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Old 21st January 2023, 10:54   #1
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Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

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Originally Posted by m8002? View Post
Aren't the BS 6.2 norms similar to the European standards? If BMW can sell the car in Europe why not in India? Or are they withdrawing the standard 3 series in Europe as well?
The answer to this question, as well as the whole trend towards smaller and more fuel efficient engines and the seemingly selection of models in the line up (e.g. why the new X1 only in 118d/118i guise? Why mainstream 3 series only in LWB? etc.) has to do with how the upcoming CAFE2 norms and targets per manufacturer are going to be calculated.

CAFE stands for Corporate Average Fuel Efficiency/Economy, so it is not the emission and economy of the individual models that are considered, but the weighted average of emissions and economy for the entire fleet sold in the country. This means, as a manufacturer I can very well sell heavy, highly polluting and fuel-efficient cars, but then I will have to make that up by selling huge volumes of much more efficient and light cars.

While BS6 norms limit the emissions of pollutants like hydrocarbons, sulphur and oxides of nitrogen, CAFE norms deal with overall fuel consumption, specifically the quantity of fuel consumed. Fuel consumption is typically proportional to the fuel efficiency and the weight of the car.

So how is the CAFE target of each manufacturer calculated? There are 3 steps.

Step 1 : Derive the corporate average curb weight for the manufacturer. This is:

{(Number of cars sold in model 1 * Kerb weight of model 1) + (Number of cars sold in model 2 * Kerb weight of model 2)+....}

DIVIDED BY

(total number of cars sold across models)


Note that the number of cars sold in each model makes a big difference. If X1 is the largest selling model of BMW, it will have a big weight in the calculation of the average kerb weight. The lighter it is, the more this will pull down the average kerb weight and be an advantage for the manufacturer in meeting the CAFE norm. Now the important point is, while the BMW India by itself cannot dictate the weight of each variant/powertrain of X1, it can influence the variant selected for sales in India. By opting for the 18i and 18d, BMW India gets to import the lightest available variant of X1 due to the smaller and lighter engines, and therefore helps achieve a lower weighted average kerb weight.

STEP 2: Scale the industry average target to the weighted average kerb weight of the manufacturer to get the manufacturer specific CO2 target

The regulator then establishes a industry wide average kerb weight by combining all manufacturers together. This is then reduced to set the CAFE 1 and CAFE 2 targets. The industry-average kerb weight of 1145 KG for India has been derived for CAFE Phase 2 and a CO2 emission target is set for this kerb weight as 113 gm/KM. Manufacturers are then scaled in a linear way based on the weighted average kerb weight of their particular fleet calculated in step 1 above. So, a manufacturer who makes a fleet of cars with an average kerb weight of 1145 KG has to make sure that the weighted average emission of their entire fleet is no more than 113 gm/KM. If they sell some gas guzzlers at one end of the spectrum, they will have to offset by selling many more smaller and lighter cars on the other end of the spectrum to offset that and bring the average back to 113 gm/KM.

Manufacturer CAFE target = (Industry wide target * Manufacturer's weighted average kerb weight from step 1 above)

DIVIDED BY

(Industry average kerb weight)

STEP 3: Calculate the real achieved CAFE of the manufacturer each year based on the weighted average of the cars sold across their fleet and the CO2 emissions of each model

{(Number of Cars for Variant 1 sold * CO2 emission of variant 1) + (Number of Cars for Variant 2 sold * CO2 emission of variant 2) + .....}

DIVIDED BY

Total number of all cars sold

The real achieved CAFE in step 3 has to be lower than or equal to the target derived in Step 2 to achieve compliance to CAFE 2 Norms

BMW received an average kerb weight of 1712 KG based on their fleet composition and relative sales of each model in step 1. So by scaling the CO2 target to the 113 gm/KM in a linear way to its kerb weight number, it received a target of 140 gm/KM for CO2. Now, they will have to make sure their real world sales of each model/variant across the spectrum results in an overall emission as in step 3, below 140 gm/KM! Plus, they will have to make sure they achieve this every year!

