New BMW 8 Series On The Way

Although BMW have stated this is just a concept at this time, a rumored 8-series has been on the cards for a number of years, and this is likely to be pretty close to the final production model which is no doubt coming soon. Full BMW words with the announcement are below.

The BMW Group is using this year’s Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este to unveil the BMW Concept 8 Series, the essence of a modern-day BMW coupe wrapped up in an enthralling design study. The study car will serve as a taster of a forthcoming BMW model – the new BMW 8 Series Coupe, slated for launch in 2018 and part of the biggest model offensive in the company’s history. The NUMBER ONE > NEXT strategy sees the BMW Group aiming to significantly increase sales and revenues in the luxury class, and the BMW 8 Series Coupe plays an important role here. “The number 8 has always represented the pinnacle of sports performance and exclusivity at BMW,” explains Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG Harald Krüger. “The forthcoming BMW 8 Series Coupe will demonstrate that razor-sharp dynamics and modern luxury can go hand-in-hand. This will be the next model in the expansion of our luxury-car offering and will raise the benchmark for coupes in the segment. In the process, we will strengthen our claim to leadership in the luxury class.”

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The New 2017 BMW 5-Series

2017 BMW 5 Series

Before you go any further, I have to warn you. This post will be long. BMW released a whole bunch of details about their upcoming 5-series and so I thought I may as well post it all and you can decide for yourself which bits you care about, and which ones you don’t. The bit I really care about won’t be there (yet) – namely, what’s it like to drive, is the steering completely devoid of all feel like the last version, and has BMW seen the error of their recent ways and gone back to pushing out sporty luxurious cars, rather than just luxurious cars? Anyway, without further ado……

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The formula for success continues with the 7th generation of the most successful premium sedan, the all-new BMW 5 Series.  Over 7.6 million BMW 5 Series have been sold worldwide since 1972 and since 1975 over 1 million units in the U.S. alone. The 2017 BMW 5 Series has been entirely newly developed allowing for a significant weight loss of up to 137 lbs with the use of magnesium, aluminum and high-strength steel. Thanks to the available state of the art chassis systems including Integral Active Steering now combinable with xDrive (BMW’s intelligent all-wheel drive system), Driver and Parking Assistance Systems and Adaptive Mode including Dynamic Damper Control, the all-new BMW 5 Series once more defines the athletic and executive design of a true sport sedan. Featuring a new user interface (iDrive 6.0), Gesture Control, the latest generation of Head-Up Display, Remote 3D View and an improved Voice Control with natural voice input, the 2017 BMW 5 Series marks a new era of personalized connectivity. The BMW 5 Series is the most innovative BMW 5 Series to date, combining unique driving dynamics using Remote Control Parking and Advanced Driver Assistance Systems clearing the way towards semi-automated driving.

The all-new BMW 5 Series will be available at U.S. dealers in February 2017. Pricing will be announced closer to market launch.

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BMW M3 Special Edition – 30 Jahre

2017 M3 Jahre Special Edition

If you’ve been waiting for the perfect configuration of new M3 and the Competition Package wasn’t quite enough for you, now might be the time to take look with the limited edition 30 Jahre M3 announcement. Full details below, but highlights are a 0-60 time of 3.8 seconds with the auto and a reworked suspension (so maybe now it will handle on the limit like an M3 should). Full details from the press release below, but have to say I love the color – put on some less shiny wheels and that thing will look super mean. Price is a not cheap $83,250.

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With the launch of the first generation of the BMW M3 in 1986, the BMW M GmbH, operating under the name BMW Motorsport GmbH at that time, revolutionized the sports car as it was built first and foremost for performance. The original M3 was developed as a homologation special to enter the World, European and German Touring Championship (DTM) racing. It was very successful in its time and is still considered as one of the purest high performance street legal sports coupes. To mark the 30th anniversary of this automotive icon, 500 “30 Jahre M3” (30 Years M3) special editions will be produced, of which 150 units will reach U.S. shores. The limited edition is available with a manual transmission for $83,250 plus Destination and Handling or with Dual-Clutch transmission for $86,150 plus Destination and Handling. [Read more…]

BMW M2 – It’s official

2016 BMW M2 Blue

After months of speculation and lots of guess work, the official details of the M2 is now here. Major upgrades from the M235i abound – check out the details in the full press release below, but here’s a couple of the main ones

  • Power at 365bhp and torque at 343 lb-ft (and overboost up to 369 when needed)
  • Manual gearbox (hurrah!) along with a twin clutch transmission if that’s your deal
  • 0-60 in 4.2 with a top speed limited to 155mph
  • Wider track at both the front and rear
  • Fully variable Active M Diff

So, all in all, everything that everyone was hoping for (at least I think – really, really hoping this drives well). This could be the new M3 in spirit if not in name….

