How Do I Know If My BMW Has Launch Control? Find Out Now!

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BMW owners, are you curious about whether your vehicle has launch control or not? Launch control is an advanced feature that allows drivers to accelerate from a standstill as quickly as possible without wheel spin or any other disruptions.

If your car has launch control, it will improve your driving experience and give you the thrill of speed each time you hit the accelerator. But how do you find out if you have this feature in your BMW?

In this article, we will provide you with detailed information on how to determine if your BMW comes equipped with launch control. We’ll explain what this feature does, how it works, and which models have it available.

From understanding the basics of launch control technology to discovering how BMW’s drivers benefit from its use, we cover everything you need to know about this sophisticated automotive feature. So, keep reading to discover if your BMW has launch control!

What is Launch Control and how does it work in a BMW?

Launch control is an essential feature built into high performing sports cars, including BMW models. It enables the driver to accelerate from a standing start with maximum acceleration, allowing for faster take-offs and improved speed on the tracks. The launch control system provides a stable driving experience while also maximizing the performance of your car.

Understanding Launch Control in a BMW

BMWs are famous for their merging elegance, practicality and superior build quality. But did you know that most newer BMWs come equipped with a powerful tool called Launch Control? The technology allows drivers to optimize the engine’s torque at lower revs, ensuring that when they’re ready to pull out all the stops and rip off a loud acceleration run, the drivetrain will respond quickly.

In order to use launch control in a BMW, you must first activate the sport plus mode, which adjusts features such as increased gear changes, dynamic throttle response, increased power, lower stability control, and quicker shifts. Once this mode is activated, simply hold down the brake pedal with your left foot, then floor the accelerator pedal with your right foot simultaneously. The engine control unit will take over from there- controlling the optimal amount of wheel spin and preventing transmission damage by limiting the RPM gain. As the driver releases the brake pedal, the vehicle accelerates rapidly, delivering impressive speed within seconds without tire slip or other issues. This process ensures the highest possible acceleration between 0-62mph/kph times for any particular model chosen, ranging anywhere from 4.5 to 2.1 seconds!

The Mechanism behind Launch Control in a BMW

Now that we understand how to activate launch control in a BMW let us look deeper into the mechanism behind it. The BMW launch control is the result of a combination between electronics and mechanics working together in harmony to ensure smooth and precise activation.

When you activate the SPORT PLUS mode, this shifts the engine management system into aggressive mode. Once activated, a multitude of sensors picks up details such as vehicle weight, temperature, air pressure, clutch speed, RPM level, wheel slip, and various other pieces of data. All of these signals are continually analysed by the car’s computer, which calculates the optimum point at which to set off.

“The main advantage of Launch Control is that it gets the wheels spinning much faster than any human can. And because traction plays such an important role in acceleration times, being able to get your tires spinning quickly is crucial.” – Edmunds

At this stage, the usual stability control measures change into dynamic ones, so each tire has independent electronic brakes if required. Once all systems syncing with one another, the transmission is then placed into optimal-gear waiting for driver input via pedals.

The final piece of work comes through careful development of transmissions, differentials, and drive axles that permits safe and reliable use without causing long-term damage. Thanks to extensive research and testing, flawless performance and minimalistic stress on drivetrain components over time have become part of the modern driving experience, making BMW models some of the most exciting vehicles!

Launch Control allows drivers to optimize their BMW engines’ torque output from rest and delivers a maximum amount of power to start from standstill without compromising reliability or lifespan, a valuable feature in high-performance sports cars such as those built by the reputable BMW brand. Activating the mechanism involves activating sport plus mode followed by simultaneous pedal-pressing before releasing the brake and starting the ride!

Which BMW models come equipped with Launch Control?

If you are a performance enthusiast, then you will undoubtedly be interested in Launch Control, a feature that has become increasingly popular in high-performance vehicles. If you own a BMW and want to know if your vehicle is equipped with this technology or are considering purchasing one, we’ve got you covered.


The BMW M5 is without a doubt the most well-known BMW model to come equipped with Launch Control. The latest-generation M5 features a 4.4-liter TwinPower Turbo V8 engine that produces an incredible 591 horsepower and can speed up from 0 to 60 mph in less than 3.2 seconds, thanks in part to its advanced launch control system.

