Video: BMW M5 First Edition Gets Commercial for UK Market

As we reported earlier this week, the first BMW M5 models are heading towards their eager owners. As is the custom with iconic models, the M5 was brought out in a select batch for those most eager to get one, in the shape of the First Edition guise and those beauties came with a couple of bespoke features like a special paint and some other carefully picked out details. Today, BMW UK released a proper commercial for the car on its Youtube channel.

Having just 30 seconds in total to get a message across – as that’s the usual average TV spot length – the short clip had to portray the M5 the right way. Therefore, a desert, an open road and the stunning M5 were chosen to mix together and offer the viewer a proper infusion of adrenaline. The shots are cut extremely tight and offer the sensation of speed without going too far. The car is shown from every angle but we prefer the frames where the muscular rear and with its quad tailpipes are truly in focus.

You might wonder what sets the First Edition M5 models apart from the rest of the range at this point. Well, as the ad shows, they come with the unusual elegant finish paint Frozen Dark Red metallic for starters. Then there are the double kidneys, the M gills and the four end tailpipes of the Sport exhaust system which are all done in high-gloss black and deliver the necessary touch of extra elegance.

The BMW M5 First Edition models also come with standard 20-inch, seven double-spoke design light-alloy wheels in black. Inside the cabin of the BMW M5 First Edition Piano Black trims dominate the atmosphere. The middle console exhibits a plaque with the number “M5 First Edition 1/400” and thereby the exclusivity of this model. The interior of the BMW M5 exhibits series standard full-leather upholstery in Smoky White adorned with red contrast stitching and top-of-the-line M multi-functional seats.

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VIDEO: What did people think of the BMW 8 Series when new?

There’s nothing like a remake to make people fondly remember the original. We see this happening with the BMW 8 Series. Now that we know a new one is one its way and that it will look fantastic, enthusiasts are pining for the original. Which is odd because the original actually wasn’t that loved when it was new, at least by enthusiasts. It was too expensive, too complicated and never really performed the way fans had hoped. So it’s always interesting to look back on old car reviews to see what people thought of them back when they were new. One such review is this BMW 840Ci review from Motor Week back in the 1994.

The BMW 840Ci was the smaller, eight-cylinder version of the 8 Series, whereas the 850i was the big V12-powered flagship that everyone wanted. However, the 840i might have actually been the better driver, thanks to its lighter nose. Either way, though, the 8 Series was supposed to be the car that launched BMW into automotive immortality. It was the most high-tech, advanced and expensive car BMW had ever made, so it had to be great, right?

In this Motor Week review, they seem to like the 8 Series quite a bit but it wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. For instance, the 1994 BMW 840Ci made 282 hp from its 4.0 liter naturally-aspirated V8 engine. That engine was paired with a fancy five-speed automatic gearbox. Although, despite the ample power and slick transmission, it was only capable of 0-60 mph in 7.1 seconds. And at over $60,000 in 1994, that wasn’t great value, as my 1996 BMW 328i (around $30,000 when new) was just a touch quicker than that and it used a 2.8 liter I6 engine with 190 hp.

The BMW 8 Series also handled well and was comfortable but it was never the sort of car that would light your hair on fire. I specifically remember an old Top Gear episode where Jeremy Clarkson basically just crapped on it the entire time. Admittedly, this Motor Week review is far more complimentary but it still isn’t overly enthusiastic. Yes, the 8 Series was an impressive car and it was very nice to drive. It just never quite lived up to its lofty expectations. Let’s hope this new one can.

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VIDEO: Carwow’s In-Depth BMW X3 review

Since its debut, the BMW X3 has been winning the hearts and minds of journalists and enthusiasts. Not only is it good looking, practical and luxurious but it puts the old-school “Ultimate Driving Machine” feeling back in BMW. I know, leave it to the X3 to bring driving enjoyment back to BMW. As odd as it is, it’s true and it’s a welcome surprise. But can it charm everyone or just BMW enthusiasts? Carwow finds out in this new video review.

