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BMW M60 engine
BMW Alpina B8 4.6 Coupé E36 (7712800700).jpg
Alpina version of the M60 engine
Configuration90° V8
Displacement3.0 L (2,997 cc)
4.0 L (3,982 cc)
Cylinder bore84 mm (3.31 in)
89 mm (3.50 in)
Piston stroke67.6 mm (2.66 in)
80 mm (3.15 in)
Block materialAluminum
Head materialAluminum
Timing drive systemChain
Fuel typePetrol
PredecessorBMW OHV V8
SuccessorBMW M62

The BMW M60 is a naturally aspirated V8 petrol engine which was produced from 1992 to 1996. It was BMW's first V8 engine in over 25 years.

The M60 was replaced by the BMW M62 engine.


During the 1970s, BMW produced a prototype V8 engine for the E23 7 Series, however this engine did not reach production.[1]

Development of the M60 began in 1984.[2]


The M60 engine has double overhead camshafts with four valves per cylinder.[3] The camshaft is driven by a dual-row timing chain[4] with a self-adjusting tensioner. Valves had hydraulic lash adjustment to reduce maintenance. The ignition and fuel injection systems are controlled by the Bosch Motronic 3.3 system, and the ignition system is a coil-on-plug design with knock sensors.[5][6]

To reduce weight, the engine uses aluminum for both the engine block and cylinder head, magnesium valve covers[7] and a plastic intake manifold.[2] The M60 was BMW's first car engine to use a "split conrod" design,[2] where sintered connecting rods are made as a single piece and then fractured in order to ensure increased rigidity and an exact fit.[4] The dry weight of the engine is between 175 kg (386 lb) and 203 kg (448 lb).[2][7]


Engine Displacement Power Torque Years
M60B30 2,997 cc (182.9 cu in) 160 kW (218 PS; 215 bhp)
at 5800 rpm
290 N⋅m (214 lb⋅ft)
at 4500 rpm
M60B40 3,982 cc (243.0 cu in) 210 kW (286 PS; 282 bhp)
at 5800 rpm
400 N⋅m (295 lb⋅ft)
at 4500 rpm


The M60B30 has a bore of 84 mm (3.31 in) and a stroke of 67.6 mm (2.66 in),[2] for a displacement of 2,997 cc (182.9 cu in). Compression ratio is 10.5:1, giving an output of 160 kW (215 bhp) at 5800 rpm and 290 N⋅m (214 lb⋅ft) at 4500 rpm.[8]


  • 1992–1995 E34 530i
  • 1992–1994 E32 730i
  • 1994–1996 E38 730i


The M60B40 has a bore of 89 mm (3.50 in) and a stroke of 80 mm (3.15 in),[4] for a total displacement of 3,982 cc (243.0 cu in). Compression ratio is 10.0:1,[4] giving 210 kW (282 bhp) at 5800 rpm and 400 N⋅m (295 lb⋅ft) at 4500 rpm.[9] It had a forged crankshaft.


Alpina versions[edit]

Alpina produced a high compression (10.8:1) version of the M60B40 for the BMW Alpina B10 4.0 (based on the E34 5 Series) and the B11 4.0 (based on the E32 7 Series)[10] and in some B8 4.0 models (based on the E36 3 Series) produced for the Japanese market.[11] The M60 engine produced 232 kW (311 bhp) in the B10 4.0.[12]

BMW Alpina engine
Configuration90° V8
Displacement4.0 L (3,981 cc)
4.6 L (4,619 cc)
Cylinder bore89 mm (3.50 in)
93 mm (3.66 in)
Piston stroke80 mm (3.15 in)
85 mm (3.35 in)
ValvetrainDOHC w/ VVT
Fuel typePetrol

The engine's displacement was later enlarged to 4,619 cc (281.9 cu in) for use in the B8 4.6 and B10 4.6.[13][11] The power output is 250 kW (335 bhp) in the B10 4.6 and 245 kW (329 bhp) in the B8 4.6.[12][11]

Nikasil damage from high-sulfur fuels[edit]

The M60 uses Nikasil- an alloy containing aluminium, nickel and silicon alloy- to line the cylinders bores. In fuels with high sulfur content (such as used fuels sold at the time in the United States, United Kingdom and South America), the sulfur damages the Nikasil bore lining, causing the engine to lose compression.[14] In the U.S. and U.K., sulfur rich fuel is being phased out.[15][16]

BMW replaced engines under warranty and Nikasil was eventually replaced by Alusil.[14]

Nikasil engines are unlikely to be a problem today, as cars with affected engines are off the road or have received replacement engines.[17]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The Lost BMW V8 and V12 Engines From the 1970s". Archived from the original on 20 February 2020. Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d e "BMW M60 engine". Archived from the original on 4 November 2013.
  3. ^ "M60 engine specs" (PDF). Retrieved 18 November 2018.
  4. ^ a b c d "SBT 4.0 Liter V8 Engine – M60" (PDF). Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  5. ^ "BMW M60B40 Engine". Retrieved 15 June 2017.
  6. ^ "BMW M60 and M62 V8 Engines". Archived from the original on 5 March 2016. Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  7. ^ a b "BMW M60 and M62 engines". 8 October 2014. Retrieved 15 June 2017.
  8. ^ "Engine specifications for M60 engines". Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  9. ^ "M60 V8 engine". Archived from the original on 24 February 2014.
  10. ^ "E34 B10 4.0". Retrieved 25 March 2017.
  11. ^ a b c "E36 B8 4.6". Retrieved 25 March 2017.
  12. ^ a b "ALPINA Automobiles based on BMW 5 Series E34". Retrieved 25 March 2017.
  13. ^ "E34 B10 4.6". Retrieved 25 March 2017.
  14. ^ a b "BMW World – Nikasil". Archived from the original on 12 August 2014.
  15. ^ "Tier 2 Vehicle & Gasoline Sulfur Program". Archived from the original on 26 October 2010.
  16. ^ "No fuel like a low-sulphur fuel". Retrieved 6 November 2010.
  17. ^ "The BMW V8 Nikasil myth". Retrieved 6 November 2010.