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BMW

New BMW X7 Arrives As The SUV World’s 7 Series, Biggest BMW Ever

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New BMW X7 Big SUV

BMW now has an answer to the Mercedes-Benz GLS, Audi Q7 and other full-size premium SUVs.

The new BMW X7 has finally been introduced, taking the mantel of largest BMW SUV to date, as well as the 7 Series of the SUV world.

Previewed by the thinly-veiled X7 concept at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show, the X7 looks very much like a long BMW SUV would, boasting proportions that don’t look out of place. A distinctive front end with a massive, more elongated kidney grill (the largest ever on a BMW vehicle) helps it stand out from the smaller X5, while the taillights and the chrome bar connecting them are reminiscent of the 7 Series.

The massive size provides enough room for up to seven passengers spread out over three rows of seats, though there’s a six-seat configuration available for buyers who prefer second-row captain’s chairs instead of a bench. BMW says the third row can comfortably accommodate average-sized adults.

There is 48.6 cubic feet (1,376 liters) of cargo space with seven passengers on board, while folding the second and third rows expands it to 90.4 cubes (2,560 liters). The cargo area is accessed via a power-folding, two-section tailgate.

As to be expected, BMW’s flagship SUV is a technological tour de force. The dashboard is styled like modern BMWs, featuring a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster that sits next to a 12.3-inch infotainment display. It’s touch-sensitive, but buyers can use voice commands or gesture control technology to access the various menu items.

The X7 has self-driving capabilities. Properly equipped, it allows drivers to take their hands off the wheel in a traffic jam at speeds of up to 37 mph, with an optic/infrared camera integrated into the instrument cluster tracking their eyes and nose to make sure they pay attention to the road ahead.

With regards to power, the X7 xDrive40i is motivated by a 3.0L six-cylinder engine that generates 335 hp and 330 lb-ft. of torque, while the X7 xDrive50i makes due with a 4.4-liter V8 rated at 456 hp and 479 lb-ft. Both engines are mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission, allowing the X7 xDrive50i to reach 60 mph from a standstill in 5.2 seconds and the X7 xDrive40i in 5.8 seconds.

The new BMW X7 is built in South Carolina and has a starting price of $73,900 for the X7 xDrive40i and $92,600 for the X7 xDrive50i.

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BMW

Next BMW M3 Has RWD And 4WD Versions, Which Will You Choose?

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New, 2019 BMW 3 Series M Performance Parts

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.

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BMW

BMW Creates Meteoric M850i Night Sky For Outer Space Geeks

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BMW M850i Night Sky Meteorite

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.

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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.

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BMW

BMW, Porsche’s Ultrafast EV Charger Adds 62 Miles In 3 Minutes

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BMW, Porsche Ultrafast EV Charger

It only takes 15 minutes for an electric vehicle’s batteries to be charged from 10 percent to 80 percent capacity.

BMW and Porsche, along with several other partner companies, have made great progress developing an ultrafast EV charging system.

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.

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