BMW 6 Series (E24)
|BMW 6 Series (E24)|
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||2-door coupé|
|Engine||2.8−3.5 L M30/M88/S38 I6|
|Wheelbase||2,630 mm (103.5 in)|
|Length||4,755 mm (187.2 in)[b]|
|Width||1,725 mm (67.9 in)|
|Height||1,365 mm (53.7 in)|
|Curb weight||1,450–1,619 kg (3,197–3,569 lb)|
|Successor||BMW 6 Series (E63)|
The E24 was produced solely in a 2-door coupe body style. Aside from the M635CSi/M6 models, the E24 was powered by a range of BMW M30 six-cylinder engines. Initially based on the E12 5 Series chassis, the E24 switched to the newer E28 5 Series chassis in 1982.
The M635CSi is the first of the BMW M6 model line and is the third BMW M-badged car. It is powered by the M88/3 straight-six engine. In North America, the vehicle is badged as "M6" and uses the less powerful BMW S38 engine.
Although the BMW 8 Series was released as production of the E24 was ending, the 8 Series is considered a separate model line and therefore not a successor to the E24. The E24's successor, the E63 6 Series, was released in 2004 after a 16-year hiatus.
Development and productionEdit
The initial proposal for the E24 was based on a BMW E9 3.0 CS with an increased height, in order to make it easier for customers to get into the car. However, Bob Lutz rejected the proposal, eventually leading to the shape of the E24 in its production form. The E24 was designed by Paul Bracq. Unlike its E9 predecessor, the body of the E24 has a B pillar.
Originally the bodies were manufactured by Karmann, but production was later taken in-house to BMW.
Figures are for European specification models, unless otherwise stated.
|628CSi||1979-1987||M30B28||135 kW (181 hp)
at 5,800 rpm
|235 N⋅m (173 lb⋅ft) |
at 4,200 rpm
|630CS||1976-1979||M30B30V||136 kW (182 hp)
at 5,800 rpm
|255 N⋅m (188 lb⋅ft) |
at 3,500 rpm
|630CSi*||1977-1977||M30B30||131 kW (176 hp)
at 5,500 rpm
|251 N⋅m (185 lb⋅ft) |
at 4,500 rpm
|633CSi||1976-1983||M30B32||147 kW (197 hp)
at 5,500 rpm
|285 N⋅m (210 lb⋅ft) |
at 4,000 rpm
|635CSi||1978-1982||M90||160 kW (215 hp)
at 5,200 rpm
|304 N⋅m (224 lb⋅ft) |
at 4,000 rpm
|1982-1989||M30B34||163 kW (219 hp)
at 5,200 rpm
|310 N⋅m (229 lb⋅ft) |
at 3,500 rpm
|1988-1989||M30B35||155 kW (208 hp)
at 5,700 rpm
|305 N⋅m (225 lb⋅ft) |
at 4,000 rpm
|M635CSi||1983-1989||M88/3||213 kW (286 hp)
at 6,500 rpm
|340 N⋅m (251 lb⋅ft) |
at 4,500 rpm
* U.S. only
Suspension and steeringEdit
Front suspension consists of MacPherson struts and the rear suspension is independent semi-trailing arms. In 1982, the front suspension was upgraded to include twin-pivot lower control arms and the geometry of the rear suspension was revised.
The M635CSi model, introduced at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 1983, is the first in the line of M6 models. In 1987, the equivalent model for the North American (U.S. and Canada) market was introduced and badged simply 'M6'.
The M635CSi is powered by a 210 kW (282 hp) version of the BMW M88/3 straight-six engine. The North American M6 vehicle is powered by the detuned 191 kW (256 hp) version of the BMW S38 straight-six engine, which has a lower compression ratio and uses a catalytic converter.
Over its production run from 1983 through 1989, 4,088 M635CSi/M6 cars were built, 1,767 of which were for the North American market.
Model year changesEdit
In July 1978, the more powerful 635CSi variant was introduced. The 635CSi featured a close-ratio 5-speed gearbox and a single piece black rear spoiler. The M90 engine's bigger bore and shorter stroke resulted in 160 kW (215 hp) and increased torque in models without a catalytic converter. The aerodynamic changes reduced uplift at high speeds by almost 15% over the other E24 models.
