This particular BMW M engine relies on evolved individual components such as a 3D-printed core, which is found within the cylinder head. The benefit of these new methods is primarily a cut in the engine weight, attributed to the new cylinder head core, plus enhanced overall performance thanks to greater temperature management. The new components allow for optimised coolant ducts that were previously unrealistic to achieve.
At BMW Group, 3D-printed components are becoming more common. Over the last decade, a million parts have been produced using 3D printing techniques. In 2019, the output from the BMW Group Additive Manufacturing Center is expected to increase year-on-year by 42%, totalling over 200,000 components. For BMW, using 3D technology has made it possible to manufacture geometric forms that are normally beyond the capability of conventional metal casting techniques.