BMW claims to have been the first carmaker to offer an in-dash navigation system all the way back in 1994 on its 7 Series. It was also arguably the first automaker to experience the backlash that comes with poor user interface design when it introduced the iDrive system in 2001. Nav systems today have trickled down to cars costing a fraction of the 7 Series these days, and iDrive has matured to become a competitive infotainment platform among the luxury set. This week, BMW is unveiling the lates
More tech in your car? Oh, that's inevitable. But automakers are trying to figure out the best way to implement it. There are two main architectures currently; tethered and embedded. Ford's SYNC is an example of a tethered tech-integration system that uses Bluetooth to connect to mobile devices consumers already own and carry with them. General Motors' OnStar system is an embedded setup that builds the technology into the car. Going forward, the consensus seems to be that we're going to see syst
Introduced last year, the BMW 1-series Cabrio included a diesel version in its lineup. For the 2009 model year, BMW has announced (in Europe, folks) that the 1-series will sport two additional engines: The 123d sports a 4-cylinder, 2-liter unit good for 204hp goes from 0 to 62 mph in 7.5 seconds, uses 5.4 l/100 km (44mpg) and emits 144 g of CO2 per km. As an entry diesel, there's the 118d model. It will include the same 2-liter engine but with a single turbocharger tuned for 143hp. It still man
We've already gotten a sneak peak of what the 2009 BMW 7-series will look like on the outside ahead of its official launch, but the interior – and iDrive in particular – is still veiled in a cloak of secrecy. However, Bimmerfile has supposedly gotten the inside dope on the new multi-function brushed aluminum mole.
These days, technology and customization go hand-in-hand. Laptop computers and MP3 players now come in a rainbow of colors and your computer's operating system can be made to suit your unique preferences. BMW has big plans in store for its oft-criticized iDrive system which would make it and the vehicle in which it's installed extremely customizable as well. Simple choices such as color schemes and screensavers for the iDrive's graphical user interface pale in comparison to the ability to adjust
When Automobile got their paws on a six-speed manual version of the M5, they were none too pleased that BMW's engineers wouldn't allow drivers to fully disable the traction control. At the time, we assumed that BMW's legal boffins pictured overly enthusiastic Americans, stomping the go pedal and promptly winding up in a ditch.
From CNN Money's Business 2.0 Magazine, we've learned of a proposal that is anything but indecent. Business 2.0 asked several venture capitalists what projects they would like to fund. Knowing this can be a touchy subject, they were pleasantly surprised to get some of the VCs to divulge their pet projects. The result is an interesting list of 20 business ideas, including websites, applications, batteries and even a luxury housing development. The one that naturally caught our "i" was a call for
Mr. Paukert, our compatriot at Winding Road, was able to abduct a few BMW execs in Paris and beat them with stale baguettes until they finally put to rest rumors of an iDrive-like interface finding its way into the new MINI.
Motoring File is reporting that for 2007 the MINI will receive a new navigation system that is basically a slightly altered version of BMW's now infamous iDrive system. The iDrive controller will be a small joystick instead of BMW's trademark dial located directly behind the shifter. From there the driver will control a redesigned menu screen that can jump to "Entertainment", "Navigation", "Communication", and the setup screen. There is no link from the main menu to a climate control screen like
For those of you following the saga of SMART's progress towards infiltrating the U.S. more closely than the NBA Finals, these spy shots are for you. The soft-top Cabriolet and City Coupe pictured show that SMART's here to stay, at least for now. Refreshed head and tail lamps, a pedestrian-friendy nose, new and more aerodynamic mirrors, and door handles that fit flush with the door round out the updates to DaimlerChrysler's perennial problem child. Also be on the lookout for Mitsubishi's tur