The BMW M3 is one of those cars. It really matters. BMW’s M division has long outgrown its motorsport skunkworks origins and now sustains a subculture and global fanbase as hardcore as any in the car world. This is both a good and bad thing, especially in these hyper-connected times and you happen to be a carmaker unafraid of taking risks. Glance at some of the comments beneath a story on a new M car and you’ll find people who’d likely start a fight in an empty (chat) room.
So the stakes are high as the M3 enters its sixth generation, undergoing a regeneration as keenly anticipated as Doctor Who’s, but far more expensively engineered. What began life in 1986 as a racing car homologated for the road has morphed into something which has to fulfil a vastly broader remit: you might drive one across Europe or take it to a circuit. You might even drive it across Europe to a circuit, then drive it home. The original M3 was light, boxy but pretty with subtly flared wheel arches. Unusually for a fast BMW, it ran a four-cylinder engine, but what a gem it was. Values of well-preserved low-mileage examples have recently gone through the roof (one made £185,000 last year). The new one summons all the fire-power BMW can muster plus the full armoury of contemporary hi-tech and connectivity. It can do things its 1980s forebear could only have dreamt of. But the question is, what happens when the ultimate driving machine meets the brave new world of AI?
Before we get to that, there’s the small matter of the way the new M3 – and its coupé sibling, the M4 – look. BMW has spent most of the 21st century disrupting/sabotaging its own finely honed design language and the company’s previous design director, the charismatic and ever-so-slightly crazy Chris Bangle, once had to endure an online petition from disgruntled fans to have him fired. Those were innocent times compared to the abuse that his successor, the urbane and highly intelligent Adrian van Hooydonk, has had to put up with. As subjective as design is, there’s no doubt that BMW is really pushing the boundaries and cars such as the M3/4 and the new iX electric crossover are either resetting the coordinates of coherent car design or demolishing it with a near-psychotic glee. In particular, BMW’s signature “double kidney” grille has been elongated and enlarged to a degree that has rendered the commentariat momentarily speechless. Here’s what Van Hooydonk told me when I quizzed him about it.
“It’s really fantastic [if you have fans]. It means you have people that not just buy your products, but love what you do. Of course, if they love what you do, the minute you change it, they might have an issue with it. It comes with the territory.
“In 2021, we are making design decisions for products that will come into the market in 2024. And those will then remain in the market for seven or eight years, so beyond 2030. How will customers react in so many years from now? We don’t know. What we do know is that if we don’t move, we become a sitting duck. I guess the name of the game is to move enough so that the company thrives in the future, but not so much you lose contact with your fan base altogether.”
BMW also reckons that its customers are split into two camps, this new M car appealing to what it calls “expressive performers”. These are obviously not shrinking violets. Judge for yourself, but having lived with a M4 Competitionfor a week – priced from £76,055 and available to order now – here are three observations. Firstly, it looks much better in the flesh and the front number plate breaks up that controversially extended grille. Note also the indents in the bonnet, the LED headlights, a very busy front bumper and double-arm door mirrors. Both the M3 and M4 get a carbon-fibre roof with “rails” to optimise airflow, as well as a boot spoiler and a spectacular rear diffuser. It’s all in the pursuit of downforce, although huge quad exhaust pipes are surely part of the visual theatre.
The only form of traction control on the original M3 was the driver’s right foot. The new one is basically a super computer on wheels, a car whose entertainment bandwidth and capability boggles the mind. Up to and including a new traction control system that has no fewer than ten stages, giving the sort of nuanced control normally only found in GT3 racing cars. Turn everything off and the new M4 is less spiky than its immediate predecessor and easier to drift, if that’s your thing. Which it generally is, hence the arrival here of the M Drift Analyser, which records the length, time and angle of the driver’s sideways behaviour and compares it to his or her best effort. BMW clearly knows its customers and this is a car of phenomenal chassis talent. Let’s just hope the people who end up behind the wheel have the skill to handle it. Keep an eye on all the usual social media channels for proof of the contrary. The fact that the new M4 is equally adept sitting at 70mph on the, erm, actual M4 is unlikely ever to be celebrated on YouTube, but it’s more important in the grand scheme of things. Special acoustic glass helps sound insulation, although there’s a bit of tyre rumble and roar. The car also comes with the full suite of driver assistance tech.
