October 11th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
BMW’s current F10 5-Series model range has been a success for the German car maker. It’s received awards in various countries, including NZ and is known as one of the best luxury sedans on the market. Now in order to push it’s economy credentials further, BMW will drop two cylinders of the engine of its entry-model 528i.
For the 2012 model year the petrol-powered 528i will use BMW’s turbocharged N20 four-cylinder unit which will replace the current six-cylinder mill. Power will decrease from 190kW to 180Kw with the new engine but peak torque will be boosted from 310Nm to a healthy 350Nm.
The four-cylinder engine is new for the 5-Series but not new for BMW, it’s already seen duty in the X1 range and, more recently, the Z4 sDrive28i. It’s a highly capable unit and will take the 528i from standing to 100 km/h in just 6.3 seconds – down from 6.7 seconds on the current model. Continue reading “2012 BMW 528i to receive turbo four-cylinder motor” »
October 10th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
BMW has released its new 6 Series Coupe in the NZ market with the sports-focused GT car slotting into the German car maker’s expanding model range.
Powering the BMW 650i is a 4.4-litre eight-cylinder engine which develops a maximum 300 kW and peak torque of 600 Nm. It is partnered with an eight-speed Sports automatic gearbox as standard. Steering wheel paddles are included and M gearshift logic.
“The all-new BMW 6 Series Coupe is the perfect mix of performance and pleasure and over-delivers on all expectations,” said the Managing Director of BMW New Zealand, Mark Gilbert. The design of the Coupe epitomises BMW dynamism, as one only has to note the stance of the new model to understand its potential. As anticipated, its all-round performance is exhilarating and the aural experience created by the optional M-Sport package featuring unique exhaust tuning has to be heard to be appreciated.
The new 6-Series has extra length and width over its predecessor and a 5-millimetre lower height to produce a low-slung and athletic design. Continue reading “BMW unleashes 6-Series Coupe into NZ market” »
September 26th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
Online reports are claiming that BMW has confirmed production plans to build an X4 crossover. The new entry into BMW’s SUV range will slot in between the X3 and X5 models.
The X4 will likely use the same platform as the current X3 and will be positioned like the X6 (pictured) is to the X5. Expect the X4 to have more raked-back sportier styling than the X3 and a coupe like roof line. In terms of powertrains the X4 will use the same four- and six-cylinder turbocharged options as the X3. A higher-output X4 M is also on the cards for future production. Continue reading “BMW confirms production of X4” »
September 1st, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
The all new 2012 BMW 1 Series is scheduled to go on sale in New Zealand on October 28. The second-generation 1-Series comes offering more fuel efficient engines, new features and a segment-first eight-speed automatic transmission as standard.
The price of the 116i manual, featuring an entirely new 1.6 litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine, will start from $46,600 drive-away. The new base-model boasts the same power output of the previous entry model, the 118i, despite using 24 per cent less fuel (5.7 litres/100km).
The new-generation turbo engine accelerates the 116i from zero to 100 km/h in 8.5 seconds – compared to 9.4 seconds for the previous 118i. Torque output is also up from 180Nm to 220Nm while carbon emissions are down from 174g/km to 132g/km.
Standard kit on the 116i include a 6.5-inch free-standing flatscreen colour display, handsfree Bluetooth functionality including USB, MP3 compatible CD player, cruise control with brake function, auto Start/Stop function, keyless engine start, 6-speaker stereo system, iDrive controller, favourite buttons and freshly designed 16-inch alloy wheels. Continue reading “2012 BMW 1-Series arriving in NZ next month – from $46,600” »
August 15th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
The 2011 BMW 1-Series M Coupe is certainly special, a one-off offering from the M-division that has raised suspicion from purists and excitement from badge fans. But what exactly makes it so unique? Is it because by being based on BMW’s entry level 1-Series a new M-car is more affordable than ever before? Or is it because of the 1M’s turbocharged engine and M3-borrowed running gear? Or maybe because it will be built for just one model year with only 14 units making their way to NZ? Or does it just go totally hard? Car and SUV had a chance to pilot the new 1-Series M on a rapid-paced voyage of discovery for the answers.
It hasn’t been an easy birth for the 1M, some have labeled it a parts-bin car because of its extensively shared components with others saying it’s cheapening the M range with its budget 1 Series donor body. But neither of these accusations is accurate. True the 1M is the new lightweight of the M Division stable but it’s quick, feisty and can throw a heavy punch when provoked. Continue reading “BMW 1 Series M Coupe 2011 Review” »
August 10th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
BMW’s recently revealed i sub-brand is one of the most exciting and ambitious moves in the automotive world recently (read news) and will expand after the i3 and i8 go on sale in the next three years.
What’s next? Well the following models will be the i4 and i5 which are rumoured to be a smaller coupe and a family focused four-door sedan.
Both the i4 and i5 models will have a carbon fiber reinforced plastic “Life” bodye to keep weight down and use variations of the drivetrains powering the i3 and i8.
Apparently the i4 will use the same underpinnings as the i3, but will drop the rear doors and seats to become a two-seater with a lower roof, wider track and a increased dynamic ability. Power will likely come from a tweaked version of the i3’s electric motor, with the same optional range-extending engine mounted out back. If the i4 is created in this way BMW will have a more affordable two-door option in its range. Don’t expect to see the i4 roaming streets for about five or six years. Continue reading “BMW’s future i4 and i5 eco vehicles to fill out range” »
August 1st, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
BMW’s hotly anticipated i-brand has officially arrived with the first introduction of two concept models.
BMW has given out the first details and images of its i3 and i8 models before the concepts are shown at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September.
Originally teased as the MegaCity concept, the BMW i3 electric car will be the first vehicle to be produced under the i brand and will arrive in 2013. Built for urban environments this high-tech machine uses an electric motor mounted on the rear axle for an output of 125kW with 250Nm of torque. Power will go through a single speed gearbox and the i3 will accelerate briskly from 0-100km/h in around eight seconds. Top speed is limited to 150 km/h.
BMW claims the i3’s battery pack can be charged to full in six hours and will get to 80% charge in just one hour using a standard socket. Expect details on battery capacity and range to be revealed soon. Continue reading “BMW reveals i3 and i8 concept vehicles (+video)” »
July 31st, 2011 by Tim Grimley
Since last putting fingers to keyboard, my world has been rocked by a sudden death. A seriously flawed yet fabulous flame flickered out of existence, taking with it just a little brightness from this world.
Did I hear someone mention Amy Winehouse? I think not. While the tragedy of a young life being gripped and seemingly snuffed out by a cocktail of addictions is definitely something to be mourned, pitied and – if lessons are to be learned – in suitable time scrutinised and criticised, she never really rocked my world.
Instead, I have been touched on an entirely more personal level by the untimely demise of my much loved BMW which suffered from a sudden and terrible loss of coolant atop Auckland’s harbour bridge on Tuesday. Thankfully the force of gravity was enough to see it down the other side where it eventually returned to a temperature on the right side of thermo-nuclear and was tentatively returned to Grimley Towers. And there it remains; forlornly abandoned on the driveway, having managed the ludicrously expensive trick of simultaneously rooting both its radiator and head gasket.
Ordinarily, my head would take control of matters, ask my heart round for a cup of coffee and while it was looking the other way club it unconscious with a decorative table lamp. Then, free of the debilitating influence of emotion, a $1, no-reserve TradeMe auction would be started and the circling vultures of vehicle breakers encouraged to descend. But this is not an ordinary week, because as keen viewers of Prime will have noticed, Top Gear returned to our screens last Sunday. Continue reading “The Final Countdown?” »