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Full Press Release Details

Today, BMW M GmbH unveiled the newest member of its product family. The coveted M badge has been placed on the popular BMW 2 Series in the form of the all-new 2016 BMW M2. The 6-cylinder under the hood is in keeping with the finest M tradition, ensuring unbeatable driving dynamics on the trace track with exceptional power delivery and the signature, outstanding driving behavior thanks to rear-wheel drive agility and lightweight aluminum M Sport suspension. The innovative M TwinPower Turbo technology ensures outstanding torque available across a wide rev band with rapid responses and excellent efficiency, raising the pulse with its distinctive engine soundtrack.

[Read more…]

Hacking Cars – The Future is Here

BMW i3

Head over to Car and Driver to read about the US owners if the i3 hacking their cars to get more mileage on a tank of gas.

BMW 3.0 CSL HOMMAGE R

BMW 3.0 CLS Hommage

The BMW Group has come up with something very special this year with the world premiere of the BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage R – a car that celebrates both the 40th anniversary of BMW in North America and the heady racing success of the BMW 3.0 CSL in 1975.

I was going to write a load of random stuff about how this car was made, and the various design items used in development and construction, but sod that – just enjoy the pics 😉

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BMW M4 GTS

BMW M4 GTS 2016

Still a concept at this stage, but OMFG this thing looks nice. Following on from the previous special edition track focused versions (GTS, E46 M3 CSL, E30 M3 EVO etc), BMW has released a “concept” for the Monterey Car Week and it’s pretty spectacular. And in the best news since NBC’s renewal of their Premier League contract, IT WILL BE AVAILABLE TO BUY IN THE US!!!!!!!!!!!

“While the BMW M4 Coupe embodies the ideal combination of motor sport genes and unrestricted everyday usability, the BMW Concept M4 GTS previews an emotionally powerful and exclusive special model conceived with an eye for trailblazing technology and a keen focus on the race track,” explains Frank van Meel, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW M GmbH. “Despite its outstanding track ability, it is still fully road-legal. This is racing technology for the road in the truest sense.”

M4 GTS rear

The BMW Concept M4 GTS builds on the BMW M4 Coupe’s dynamic and emotional use of forms. Yet its character as a high-performance special model, in which every detail has been developed to fulfil its purpose as a successful track machine, also comes immediately to the fore. The manually adjustable front splitter and rear wing – both in exposed carbon – ensure perfect aerodynamic balance on the race tracks and on the road. Another example of the engineers’ rigorous adherence to lightweight design is the CFRP (carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic) hood which lowers the car’s weight and center of gravity. A wide front air intake optimizes airflow and minimizes front axle lift.

M4 GTS Splitter

The dynamic and exclusive presence of the BMW Concept M4 GTS is accentuated by the exterior paint shade Frozen Dark Grey metallic, with the Acid Orange accent on the front splitter creating an effective contrast. The lightweight, forged and polished light-alloy wheels in 666 M styling also feature an Acid Orange accent. The 9.5 J x 19 (front) and 10.5 J x 20 (rear) wheels are fitted with Michelin Sport Cup 2 tires (265/35 R19 at the front, 285/30 R20 at the rear). The mixed-size tires provide the ideal conduit for the stand-out dynamic attributes of the BMW Concept M4 GTS.

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The engine powering the BMW Concept M4 GTS is equipped with the same innovative water injection system that has endowed the BMW M4 MotoGP Safety Car with a noticeable increase in output and torque.