From the outside, the new X3 is certainly better looking than the one it replaced. It may not be as pretty as the Mercedes GLC-Class, Alfa Romeo Stelvio or Jaguar F-Pace but it’s a good looking car nevertheless. It’s on the inside where the X3 starts to really make a case for itself. Again, it’s not as exciting or as pretty as some of its competitors, such as the Mercedes, but it feels more high-quality than all of them. In this video, Carwow’s Mat Watson shows how all of its materials feel top notch and its build quality is incredibly solid.

It’s also surprisingly practical. Back seat space isn’t a good as you’d get in an Audi Q5, thanks to that car being front-drive-based, but it has good enough space in the back and the rear seats can recline. Where it shines is cargo space, as its trunk is huge, has a flat load lip that makes loading items much easier and it even has nice little features, such as the optional floor rails in the trunk and a little gas strut that holds the trunk floor up when accessing the underneath storage space.

But the best part, by far and away, of the new BMW X3 is in the way it drives. BMW has gotten its old chassis-tuning magic back, as the new X3 is able to glide over bumps without feeling squishy and it’s able to corner flat and handle turns without feeling to stiff. It’s that perfect blend of comfort and performance. It almost has an E46-like feel to it. It steering is also superb, being better than almost everything else in the segment, save for maybe the Jag.

Overall, Watson claims that, if you’re in the market for a premium SUV, you should just go and buy the BMW X3. It’s a brilliant SUV that’s practical, family-friendly and fun to drive.

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BMW M760Li xDrive V12 Engine to Be Pulled Out of Production Next Year

Just a few days ago we announced that the BMW M550i model was going put on hold due to the tightening environmental laws the BMW Group has to abide by. Now it looks like yet another M Performance model will go out of production in the future. According to one of our trusted sources in Munich, BMW plans to pull the V12 engine of the BMW M760Li xDrive model out of production once the facelift for the 7 Series comes around.

According to our timeline, the facelifted 7er will be launched next year and that means you have just over 12 months to get yourself a V12-powered 7 Series, if you’re interested in one. Just as is the case with the M550i, the decision to pull the plug on the best car you can get on the G12 platform has everything to do with regulations imposed by the EU. As a matter of fact, a lot of petrol-powered cars are experiencing some sort of regulation issues that the engineers are currently working on.

Earlier this year the Germans announced that certain gasoline engines will get an Otto particulate filter to cut down on harmful emissions, a measure that was new for the brand. Usually diesels resort to such filters commonly known as DPF in the automotive realm. For some engines though, applying this solution wouldn’t be enough and it would cause performance issues which prompted BMW to drop them altogether.

It is a sad piece of news for those wanting to enjoy a perfectly smooth and balanced BMW V12 but at least you now have a heads-up and can plan accordingly, if you were waiting for the right time to snatch up an M760Li xDrive model. Chances are, in a future dominated by electric vehicles, this may become a collector’s item.

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Fostla BMW X6 M50d Points a Mirror at Innocent Bystanders

German tuner Fostla recently started to work with Hamann among other companies and they decided to do a celebratory project together to mark the occasion. Therefore, the BMW X6 M50d model you see in the photo gallery below came to life and it definitely isn’t for the light of heart. The car is featuring a reflective protective film on the outside which makes it look like a rolling mirror, something the Hamann people are more familiar with than you may know.

Back when the BMW M6 was still in production, the people from Hamann brought out what they called the Mirr6r, a project that included a full body kit for the M car as well as a wrap for it, with a similar approach. The Mirr6r was a rolling mirror after all and it was… controversial, to put it mildly. It seems like not much has changed over the years and this BMW X6 definitely looks close to what we’ve seen in the past.

The Fostla team applied a full vinyl wrap in black-chrome at first. Then came the “highlights” on the roof, mirror, door handles and at the diffuser, all done in a black brushed aluminum theme. On the outside, the wheel-tire-combination comes from the Hamann team. It consists of Hamann Anniversary Evo II Black Line rims in 10,5×22 et40 sizes with tires measuring 295/30 R22 on the front axle and 12×22 offset28 with 335/25 R22 on the rear axle. Hamann lowering springs and spacers complete the stanced out look.

