Have a look at the sights and sounds from BMW’s presence at the 2012 Auto China show, currently underway in Beijing, China. The two big premieres at the show for BMW were the BMW i8 Spyder Concept and the BMW 3 Series Li Long Wheelbase model. The press conferences for each model can be viewed below, along with some more information on each and photos.
The BMW 3 Series Long Wheelbase Sedan has just premiered at the 2012 Auto China show in Beijing. The 3 Series Li has been announced in three models – 320Li, 328Li, and the 335Li.
The Li model adds 11 centimeters (4.3 inches) to its wheelbase over the standard F30 3 series sedan, resulting in a more spacious passenger cabin (particularly the rear). Both the BMW 3 Series Sedan in the long wheelbase version and the new BMW 3 Series Sedan will be available in China before the end of the year.
These models will be for the Chinese market only and will be produced at BMW’s new Shenyang production plant.
The following is the transcript from the 3 Series Li introduction at the BMW Press Conference during the 2012 … CONTINUED
Road and Track undertakes a head to head comparison of the 2012 328i (F30) versus the Mercedes C250 Sport. What do they find?
The F30 is on the varsity team when it comes to performance. The 2.0L N20 engine pulls strongly without breaking a sweat, the shifts from the 8 speed automatic transmission are nearly telekinetic, and the chassis is great. The steering is lauded for having the right amount of resistence, offering great feel for what’s happening with the tires.
Overall, the BMW’s dynamic prowess and effortless performance won Road and Track over. View the video review inside.
The BMW 335i (F30) sedan is put to the test against the more powerful (and more expensive) Audi S4. Can the 335i keep up? While the 335i was down on acceleration compared to the S4, the author still picked the 335i over the S4. Why? Here’s some of the notable things said about each car and how they compared:
“The 300hp inline-6 in the 3-series impresses with its sharp throttle response and smooth-as-silk operation. Not only does it accelerate the 335i strongly, but it also shows a nice and warm engine sound causing goose bumps. And that’s something the Audi can’t keep up with. Its [Audi's] V6 does make a good noise but it’s always a bit artificial – as if the engine sound was composed on … CONTINUED
The BMW Performance Center has some new workhorses in its fleet. They’ve now replaced all their E90 3 series sedans with the F30 3 series sedans – 335i Sport Line models.
Check out some of them in some of their first action on the wet skidpad at the Performance Center [photos and video]. Courtesy of Palbay.
Sure we all love our BMWs and we know why we love them so, but it’s always nice to hear some affirmation from someone who know a thing or two about cars and has had a chance to experience the best the world has to offer, from econoboxes to exotics.
In this interview with Top Gear presenter Richard Hammond, the Hamster is asked whether BMWs are the best cars made, to which he responds: “To a degree you really could make a case for them being exactly that,” Hammond says in the attached video, pointing to BMW’s engineering pedigree and a reputation for quality that assures you their cars will “be here in ten years.”
Hammond’s revelation first came to light in a column he wrote … CONTINUED
How’s this for kicking off the racing history for the F30 3 series sedan. South African based ADF Motorsport team successfully took a brand new F30 3 Series racing car [more info/photos] to its first-ever race victory, in its very first race! The victory came at the Killarney race circuit in Cape Town, South Africa, in a WesBank Super Series race which features Bridgestone Production Cars Class A race cars. Congrats to the ADF team!
Ian McLaren of carmagblog provided us this account of the race, along with his experience from being a part of the pit crew.
Wagon fans should be smitten over this one. We’ve spied for the first time the F31 3 series touring in M Sport form, in the stunning Estoril Blue II color.
The camouflage remains a formality at this point since the F30 3 series sedan M Sport has already been revealed and the F31 touring will share the same front and rear bumpers/diffusers and sideskirts.
What’s missing from this test car are the M Sport wheels and brakes.
The next 3 series touring / wagon is expected to make its debut at the AMI auto show in Leipzig in early June.
The F31 has been confirmed to be making a return to the North American market. In an interview we had at the 2012 NAIAS with Paul Ferraiolo, Manager, Product Planning … CONTINUED
Here’s a good look at the current F30 3 series against the preceding two generation 3 series – the E90 and E46 sedans. Here’s the tale of the tape:
F30 vs E90 sedan physical specs, F30 is:
3.66 in (93 mm) longer body
1.45 in (37mm) wider track [front]
1.85 in (47 mm) wider track [rear]
0.31 in (8 mm) taller
1.96 in (50 mm) longer wheelbase
0.59 in (15 mm) more legroom for rear passengers
0.31 inches (8mm) more headroom
F30 vs E46 sedan physical specs, F30 is:
6.5 in longer body
2.8 in wider
0.6 in taller