BMW’s interiors, connectivity and user interface are industry-leading; the central 10.25-inch touchscreen is blissfully easy to understand and use. The standard “BMW Live Cockpit Professional” includes a multimedia system, a cloud-based BMW Maps navigation system, two USB ports for data transfer and a Wi-Fi interface, plus a built-in SIM card with 4G LTE connectivity. Apple CarPlay or Android Auto work seamlessly; a 16-speaker Harman Kardon audio system with gesture control is standard. There’s also head-up display. The options list is vast, but I’d definitely spring for the M Carbon seats, which shave 9.5kg off the weight of the standard seats. They look and feel fantastic.
The M3 and M4 Competition’s arrival may have been marred by a noisy online and frequently furious social media debate. That’s part of the rough and tumble of life circa 2021 and BMW appears happy to double down on its mission to disturb the visuals. Be in no doubt, though, that while the car itself is coursing with advanced new technology, at heart this is an old-school BMW. And that means it’s magnificent.
2024 MINI Aceman Seen With Concept-Like Appearance, Spied
The Aceman concept, a futuristic take on urban mobility, was unveiled by MINI a few weeks ago. It was obviously made for the next generation of drivers, wi
The Aceman concept, a futuristic take on urban mobility, was unveiled by MINI a few weeks ago. It was obviously made for the next generation of drivers, with a funky interior, a sizable dashboard screen, and playful animations. However, its exterior was much more subdued than its wild interior. So I wonder what the finished product will look like. The Aceman, however, doesn’t appear to be all that different from a typical five-door MINI in some recent spy images. (The images can be seen here; we do not own them
) Despite this test mule’s fairly unremarkable exterior, you can tell it is the production Aceman because of its peculiar headlight design. It appears as though the headlights are shaped similarly to the Aceman concept, unless MINI is playing a trick on us by using camouflage. Like the concept car, this vehicle has a low roofline that tapers toward the rear and has a high shoulder line and short windows
Even though the test mule’s front air intakes appear to be larger than those on the Aceman concept, they could still be useful intakes for cooling the battery. With no options for an internal combustion engine, the MINI Aceman will only be available as a battery-electric vehicle. It will be constructed on the brand-new Spotlight platform, which was created in China by BMW and Great Wall jointly. Future MINI models will be supported by this new platform, which is an all-electric scalable architecture
When the MINI Aceman is released, it will essentially replace the MINI Clubman and most likely have the same powertrain choices as the MINI Hatch. So anticipate a base Cooper model with 181 horsepower front-wheel drive and a more potent Cooper S model with 221 horsepower
This brand-new MINI Aceman piques our interest because it heralds an exciting change in MINI’s product lineup. The brand will be better off for switching to all-electric vehicles because it will stand out in the lineup. Additionally, electric powertrains are better suited to the entire MINI ethos. I’ve driven almost every type of MINI you can think of, starting with the original Mini Cooper S and progressing through the 1990s Leyland-owned classic Mini and nearly every model of MINI currently on the market. The majority of them have been enjoyable to me. But never once did the engine rank among their top five best features. Electric power is just so much more appropriate for a brand that lives on low-down torque, low speeds, and big fun because MINI has never been good because of its engines. I’m eager to try MINI’s new electric future, which includes the Aceman
Car Cleaning Tips: 8 Steps To Cleaning Your Car Interior Like A Pro
Nothing like a new, clean automobile that smells great. We all like gleaming clean glass and a gleaming dashboard. However, filth and dust cause surfaces to lose their luster and seem dull with time.
While some of us maintain our automobiles on a regular basis, we don’t always take the time to clean the inside. We’ve put up a few instructions for cleaning and protecting your car’s inside.
8 STEPS TO CLEAN AND SANITISE THE INTERIOR OF YOUR CAR
- Remove the garbage.
- Clean the ventilation system of your vehicle.
- Clear the windshield.
- High-quality touchpoints
- Window cleaning
- Wash the seats and doors.
- Carpets should be vacuumed and cleaned.
- Bacteria and viruses must be eliminated.
STEP 1: GET RID OF THE GARBAGE
Before you begin vacuuming the carpets or washing the dashboard, remove any trash or undesired things from your vehicle.
Pro tip: get a couple of separate bags for recyclables and miscellaneous trash so you don’t have to sort it afterwards.
STEP 2: CLEAN THE VENTILATION SYSTEM IN YOUR CAR.