Now this is quite a significant stretch from their current average which is is around 160 gm/KM. So what can they do to achieve the target in an ongoing basis? Emissions per model/variant are what they are - these are determined by the global design & engineering of the cars. There is no control BMW India will have on the emissions per specific variants. So, few of the things BMW can do to influence their achieved CAFE :

  • Decrease the weight of the fast selling models by opting for variants that are lighter and have smaller engines. This is the driver behind opting for the 118i and 118d variant of the X1. Selling these variants in good numbers will allow BMW to get enough headroom to sell niche high priced performance models like M3 and M4 that will drag the corporate average emissions significantly higher for each additional car sold.
  • Increase the weight of mid-rung models that sell in reasonable numbers so that the average kerb weight goes up but the CO2 target also goes up somewhat. They cannot overdo this, as a heavier car may create more emissions and this will then incase the numerator. The 3 Series LWB only choice is a direct result of how good an opportunity there is in this segment. The LWB weighs more than the standard 3 series by a good margin, but does not increase emissions by a corresponding amount due to the way these engines are tuned. The 330LD LCI emits just 135 gm/KM of CO2. The pre-LCI 320D regular wheelbase emitted 127 gm/KM. The weight increase advantage is probably outweighing the emission increase disadvantage.
  • Decrease the number of cars that do not contribute enough volumes and revenues; do not significantly increase the average kerb weight but yet drag the emissions disproportionately higher.
  • Play a pricing game - peg the prices of the top end marquee variants that will sell irrespective of how high they are priced (think 7 series) and subsidize the baby darlings like X1 that will pull down the CAFE number overall by selling them at higher volumes
  • Last but not least, increase EVs and hybrids in the lineup, as they will significantly bring down the overall CO2 emissions - this is the one thing the government is trying to push the carmakers to do the most, but all the above bullets are unintended consequences of the way CAFE norms are defined and measured.
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Last edited by 84.monsoon : 21st January 2023 at 11:21.
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Old 21st January 2023, 18:45   #2
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Originally Posted by 84.monsoon View Post
The answer to this question, as well as the whole trend towards smaller and more fuel efficient engines and the seemingly selection of models in the line up (e.g. why the new X1 only in 118d/118i guise? Why mainstream 3 series only in LWB? etc.) has to do with how the upcoming CAFE2 norms and targets per manufacturer are going to be calculated.
All this based on the premise that BMW X1 U11 2023 will sell in same numbers as X1 F48 2016-22.

This is where BMW India has got it wrong.

BMW X1 U11 2023 will not sell in high numbers as customers are now educated.

Spending 50 Big ones to get

Diesel engine will be 18d making a measly 150 BHP.
Petrol engine will be 18i making a meagre 136 BHP.

Extended warranty package now ONLY available till 5 years and cost an exceptionally high at 3 lakh plus 18% GST.

BMW X1 U11 is no more a value for money proposition.

BMW India should go with 20i & 20d engine in X1 as this what brings people to your brand.

Figure out the fine for not meeting CAFE 2 norms and if carbon credits can be purchased to offset it.

Loosing sales vis a vis fine for not meeting CAFE 2 norms. Run the numbers.
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Old 22nd January 2023, 11:23   #3
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

Thanks for sharing, 84.monsoon! Moving your informative post out to a new thread. A new thread means 100X the views & 100X the visibility in search engines, including Google. Will add to our homepage in the coming week .

@ BHPians, if you should spot any good post in an existing thread that deserves its own new thread, please report the post and we'll move it out for greater visibility.

Thank you!
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Old 22nd January 2023, 11:35   #4
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Re: BMW 3 Series Gran Limousine facelift launched at Rs 57.90 lakh

Am I sad seeing BMW India offer puny engines on the U11 X1: Hell Yes!

But I’m guessing BMW India must have surely thought about this and must have themselves really wanted to give the U11 X1 the current 20i and 20d engine specs.

But the international markets get the 23i and 23d engine spec and no 20i/20d any longer.

