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 of the Engine

  • N47D16
  • 94 hp @4,000 rpm 173 lbft @1500 - 2750 rpm 2013
  • 114 hp @4,000 rpm 192 lbft @ 1500 - 2750 rpm 2012
  • N47D20
  • 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

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

  • E81 E87 116d E90 316d

41 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

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 should ideally 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.

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.

Stage 1 mods: Fast road camshaft, Sports exhaust manifold, Intake headers, Drilled & smoothed airbox, Panel air filters, Remaps/piggy back ECU.

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

Stage 3 mods: 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 to establish the full potential of all the mods you've fitted to your N47.

It will usually give 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.

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.

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 optimised 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

NASP engines need quite a lot of work when you add a turbo, so we have a separate guide to help you take into account the pros and cons of going this route on your N47

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.

If your car has a turbo already fitted parts are more reliable and you'll see that turbo engines are built using strengthened components.

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.

Fuelling

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.

Exhaust

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 will help avoid this restriction.

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

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.

For more information 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 them on each model of car. Comments are used to improve the accuracy of these N47 articles which are continually updated.

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