Blasting the dust out of your ventilation system is always a good idea. Especially if you haven’t driven your automobile in a long. To do so, shut all of the air vents and start the engine. Set your fan to maximum power and open each vent one at a time. This will remove any dirt or dust that has been lodged in the system.
To reach dust in air vents, use a flat screwdriver with a towel wrapped around the end.
CLEAN THE DASHBOARD IN STEP 3
Dashboards acquire dust and fingerprints, giving in a faded appearance. Although there are several dashboard cleaning solutions available, a soap and water solution and a rag will suffice. Other home cleaning chemicals and scrubbing sponges should be avoided since they might harm the surface.
If you want to safeguard your dashboard, use specialized cleaning solutions that include natural and chemical ingredients that form a protective layer and keep your dash appearing clean for longer.
Because it is often touched, the infotainment screen might be a little more sophisticated. To clean the screen, use screen wipes or a towel soaked in soap and water. Dry it with a clean towel. Harsh chemicals should not be used on the infotainment screen since they may harm the anti-glare and anti-fingerprint coatings. Using a microfiber cloth decreases the possibility of screen damage.
The switches on an automobile may include fragile electrical components, so keep moisture out of them. Also, the translucent plastic that covers the instrument dials is prone to scratches, so take care not to touch it.
Before vacuuming, always clean your dashboard since any dust and dirt you wipe off will fall on the floor. Working from top to bottom, much like cleaning the outside, ensures that the dirt you remove does not come into touch with clean surfaces.
Pro tip: To remove dust from difficult-to-reach spots such as vents, use a soft paintbrush or a fresh make-up brush.
CLEAN HIGH TOUCHPOINTS IN STEP 4
The surfaces that you contact the most are the ones that are most prone to infection. This includes the steering wheel, gearstick, dash buttons, center console touchscreen and buttons, sun visor, and cup holders.
Cleaning wipes or a soft cloth and your preferred cleaner are the best method to clean them. Microfiber should be used on all dashboard surfaces. Microfibre materials repel dirt and debris, unlike paper towels and napkins may retain small bits of dirt in their fibers, which may harm plastic and vinyl surfaces when wiped off. To prevent mistakenly spraying on the windshield, spray cleaning products onto a cloth rather than straight onto the dashboard.
Pro tip: Avoid using any products on the steering wheel or pedals since they might become slippery.
CLEAN THE WINDOWS IN STEP 5
Washing the interior of the car’s glass is nearly as vital as cleaning the exterior. When it’s sunny, marks like dust, stains, and fingerprints may limit sight and cause harmful glare. You may anticipate a clean finish with no streaks and good visibility if you use a quality cleaning product.
To clean the interior of the windows, spray some glass cleaner on a soft cloth and wipe it over the glass in a figure-eight motion.
Washing the windows after cleaning the dashboard is preferable since dirt and debris may rapidly migrate to glass surfaces while cleaning the center console.
CLEAN THE SEATS AND DOORS IN STEP 6
The seats and furnishings in the cabin are susceptible to a lot of wear and tear, as well as filth and stains. To remove dried-on filth, use home upholstery cleaning chemicals and a brush. Use an intense cleaning method to remove stains and odors from interior textiles to work through tougher stains.
Use specific cleansers to remove dirt and stains from leather surfaces before applying leather protection lotion. Using a leather cleaning will preserve the surface and aid in the prevention of wear.
To preserve the fiber of your upholstered seats, use a soft bristle vacuuming brush.
STEP 7: CLEAN AND VACUUM THE CARPETS
After you’ve worked your way down to the carpets, vacuum up all the dust and grime. A standard vacuum cleaner works great. You may, however, purchase a portable vacuum with specialized heads and attachments that can assist with dry and wet cleaning. To prevent the inconvenience of taking the home vacuum outdoors, it may be worth investing in a portable vacuum to use in the vehicle.
To remove tough ground-in debris, vacuum the carpet with a gentle brush head tool and a lifting motion. Scrubbing should be avoided since it might harm the carpet’s fibers.
After vacuuming and removing any dirt and debris from the carpets, apply carpet cleaning chemicals to refresh the fibers. Remove tough filth with a rubber brush to leave your carpets feeling and smelling clean.
Pro tip: Remove the vehicle mats and boot liner as well, since dirt and debris may accumulate underneath them.
STEP 8: ELIMINATE BACTERIA AND VIRUSES
No matter how clean and tidy your automobile is on a daily basis, it is always a good idea to give it a thorough cleaning to remove germs, bacteria, and viruses.
