BMW N47 Tuning

"All you need to know about tuning the BMW N47 engine!"

The BMW N47 are awesome to work on and with carefully chosen motorsport parts like a remap, turbo kits and camshafts you will really maximize your driving experience.

TorqueCars will examine the options for your N47 tuning and point out the ultimate modifications.

History, Power & Specs of the Engine


  • 94 hp @4,000 rpm 173 lbft @1500 - 2750 rpm 2013
  • 114 hp @4,000 rpm 192 lbft @ 1500 - 2750 rpm 2012


  • 114 hp @4,000 rpm 192 lbft @ 1750 rpm
  • 141 hp @4,000 rpm 221 lbft @ 3000 rpm
  • 161 hp @4,000 rpm 251 lbft @ 2000 rpm
  • 174 hp @4,000 rpm 258 lbft @ 3000 rpm
  • 181 hp @4,000 rpm 280 lbft @ 2750 rpm
  • 201 hp @4,400 rpm 295 lbft @ 2000 rpm
  • 215 hp @4,400 rpm 332 lbft @ 2500 rpm

The engines were fitted in the following models and we get a lot of interest from people looking to tune this up and extract a little more power from them.

114 hp @4,000 rpm 192 lbft @ 1500 - 2750 rpm 2012

  • E81 E87 116d E90 316d

141 hp @4,000 rpm 221 lbft @ 3000 rpm

  • E81, E82, E87 and E88 118d
  • E90 and E91 318d
  • F20 118d
  • F30 and F31 318d
  • 2009-2015 BMW E84 sDrive18d and xDrive18d
  • 2010–present MINI Countryman Cooper SD (R60)
  • 2010–present MINI Cooper SD (R56)
  • 2010–present MINI Cabrio Cooper SD (R57)
  • 2010–2015 MINI Coupe Cooper SD (R58)
  • 2012–2015 MINI Roadster Cooper SD (R59)
  • 2013–present MINI Paceman Cooper SD (R61)
  • 2014–2015 F22 218d
  • X3 xDrive18d

161 hp @4,000 rpm 251 lbft @ 2000 rpm

  • E90 BMW 320d Efficient Dynamics

174 hp @4,000 rpm 258 lbft @ 3000 rpm

  • E81/E82/E87/E88 120d
  • E90/E91/E92/E93 320d
  • 5 Series E60 and E61 520d
  • E84 X1 X1 sDrive20d, X1 xDrive20d and E83 X3 xDrive20d.
  • 2014–2015 F22 220d

There was also a twin turbo version :
201 hp @4,400 rpm 295 lbft @ 2000 rpm

  • E87 123d
  • E84 X1 xDrive 23d
  • 2014–2015 F22 225d

Revisions between engine models are generally injectors, turbo and the ECU map. The higher power ones generally use Pintle injectors vs the earlier Piezo's and as these are wired differently can't be swapped over. But swapping a turbo and doing a remap gets you a fairly easy power upgrade on the lower power versions.

Tuning the BMW N47 and best N47 performance parts.

Best N47 mods

Just because particular parts are popular with N47 owners it doesn't mean it is good, we shall ultimate parts that will give your N47 the best power gain for you spend.

Significant gains on the N47 can be made from camshaft upgrades. Altering the camshaft profile alters the intake and exhaust durations on the engine and can dramatically change the engines power and power output.

Fast road cams tend to raise the torque throughout the rev band, you could sacrifice a little low end bhp but your top end will be better.

Race cams, raise the top end band but as a result the car will not idle smoothly and low end power nearly always suffers.

On a car used daily, really you should, ideally aim to optimize your power band to your cars usage.

I'd be shocked if you find a N47 Race camshaft is a pleasure to live with when driving in heavy traffic. The low end idle will be very lumpy and irregular, so something you would notice on a track when you drive in the upper third of the rpm band, but on roads this is a serious issue and we've heard from lots of drivers lamenting their decision to add an extreme competition cam profile to their engine.

