BMW

BMW cars

The BMW i8 has become a sales hit in the UK. Actually, it’s become more than a hit if you consider reports that it’s already sold out and that there’s already a 10-month waiting list to get your hands on the hybrid sports car . British newspaper Telegraph is reporting that the demand for the i8 has become so incredible that customers are even willing to pay "any price" for the display car in BMW’s i showroom on Park Lane in London.

It’s a dramatic turn of fortune for BMW , which initially expressed fears that the i8 wouldn’t command the same amount of attention as it had hoped. It was a gamble to build it in the very beginning, especially when the German automaker made it clear that the i8 would only feature a rather petite, 1.5-liter, turbocharged, three-cylinder engine and an electric motor, combining to produce a total output of 362 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque.

But even the £95,000 ($135,925 here in the U.S. as of 8/12/2014) price tag of the i8 couldn’t dissuade buyers from putting in deposits for the car as early as 2012, even before BMW announced that production for the hybrid would ensue. BMW Park Lane sales manager even told the Telegraph that the i8 has become the "biggest conquest car I’ve known as a BMW salesman."

Something tells me that BMW enjoyed hearing those words. At least more so now that the decision and subsequent risk it took in producing the i8 is turning out to be a stroke of genius at this point.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW i8.

Source: Telegraph
Posted on by Nico DeMattia  

If you aren’t familiar, Chris Harris is one of the better journalists out there. He’s made a name for himself by getting into arguments with Ferrari — and more importantly — destroying tires (or tyres since he’s English). The one thing that’s always great about a Chris Harris video review, is how well he can diagnose a car. He’s been in the game a long time and has driven everything from ancient, decrepit Citroen 2CV’s to hypercars like the McLaren P1 and LaFerrari . This makes him very diverse, and able to enjoy many different types of car, he doesn’t limit himself to old muscle cars with manual gearboxes or modern high-tech sports cars with all the newest of gadgets. He simply enjoys cars for what they are, he’s a proper gearhead (or petrolhead because again...English). So when he put out this video driving the i8, I payed attention.

The i8 is a technological powerhouse, using technologies and techniques not available on anything in its price range. It has a mid-mounted, 1.5-liter, turbocharged, three-cylinder engine, making 228 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque, paired with a 129-horsepower electric motor to make a combined power out put of 362 ponies. The benefit of electric power is the instantaneous torque, and when combined with the turbo three-banger, the i8 produces a whopping 420 pound-feet of it. All this is sent through a variation of the six-speed auto in the new Mini Cooper (the engine is also carried over from the Mini), and delivered to all four wheels.

The chassis of the i8 is a monocoque tub made from CFRP (Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic), so it’s incredibly light for a hybrid with big heavy batteries. The i8 weighs only 3,378 pounds. This makes it heavier than both the Corvette Stingray (3,298 pounds) and the Porsche 911 Carrera (3,042 pounds), but since the chassis is made out of CFRP and the batteries are laid out down the spine of the car, it feels much lighter and more nimble than it’s weight would suggest. This is also aided by the fact that it has that 420 pound-feet of torque from almost the second you touch the accelerator. In the video Chris explains how it doesn’t feel as pure and organic as a 911 but it’s close, and with all of the new technologies, it brings new exciting elements to the table.

Then there’s the look of the thing. To these eyes it’s the most interesting looking car on the road today, if not the most beautiful. This gives the Jag F-Type a run for it’s money. It’s not beautiful in the classic sense, but it is stunning in a modern art sort of way. It looks like the future, and it sort of is. Sports cars need to become fuel efficient nowadays and the new i Division cars are paving the way for that green future. I’m not a fan of electric cars but this one has me intrigued and it intrigues Chris as well. Real gearheads can appreciate when something is new and innovative, when it pushes the ball forward, and that’s exactly what you see here in the i8 and exactly what Chris talks about while driving it. Watch the video, it won’t disappoint.

The X6 found itself a little brother when BMW unveiled the X4 at the New York Auto Show in April 2014. The X4 was everything the X6 was without the size or the price tag. Naturally, the SUV has gained popularity in the months since its debut. Well, it’s expected to be more popular now that Manhart Performance has developed a program specifically for the X4 .