International spec U11 X1 powertrains that India should’ve got:
23i - 213hp and 360Nm
23d - 211hp and 400Nm

X3’s powertrains on offer in India:
30i - 252hp and 350Nm
20d - 190hp and 400Nm

Mate the 23i and 23d engines with the U11 X1 backed with as much space as in the G01 X3 on the inside for India and you’ll see the X3 sales dwindle big time! Anyways the X3 doesn’t sell a lot in itself, if we compare it with something like the GLC, its arch rival.

The same reason the G01 X3 no longer gets the 30d spec, because the X5 30d would have had no USP left atleast for the Indian market.

Quote:
Originally Posted by el lobo 6061 View Post
Loosing sales vis a vis fine for not meeting CAFE 2 norms. Run the numbers.
For automobile enthusiasts a brand not meeting CAFE 2 norms to give better engines will be met with much fan fare. But the number of automobile enthusiasts in India is minuscule compared to non-enthusiasts. If non-enthusiasts get the whirlwind that an automobile brand is not meeting CAFE 2 norms, it won’t be hard to imagine something similar to the VW Dieselgate taking place all over again.

Last edited by CEF_Beasts : 22nd January 2023 at 11:41.
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Old 22nd January 2023, 12:14   #5
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

There are several ways to tackle the CAFE norms requirements. For example,
1) launching hybrid variants and pure electric vehicles under the BMW brand.
2) launching smaller vehicles with smaller engines under a different brand name (like Mini Cooper with a very attractive pricing) to garner more volumes.

Launching your bread and butter model with a puny engine will kill your brand image. After your brand image, takes a hit, why would someone buy your flagship model for a premium price?

After all, the charm of owning the 'badge' will be gone if the same badge is flaunted by underpowered, mediocre cars. It will no longer be an exclusive club of people who are willing to pay a premium for the "ultimate driving machine" as it will not be one, in the first place.

Last edited by Geta : 22nd January 2023 at 12:16.
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Old 22nd January 2023, 13:50   #6
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

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Originally Posted by 84.monsoon View Post
The answer to this question, as well as the whole trend towards smaller and more fuel efficient engines and the seemingly selection of models in the line up (e.g. why the new X1 only in 118d/118i guise? Why mainstream 3 series only in LWB? etc.) has to do with how the upcoming CAFE2 norms and targets per manufacturer are going to be calculated.]
You have very nicely written about the CAFE norms but unfortunately, it’s not the reason for dumping the regular 3 series or smaller engine on upcoming X1.

Both decisions are Business driven and not due to CAFE norms. BMW sells enough BEVS to meet the overall levels for the group. And individual models like X1 and 3 series aren’t quite the gas guzzlers.

BMW is pretty happy with 3 LWB and M340 and doesn’t see need for the regular sedan and given the low numbers in our market it completely makes sense.

On X1, the decision to go with a lower tune is to keep the car loaded with technology. Petrol should definitely come up later in the year. Let’s wait for the final specifications on the Diesel X1 to see how it compares with the outgoing.

Last edited by Turbanator : 22nd January 2023 at 20:59. Reason: Minor edit.
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Old 22nd January 2023, 17:58   #7
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

Most likely, this choice of engines is to differentiate the X1 from X3 and prevent cannibalisation of sales of the latter. The new X1 is almost as spacious as the X3 as per international reviews, and it has got the more modern interiors. The X3 is already not a high selling model when compared to the GLC, I’m guessing the X1’s engine choice is probably influenced by that. And Merc selling the GLA with a small petrol engine.
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Old 22nd January 2023, 20:44   #8
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

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Originally Posted by Turbanator View Post
You have very nicely written about the CAFE norms but unfortunately, it’s not the reason for dumping the regular 3 series or smaller engine on upcoming X1. Both decisions are Business driven and not due to CAFE norms.
On the new X1, I would like to respectfully disagree with the position that the choice of engines is not influenced by the CAFE norms.

