BMW M Series

BMW M Series

It took BMW about a year to release the 2 Series Convertible to sit alongside the Coupe version , but now that the drop-top is here on official terms, Munich is rolling out all the goodies that come with each new model. This time around, the Germans started with the M Sport Package, a bundle that adds a touch of aggressiveness to the stylish cabriolet. It’s for those looking to get more than just a plain 2 Series Convertible in terms of looks, but can do just fine without the brawnier engines of the M235i or the M2 .

As you might have already guessed, the M Sport Package leaves the drop-top’s powertrain unaltered. The proven 2.0-liter, four-cylinder unit gets to keep its 240 ponies and 255 pound-feet of torque, which do an excellent job at pushing the 2 Series Convertible from 0 to 60 mph in 5.7 seconds with rear-wheel drive or 5.6 seconds with the available xDrive system.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW 2 Series Convertible with the M Sport Package.

Like most high-performance vehicles, the BMW M3 was the perfect platform for a dozen special-edition models throughout its history. Who can forget about the E36-based GTR and the E46-based CSL , or even the Cecotto and Ravaglia editions of the first-generation M3? Then there’s the GTS, arguably one of the best-performing M3’s in history. Launched for the 2010 model year and built in only 250 units, the GTS was a more powerful and lighter version of the E92 M3 . The coupe was powered by a 4.4-liter V-8 rated at 444 horsepower and weighed 300 pounds less than the standard M3. These specs made it incredibly fast in the 0-to-60-mph sprint, which took only 4.2 seconds, and quite popular with collectors. All 250 units sold immediately, despite a sticker of €115,000 ($149,000 as of 09/11/2014). The E92 GTS remained the sole GTS built to date, but it seems the Germans have a new iteration underway, this time around based on the M4 .

That’s the word from our skilled photographers, who spotted what appears to be a track-prepped version of the M4 set to carry the GTS moniker. And although BMW has done its best to parade it as a MotoGP Safety Car , we have reasons to believe this coupe is more than just a pace setter.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 BMW M4 GTS.

The BMW 1 Series M has been regarded as one of the best pieces of performance machinery to come from the halls of BMW for decades, but sadly it was limited to a very short run of cars and it was only sold as a coupe . Now that BMW has moved its two-door models to the new naming scheme, it seems that we are at least getting a topless model that approaches the same fun and tossability as the 1M Coupe with the freshly announced 2015 M235i Convertible.

It shares many similarities with the new M235i Coupe , but with much more headroom and sunshine. It also marks the first convertible version of an M Performance model. With a turbocharged, straight-six engine, a six-speed manual transmission and rear-wheel drive, it has all the proper bits to make for a truly memorable driving machine.

Like all machines that roll from the BMW factory, the M235i Convertible also promises to offer a sublime blend of handling ability and ride comfort. What else makes this machine different from a regular 2-Series ? Read on to find out.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW M235i Convertible.

BMW introduced the 6 Series (E24) in 1976 as a successor to the E9 (New Six) coupes. Powered by as many as 215 ponies in its range-topping trim, the 6 Series was far from being slow, but a true-blue high-performance model would arrive for the 1984 model year. Motivated by the same 3.5-liter, inline-six fitted in the M1, the first-gen M6 cranked out 282 horsepower and came with a top speed of 158 mph. When BMW discontinued the 6 Series in 1989, the M6 disappeared too. The M6 performance coupe would return for the 2006 model year, two years after BMW resurrected the 6 Series. A redesigned, third-generation model was launched for 2013, this time hiding a 4.4-liter, V-8 engine under its long hood. Rated at 560 horsepower, the N63 mill made the new M6 one of the most desirable coupes on the market. As we’re moving closer to 2015, the Germans are readying a mid-cycle refresh for the M6, which will hit dealer lots for the 2016 model year.

The M6 facelift is pretty much in line with each and every update BMW has launched in 2014. Revised front and rear fascias, a slightly updated interior, and maybe a tweaked engine are to be expected from the Bavarian GT for 2016. Just enough to keep it fresh before a brand-new model arrives in 2018.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 BMW M6.

It is not even a tiny bit of a secret that I love my Volkswagen Golf . I love its combination of good looks, practicality, and sporty driving characteristics, but how does it compare against something from BMW ? In this episode of Chris Harris on Cars for /DRIVE, Chris takes a look at the latest and greatest seventh-generation Golf R , and he compares it to the new darling from BMW, the M235i .

In usual Chris Harris fashion, there is a bit of wit, a bit of history, and just a dash of sideways. Strangely though, he doesn’t really come to a solid conclusion about which one is best. He just gives us what he sees as the pros and the cons, and leaves it at that.

Seeing as he never came to a full conclusion, I leave it up to you to make your choice. Hit up those comments and tell us which car you think is the better of the two. I’ll be back a bit later to congratulate everyone who I think is right, as well as chide all those who have yet to see the light and truth in this automotive universe.

Now hit play, watch the two cars do their magic, and get to commenting. I am waiting.

So apparently, the "Mission: Impossible" movie franchise has already begun filming its fifth installment. I didn’t even know there was a fifth movie, not after that bomb of a fourth film whose only redeeming quality was seeing the BMW VisionEfficient Dynamics get some well-deserved camera time. But amateur video has popped up of "M:I 5" and once again, BMW is front and center.

This time around, it’s the new M3 Sedan that’s getting treated to a whole lot of stunt driving smack in the middle of the streets of Casablanca in Morocco. If you love the M3 Sedan, this is a painful video to watch, as it looks like the car’s getting hammered down a steep flight of steps.