The German aftermarket company created a tuning kit that should provide more driving pleasure for owners of Bimmer’s new coupe crossover, at least that’s my takeaway after perusing through the all the goodies of Manhart’s kit. The overall look of the Manhart-tuned X4 doesn’t deviate from the original version, which suggests that the tuning firm didn’t add as many aerodynamic upgrades as I would’ve hoped. Still, the lack in cosmetic improvements shouldn’t dissuade customers from purchasing the program. Manhart Performance does have a new set of wheels to offer, as well as a lowering kit and engine modifications that should provide ample improvements in the X4’s horsepower output.

Consider this one an introductory kit from Manhart Performance, because I think the tuner has something even more special down the road.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW X4 by Manhart Performance.

Posted on by Nico DeMattia  

Mysterious marketing can be fun. It’s a way to pique peoples’ interests and keep them coming back for more. Leave people hanging and they will diligently follow you for answers. However, it can also lead to disappointment due to high expectations and low delivery. Which is exactly what happened in this case.

BMW released a teaser video showing a car, in first person, tearing through the streets with a nice engine note to go along with it. What it had shown led me, and probably others, to believe a new, hot-blooded sports car was on the way. Being that the only part of the car BMW had shown was the front wheel, I had assumed something front-wheel drive; maybe a 2 Series Active Tourer hot hatch or maybe something based on the new Mini . But what it turned out to be, if you haven’t watched the video, was an i3 being driven by a woman with her son in the back seat playing some sort of racing game on a PS Vita.

While this is kind of a clever commercial, and the i3 is a great car, the video was somewhat disappointing. BMW is primarily a sports car company, a damn good one at that, and the idea of a new sports car from its factory is an exciting one, so to find out it’s just a clever i3 commercial is a real bummer. Unfortunately Bimmer got our hopes up, but at least for a little while I got to dream up some wild car fantasies, and isn’t that what being a car enthusiast is all about?

Click past the jump to see the deceitful teaser video that got us all riled up

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.

Oh, look. There’s another German aftermarket company that has prepared a program for the BMW 4 Series . At this rate, we’re probably going to see enough aftermarket programs to fill up an entire catalog. Not that it’s a problem, given the 4 Series is nothing short of awesome. This is exactly why so many tuning firms are jumping all over it. And now we have the German aftermarket company Best-Tuning, which is known for its works on Bavaria’s finest.

Since its founding in 1997, Best-Tuning has created a laundry list of tuning kits for cars and motorcycles. Its latest work on the 4 Series follows up on that tradition, even though the lack of any aesthetic upgrades won’t win it any style points from us.But who thinks the 4 Series lacks so badly that it actually needs aesthetic enhancements?

Even without the styling upgrades, this program is far from a dud. Actually, it’s got some nice qualities to it, although not to the extent of what other aftermarket firms have developed for BMW’s newest eye candy.

Best-Tuning did do some serious work improving the 4 Series’ performance capabilities, including a mild engine tune and some chassis upgrades.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW 435IX By Best-Tuning.

Posted on by Austin Taylor  

The current BMW 6 Series is a hot commodity. With three different models — the two-door coupe, GranCoupe with four doors, and convertible version — BMW offers plenty of choices for consumers looking to drop some considerable change for this sporty, luxurious car. Engine offerings start with a 3.0-liter, 315-horsepower, twin-scroll turbocharged inline-six, dubbed the 640i. Next up is the 650i, with a 4.4-liter V-8, also featuring a twin-scroll turbo design, which is good for 445 horsepower. The mighty M6 Convertible comes with a more powerful version of the 650i’s V-8, producing an almost-crazy 560 horsepower. Performance is blistering, regardless of engine choice, and typical BMW luxury and top-notch fit and finish adorn the interior.

While the current 6 Series Convertible is certainly fresh, this isn’t stopping BMW from updating the lineup for the 2016 model year, and our spy photographers caught this facelifted model out testing.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 BMW 6 Series Convertible.

Every year, there’s always a car that captures the heart of aftermarket companies and this year it’s the BMW 4 Series . Bavaria’s new sports coupe has become the flavor of the year for tuning firms. The 4 Series love has become so rampant that even Alpha N Performance is getting in on the fun with its work on the 4 Series’ big brother, the M4 .