[Read more…]

BMW M3 vs Mercedes C63 S AMG

The battle you’ve all been waiting for is finally here – the new M3 vs the new C63 S, courtesy of the fine folks at Evo

Updated BMW 3 Series – 2016 Model

2016 BMW 3 SeriesBilled as a mid-cycle refresh, the latest announced changes from BMW are actually a little more extensive than the usual spit and polish approach to bodywork thats commonplace for the these things. It looks like (and I’m really hoping it’s true) they’ve listened to complaints around the crap steering and not up to par sportiness of the current generation with updated components and setup to address those areas.

2016 BMW 3 Series Front

And the other big news is the appearance of the 340i – replacing the 335i at the top of the none-M badged models. The BMW 340i is the first model in the BMW line-up to be powered by the all-new inline 6-cylinder engine (B58) from the new modular BMW EfficientDynamics engine family. The lightweight and rigid all-aluminum unit with BMW TwinPower Turbo technology replaces the N55 powered 335i and tops the 3 Series line-up. It produced a maximum power of 320 hp between 5,500 and 6,500 rpm, a 20 hp improvements over the previous model. Peak torque is an impressive 330 lb-ft, which is available from 1,380 rpm. The new BMW 340i Sedan equipped with the 8-speed Steptronic transmission accelerates from 0-60 mph in just 4.8 seconds while the BMW 340i xDrive model takes just 4.6 seconds. All 340i models are governed to a top speed of 155 mph. The new EfficientDynamics 6-cylinder engine is equipped with the latest generation of BMW’s innovative TwinPower Turbo technology, featuring twin-scroll turbocharger, High Precision Injection and Double-VANOS variable camshaft timing. It also incorporates VALVETRONIC fully variable valve lift.

2016 3 Series BMW interior

Although BMW still offer a manual option (at least on the non-diesel versions), the default choice is not the 8-speed automatic, meaning gone are the days of getting your BMW with manual for a couple of grand cheaper than the auto – it’s now a no-cost option (but we should be grateful it’s still there on the list – there’s lots of manufacturers just killing this option altogether over here).

2016 3 series BMW estate station wagon

Some of the specific changes for the updated suspension include: new geometry of the chassis with new front struts with five bolt upper anchors points (versus 3 previously), redesigned electric power steering, new rear damper technology, and updated Dynamic Stability Control. All these updates translate to increased handling capabilities as well as feedback to the driver. It’ll definitely be interested to hear the autopress comments when they get their hands on one.

3 series rear new 2016
There’s also a track handling package available. Designed for the driving enthusiasts and available on the gasoline engine models only, consists of Variable Sport Steering, Adaptive M Suspension and M Sport Brakes with high temperature Euro brake pads mounted to blue calipers that highlight the new 3 Series sportiness while sharpening handling. The package includes 18” Light alloy wheels in Orbit Grey with Michelin Super Sport Tires, which emphasize maximum performance while providing excellent handling. Optional 19” wheels are also available on all 340i models. Variable steering of any kind scares the crap out of me (have you ever read a decent review of such a system for a performance car?) so not quite sure why that would be a key part of the track package. But I guess we’ll see.

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There’s also a few minor changes for exterior and interior designs, all seem nice enhancements (like automatically getting what was previously the Sportline option as standard on the 328i, 328d and 340i models). And the now obligatory announcement that the line will include a plug-in hybrid coming out in 2016, with a 22 mile electric only range when needed (handy for avoiding the congestion charge in London!).

BMW 6 Series

6 Series Grand Coupe

The world debut of the 2016 BMW 6 Series and BMW M6 will be represented in Detroit by all three body styles in the form of: the new BMW 6 Series Coupe, BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe, and the BMW M6 Convertible.Through three generations, the BMW 6 Series has stood for vehicles meeting the highest standard of handling, comfort, technology, and elegance.  Using state-of-the-art suspension technology, the BMW 6 Series strikes the ideal balance between agility and comfort. The two-door body of the BMW 6 Series Coupe exudes an athletic and elegant aesthetic, while its interior ambience is designed to comfortably immerse four people in the ultimate driving experience. Similarly, the BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe blends the performance and elegance of a coupe with the functionality of a four-door vehicle.  The BMW 6 Series Coupe, Convertible and Gran Coupe will continue in the US in the  650i and 640i models.