Armin Schwarz newsletter 2007-06-25

Our V8 engine: A Bavarian bear in the US desert I've been in professional motorsport for many years. I have competed in rallying for over two decades, but when our Buggy's 4.8-litre V8 roars into life my hair stands on end. From 5,500 revs the...

Our V8 engine: A Bavarian bear in the US desert

I've been in professional motorsport for many years. I have competed in rallying for over two decades, but when our Buggy's 4.8-litre V8 roars into life my hair stands on end.

From 5,500 revs the thrust is impressive. At 6,000 the BMW engine bellows so loud it rocks the desert. At 7,800 we reach maximum revs (my dream is that it would continue to 10,000). The sound of this engine is unique in the SCORE Offroad Series: You don't have to see our Buggy to recognise it. The revs where our engine kicks in is the point where the 7.3 to 7.6 litre Chevy engines are already at the rev-limiter.

Our 4.8-litre unit is very competitive with around 640 hp. It has a fantastic throttle response and in this respect reminds me a lot of the engines from my rally days. But 640 horses are thirsty, needing about one litre of modified av-gas per kilometre. We have one minor handicap with torque compared to the mighty Chevys and our five-speed gearbox doesn't allow the optimal gearing for our engine characteristics. Martin Christensen, our All German Motorsports team boss, is already working with a partner on finding a solution.

Martin has modified the engine for desert racing. It's relatively close to the standard unit. A race aggregate is not really suitable for deep dust and winding mountain tracks. We don't have a dry-sump lubrication but an oil-sump as we couldn't fit the dry-sump inside the frame. The V8 is not a partially self-supporting unit because our tubular frame chassis flexes when we do those huge jumps. No engine-gearbox unit could withstand such punishment. The radiators sit high up on the engine to avoid damage. It's crucial to position the driver and co-driver as low as possible because otherwise their heads would disturb the air-flow. Even the positioning of the oil-cooler on the side requires a special solution for the desert: They are protected against flying stones by sturdy grills.

Remus developed and built a special exhaust that not just optimally harmonises with the engine on the performance side, but also significantly contributes to our fans knowing exactly who we are long before they see the Germans with their Bavarian bear coming.

-credit: www.armin-schwarz.com

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