For now, Alpha N Performance has only produced a basic engine upgrade for the M4. The tuner still has more tricks up its sleeve in the future, including aerodynamic components and two more stages of performance upgrades. But right now, the Stage 1 engine kit is all it has for the M4.

You can draw your own conclusions on the tuner’s work on the M4. In some way, it does lack the wow factor we normally attribute to tuning programs, but for what it was able to accomplish — developing a system for the M4 is no small feat — Alpha N Performance is on the right track toward building a tuning kit that we can all get behind. Besides, it’s not totally fair to judge a tuner on a program that still has plenty of room to evolve in the future.

Hopefully, we see the final product, complete with the Stage 2 and 3 performance upgrades, sooner rather than later. We’ve got high hopes on your kit, Alpha N Performance. Don’t leave us hanging.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 BMW M4 By Alpha-N Performance.

BMW is only two short years away from celebrating its 100th year in business, and speculation around how the German automaker will celebrate is starting to grow. One heavily speculated party place is within the BMW i division. A conversation between BMW’s senior spokesman Kai Lichte and Motoring.com.au shed just a little more light on the upcoming situation. Plans for a more powerful version of the i8, the i9 , are rumored to already be in the works. Also on the table is the i5 , an all-new i vehicle loosely described as a stretched i3. Lichte’s answer to Motoring’s query is somewhat vague. “in two years’ time, maybe we will have some surprises for our anniversary,” he says. “There are a lot of discussions and a lot of ideas for this special occasion.”

Since the i9 is based on the current i8 , it’s likely it will see production first. The i9 will basically swap out the i8’s inline three-cylinder for a more potent 3.0-liter, turbocharged, inline six-cylinder, elevating it to near-supercar levels of performance. It would also serve as a modern-day interpretation of the iconic BMW M1 of the late 1970s.

The i5, on the other hand, will likely need more development time. It’s said the i5 will probably hit production in 2017, a year after BMW’s actual birthday. Perhaps the i9 will be BMW’s physical present to itself while the announcement of the i5 will continue the birthday hype into the future.

However at this point, BMW is still trying to figure out how to increase i-branded production at its new plant in Leipzig, Germany. "When we decide on more i models, then we would need more production capacity and … the next two years I think we have (are) limited to the current production line," Lichte concluded.

Note: BMW i8 pictured here.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW i5 and i9.

Source: Motoring
Posted on by Nico DeMattia  

BMW is continuing its plan to make the transition to electric vehicles as simple as possible. The i3 is already a huge step in the right direction, as it introduces a Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic chassis, aluminum sub frames and a small gasoline range extender all at a relatively low price. The main goal is to get people into electric vehicles by taking as much of the compromise out of the equation as possible. Well, BMW i BMW i s now going one step further with the introduction of the i DC Fast Chargers and the ChargeNow DC Fast Program. BMW developed the i DC Fast Charger with the help of Bosch Automotive Service Solutions. The i DC Fast Charger is a small (31-by-19-by-12 inches), 100-pound box that owners can mount to a wall that will charge the battery up to 80 percent in 30 minutes. The i3’s Fast Charger will set you back to the tune of $6,548, which is cheap in comparison to most DC Fast Chargers. A standard charger will “fill up the tank” in about 6 to 8 hours. With that in mind the Fast Charger seems worth the premium, especially considering it’s a slick-looking, smallish unit that will fit nicely in most garages.

ChargeNow DC Fast is a program BMW has developed with the help of NRG eVgo, and will offer unlimited, no cost, 30-minute charging for i3 drivers in California until December 2015. This will help reduce range anxiety considerably on long trips through The Golden State. To access the ChargeNow DC Fast program, i3 owners must equip the DC Fast charger option, and sign up for a ChargeNow Card. Doing so will give owners access to all eVgo DC Fast chargers across California. Even at a price though, the ChargeNow program will help dramatically in the implementation of electric vehicles as primary cars for households. It still takes a bit longer than stopping at a gas station, but if placed properly, these ChargeNow stations can provide some resting time or even some sightseeing on long trips. This in tandem with the i DC Fast Charger in the home and the i3 becomes a very useful and eco-friendly option.

Click past the jump to read more about BMW’s new i DC Fast Chargers And ChargeNow DC Fast Programs.


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