KIDDING! :o)

  • BrantV

    Probably not. S doesn't stand for Supercharger.

    I haven't owned my 2005 MCS for more than 2.5 months and yet have over 4500 miles on it. How I do wish it got better fuel economy. Also the SC seems to act like a heavy flywheel preventing the engine from settling its RPMs quickly on up-shifts. It also seems to hinder rev matching on down shifts, but I'll keep trying.

    Everything I've read so far suggests a motor that will fit my driving needs more than the current fabulous one.

    Don't misunderstand. The current gas millage isn't that bad. I'm averaging mid 20s, it's just that I'd like to be less hippocratic to my green side. With consumption sometimes dipping into the low-mid teens I have a hard time justifying any notion that I bought this to get better gas milage. If the new engine is lighter, hopefully quieter, and gets better fuel economy I will have little hesitation upgrading in 2007. My guess is that variable valves and direct inject will combine to produce more torque at lower (more usable) RPMs.

    PS. Turbos produce their own exhilarating noises too. Woooosh. 🙂

  • Glassintrepid

    ?- Wont this multi stage turbocharging system be difficult to tune? That sounds pretty complicated to me!

  • john

    An AWD 200+HP JCW's turbo MCS sure sounds good but I would never buy it the 1st year of production.

    So if Mini did every bring one out with these features for the Coopers 50th anniversary and etc I would wait an extra year or so they could get “most” of the bugs out.

  • charlie

    the new engine looks nice… i'm sure it is if BMW is behind it.

    Anyway, I just want to say this to those that have been commenting about an AWD mini: what? I thought that the entire purpose of the design of the mini was that it would not need any drive shaft- front engine, front wheel drive, and therefore plenty of room in the seemingly small cabin. I have to say that I highly doubt that they'll ever make a mini with 4-wheel drive. You might see an AWD version on the new BMW 1-series eventually… its already RWD, so making it AWD wouldnt be all that difficult.

  • Charlie – you may hav missed this:

  • dgszweda

    I am not holding off my judgement till later, I will give it now.

    I have no desire for this engine. I don't think it will be that advanced, but I could be wrong. Variable valve timing has been around for ever. And while BMW does have some great variable valve timing, they are also prone to problems down the road.

    True twin scroll will help, but there is still lag. Even the EVO has lag. I will cringe the first time I hear a BOV with a Mini. Talk about death of an era.

  • Patrick

    Methinks that BMW should have done a bit more (or at least some) on US customers. Since they tend to like to brag about their engines, I doubt by 2006 you are going to have people in the US popping their hoods showing off their FRENCH engine. They can count lost sales due to this at 2 (law school friend and I), and they haven't even sold 1 yet.

  • bob

    It is not French. It is a German-French engine that will be made in UK.

  • Barry / 10 Ball

    Turbo cool down: Really not necessary, unless you have a bad habit of driving on full boost and then just cutting the still red-hot turbo. It's nice to cool-down any car after riding it hard [motor and brakes] before just shutting it town. For those of you/us that get to drive in triple-digit temps during the summer months, you can get anal and do things like pulling into gas stations heading into the wind or popping the hood at rest stops. Sounds — turbo vs. blower: I have a 1-ton van with a 7.3L Powerstoke turbo diesel [I know, this is apples and oranges] – it makes a cool sound on boost. But supercharger whine of Mini is way cooler. Now I know why people like aftermarket intakes like the Alta that cut into the cabin-air plenum and let in more of that great sound. Power — turbo vs. blower: I'm sure smaller turbos spin-up faster than older designs, but it's hard to beat the almost DC-motor like powerband of a supercharged motor. IMHO, blown motors have a much richer mid-range, where most people need the power, compared to turbos that really kick-in at the top-end. B^)

  • Josh

    keep in mind that right now ur popping ur hood to show off ur brazilian built engine, if u drive a jetta ur showing off ur mexican built engine, i think its a plus to see the engine built in england, just seems to fit better with a quasi-british car

  • Michael

    I am kinda dumb when it comes to these things… but looking at the full press release here This can be found here it seems this could be a pretty powerful little engine… even at “low RPMs”

  • BrantV

    Michael – Many thanks for the link. It's a great read. A bit flavored with marketing, but answers many questions.

    I like the individual coils, and separate electric water pump for cooling turbo after shut-down.

    High tech materials like composite crank shaft and a theme of weight and vibration reductions seem well thought out. Many of these improvements should lead to a very free revving engine.

  • Patrick

    Actually, I like Brazil so I don't really mind. You don't hear as many people taking shots at the Brazilians as they do the French for a reason. Plus, it's a Chrysler engine correct? Then agian post 05 JCW a small portion of that engine bay was replaced in the good ol' US of A.

    Fact is -2 customers even if they try to hide it. The fact that the engine is built in the UK not France was probably a way to mitigate the negative sentiment. It might work, but it has already lost 2 sales.

    I hope the fuel economy does turn out quite a bit better though. I actually don't think the current MCS gets amazing numbers. Figure that a 3 3/4 times larger engine in the C6 Vette moves a 20% heavier car MUCH faster with only a 7mpg city 4mpg highway hit. And compared to other engines out there the small block is considered low tech. It kinda makes you think just how great this new tech is 😉

  • Lucas

    I guess I'm the odd ball here — I prefer the turbos. I guess it's just my experience with my old trusty SAAB?

