BMW

BMW cars

The news surrounding the BMW i8 is relentless these days with information flowing in left and right. But sadly, the latest bit of news doesn’t hold much promise for those looking forward to a sportier version of the i8 or a replacement for the M1 coming from the i8 platform.

Our German friends over at Autovisie sat down with Carsten Pries, BMW’s head of Product Management M, for a recent interview. His issue lies with creating competition for its own i8 by flooding the already-small segment with low sales volumes. Not to mention the need to develop more powerful hybrid technology and a larger engine sized properly for an i8-like car. What’s more, the i8 was developed from the ground up to be an electric hybrid with only a small gasoline engine.

The lack of an outright M model based on the i8 doesn’t completely spell disaster. Friedrich Nitschke, the CEO of BMW M, says the fuel-saving technology from the i8 might wind up in future M models while the sportier aspects of the M Division might find its way onto future i models.

While these words came from BMW corporate heads, Pries and Nitschke may be bluffing about the existence of a high-performance hybrid supercar. Only time will tell, so stay tuned to TopSpeed for any breaking information.

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

Source: telegraaf.nl

Oh, the things we see on eBay . The commerce site has and will always have some interesting items up for sale or auction. That was no more evident to us than when we happened upon a restored 1988 BMW M5 that actually looks pretty good given its age. According to the seller, this particular M5 has been restored to serve as a nice "daily driver," the kind that can take you from point A to point B in style and without any mechanical problems. Given that its essentially a 26-year old car, such ringing promises are good to hear.

More impressive in this case is the car’s reported forays in the drag strip back in its day. It can supposedly run a quarter-mile in 13 seconds, no small feat for any sports car by today’s standards.

But you’re not getting just any M5 either, as it was also given a series of upgrades. These upgrades include the installation of a new throwout bearing and new transmission output shaft and shifter seals. The best of the updates is a hot new engine that not only adds some extra firepower, but also had just 17,000 miles on it when the owner dropped it into the car.

Click past the jump to read more about the 1988 BMW M5.

Source: eBay

If you’re a BMW owner who is truly trying to reduce their impact on the world around them, the new i3 and i8 make great choices. These green cars promise BMW dynamics with a much friendlier CO2 output and impressive fuel economy.

Of course, what happens when your neighbor also buys a new BMW i8, and you are no longer the coolest eco-kid on the street? You snag one of these new solar carports from the minds at BMW DesignworksUSA.

Like everything that comes from the minds at DesignworksUSA, the carport is stunning to look at and features a unique styling aesthetic that is open, industrial and modern. In keeping with the theme of reducing the owner’s impact on the world around them, much of the structure is made from bamboo. As a quickly growing and dense wood, bamboo makes a great renewable building resource.

Did I mention that it looks awesome? Like a solar-powered cyber spider awesome?

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW i8 and the Solar Carport Concept.

We’ve barely reached the halfway point of the year and it seems BMW’s newest addition to its M family has been in the headlines so much we’ve seen one incarnation of the sports car after another in various racing series all over the world. And just to drive home that point, BMW Abu Dhabi has released a new batch of photos of the M4 Coupe in the middle of a tire-smoking drifting session, all while sporting BMW’s official racing colors.

Those unmistakable BMW racing graphics look pretty sexy on the M4, don’t they?

Not a lot of BMW models can proudly wear those colors and make it look like they were born to be dressed in them. The M3 was usually the car getting the racing garb and for good reason. But with the arrival of the M4 Coupe and BMW’s decision to keep the M3 a sedan from here on out, it does look like the baton is finally getting passed to the newest member of the M family.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW M4 Coupe.

Source: BMW Facebook

After first showing us some Gran Turismo awesomeness late last year, BMW has finally pulled the covers of its latest concept vehicle, but one that will only be available in the world of Gran Turismo 6. This is the 2014 BMW Vision Gran Turismo Concept and as we had expected, it looks positively insane.

Remember when Mercedes became the first company to unveil its own Vision Gran Turismo Concept ? When it did, we all fell out of chairs, blown away by the insanity of Merc’s creation. But what it also did was set the bar really high for the rest of the car brands that were preparing their own concepts for Gran Turismo 6.

Admittedly, we had some trepidations on what other companies had up their sleeves. But with the arrival of BMW’s GT6 concept, all the doubts that crept up in our heads about what the car was going to look like quickly evaporated.

At first glance, you get the vibes of the M4 Coupe , albeit one that’s been rebuilt specifically for video game-racing purposes. But the best part about this concept is that unlike the Mercedes version, this one looks like its ready to be transformed into the real world.

Should that happen, trust us when we tell you: it’s going to be have a lot of people clamoring for a piece of it.

It’s been only a week since we had a preliminary look at the BMW M2 Coupe , which was caught testing for the very first time, and now we are able to ogle once again at its drop-top brother, thanks to our skilled spy photographers stationed in Germany.

This is not the first time they’ve caught the compact two-door on the road, but these new photos provide us with the best look yet at the brand-new 2 Series Convertible as the Germans have stripped it of almost all of its camouflage.

Part of the bumpers, the badges, and the edges of the headlamps and taillights are the only elements that are still covered, allowing us to enjoy all of its lines and curves. There’s nothing left to take us by surprise once the last strips of camouflage disappear, so there you go folks, the 2015 BMW 2 Series Cabriolet is basically unveiled!

We can’t help but notice that there are a few nips and tucks that make it look different than the vehicle we’ve rendered a while back, but most of the important cues were spot on, including the twin five-spoke wheels.

