BMW 320d EfficientDynamics Edition – First Look

By Christian Stampfer on 1 October 2010
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The BMW 3 Series diesel range was made complete in 2009 with the introduction of the BMW 320d EfficientDynamics Edition at the 63rd Internationale Automobil Ausstellung (IAA) in Frankfurt. At that time, BMW already had three diesels in the 3 Series, namely the 316d (115 hp),  the 318d (143 hp), and the “normal” 320d (184 hp).

Alongside the breathtaking BMW Vision EfficientDynamics (a three-cylinder diesel-electric hybrid show car), the 163-hp BMW 320d EDE was one of the stars of the Frankfurt show, in part thanks to the fact that it uses only 3.6 l/100 km (65 mpg) in highway driving.

The BMW 320d EDE starts off by using standard EfficientDynamics features such as auto stop start, brake energy regeneration, and electric power steering, technologies that have been featured on all four-cylinder BMW 3 Series models since 2007.

To increase fuel economy compared to the standard 320d, the EDE gets additional fuel saving options. These include new Michelin Energy Saver tires with reduced rolling resistance. Along with the specially-designed aerodynamic wheels (turbine style), a chassis drop of 15mm, and active ventilation flaps, the aerodynamics of the car were improved and lead directly to its lower fuel consumption.

BMW engineers reworked the drivetrain and improved the transmission. The innovative dual-mass flywheel uses a centrifugal-force pendulum to reduce engine vibration through the drivetrain, making it possible to drive the car without any bucking around 1000 rpm.

The engine, which is built at the BMW Motoren plant in Steyr, Austria, saw  a reduction  in power from 184 hp (135 kW) to 163 hp (120 kW).  It boasts an all-aluminum crankcase, turbochargers with variable intake geometry, and Bosch common-rail direct fuel injection with piezo-injectors.

The special EfficientDynamics options result in a fuel consumption of  4,1 l/100 km (57 mpg) in the combined EU test cycle.  With the fuel consumption dropping to 3.6 l/100 km (65 mpg), the 320d EfficientDynamics Edition driver can go up to 1,685 km (1047 miles) with the 61-liter (16.11 gallons) fuel tank. With these figures, the BMW 320d EfficientDynamics Edition compares favorably with the  green king of the hill, the Toyota Prius, which uses 3.9 l/100 km (60.3 mpg) in the combined EU test cycle.

The 320d EDE, with a CO2 rating of 109 grams per kilometre in the EU test cycle, is not only the most fuel efficient car in BMW’s current model range but it is also the car with the lowest emissions.

Next week, The Diesel Driver will take the BMW 320d EfficientDynamics Edition from Munich to Hamburg to Lübeck (a distance of 832 kilometers or 517 miles) and back to see how far one can go on one tank of diesel fuel.  The plan is to drive the 320d EDE the way it’s meant to be driven, not to drive it for maximum fuel economy.  Indeed, despite its excellent fuel economy, it is of course still  a BMW and it can go from 0-100 km (0-62 miles) in only eight seconds. (AutoBild reports that it takes the Prius 12.4 seconds to achieve the same speed.)  Stay tuned for our next report.