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11/09/2011    12:00 PM
COMMENTS: 90

Some weeeks ago we brought bring you the very first video of the 2013 BMW M3 sedan internally dubbed F80. We’ve now posted the first footage of F80 M3 prototypes on and around the Nurburgring and conducting high speed performance runs!

As you’d expect from an M3, the F80 prototype looks very planted and stable while being pushed around the Nurburgring. The video provides the best listen yet at the F80′s engine/exhaust noise. And although we can tell with certainty that it’s powered by a 6 cylinder engine (to be turbocharged), it’s difficult to discern whether the engine is an inline or V configuration. BMW M CEO Dr. Nitschke recently stated that they wouldn’t do a V6, but we’ve also been tipped otherwise.

The number and type of … CONTINUED

11/09/2011    11:03 AM
COMMENTS: 178

The first F32 4 Series / 3 Series coupe prototypes were spotted for the first time ever just last month. And although it appeared in heavy camouflage, we’ve attempted to envision what the production form may look like underneath.

In producing the following images, we started from a real life F32 spy photo (attached below) and combined it with some elements from the F30′s styling, along with some educated guesses and imagination sprinkled throughout. We’ll be able to better assess the accuracy of the image’s detailed styling elements as the F32 prototypes lose some camouflage, but for now, the general shape, proportions, and stance seen in these renders are accurate.

The result is a production F32 with very sleek and wide width-to-height proportions, seemingly more so than the … CONTINUED

11/02/2011    8:30 AM
COMMENTS: 38

We’ve caught BMW’s FWD 1-series model based on the FWD UKL platform on video for the first time and the previous silly camo on the tailgate has been dropped, revealing its shape. The UKL platform is BMW’s platform which the FWD 1-series GT will share with the next generation of MINIs.

The FWD 1-series will come in various forms, including a traditional 5-door hatchback, a sporting estate model, and a gran touring version (seen in the video). They’ve been referred to by insider Scott26 as the “City Compact,” the “F.A.S.T. Family Activity Sports Tourer,” and the “GT”. The upcoming Z2 roadster is also rumored to being considered for the UKL platform.

These FWD 1-series models will join the rest of the 1-series lineup which in the next generation … CONTINUED

11/01/2011    9:55 AM
COMMENTS: 67

Turbochargers are a popular technology in the automotive world as of late. It allows rather low displacement engines to have relatively high power outputs, while also managing to return fairly good fuel consumption figures (on paper).

Despite the technology being decades old, some of its drawbacks could still be improved upon. One of these issues is the well-known problem of turbo size. A smaller turbine spools up quicky but runs out of steam at higher revs while a bigger turbine offers enough power at high revs but often is too slow at lower revs which results in turbo lag.

BMW has now patented its own idea on how to address these issues, and it involves the use of an often rumored “electric turbocharger”.

We reported before that BMW has … CONTINUED

10/12/2011    12:30 PM
COMMENTS: 59

It’s been several months since we last discussed the topic of an all wheel drive M5. The last update we posted was news from Autocar claiming that an AWD version of the M5 had been approved.

Speaking at the new M5′s press launch in Spain, the F10 M5′s project leader, Max Ahme, touched on this subject. Although he did not confirm the approval of a AWD M5 already, he did let on about its very real possibility.

As M cars’ power figures continue to climb generation after generation and proper traction becomes an issue, Ahme admits that AWD transmissions may be the solution to effectively put down all the power to the ground.

Ahme admits that BMW is “thinking about it… If you are increasing power more and more, … CONTINUED

10/03/2011    2:25 PM
COMMENTS: 136

Now that the next generation F80 M3 sedan has been both spied and confirmed, the natural next question is what will it look like? We’ve taken up the task of previewing what the F80 may look like in our new set of renders.

We received insider input on these renders and the feedback is that these images are generally a good representation of the next M3 sedan. The new distinctive headlight-grille area design is straight from our F30 renders and uncovered spy pics. The M styled bumper resembles the new F10 M5, which the F80 M3 is said to be a smaller version of. The F80 M3 will receive sportier mirrors compared to the F30.

Rumored powerplant configurations have been all over the map – from … CONTINUED

09/28/2011    11:01 AM
COMMENTS: 74

Now that the F80 M3 sedan has been given the greenlight, our spies have spotted the F80 M3 continuing its public road testing. While the camouflage on the F80 prototype remains the same as before, we’ve got some more angles to share with you – a slightly higher-down look than before. The F80 M3 continues to show off its attractive proportions and shape, while looking more aggressive and ‘beefier’ than the standard F30 3 series due to its widened wheel arches, M styled front and rear bumpers and sideskirts, and quad exhaust. It does not yet show the sportier mirrors that the production version F80 will receive.

If you take a close look, we may be looking at a different front end on the F80 M3 than … CONTINUED

09/20/2011    2:25 PM
COMMENTS: 46

It’s been speculated that BMW will introduce a version of the F25 X3 which has been breathed upon by BMW M GmbH. The rumored timetable for the X3 M release is sometime in 2012, although no prototypes have yet been spotted.

An X3 M would be an important car not just because it represents another M model, but because it would likely provide a preview of the next generation F80 / F82 M3′s powerplant. The X3M would likely represent the introduction of a new turbocharged 6 cylinder motor which will also power the next generation M3 (but at a higher power output in the M3). This brings to mind the relationship between the S63 engine in the X5M and the modified S63Tu in the F10 M5 sedan.

The … CONTINUED

09/20/2011    9:45 AM
COMMENTS: 92

Rumors of BMW considering V6 engines have been floating around for quite some while now. One possible future application often mentioned when talking about such an engine is the upcoming F80 M3 (F82 M4). As we reported earlier, BMW was studying no less than four potential engine choices for the next M3.

To add to the speculation, we’ve just discovered that BMW has filed a patent for a unique twin-turbo V6 engine last year. Have a look at this schematic BMW submitted to the German patent office to describe the patent filing:

As BMW describes in their patent application, this image shows “the principle of this turbocharger layout invention (#1) in a 6-cylinder internal combustion engine in V configuration (#2) with a first cylinder bank … CONTINUED