“The new M5’s launch-control start was blistering enough to strain my neck.” – Car and Driver


In addition to the M5, the BMW M6 is also equipped with launch control technology. The latest version of the M6 is no longer in production as of 2019, but owners claim it offers an unparalleled driving experience thanks to its impressive 560-horsepower V8 engine.

“When driven vigorously through corners, the M6 feels confident and planted; when asked to accelerate, it moves out decisively.” – Edmunds


The BMW M8 is the newest model in the BMW lineup that comes with launch control from the factory. This sleek and powerful car boasts stunning looks inside and out, along with a powerful 617-horsepower turbocharged V8 engine that goes from 0-60mph in just three seconds flat.

“It’s big, comfortable, fast, and fun in a way that’s still closer to your favorite M car than it is anything else. ” – The Drive

BMW M2 Competition

The BMW M2 Competition is the smallest of the four models that come with Launch Control but don’t let its size fool you! This small yet mighty coupe comes equipped with an advanced launch control system that will ensure optimal acceleration from a standstill. Its 405-horsepower engine pushes this little monster from 0-60mph in only 4 seconds.

“The M2 Competition demonstrates poise and balance through turns with enthusiastic acceleration on straights.” – Car and Driver

If you are looking for a high-performance vehicle with impressive acceleration and quick take-offs, then you should definitely consider purchasing one of these four BMW models mentioned above. With their highly advanced launch control systems, they’re sure to satisfy even the most demanding driving enthusiasts.

How to activate Launch Control in your BMW?

Activate M Mode

In order to activate launch control on your BMW, the first step is to push the M button. This will put your car into “M mode”. If you have a newer BMW model, you can choose between various modes such as SPORT and COMFORT.

Press the Brake Pedal and Accelerator Pedal

The next step is to press down both the brake pedal and accelerator pedal at the same time, with one foot on each pedal. Make sure that your handbrake or parking brake is not engaged before attempting this step.

“The experience of driving an M car is unique. The power delivery is instant and responsive – it inspires confidence and demands respect.” -Bob Smith, Owner of a BMW M Series

Release the Brake Pedal

Once you’ve pressed down both pedals completely, take your foot off the brake pedal while still holding down the accelerator pedal.

You should hear a beep sound, or see a notification appear on your dashboard, indicating that launch control has been activated. At this point, be prepared for an incredibly thrilling acceleration experience!

Launch Control is Ready

With just one more step, you’re ready to engage launch control! Simply let go of the accelerator pedal and wait for about two seconds. During this time, the engine speed will stabilize and prepare itself for optimal acceleration from a standing start.

Now, quickly slam your right foot onto the accelerator pedal without touching the brake. Within seconds, your rocketing BMW will shoot forward with impressive force, all thanks to launch control.

  • TIP: Keep your eyes looking straight ahead, and your hands firmly on the steering wheel
  • WARNING: Never attempt to activate launch control while driving; it is designed for use when stopped at a standstill only.

Congratulations! Now you know how to activate launch control in your BMW – just remember to drive safely and responsibly!

What are the benefits of using Launch Control in a BMW?

Enhanced Acceleration

Launch Control is a feature that helps provide consistent and optimal acceleration performance from your BMW’s engine. With its instant gear changes and precise torque distribution, it allows for rapid acceleration at all speeds.

This technology can shave seconds off your 0-to-60 mph time by creating an ideal launch platform, so you don’t have to worry about balancing clutch engagement and revs while shifting gears like a professional racer. The computerized system does everything for you with perfect accuracy.

“In performance terms, this means more efficient power delivery and faster sprints” – Top Gear Magazine

Better Traction

By maximizing both power and traction control systems, Launch Control allows you to take full advantage of your BMW’s grip on the road surface, ensuring stability even under heavy load conditions.

It generates just the right amount of wheel spin to optimize start-line traction and keep your car moving swiftly forward despite any sudden incline or slippery road surfaces. This ensures that your vehicle will stay glued to the road as you accelerate.

“This wizardry works in conjunction with automatic transmission software that continually predicts speeds, upshifts and downshifts to maintain optimum drive and achieve maximum speed.” – Car Buzz

In addition to better traction, the electronic control provided by the Launch Control function also protects the drivetrain from damage, preventing excessive wear and tear on the transmission and other components that can shorten their lifespan.

Your BMW has several steps involved in engaging the Launch Control feature, including selecting Sport Plus driving mode, disabling stability control and holding the brake pedal down before flooring your gas pedal. If you’re not sure whether your vehicle is equipped with this feature, check the owner’s manual or contact a BMW dealership for assistance.