Different N47 engines respond better to less aggressive cam durations so view each engine as unique.

The ecu map and fuel pump and injectors also will say much on the torque gains you'll achieve.

Longer valve durations can alter the torque band and on most engines the exhaust and intake durations do not need to match, although most cams and tuners use matched pairs there are some advantages to extending the intake or exhaust durations.

Typical stage 1 mods often include: Fast road camshaft, Sports exhaust manifold, Intake headers, drilled & smoothed airboxPanel air filters, Remaps/piggy back ECU.

Typical stage 2 mods often include: fuel pump upgrades, Fast road cam, high flow fuel injectors, induction kit, Sports catalyst & performance exhaust, Ported and polished head.

Typical stage 3 mods often include: Twin charging conversions, Competition cam, Internal engine upgrades (head flowing porting/bigger valves), Engine balancing & blueprinting, Adding or Upgrading forced induction (turbo/supercharger), Crank and Piston upgrades to alter compression.

Review your options and then buy your parts and set yourself a power target to avoid costly mistakes.

remap should help to establish the full potential of all the mods you've fitted to your N47.

(In some cases, as the factory ECU is locked flashing is not an option, so an aftermarket ECU is the route to take, and many of these will outperform factory ECU's but make sure it has knock protection and that you get it setup properly.)

It will usually give you around 30% more power on turbocharged vehicles and you can expect to see around 15% on NASP engines, but your results usually rely on the mods you've done and the condition of your engine.

N47 Intake mods

It is the whole point to any performance tuning job to shove more fuel and air into your N47

The intake plenum transmit the air during the suck phase from the intake filter and allow it to be sucked into the engine and mixed with fuel.

We should mention the elephant in the room that is the swirl flaps on these engines.

The swirl flaps are only really effective at lower RPMs so it's more of an economy and emissions feature than a performance one.

As the EGR (exhaust gas recirculation) valve does its thing oil residue builds up coating the intake with carbon, narrowing the intakes, and in some cases, we've seen these lose 50% of their capacity to flow air.

When you add the EGR issues to the swirl flaps the problems just keep getting bigger, and instead of helping emissions and low RPM efficiency, it degrades it further.

So many owners are option to remove the swirl flaps completely, but this may not be legal in some areas.

Keep an eye out for symptoms of carbon buildup in the intake.

The shape and flow rate of the Headers can make a big improvement to fuel engine efficiency on the N47.

We often see intake are needing a performance upgrade, although some manufacturers provide well optimized intake.

Fitting big valve kits, doing a bit of N47 port enlargement and head flowing will also lift power, the fantastic side effect is it will permit a better power increase on other tuning parts.

Turbo upgrades

The more air you can get into an engine, the more fuel it can burn and uprating the induction with a turbocharger upgrade makes massive power gains.

There are weak spots for every engine, with some being incredibly solid and some only able to handle stock power

Research these limitations and upgrade to better pistons and crank to cope with the power.

We've seen drivers spending a a stack of money on turbo charger upgrades on the N47 only to watch the whole thing literally blow up when it's finished.

Bigger turbochargers commonly suffer low end lag, and small turbochargers spool up really quickly but won't have the top end engines power gains.

Thankfully the market of turbo chargers is always increasing and we commonly find variable vane turbo chargers, allowing the vane profile is altered according to speed to lower lag and increase top end torque.

Twin scroll turbo chargers divert the exhaust flow into two channels and push these at differently designed vanes in the turbo charger. They also improve the scavenging effect of the engine.

It is common that there is a restriction in the air flow sensor AFM/MAF on these engines when considerably more air is being pulled into the engine.

We see 4 bar air sensors coping with quite large power gains, whereas the OEM air sensor limited power at a much lower level.

Adding a supercharger or additional turbo will make large bhp gains, although more difficult to configure. We have this feature on twinchargers if you want to read more.