Soap is the most potent antiviral agent, and we are reminded of its potency every time we wash our hands. The same reason why soap is good against viruses is because it may wipe away oils. Soap may sever this outer lipid coating, deactivating viruses and killing bacteria. A soap and warm water mix produces suds and bubbles, preventing viruses from adhering to surfaces and enhancing soap’s sanitizing effectiveness. Soap has no negative effects on dashboards, windows, or fabric or leather vehicle seats. Just be careful not to clean your vehicle seats too vigorously or you risk harming them due to friction.
While most common home disinfectants are effective, some, such as bleach, hydrogen peroxide, benzene, thinners, or other strong and abrasive cleansers, are not suitable for use on a car. These chemical products may harm the upholstery and interior surfaces of your car. Alcohol-based wipes or sprays containing at least 70% alcohol are more effective against the coronavirus and may be used safely in your car.
Alcohol is a powerful antibacterial and antiviral agent. A solution of 60 to 90 percent isopropyl alcohol can destroy the coronavirus in seconds by denaturing the proteins that make up the virus components.
Alcohol is often used to clean automotive interior parts, and it can be used to safely clean most surfaces without harming them. However, if you have leather vehicle seats, you should avoid using alcohol since it might damage the finish.
Disinfectant wipes or sprays are very efficient in removing viral contamination from almost any surface. They are safe to use on automobile interior surfaces, but be careful not to miss any spots! These disinfectants are only effective in the areas where they are used.
Disinfectant sprays are excellent for cleaning surfaces that cannot be wiped off, such as carpet or upholstery. A spray may be used to cover vast areas and can be utilized both indoors and outdoors. Normally, you should wait for the spray to dry before utilizing the cleaned area, but if you are using it on delicate surfaces, you may wipe it off with a paper towel.
If you like your vehicle, remember to maintain its inside as well. Getting this properly will allow you to recreate and retain the cabin’s original ambience.
The Top 10 BMW Models of the Decade
BMW is one of the few automotive companies whose cars make a dramatic statement and function as a status symbol. Here are their ten finest models over the last decade.
BMW is one of the few automotive companies whose cars make a dramatic statement and function as a status symbol. It has acquired its reputation for brilliance and dependability by producing some of the most desired and durable models in automobile history. The previous decade has been exceptionally rewarding for this German behemoth, as it has successfully diversified its vehicle portfolio into several new sub-segments. These include expanding their SUV portfolio, new members to the BMW supercar family, and even the unveiling of their future electric fleet (the i-series).
As we approach a new decade and hence a new era in automotive, we now commemorate the best automobiles introduced by BMW in the last 10 years. Cars that have received the greatest customer ratings, outperformed their competitors, or simply made their imprint on the industry. These are the best BMW cars from the last decade.
BMW had to wait until last year to launch its response to full-size SUVs like the Audi Q7, Lincoln Navigator, and G-Class. However, the X7 was well worth the wait, as the model is now towards the top of its class, with some of the finest luxury amenities combined with a strong engine.
The X7 cabin, as usual, displays nothing but excellence. The most prominent parts are accented with wood and leather, delivering a pleasant, upmarket experience for all 7 passengers. Meanwhile, beneath the hood rumbles a scary 523-horsepower V8 that, when coupled to all four wheels, makes the X7 a capable off-roader.
Competition BMW M5
BMW took one of the best midsize sedans on the market, the 5-series, and equipped it with a monstrous 4.4L V8 generating 617 horsepower to create this fantastic sports vehicle. With so much raw power flowing from the engine, it was no longer coupled to just the back wheels, but to all four. This level of grip enabled the M5 Competition to achieve 60 mph in 3.1 seconds and continue accelerating until it reached a speed of almost 190 mph, making it one of the fastest sedans in the world.
Nonetheless, the inside is still that of a premium midsize car, with leather upholstery and as many electronic options as you want.
The BMW 8-Series
The beautiful 8-Series is the long-awaited replacement to the renowned 850CSI model, which was withdrawn in 1999. It is without a doubt one of the greatest automobiles BMW has provided in the previous decade. The car’s performance, appearance, and premium feel made it one of the top grand tourers of the 1990s, and we’re thrilled to report that the new 8-Series is even better. The automobile is designed to compete with the most opulent and capable sports cars on the market, such as the Audi R8 and the Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe.
