Originally Posted by KoenG
BTW, what I forgot to mention, I drive the 520dF10 (163hp/380Nm) and 530iE39 (231hp/300Nm). So the 530i would be far superior don't you think?
Well it's only mildly superior when you can drive at speeds that put you behind bars immediately and when you keep rpm +4000... All other conditions the 520d is better and feels like a superior engine (I don't compare the cars, since the F10 really obliterates the E39 of course!).
The 530i even frustrates by its lack of grunt under the 3000rpm. Oh yeah, average consumption 520d = 6,1l/100km and 530i=13l/100km. So, again, the 118d is way, way, way superior to the 116i.
But the M54B30 is not really relevant as comparison to the N13B16, as it has no turbo. The two engines have very different characteristics. The 116i feels almost like a diesel engine with its strong bottom end and lack of power at high RPM.
It is still strange to me that you think the diesel four feels like a superior engine under 4000 RPM. The sound and smoothness (and even smell) of the six is far superior in my opinion. It lacks the torque peak, but you can easily compensate by downshifting once or twice, and have plenty of power availabe. And of course glorious sound as well. Of course that will affect the fuel consumption, but in that case it is not down to which engine feels better, but which engine is cheapest to run. For me it is easy: Petrol feels superior, but is more expensive.
I am pretty sure the M54 is stronger than the diesel at really low RPM as well, like 800-1100.
If you go for some occational weekend fun on a trackday, you will use the RPM range all the way to the redline, and I am 100 percent sure that the M54B30 would put a bigger smile on your face than the diesel four.
The 116i is a rather boring engine that does not come close to the M54B30 in smoothness or sound or power. It does however run quite cheap, and it has practical low end grunt compared to the rather moderate power output. Compared to a 118d, the 116i will feel weak and slow in everyday traffic, but they have similar performance when pushed to the redline.