When you raise the bhp you will need to uprate to the fuelling.

More bhp needs more fuel. We strongly recommend you to over specify your flow rate on the injectors.

The accepted safe increase is to add 20% to the flow rate when fitting an injector, which takes into account injector deterioration and provides a little spare capacity should the engine need more fuel.

We think this one is common sense, but you'll need to match your fuel injector to the type of fuel your car uses as well.


Only look to increase your exhaust if your exhaust is actually causing a restriction.

On most factory exhausts you'll find your flow rate is still good even on modest power gains, but when you start pushing up the power levels you will need to get a better flowing exhaust.

Sports exhausts increase the flow of air through the engine.

But if the exhaust is too large, ie: it's over 2.5 inches bore, you will lose a great deal of the exhaust flow rate and end up losing power and torque.

Usual exhaust restrictions are traced to the catalyst and filters installed, so adding a faster flowing race alternative such as a sports catalyst pretty much removes this restriction, thanks to it's larger size and surface area, and will effectively raise the performance to levels you would expect without having a catalyst installed, but keeps the car road legal.

Weak spots Issues & problem areas on the N47

The N47 engines are generally alright as long as they are regularly serviced and maintained.

The N47 engine family is prone to excessive timing chain wear and premature failure, later engine versions designated with a T (technical update) have a revision to prevent this happening and a better ECU setup.

Carbon build up in the head, particularly around the valves which will sap power or create flat spots, this is a larger issue on direct injection engines but should be looked out for on all engines. We have tips on removing carbon build up.

Swirl flaps and EGR valves can cause carbon build up, so these need carefully maintaining and regular checks.

Turbo wastegate springs would often fail causing it to stick open. The hoses are also in need of attention as these seem to be quite fragile.

Regular oil changes are vital on the N47, especially when tuned and will help extend the life and reliability of the engine.

If you would like to know more, or just get some friendly advice on Tuning your N47 engine please join us in our friendly forum where you can discuss tuning options in more detail with our tuning articles to get a full grasp of the benefits and drawbacks of each modification.

Please help us improve these tips by sending us your feedback in the comments box below.

We love to hear what our visitors have got up to and which tuning mods work best for you on your car. Which helps us keep our guides and tips up to date helping others with their modified car projects. Your feedback and comments are used to keep this page up to date, and help improve the accuracy of these N47 articles which are continually updated.

PLEASE HELP: I NEED YOUR DONATIONS TO COVER THE COSTS OF RUNNING THIS SITE AND KEEP IT RUNNING. I do not charge you to access this website and it saves most TorqueCars readers $100's each year - but we are NON PROFIT and not even covering our costs. To keep us running PLEASE Donate here

If you liked this page please share it with your friends, drop a link to it in your favourite forum or use the bookmarking options to save it to your social media profile.

Please watch this video on our new YouTube channel.


Please use our forums if you wish to ask a tuning question, and please note we do not sell parts or services, we are just an online magazine.

Help us improve, leave a suggestion or tip

Your Constructive comments on this article

Member Benefits

Join our forum today and benefit from over 300,000 posts on tuning styling and friendly car banter.

You will also have full access to the modifed car gallery, project car updates and exclusive member only areas.

(All car owners of all ages and from all countries are welcome).

Popular articles

Tuning diesels
Remapping ECU
Double Clutch
Induction Kits
Customize a car
Chip Tuning
Insuring Modified Cars
Track day insurance
Remap Diesels
Work out your MPG
DPF cleaning
Horizon 5 tuning

Porting Polishing

Principles of porting an engine and big valve conversions

Converting A Car To Ev

Converting a car to EV

Car Mats

Tailored fitted custom and off the shelf car mats.

Scratch Removal

Scratch removal

Cornering Techniques

The racing line and high speed cornering techniques.

Forza Horizon Tuning

Forza Horizon 4 tuning

MPG Calculator

MPG calculator UK miles per Gallon – calculate MPG