In 1982 (model year 1983 in the US), the E24 platform changed from the E12 5 Series to the E28 5 Series, resulting changes to exterior styling, engines, chassis, suspension, electronics and the interior. The struts in the new front suspension were double-linked ones, making the car less likely to dip under hard braking. The new rear axle was nearly identical to the trailing arm layout of the E28 528i, with the addition of an extra top-mounted link. Meanwhile, the ventilated rear discs had proven a needless complication and were replaced with solid ones.
The 635CSi engine was updated to the 3,430 cc (209 cu in) M30B34, which used a smaller bore and longer stroke than the previous 3,453 cc (211 cu in) M90 engine. The 635CSi became available with a wide-ratio 5-speed manual or a 4-speed automatic transmission.
E24s produced after June 1987 were fitted with ellipsoid headlamps, as per the recently introduced E32 7 Series. The front and rear bumpers and spoilers were redesigned to use a single design worldwide (prior to this, models sold in North America used a different design from the rest of the world).
North American and Japanese model rangeEdit
Although other markets offered multiple E24 models, in North America only one model was available at any given time (aside from the M6).
In 1977, the 6 series was released in the US as the 630CSi. The 630CSi is powered by a fuel-injected version of the 630CS engine. This 3.0 litre engine produces 131 kW (176 hp) and 251 N⋅m (185 lbf⋅ft).
The 630CSi was replaced in September 1977 by the 633CSi. In United States/Japan specification, the 633CSi was powered by a 135 kW (181 hp) version of the M30B32 engine. Output later dropped to 130 kW (174 hp).
In September 1982, North American and Japanese market models received a major facelift, as per the models sold in the rest of the world.
In 1985, the 633CSi was replaced by the 635CSi for the North American Market. This model uses the M30B34 engine, which produces 136 kW (182 hp) and 290 N⋅m (214 lbf⋅ft) at 4,000 rpm. An L6 "luxury edition" version of the 635CSi was available in North America for the 1987 model year. The L6 featured leather headliner and trim and an automatic gearbox.
In 1988, the engine was upgraded to the M30B35. This engine has a capacity of 3.4 Litres (despite the model code and the "3.5" inscribed on the intake manifold) and produces 155 kW (208 hp) and 305 N⋅m (225 lbf⋅ft) torque. This upgraded engine resulted in catalytic converter equipped United States models offering similar performance to European models. Self-leveling rear suspension was added to the 635CSi and M6 features list.
In 1987, North America and Japan received their equivalent of the M635CSi, called the M6. The main difference between the M6 and its European counterpart, is that the S38 engine is used instead of the M88. Compared with the M88, the S38 has a catalytic converter, the compression ratio reduced to 9.8:1, a double row timing chain, a shorter camshaft duration and a simplified exhaust manifold. The power output for the North American E24 M6 is 191 kW (256 hp), which is 22 kW (30 hp) less than the European M635CSi.
Standard equipment on the United States market M6 cars included many features which were optional on the European cars, including heated power seats, self-leveling rear suspension, beverage chiller (cooled by an air-conditioning system) between the rear seats, air-conditioning vents for rear seat occupants, sunshade for rear occupants and an 8 speaker premium sound system.
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Achievements in championships and series:
- European Touring Car Championship; 3 titles (1981, 1983 and 1986)
- Deutsche Tourenwagen Meisterschaft; 1 title (1984)
- Belgian Touring Car Championship (Group N); 1 title (1984)
- Australian Touring Car Championship; 1 title (1985)
- Australian Endurance Championship; 2 titles (1985 and 1986)
- Australian Manufacturers' Championship; 1 title (1985)
- AMSCAR Series; 1 title (1985)
- European Hill Climb Championship; 1 title (1985)
- New Zealand Touring Car Championship; 2 titles (1985 and 1987)
- New Zealand Benson & Hedges Saloon Car Series; 1 title (1985)
- Nissan-Mobil 500 Series (New Zealand); 1 title (1985)
- Japanese Touring Car Championship; 1 titles (1985)
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- Bodies were initially manufactured by Karmann in Rheine
- 4,923 mm (193.8 in) for U.S. models
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