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New BMW i3 Electric Car Pictures and Details [Video]

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BMW i3

Having earlier released details on the i3 hatchback, BMW has finally dropped official photos of its emissions-free electric car.

As the first model of the German automaker’s new “i” sub-brand, the i3 ushers in a new generation of lightweight, electric-powered Bimmers. It doesn’t stray too far from the original concept with regards to overall design and is the first car to feature a Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic (CFRP) passenger cell.

Just what is so special about Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic? Well, the material is just as strong as steel, while being 50 percent lighter. It is also 30 percent lighter than aluminum, which largely explains why the i3 only weighs around 2,700 lbs (1,224 kg).

Designed mainly for city driving, the i3 is powered by a full-electric motor that produces 170 horsepower and 184 lb-ft (250 Nm) of torque. A 22 kWh lithium-ion battery pack feeds the motor and provides a driving range of 81 to 99 miles (130 to 160 km) on a full charge. To help quell range anxiety, an available two-cylinder 650cc gasoline engine with 34-hp can work with the electric motor to extend overall driving range to 160-180 miles (257 to 300 km).

The base drivetrain allows the small city car to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph (96 km/h) in about 7 seconds and reach a top speed of some 93 mph (150 km/h). It also offers the driver three drive modes: Comfort, ECO PRO and ECO PRO+.

Charging the battery to 80 percent capacity can be done in 20 minutes to 8 hours, depending on the charging method used. Buyers can use either a standard household outlet (8 hrs), a BMW-provided i Wallbox charging system (6 hrs) or a DC fast-charging station (20 mins).

Styling highlights of the i3 include U-shaped LED headlights, distinctive grille, “stream flow” side contours, a “black belt” that spans the full length of the car, and 19- or 20-inch forged light-alloy wheels. Occupants enter the cabin via rearward opening “coach” doors.

As the “world’s first fully networked electric car,” the i3 is embedded with a SIM card that acts as the key that unlocks its available BMW ConnectedDrive services. The navigation system is specially developed to enhance electric mobility, while a BMW i Remote app allows drivers to share information with their car at any time using their smartphone. As a reflection of the car’s “green image”, the interior features “naturally treated leather, wood, wool and other renewable and recycled raw materials.”

The BMW i3 will have a starting price o €34,950 in Germany, £25,680 (after a £5,000 government grant) in the U.K. and $41,350 (excluding a $925 destination charge) in the United States when it goes on sale in the last quarter of 2013.

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BMW M8 Gran Coupe Is A Super Sedan With 617 HP

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2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe Competition, front side

It can hit 60 mph in a supercar-like three seconds flat.

The BMW 8 Series family has welcomed its final two members, the M8 Gran Coupe and M8 Gran Coupe Competition.

What you are essentially getting with both models is a merger of the existing M8 and the 8 Series Gran Coupe — a super sedan that can go toe-to-toe with many supercars.

Despite offering nearly eight inches of additional rear shoulder room and more than seven inches of rear legroom, the two extra doors and stretched body make the M8 Gran Coupe just 185 pounds heavier than its two-door counterpart.

2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe Competition, interior

Premium leather interior of the 2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe Competition.

Power comes from the lineup’s familiar 4.4-liter twin-turbo S63 V8, tuned to produce 600 horsepower for the standard edition and 617 ponies for the Competition trim. Torque is rated at 553 pound-feet regardless of variant.

The V8 is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission, allowing the BMW M8 Gran Coupe to reach 60 mph (96 km/h) from a standstill in 3.1 seconds, while the M8 Gran Coupe Competition matches the M8 coupe’s 3.0 seconds.

Top speed is electronically-limited at 155 mph (249 km/h) but can be increased to 190 mph (306 km/h) with the M Driver’s Package.

BMW M8 Gran Coupe First Edition, side

BMW M8 Gran Coupe First Edition in Individual Green Metallic.

BMW has also announced the M8 Gran Coupe First Edition, a special build based on the Competition variant that pairs Individual Green Metallic paint and Goldbronze wheels and accents inspired by the M8 Gran Coupe concept vehicle.

It also gets unique 20-inch Forged M Star-Spoke wheels, while the interior features Ivory White/Tartufo Full Merino leather and a “First Edition 1/400” on the center console door.

Only 50 examples of the M8 Gran Coupe First Edition will be shipped to the U.S.

U.S. pricing for the 2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe starts at $130,995 and at $143,995 for the M8 Gran Coupe Competition, both including destination fees.

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BMW Concept 4 Previews A Massive-Grille 4 Series

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New BMW Concept 4

Its huge grille supposedly “embodies the aesthetic essence” of the BMW brand.

BMW used the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show to debut the BMW Concept 4, previewing the “new face” of the 4 Series.

The first thing that will catch your eye is its massive twin-kidney grille, which the German automaker describes as a “confident and classy” new take on the brand’s iconic grille. Look closer and you’ll notice that it is made of several small “number 4s” joined together.

“The kidney grille has always been a signature feature of BMW cars,” BMW design head Domagoj Dukec stated. “The BMW Concept 4 presents a confident and classy take on this iconic feature. At the same time, the BMW Concept 4 offers a look ahead to the expressive face of the 4 Series range.”

The design is said to be inspired by the 3.0 CSi, though the 1970s car had a much smaller grille than any modern BMW. Do you like it?

Massive grille aside, the BMW Concept 4 borrows many styling cues from the 3 Series and 8 Series and features classic sports car proportions. We’ll have to wait and see how all of this translates to the production 4 series.

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Here’s A BMW X7 Pickup Truck You Can’t Have

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BMW X7 pickup truck

It’s not April 1, so no jokes here. This car is very real, but you can’t buy one.

BMW has transformed its biggest SUV into a pickup truck, and it’s pretty cool.

Developed by BMW Group vocational trainees in cooperation with the Concept Vehicle Construction and Model Technology divisions at BMW’s Munich plant, the BMW X7 Pickup is a one-off concept that can carry five passengers and an F 850 GS motorcycle. The roof panel, rear door skins, and tailgate are made from carbon fiber to minimize weight, trimming 440 pounds off the X7 SUV’s weight despite being a four inches longer.

The truck bed is finished in fine-polished wood finish, while a height-adjustable two-level air suspension makes it easier to get things into it.

There are no mechanical changes. Power is provided by a 3.0-liter straight-six engine that has been turbocharged to produce 340 horsepower, with an eight-speed automatic transmission driving the four wheels. BMW didn’t publish towing capacity, or revealed the effect the pickup conversion has on performance.

The BMW X7 truck concept looks production-ready and could be an interesting addition to the BMW lineup, but the German automaker stresses it has no plans to build it. What a shame.

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