On the flip side, appearing in a movie like "Mission: Impossible 5" is a great way for the M3 Sedan to get some mainstream publicity. The VisionEfficient Dynamics benefited from its time in front of the camera and now proudly calls itself the BMW i8 .

Hopefully, the M3 Sedan doesn’t suffer the same fate as so many other “movie” cars have in the past. I still have weird nightmares about what Michael Bay did to all those exotics in the "Transformers" franchise.

While the redesigned BMW 2 Series and the performance-oriented M235i are freely roaming the streets as we speak, the range-topping M2 is still a long way from showing itself in production guise. Sure, we’ve seen the beefed-up coupe in several spy photos during the first half of 2014, but the two vehicles spotted on inner city streets and on the Nürburgring track were merely test mules wearing various M235i body parts.

Scheduled to break cover in 2015, it seems the M2 is finally starting to take shape, as our paparazzi have caught the coupe during a new test session on the ’Green Hell.’ It’s not the first time the M2 takes on the ’Ring’s twisty course, but this time around, the BMW looks closer to what we’ll be seeing in dealerships for the 2016 model year. The differences between the first mules and the new prototype are massive, especially in the bumper area, meaning this is our best look yet at the upcoming M2.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 BMW M2.

We already know everything there is to know about the second-generation BMW X6 , which was recently launched for the 2015 model year, but its high-performance version, the X6 M, is still somewhat of a mystery. What we do know about it, though, is that the Germans have been testing prototypes since early 2014. Now that yet another test vehicle has surfaced, this time around on the Nurburgring track, we know for a fact that development is well underway.

How do we know we’re looking at the upcoming X6 M? Well, that’s very simple, despite the fact that the SUV is still wearing a serious amount of camouflage. The first hint lies in the front bumper, where a couple of large air intakes can be spotted. Then there’s the rear diffuser, which isn’t available on the standard X6, and the redesigned, more aggressive side skirts. If you still have doubts, then the hostile exhaust note coming with the video above should convince you.

Speaking of which, the X6 M will retain the turbocharged, 4.4-liter V-8 currently residing under its hood. The unit is now rated at 547 horsepower and 501 pound-feet of torque, but it’s unlike for BMW to let those numbers untouched. Expect output to increase to around 560 ponies to keep up with the Porsche Cayenne Turbo S .

Alongside an upgraded engine, the second-generation X6 M is also in for a revised aerodynamic body kit, the updated headlamps and taillights of the 2015 X6, and a revised interior with updated technology and new trims. The unveiling is expected to take place by the end of 2014.

Posted on by Nico DeMattia  

BMW M3s have always been about high-revving, naturally aspirated engine and lightweight, nimble handling. In fact, that was the case for all M cars until the M5 came along with a twin-turbocharged V-8, which then made its way into the M6 as well. The E92 generation M3 was the last M car to have a free-breathing engine. The new one, chassis code F80, gets forced induction — much to the dismay of many M car fans. With the help of two turbochargers, the new, 3.0-liter inline-six makes 425 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque. That’s a considerable bump over the 295 pound-feet of the previous M3 and it comes on 2,050 RPM sooner. This makes the new M3 much more of a weapon than the E92, which needed to be revved to eternity to really get going. And this shows, as the F80 gets from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.8 seconds where as the old E92 took 4.1.

Chris Harris seems to think, despite what all of the haters say, that this new M3 is best of the breed. And he should know, being that he used to own an E92 M3 and currently owns an original E30 Sports Evolution M3. Harris say the engine, despite drawing such criticism for its blown-nature, is a masterpiece. It doesn’t sound all that great but it works wonderfully.

The chassis balance, as always with M3s, is fantastic and the gearbox is epic. One place where the new M3 might still draw criticism though, is the steering. It’s electric and many people, including Harris himself, think that it feels a bit artificial, but it’s incredibly accurate and is nicely weighted. Chris seems to think that this new M3 moves the game dramatically forward over the previous generation. If a man who drives some of the most hardcore sports cars out there says that, then I’m going to listen.

Chris Harris makes lovely videos because they help people like me, who don’t always get to drive some of these awesome sports cars, really get a feel for what they’re like. He really beats on the M3 in this video and shows what it can do, drifting through turns on a circuit and bombing a twisty, mountain road. In doing so, we can really get an idea of just how good the new M3 is. It may not be as pure as an E30, but it’s damn close, and that’s good enough for me.

Posted on by Austin Taylor  

An exciting M Performance Edition of the new BMW X4 is headed our way for the 2016 model year. Likely to be named the X4 M40i, and expected to offer an increase of at least 60 horsepower, courtesy of an official, M-branded S55 engine, along with suspension, brake, and styling tweaks, the M Performance upgrade will elevate an already sporty driving experience to an even higher level.

The M Performance package is already a smashing hit with the new 2 Series, and if the exciting ,new M235i — acclaimed by many to be the best-driving BMW in a decade — is any indication of just how fun to drive these tweaked models are, expect nothing less from the M Performance upgrade slated for the 2016 BMW X4.

The new BMW X4 is basically a trendy, four-door-coupe version of the hot-selling X3 crossover. Touted as a "Sports Activity Coupe," this design somewhat limits headroom and overall interior space, but the flip-side of this compromise is a much sleeker design.

Good looks and additional street presence are justifiable price premiums, and BMW wants $6,000 more than the base price of an X3 for the sharper-looking design. Based on the X6’s success, which is a similar coupe-like approach based on the X5 , we see no reason why fanatics won’t be lining up to purchase X4s in droves.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 BMW X4 M40i.


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