The X1 is probably one of, if not the, highest selling models of the company, and decisions will not be taken lightly. The reactions in this forum will not be too far off from what the general public will have, when the product is launched and the power figures of the 18i and 18d are published. People buy BMWs because they are powerful and deliver a superior driving experience. This is the DNA of the car that is expected by every customer. X1 is the entry point into the BMW range - this is probably the first BMW for most people buying it. The strategy of every global auto manufacturer is to catch the customer young and have them stay with the brand through their lifetime. Unless that first car demonstrates the DNA of the brand and the customer is able to experience that, they are not going to come back to the brand when they upgrade.

BMW will not risk compromising on the performance of the X1 by selecting the 118i/118d, especially when the stronger variants are easily available, unless there is a very strong corporate-wide reason that swings the decision towards using the smaller engines. I don’t see BMW selling sufficient number of Born EVs such as the i4/ix etc. to offset the emissions from the petrol cars they sell across 3, 5, and 7 series vehicles, most of which emit higher CO2 than the corporate average target of 140 gm/KM. I have hardly seen an iX here in Chennai though it was launched over a year ago.

The X1 23i emits 154 gm/KM of CO2 - this is significantly above the corporate target of 140 gm/KM for BMW India. The smaller engined 118i on the other hand, emits around 130 gm/KM and so, helps significantly in reducing the corporate average emissions across the range. With Diesels, it is not so much as issue as even the 23D emits only 130 gm/KM. However, diesel model sales as a proportion of the total is reducing and the petrol variants are having a higher influence on the overall fleet average CO2, so BMW cannot afford to put a higher emission petrol into its best selling model.

From my experience in the corporate auto world, not everyone in every department of the company may be privy to each strategic product line planning decision, and the rationale behind it. Nor would a manufacturer want the whole world to know the ins-and-outs of their decisions. So providing an explanation as being a “business driven” decision, both internally and externally, to people outside of the strategic group involved in the variant selection, is a safer bet for the company.

Last edited by GTO : 23rd January 2023 at 11:09. Reason: Removing one line about the "connect". Thanks
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Old 22nd January 2023, 21:36   #9
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

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Originally Posted by 84.monsoon View Post

BMW will not risk compromising on the performance of the X1 by selecting the 118i/118d, especially when the stronger variants are easily available, unless there is a very strong corporate-wide reason that swings the decision towards using the smaller engines. I don’t see BMW selling sufficient number of Born EVs such as the i4/ix etc. to offset the emissions from the petrol cars they sell across 3, 5, and 7 series vehicles, most of which emit higher CO2 than the corporate average target of 140 gm/KM. I have hardly seen an iX here in Chennai though it was launched over a year ago.

The X1 23i emits 154 gm/KM of CO2 - this is significantly above the corporate target of 140 gm/KM for BMW India. The smaller engined 118i on the other hand, emits around 130 gm/KM and so, helps significantly in reducing the corporate average emissions across the range. With Diesels, it is not so much as issue as even the 23D emits only 130 gm/KM.
I don't get the whole point. Is BMW expecting the X1 buyers to pay Rs 50-55 lakhs on road and do a charity/ give a subsidy towards the poor, cash strapped X3, X5 and X7 buyers?

The competition has really moved on. We are having 200 bhp petrol SUVs starting at Rs 12 lacs ex showroom these days. BMW is not doing India any favour by launching a 136 hp FWD petrol hatchback (on steroids) at Rs 50 lacs on road, how much ever tech loaded it might be.

Unless they really surprise us with some hybrid tech or price the X1 quite aggressively, in the Rs 30-35 lacs ex showroom bracket for the whole range, I don't think many car buyers will be interested. After all, we already have some very good 5 seaters and 7 seaters in the Rs 30-40 lacs on road price bracket.

P.S: I hate flap type door handles. They are look outdated,
cheapish and unappealing. If they have one in the car, they better price it aggressively.

