To the casual observer, there's a sort of schism in the world of fuel sipping. The Japanese, Koreans and Americans have embraced electrification by way of hybrid powertrains, while our German friends lean towards diesel technology. BMW is actively pushing to change that impression, as it's announced that it will take a break from niche-busting MPVs and lifted, four-door coupes to produce plug-in hybrid versions of some of its "core-brand" models.
Challenge Bibendum, Toyota Mirai, 3 Series Off 10Best
We're set to record Autoblog Podcast #407 this evening. Check out the topics below or drop us your questions and comments via the Q&A module. And don't forget to subscribe to the Autoblog Podcast in iTunes if you haven't already done so. To take it all in live, tune in to our UStream (audio only) channel at 10:00 PM Eastern tonight.
We just can't seem to get away from recalls involving the faulty airbag inflators supplied by Takata. There are already millions of vehicles in need of repair as a result of these ever-expanding campaigns, and BMW is adding another 1.6 million worldwide. The Bavarian automaker is issuing a recall for certain 3 Series models, including 574,000 of them in the US, to replace the passenger-side, front airbag inflator.
Once upon a time, you could look at the back of a trunk lid of a BMW and come up with a pretty fair idea of what sat under its hood. For example, a 320i was a 3 Series with a fuel-injected, 2.0-liter engine, a 328i was a 3 Series with a fuel-injected, 2.8-liter engine and a 328Ci was a two-door 3 Series with the same engine. Those were good days.
Over the last few years, it feels like BMW has looked at its lineup and decided to offer a vehicle in every possible segment that it can find, no matter how small. The company is finally showing some restraint, though, at least when it comes to the high performance M division. For example, don't expect to see an M4 Gran Coupe at your local BMW dealer in the future.
The cylinder count in BMW's M3 has fluctuated over the years. The original M3 debuted in 1985 packing a 2.3-liter inline-four, but subsequent models went with sixes until the outgoing generation upped the cylinder count to eight. With its latest model, BMW has dropped back to six cylinders with a pair of turbos taking the place of the extra pistons. But the next M3 sedan and M4 coupe could go back to the model line's roots with a four-cylinder engine.
Okay kids, here's your lesson for the day. When you go to a motorsports event (that isn't a rally), there are these things called walls. They're big and hard. There might be stacks of tires in front of them. There are also these things called barriers, catch fences and run-off areas. They exist to protect you, the spectator, when something inevitably goes wrong on the track.
"The Ultimate Driving Machine" has been BMW's tagline for nearly 40 years. Launched in the 1970s, the marketing campaign was a stroke of genius by ad firm Ammirati & Puris, as the phrase helped differentiate the imported Bavarian cars from their fellow European rivals by subtly pointing out that Mercedes-Benz and Audi were offering luxury models, while BMW was selling sporty and youthful driving dynamics. The campaign worked – some would argue that stands among the most effective ad ca
BMW officially unveiled the 2015 M4 Convertible at the Javits Center in New York this morning. The droptop, which will slot in next to the M4 Coupe in BMW's performance line, offers infinitely more headroom, fresh air and sunshine for those that want a little more great outdoors and tousled hair with their M experience.
Almost one month ago, we reported on a BMW investigation into a potentially defective bolt that lived in the company's VANOS variable valve timing system. At that point, the potential recall was seemingly limited to Chinese-market cars; the company was filing a recall application with Chinese officials.
There's a running joke among auto writers that the perfect car would be a diesel-powered, rear-drive wagon with manual transmission and no power accessories whatsoever. It would only be available in brown and would somehow be as fun to drive as a Mazda MX-5 Miata. Makes total sense, right?
BMW has just made your lunch break a little more interesting by launching the configurators for the M3 and M4. Pricing and options for the new sports coupe and sedan was revealed just a few days ago, but it's always more fun to see the visual effect your personalizations have on the bottom line.
The latest BMW 3 Series is pretty new, right? Well it's been on the market for the better part of three years now. And on a typical six-year production cycle, that means it's halfway through its life. It only makes sense, then, that BMW should be preparing a little mid-life facelift, and that's just what we appear to be looking at in these latest spy shots.
Another day, another new BMW spied. Sometimes it feels like Bimmer is developing so many new models that in the future, every buyer will get their own unique car. The latest one spied is the upcoming BMW X4 that was launched as a concept nearly a year ago. The Bavarians still see a need to camouflage the rear end of its prototypes, though.
Here it is, the fifth generation of BMW's 3 Series Convertible – only this one begins with a "4," having been rechristened as a droptop version of the new 4 Series Coupe. With thirty years of work on this same recipe and having gotten it so right for much of that time, the Munich compact premium convertible has been a WYSIWYG affair for decades: once you saw its sedan paradigm, you knew what it was going to look like in roofless two-door form, and what you saw is exactly what you got.
Our trusty spy photographers have been at it again, snagging these first images of the forthcoming BMW M4 Convertible without camouflage on its retractable roof and rear deck. You'll recall that this is not the first time we've seen the followup to the M3 Convertible, but that the last batch of images we had were encumbered by a lot more camouflage – this car is virtually naked by comparison.
BMW has shown its commitment to the development of hybrid and electric powertrains in recent years, with vehicles in its ActiveHybrid range, electrics like its BMW ActiveE and range-extended EVs like the i3 and i8. Plug-in hybrid-electric vehicles are clearly top-of-mind for the German automaker. We saw spy shots of the PHEV BMW X5 eDrive prototypes about a year ago, and now our shooters have come through with a 3 Series-bodied version of the technology, as well.
At BMW, there really is something for everyone these days. Just take a look at the massive 3 Series/4 Series range – you can have a sedan, coupe, convertible, wagon, or funky-backed Gran Turismo. And now, with the introduction of the 2015 4 Series Gran Coupe, you can have another seda... err, hatchback, actually. But perhaps, a better one.
When BMW switched its entry level 3 Series, the 328i, from a naturally aspirated, 3.0-liter six-cylinder to a turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder, we weren't entirely sure what to think. Sure, from a pure numbers perspective, the new 2.0-liter cooked the old 3.0's goose, delivering more torque at far more accessible engine speeds while boosting horsepower and fuel economy.
We can't help but use this time of year to look back at the days before and reminisce about friends who are no longer in our lives. For The List, Jessi and Patrick were often joined by a little, red BMW 3 Series that, at times, felt like a third host of the show. Having been bought used for just a thousand bucks, the red BMW proved to be surprisingly durable. Through jumps, dunks and monster trucks, it remained our little trooper 'till the very end, and on the way taught us all how important a f