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by Brett Davis

BMW could be about to stretch the versatility of the current 3.0-litre straight-six diesel engine by adding a triple turbocharging unit to it. The new tri-turbo unit is expected to debut in the BMW X6 xDrive50d next year, and in a BMW 550dX M Sport in light of this BMW order form.

This image of a BMW brake pad supplier form clearly shows a BMW 550dX model name will exist in the future, on both the 5 Series sedan (F10), and the wagon versions of the 5 Series (F11), in ‘X’ form – this ‘X’ designation applies to BMW vehicles fitted with an all-wheel drive system.

According to Bimmer Today, BMW is planning on releasing a triple-turbo diesel 3.0-litre straight-six engine in 2012, saying the unit will produce around the same power as the 550i petrol, with up to 300kW on offer. The report says the unit will first be available on the BMW X6 xDrive50d and then later on the BMW 550dX fitted with the M Sport pack.

The new tri-turbo diesel unit is likely to be unveiled at next month’s 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. We look forward to uncovering the full details of the engine, the placement of the turbochargers, and some of the specific engine outputs upon the unveiling. Stay tuned, the show starts on September 13.