In fact, at a starting price of $110,000, the 8-series substantially outperforms them. Its robust 523-hp V8 engine propels it to 60 mph in 3.6 seconds while securely cradling the driver within its opulent, leather-clad cabin.
The Z4 has been around since 2002, when it replaced the outmoded Z3. The model was discontinued in 2016, with 335 horsepower under the hood at the time. The Z4 is returning for the 2019 model year, acting as the brand’s go-to convertible sports car, with an appealing look and a respectable 255-horsepower engine. In fact, with each redesign, the Z4 has become more appealing.
And, although we’d like to see more power, the latest model remains a real threat to the Porsche Boxster and Chevrolet Corvette (both in performance and in price).
When it debuted in 2014 as the brand’s first hybrid supercar, the i8 signaled a change in attitude for BMW. The automobile takes styling and performance cues from the renowned mid-engine BMW M1, which was discontinued in the early 1980s. The new i8 can go for around 23 miles on electricity alone, owing to a 4.4kWh battery pack and a 139-horsepower electric engine.
When the petrol engine is turned on, it transforms into a supercar, providing a combined power output of almost 360 horsepower and reaching 60 mph in only 4.4 seconds. Despite the fact that this stunning hybrid coupe is still in production today, the last model will regretfully depart the plant in 2020.
M Coupe BMW 1-Series
The BMW 1-Series M Coupe, which debuted in 2010, had a promising start to the decade. This is the automobile that no one knew they wanted until BMW built it. It’s simply a high-performance version of their subcompact 1-series, with a 335-horsepower engine. Its power-to-size ratio ensured superb agility and track performance, which wowed the Top Gear crew, who named it Car of the Year in 2011.
Inside, it nevertheless lives up to the BMW brand, with high-quality materials and an appealing interior design. Despite its success, the 1-Series M Coupe was discontinued in 2011, making it one of the rarest and most sought-after BMWs of the twenty-first century.
BMW M3 E92
It’s uncommon to find a vehicle fan who doesn’t appreciate the M3’s uncomplicated brilliance and attractiveness. The E46 became one of the most popular and coveted German sports cars in the world thanks to pop culture, and the E92 facelift just perpetuated the trend. Aside from the outside of a fashionable sedan, which hints that this vehicle is more capable than it seems, the M3’s major selling point has always been its performance. Inside the 2018 model is a 425-horsepower V8, which propels this premium midsize sedan from zero to sixty in less than four seconds.
However, as you would expect, the M3 is no longer manufactured after failing to fulfill the WLTP emissions rules. Fortunately, we still have the following vehicle to fill the void.
In 2013, BMW decided that a sporty 3-Series coupe warranted its own line, and so the 4-Series was created. And that was just one of the brilliant innovations BMW would come up with over the next decade. The automobile essentially competes against the Audi A5 and the Mercedes C-series coupe, and it now has a very competent engine selection ranging from 248 horsepower to the exhilarating 454 horsepower found in the M4. The vehicle is also available in convertible form, offering a possibly more powerful alternative to the equally appealing Z4 roadster.
And don’t think BMW overlooked the luxury component in this one; it has a premium interior with two rows of comfy leather seats, a high-tech entertainment system, and 15.7 cubic feet of storage in the rear.
With a starting price of $35,000, the X1 is the premium SUV for individuals who want the BMW experience without the space of a bigger SUV. And it precisely fills this void, presently sitting at the absolute top of the subcompact luxury SUV sector. This has been going on since 2013.
What makes the X1 so special? Because it achieves the greatest price-performance-high-end-luxury ratio of any compact SUV on the market. The present 228-horsepower engine is more than adequate to move the X1 anywhere, while its interior comfort and payload room (up to 58.7 cubic feet) compete with many bigger and more expensive vehicles.
For the last decade, the company’s flagship super luxury sedan has maintained its elite reputation, competing with the best automobiles in its market such as the Mercedes-Benz S class and Jaguar XJ, and even giving land yachts like Bentley a run for their money.
The cockpit has everything you might want in a vehicle, from an extravagant 12.3″ touchscreen display to ambient lighting, seat massage, and even air scent. It’s similarly amazing beneath the hood, with a 335-horsepower engine that only gets larger from there. With the 600-hp B7 variant, the 5000-lb vehicle will reach 60 mph in 3.5 seconds, quicker than an all-out supercar.
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