Last edited by Geta : 22nd January 2023 at 22:04.
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Old 24th January 2023, 10:46   #10
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

In countries like UK, the CO2 emission is a much watched number as road tax rates and even cost of entry into urban centres depends on the emission rating of the car. It is high time India shifted automotive taxation structure to base it on emissions rather than size, cost and other such considerations that are not necessarily correlated to environmental damage. For instance, a highly fuel efficient Toyota Hyryder is being charged more or less the same road tax as a full fat ScorpioN Diesel 4X4.

The good thing is, BMW publishes the emission data on every model's spec sheet. This allows consumers to make a comparative analysis based on emissions, in addition to just power figures, size, FE etc. BMW does not publish kerb weights in the Indian specifications, this would have made the analysis more rounded.

Among the BMW sedan models, it is interesting to see that the new 5 series LCI diesel as the lowest emissions across the board. This is surprising as I would have expected the 220d and 320ld to be lower. Numbers have been taken from the company website and spec sheets of each model.
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Old 24th January 2023, 12:33   #11
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

Wondering how corporates like JLR deal with CAFE norms then? They basically have land barges, specially the LR side of JLR.
Ultra heavy (and for an absolute good reason) Range Rovers also have very powerful deisel engines (D350 f.e.) and they have no small sedans or suvs (Evoque doesn’t sell much afaik). Then, in regards to petrol engines, they have one trick pony P250 which must not be super effecient in emissions either.
So, what gives?

Also, while we are on the topic here, any scoops on India bound 40d spec for 5 series sedan or x5?
Would love a strong diesel in my garage preferably with a Bimmer badge. Otherwise GLE/S 400d or a Defender D300 are strong contenders.

Last edited by Tutenkhamen : 24th January 2023 at 12:38.
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Old 24th January 2023, 12:46   #12
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

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Originally Posted by Tutenkhamen View Post
Would love a strong diesel in my garage preferably with a Bimmer badge. Otherwise GLE/S 400d or a Defender D300 are strong contenders.
Your wish was granted just recently, the X7 LCI is now available in the higher tune 40d which replaces the 30d available in the pre-LCI X7.
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Old 24th January 2023, 18:25   #13
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

All I can say is that BMW should keep tuning of the engine the same for the same engine designation. Wouldn't it make everything so much simpler? Why does the X3 30i get 350nm of torque but the 330i/330Li get 400nm? This makes an enthusiast's car-buying decision so unnecessarily complicated!
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Old 24th January 2023, 18:45   #14
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

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Originally Posted by Tutenkhamen View Post
Wondering how corporates like JLR deal with CAFE norms then? They basically have land barges, specially the LR side of JLR.
Ultra heavy (and for an absolute good reason) Range Rovers also have very powerful diesel engines (D350 f.e.) and they have no small sedans or suvs (Evoque doesn’t sell much afaik). Then, in regards to petrol engines, they have one trick pony P250 which must not be super efficient in emissions either.
So, what gives?
This is where the scaling process helps the manufacturer (Step 1 in my post above). If the weighted average kerb weight of all models of JLR is say 2290 KG, and the weighted average kerb weight of all manufacturers across the industry is 1145 KG (for convenience of calculation, I have assumed JLR's is double), then the general emission target of 113 gm/KM of CO2 will be scaled to the JLR weight. So, JLR will get an allowance of double the general target - i.e., 226 gm/KM of CO2.

This is where bringing in heavier cars which are also very fuel efficient helps (such as the 3 series LWB in case of BMW). This helps to get a higher target assigned as it takes up the weighted average kerb weight of the fleet. However, in general, emissions are strongly related to weight, across a given manufacturer's range, except for EVs and Hybrids.

Last edited by 84.monsoon : 24th January 2023 at 18:47.
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Old 24th January 2023, 22:27   #15
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Re: Understanding BMW's bizarre choice of engines & variants for India

BMW being true to its own DNA should have kept following engines
X1 23d
X3 30d
X5 40d
X7 40d (Since 50d is no longer available)

These would show true characteristics of a BMW. Sheer Driving Pleasure.

Instead BMW India is giving us
X1 18d
X3 20d
X5 30d
X7 40d

30d engine in X3 was missed in G01 and only available in X4.
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