    Turbos' boost is somewhat controlled by the engine tuning and ECU (I guess, at least on the SAAB — that's probably why the torque curve is flat after the engine reaches certain RPMs). The boost itself is, of course, non-linear, but once engaged gives a very smooth, constant delivery of power.

    Supercharger, on the other hand, is more linear in nature — because the supercharger is connected directly to the engine drive shaft. So faster you drive, the more boost you get.

    As far as Turbo and shutdown delay thingy — like others have explained before — modern turbo designs overcomes that problem — most of the time. On my Saab's manual, it only states a need for delay shutdown when engine has been driven hard immediately before shutdown, or when engine driven hard in high temperatures.

  • Louis

    Is Patrick seriously saying he won't buy the new MINI under any circumstances because he disagrees with the current policies of the government in which the co-developer of the new engine is based?

    You should make decisions like those on more important criteria, like initial body color choices.

  • R50

    Are there 2 different engines pictured here? The engine in the last photo doesn't have a turbo charger. Thanks for this “article.” I love reading about the technical side of the equation.

  • R50

    The pdf file at the above Peugeot url lists oil change interval at 20,000 miles! What will our grandfathers say?

  • Michael – you beat me to it… I was going to be posting the full release Tuesday 🙂

  • I don't understand why the negativity towards an engine that was co-developed by a worldwide company that happens to be based in France. 100s of components in the current MINI are made in France (and all over Europe for that matter).

    The key you hold in your hand when starting your MINI is made by the French company Valeo for example.

  • Sorry Gabe 😉

  • Nicholas P

    uh oh!

    Patrick will have to trade in his MINI then, if it's made by the gasp FRENCH

    i don't base my purchases on whether or not my government agrees with the policies of another nation…after all, half of America doesn't agree with our current policies…and most of america didn't even vote for our current president the first time…

  • Scott

    I'm also a fan of turbos (and a former Saab owner). If you plan to modify your car to make as much power as possible, a turbo is the only way to go. Becuase of the diminising returns associated with a supercharger, a turbo engine will always be capable of making more power than the same engine with a supercharger. I was talking to a guy last weekend who has an Audi TT with a chip and other mods and he's somewhere in the 275 hp range with a 1.8 liter engine.

  • Rodney

    It's funny the number of Saab owners on this board. I think the die hard supercharger fans out there will just have to wait and see. The low end torque of the low pressure turbo is truly a delight. V8 torque from a small four. I envision a day when the V8 will be put away in favor of small displacement turbo charged engines. Europe is a good example of this. Right now it's still cheaper to build a low tech V8. High tech 4 cylinders are expensive. But that cost will deminish over time. An example is the Crown Vic, it comes with a big V8 that puts out 239HP@4,750 RPM and 287lb/ft@4,100 RPM. The 2.3l Saab Aero puts out 250HP@5300 RPM and 258lb/ft@1900 RPM. That's roughly the same numbers in an engine that is exactly half the size. But note the Saab gets full torque at only 1900RPM. One quick CPU swap and those numbers jump to over 300+ easy. Can you imagine a 4 banger in a Crown Vic… It would never sell no matter how much more HP it produced! Americans are too accustomed to the big thirsty V8.

  • michael Boice


    Ooooh, sounds great! But, I would expect output to be somewhere north of 200hp, perhaps 220hp. time will tell as Gabe pointed out.

  • Oliver Bonaccorso

    What is so good about a 1.6L engine that only produces 85kW or 105kW? is this so spectacular? japanese 4cyl cars have been producing 130kW from a naturally aspirated, variable valve timing 1.6L engine for the past 10 years! and emissions arent too bad either! now a real advance would be to slash emissions and still retain high power outputs. that would be an advance.

  • Pritch

    “A 1.6-liter atmospheric engine with a variable geometry turbocharger and a power output of 85 kW (115 hp).”

    This comment in the text above is not true and not in the original press release – which refers to variable valve timing instead (an atmospheric engine has of course no turbo)!!

  • Pritch – not sure what to tell you …. that info was copied straight from the release I got from BMW. That being said from what I had heard previously the 115hp engine should be normally aspirated.

    Other sites that are covering this news have that sentence in there as well. Perhaps it's a typo in the original release.

    I'd refer to the story above this one on the main page for more technical detail.

  • Pritch

    Gabe, it's surely a typo somewhere, because following your link (from your “engine details report”) to the PSA web site (and then to the main page), I find exactly the same basic sentence, but just slightly different:

    “A 1.6-liter atmospheric engine with a variable valve timing distribution and a power output of 85 kW (115 hp).”

    Maybe to save any confusion, you could modify your report accordingly (assuming that they have now also corrected their information) 😉

  • Ah they did change it. I've updated it with the new text.


  • Gilbert

    turbo????? BMW gonna' kidding and only 143 bhp????

    I don't know..

  • Stuart

    BMW/Peugeot joint design, built in UK, lighter, faster to spin up, tough as old boots, lots of headroom for 'tuning' 😉 , Can't stop the Grin factor 😀 I've just ordered an MCS for next year just to tide me over till the 'new' ones arrive. 1st year production will be fine by me.

  • Stuart – all good to hear. I'll probably be one of the first in line for the new car in '07. But until then I might be ordering something to tide me over as well 🙂

  • Appears BMW has decided to use a peugeot 106 gti lump and the same lump with a turbo. I can see Mini being critised for dropping the excellent supercharged engine.

  • non believer

    Austin Mini = British BMW Mini = GERMAN, not really a mini is it.