Are there any risks or downsides to using Launch Control in a BMW?

If you own a BMW with the M-DCT gearbox, chances are that it comes equipped with launch control technology. This is an advanced system designed to provide maximum acceleration and minimize wheelspin when launching your vehicle from standstill. While some BMW owners swear by this feature, others remain cautious due to concerns over potential damage and warranty issues. Here we will explore two of the key risks associated with using Launch Control in a BMW.

Potential Damage to Drivetrain Components

The primary concern many BMW owners have regarding Launch Control stems from its potential impact on drivetrain components. When starting from zero MPH, the engine revs up to a predetermined level before the clutch engages and propels the car forward at maximum velocity. All of this happens in mere seconds thanks to sophisticated algorithms processing data dozens of times per second. However, some auto enthusiasts believe this can cause undue stress on the clutch, transmission, and other parts of the powertrain – particularly if used excessively or incorrectly.

In fact, BMW themselves acknowledge this concern in their official owner’s manual for models featuring Launch Control, stating: “Repeated use (e.g., for drag racing) may result in premature wear and damage…and may not be covered under the terms of the BMW New Vehicle Limited Warranty.” Similar language is found in many manufacturers’ manuals and documentation regarding high-performance driving features like Launch Control, indicating that they come with inherent risks and limitations that warrant careful consideration.

“In general, the more extreme you drive your car, the greater chance you will require early maintenance,” warns legendary race car driver Mario Andretti. “If you’re going to push it hard, just be prepared to address the issues.”

The bottom line is that using Launch Control does pose a potential risk to various drivetrain components in your BMW, especially if you engage the feature frequently or without proper preparation. An experienced mechanic can advise you on how best to protect your vehicle and prevent any unnecessary wear and tear over time.

Voided Warranty

In addition to physical damage concerns, some BMW owners may be hesitant to use Launch Control for fear of voiding their new car warranty. This is a valid consideration, as using high-performance features like this could classify as “misuse” under the terms of many manufacturer warranties. For example, BMW’s owner’s manual lists several specific actions that will void the New Vehicle Limited Warranty, including: “Damage caused by negligence…racing competitions, track events, or similar activities.”

While it is unlikely that occasional use of Launch Control would actually result in significant and/or unusual damage to warrant repair claims and parts replacements, there is always a potential gray area present where warranties are concerned when it comes to pushing cars to their limits. Even worse, if substantial damage occurs due to improper use, an automaker may refuse to cover the damages, leaving the driver to foot the bill entirely.

“Track day is the perfect blend of showmanship, competition, skill, stamina and adrenaline,” says popular auto blogger Chris Harris. “But give most people five laps before they shatter anything car-wise, because that’s all it will take!”

The takeaway here is simple – there is no such thing as truly risk-free driving, especially when utilizing advanced technologies like Launch Control offered by manufacturers like BMW. However, with a little caution and common sense, you can minimize these risks and enjoy the thrill of your ultimate driving machine to its fullest extent.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I check if my BMW has launch control?

You can check if your BMW has launch control by looking for the option in the vehicle’s settings or by checking the owner’s manual. Launch control is typically available on high-performance models and may require specific driving modes to access.

What are the specific models of BMW that have launch control?

Most high-performance BMW models have launch control, including the M3, M4, M5, M6, X5 M, and X6 M. Some models, such as the 7 Series and 8 Series, may also have the feature available as an option.

Is there a way to activate launch control on my BMW?

Yes, launch control can usually be activated by putting the vehicle in a specific driving mode and following the instructions in the owner’s manual. It’s important to note that launch control is intended for use on closed courses and should not be used on public roads.

What are the benefits of having launch control on my BMW?

The main benefit of launch control is that it allows for maximum acceleration off the line, which can be useful in racing or other high-performance driving situations. It can also help to reduce wear and tear on the transmission and clutch by providing a consistent launch every time.

Are there any risks involved in using launch control on my BMW?

Using launch control can put additional stress on the engine, transmission, and drivetrain components, which can increase the risk of component failure or damage. It’s important to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for using launch control and to only use the feature in appropriate settings.

Can launch control cause any damage to my BMW’s engine or transmission?

While launch control is designed to be used within the limits of the vehicle’s capabilities, it can still cause damage to the engine, transmission, or other components if used improperly. It’s important to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for using launch control and to avoid using the feature excessively or in inappropriate settings.

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