If you’re wondering about what engines will pop up under the hood, BMW will most certainly opt for a full transplant from the 2 Series Coupe , which means U.S. dealerships will have two versions on offer. The 228i that will be motivated by a 2.0-liter four-pot rated at 240 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, and the brawnier M235i that will carry a 3.0-liter inline-six that generates 322 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque. The 2 Series Convertible will also get a diesel mill, but that won’t cross the pond to the United States.

The vehicle’s official launch won’t occur until fall 2014, while production is scheduled to commence in January 2015.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW 2 Series Cabriolet.

Another Thursday afternoon means another TopSpeed.com Podcast . You can click play here for audio, or look after the jump for a FULL video podcast.

This week sees the return of Justin after his vacation, lots of cars with manual transmissions and a few automotive farewells.

Our weekly wheels for this week include the Honda Accord Touring from Justin and the Chevrolet Silverado High Country from Mark. I am a sad boy this week and have no new cars to talk about. Cue the sad trombone.

To make myself feel better, we cover a whole host of bad-ass car news. We start with the announcement of a manual transmission for the F-Type . We move to more fun cars with the Cayman GT4 spy shots , and the final edition of the Cadillac CTS-V . Cadillac gets some more love with the ELR-V and we finish with the BMW i8, the future of the M1 and round things out with a special edition Audi R8 .

We wrap up the show with a trio of questions from you, our wonderful listeners, and an Own, Drive, Burn made entirely of Corvettes.

We had one final viewer question, but it was a long one, so we decided to tackle it as a special "after-show bonus" so feel free to stick around after the closing music to catch that. We discuss what you should buy if you are sitting on $30k and want a performance car.

As always, you can catch us on iTunes ( we would love it if you rated and gave us a review), drop us an email at Podcast@TopSpeed.com, find us on Twitter @TopSpeedPodcast or just hit up the comments. We read and respond to basically everything, so if you have feedback, let us know.

Click "play" to hear this week’s Podcast

See you next week-

Hosts: Christian Moe, Justin Cupler, Mark McNabb
Weekly Wheels: Honda Accord, Chevy Silverado

If you just heard a collective groan between your ears, chances are you’re part of the collective masses that just heard about BMW’s plan to offer less than 500 i8 sports cars in North America. We already knew from the start that BMW had no plans of mass-producing the i8, but just 500 earmarked for North America?

But no matter how disappointing that is, it probably won’t dissuade BMW of North America CEO Ludwig Willisch from adding more models in the NA inventory in the near future. That could change if the hybrid supercar sells like hot pancakes, but for now, it’s only sending 500 to North America.

So what’s the rationale behind it? Willisch didn’t elaborate on that so we’re assuming that BMW wants to test the North
American market first on how it receives the i8 when it arrives. It might be ridiculous to imagine why a car so lauded as the i8 needs to "test a market" but remember, BMW is essentially venturing into uncharted territory with this model, developing it as a hybrid that promises the best in performance and efficiency.

On top of that, the i8 isn’t cheap by any stretch of the imagination. Starting price is at $136,625, including shipping, so it’s not like people will just line up to buy the car when sales begin in August 2014.

Or maybe they will, which explains why it’s weird for BMW to limit the allotment of i8s to just 500 in North America.

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

The BMW 2 Series Active Tourer may have been a disappointing appearance to most brand enthusiasts, due to its front-wheel-drive layout, but the Bavarian manufacturer hopes to score big with the compact MPV in both North America and Europe.

The regular 2 Series Active Tourer, which is powered by a tiny, 1.5-liter, inline-three unit rated at 136 horsepower, will be followed by an M Sport version with a plug-in hybrid model to arrive shortly after.

Unlike its gasoline-exclusive counterparts, which will require an xDrive option to get all four wheels moving, the plug-in hybrid will feature an all-wheel-drive setup by default. Although BMW has yet to reveal any details, the same three-cylinder engine is likely to be in charge of the front axle, while an electric motor will be added to take care of the rear wheels.

Total output is expected to sit around the 200-horsepower mark, with 136 horsepower coming from the conventional mill and the rest provided by the silent, battery-powered motor. As for mileage, the Active Tourer Plug-in Hybrid should return at least 50 mpg when using both units, though it won’t be able to travel more than around 20 miles in EV mode.

Styling-wise, the hybrid version won’t be any different than the gasoline Active Hybrid, with only a few badges to highlight its greener nature. The MPV has already been spotted testing in Germany so we might see it in production form by the end of the year.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW 2 Series Active Tourer Plug-In Hybrid.

This is it, BMW . Years of research, testing, and development has culminated in the upcoming release of the new BMW i8 . With the arrival of BMW’s first plug-in hybrid supercar drawing closer and closer, the German automaker has launched a global campaign to showcase the history of the i8, from its genesis as a concept vehicle all the way to its arrival in dealerships in August 2014. The campaign began on May 9th and will run the gamut of media platforms, ranging from TV spots and print ads, all of which tell the story of a car that has, in so many ways, become synonymous with BMW technology.

The unquestioned star of this campaign is the i8, putting the focus on the hybrid supercar ’s design, performance, and innovation. If anything, BMW is pulling out all the stops with this media blitz, enlisting Gus Van Sant, the man behind Oscar-winning films such as “Good Will Hunting," “Milk” and “My Private Idaho," to direct the three TV spots, namely "Genesis," "Powerful Idea," and "Attitude".

Complementing the TV spots will be a series of seven print ads that highlight the i8’s attributes as a real car for the ages. Like Van Sant’s work on the TV spots, these print ads carry the cache of being photographed by renowned photographer Uwe Düttmann.

If there was any question as to how important the BMW i8 is to the Bavarian automaker, the fact that the company is going to this length to promote the hybrid supercar tells you that the i8 could very well be one of those iconic cars that defines this BMW generation.

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


Back to top