Those who still think of diesels as sluggish, smelly and anything but fun to drive could be in for a shock if they turn up for the BMW news conference at the upcoming Frankfurt Auto Show.
If reports circulating on the web prove true, the maker could be ready to unveil not just a new diesel, but one that would be the first to carry the vaunted BMW M badge. According to Autoblog, the new model would go by the unusual designation of the M550dX, which would suggest a diesel with all-wheel-drive.
The nomenclature might seem unusual – though one of BMW’s very first M cars was the 1979 M535i – but so is the idea of using an oil burner to power a performance machine. The technology has, for most of the century-plus since it was invented, been focused on fuel economy.
But the latest diesel systems, such as turbocharging and direct injection, have transformed the technology, as Mercedes-Benz proved, a few years back, with a limited-production diesel model bearing that brand’s vaunted AMG badge.