This is the new BMW 2-Series coupe — details, along with a video and a boatload of pictures. For those that have not been keeping up with the news, the small two-door is essentially the 1-Series coupe with a name change. The 1 Series convertible will also adopt the 2 Series moniker.
The 2 Series has a sportier, more sloping coupe-like profile than the 1 Series Coupe. The front end looks familiar, but features a grille and headlight design similar to those found on the latest 3 Series. The sheetmetal is accented by subtle creases and an upward sweeping character line, while the taillights have an L-shape to them. In short, it looks less goofy and more substantial than the model it replaces.
Of all the available trim levels, the 2-Series with M Sport package will be the fiercest, thanks to an aerodynamic body kit, a restyled grille and a chrome exhaust finisher, as well as sport seats, aluminum hexagon trim, M-brand sill plates and a revised instrument panel. It will also have the best handling, thanks to its sport-tuned suspension and 17-inch M light alloy wheels.
Compared to the 1 Series Coupe, the 2-Series is 72 mm longer, 32 mm wider and has a 30 mm longer wheelbase. That of course means a more capacious cabin that offers better head and legroom for occupants, as well as a larger, 390 liters (13.7 cubic feet) trunk for their luggage.
Room aside, the interior comes standard with cloth seats and satin silver trim. Buyers can spruce things up further with such optional features as more premium leather upholstery, brushed aluminum or fineline stream wood trim, and a 6.5- or 8.8-inch iDrive infotainment display.
As with the 1 Series, a comprehensive lineup of engines will be available. In North America, the 228i will have a 240 horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, while the performance-tuned M235i offers a more exciting 322 hp 3.0-liter turbo inline-six that launches the car to 60 mph (96 km/h) in 4.8 seconds and to a top speed of 155 mph (250 km/h). Pricing for the former starts at $33,025, while the latter begins at $44,025. Both include a $925 destination and handling fee.
European buyers will have a larger selection of engines. The base 220i is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharge four-cylinder unit rated at 181 hp (184 PS) and 270 Nm (199 lb-ft) of torque, the 220d features a more frugal 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four diesel rated at 181 hp (184 PS) and 380 Nm (280 lb-ft), and the top-of-the-line M235i makes a statement with a 322hp (326PS) and 450 Nm (332 lb-ft) 3.0L turbo’d straight six, allowing it to accelerate from 0 to 62 (100 km/h) in 5 seconds when using the manual and 4.8 seconds with the optional eight-speed automatic.
The engine lineup, particularly in Europe, will gain more gasoline and diesel units in the near future. An all-wheel drive system may also be tossed into the mix to spice things up.
Sales of the BMW 2-Series coupe begin in spring 2014.
Next BMW M3 Has RWD And 4WD Versions, Which Will You Choose?
The M3 will take a page from the latest M5, but without losing grip of its roots.
When the sixth-generation BMW M3 and M4 hit the market, they will reportedly be offered with both rear-wheel and all-wheel driver versions.
The rear-wheel drive M3 / M4 — ‘M3 and M4 Pure’, as they are known internally — are intended for purists, while those looking for outright performance will certainly go for the all-wheel drive variants.
According to , the all-wheel drive M3 / M4 can only be had with a ZF eight-speed automatic transmission and will have a bit more power to work with since the manual transmission in the purist M3 / M4 can’t handle the same amount of torque. It will also be a bit different aesthetically, featuring a different front fascia and set of wheels.
BMW hasn’t announced when the next M3 and M4 will debut, but it will add three additional go-faster models to the lineup overtime, including a competition package.
So, which one will it be for you — the rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive M3 / M4? Let us know in the comments below, including your reason(s) why.
BMW Creates Meteoric M850i Night Sky For Outer Space Geeks
The unique 8 Series features meteorite inlay and 3D-printed brake calipers.
BMW has revealed the M850i xDrive Coupe Night Sky, a one-off take on the new M850i created by the company’s Individual Manufaktur team for astronomy fans.
The car features an outer space theme. Inside, hunks of meteoric rock adorn the center console, start/stop button, shift lever, iDrive controller and other surfaces, while Widmanstätten surface pattern of meteorites can be found on the center console’s trim finishers, brake discs, exterior mirror caps and the front splitters.
For the non-space geeks among us, Widmanstätten patterns are the result of iron-nickel crystals forming on meteors over the course of around 10 million years and cannot be reproduced on Earth.
Special LED project constellations of stars on the center console and other interior surfaces.
Not content with the space theme, BMW created new lightweight brake calipers using generative design processes (3D printing). The pieces manage to be 30 percent lighter than the 8 Series’ usual calipers without negatively affecting necessary strength characteristics.
The one-off Night Sky edition is finished in San Marino Blue metallic paint over a black base coat. Its debut coincided with a meteor shower that took place overnight from January 3 – 4, resulting from the Earth briefly passing through the orbit of the asteroid 2003 EH, with fragments from the asteroid entering our planet’s atmosphere and burning up.
Some of these meteoric fragments were incorporated into the BMW Individual M850i Night Sky’s interior.
BMW, Porsche’s Ultrafast EV Charger Adds 62 Miles In 3 Minutes
It only takes 15 minutes for an electric vehicle’s batteries to be charged from 10 percent to 80 percent capacity.
Their so-called FastCharge research program has resulted in a 450 kW prototype charging station that can add 62 miles (100 km) of range in just three minutes or nearly fully charge a mostly depleted battery from 10 to 80 percent in just 15 minutes.
While the ability to charge an electric car in just a few minutes will be a boon for EV owners, today’s electric vehicles aren’t able to charge at 450 kilowatts. Tesla’s vehicles, for instance, utilize a 400-volt battery configuration, but Porsche and Audi’s FastCharge tech can handle higher voltage levels of up to 920 volts, which experts believe will become the norm.
Their charging station is able to handle so much current and voltage thanks to actively cooled cables that use a circulating water-glycol solution to manage temperature. The electric vehicle must also be compatible and use intelligent charging strategy that not only precools the battery before charging begins, but also monitors cell temperature during the charging process.
Suffice it to say, the long, tedious hours that it used to take to charge an electric car are almost a thing of the past.