The original readings of 381 PS and 740 Nm (546 lb-ft) of torque were deemed not enough and therefore the M50d got a PP-Performance power upgrade in combination with a BMC high-performance air filter. Now, 443 PS and 845 Nm (623 lb-ft) of torque are available using the right pedal. In case you’re wondering, the goodies shown here add about 19,000 Euros to the total bill of this BMW X6 which is definitely not for anyone.







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BMW Confirms Talks with Great Wall for MINI EV Development in China

Last year, a report claimed that the BMW Group and Chinese manufacturer Great Wall were in talks for a possible joint venture, aimed at the MINI brand and its distribution worldwide. Today BMW confirmed the talks and the signing of a “letter of intent” with the Chinese manufacturer. Furthermore, BMW also confirmed the production of the first battery electric MINI at the main plant in Oxford starting in 2019. This signals a further clear commitment to the electrified future of the MINI brand.

The next steps will imply the agreement on the details of a possible joint venture and cooperation agreement and clarify aspects such as the choice of production location and concrete investments. The end goal seems to be the development of electric vehicles under the MINI brand and not just for the local market. The BMW Group has no plans to set up an additional sales organization in China. The company is firmly committed to continuing the successful cooperation with the established sales structure and the cooperation with Brilliance Automotive.

Independently of its strategic considerations towards the MINI brand, the BMW Group will further expand its highly successful BMW Brilliance Automotive (BBA) joint venture in China with its partner, Brilliance. In addition to its two automobile production locations, BBA already runs an engine plant, which includes a battery factory for electrified BMW brand vehicles produced locally in Shenyang. This is the first battery factory operated by a premium automobile manufacturer in China.

In recent years, BBA has become a cornerstone of the BMW brand’s success in its largest market and serves as a model for the continued development of MINI in China. Around 560,000 BMW brand vehicles were delivered to customers in China in 2017 – more than in the next two largest markets, the US and Germany, combined. In 2017, China was MINI’s fourth-largest market, with around 35,000 units delivered. This underlines the brand’s additional global potential.

Expansion of the BMW brand in its largest markets, such as China, has not led to a decrease in production at the company’s German plants. On the contrary, between 2007 and 2017, production in Germany increased by close to a quarter to around 1.15 million vehicles per year. At the same time, almost half of all BMW production now takes place at plants outside Germany. A similar growth strategy could accelerate development of the MINI brand significantly without questioning the BMW Group’s commitment in the UK.

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McIlroy looking on the bright side despite cloudy finish

Rory McIlroy took his late mistake on the chin

Rory McIlroy took his late mistake on the chin

Rory McIlroy was looking on the bright side despite following the sublime with the ridiculous as a closing double-bogey seven left him six shots off the pace at the Honda Classic in Florida.

The world number ten was almost flawless from tee to green for 15 holes at a firm and breezy PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens. But feeling he had to go for the 18th green in two, he found water instead and trudged away to sign for a frustrating two-over 72.

It was a big disappointment after the heroics of his par-save at the treacherous 16th where he went from a fairway bunker on the left to the edge of the hazard right with his approach, then chased a magical 38-yard pitch up the green from among the rocks and rushes to less than three feet to miraculously save par.

Just four off the lead after getting through the Bear Trap unscathed, a closing eagle would have halved the deficit with the pace-setters, Swede Alex Noren and former US Open champion Webb Simpson, who shot four-under 66s.

But facing 268 yards to the hole at the 556-yard 18th, his attempt to hold a three wood up into the breeze backfired and fell short in the lake on the right.

He then compounded the error, overshooting the green from 135 yards before pitching 12 feet past and dribbling his bogey putt well wide.

“It was a pretty tough day,” said McIlroy, who admitted he found it tough to read the greens at times. “Wind was up. Greens got a little sort of crusty and firm. I felt like I was hanging on pretty well. I was doing everything I needed to do, just sort of grinding out pars.

“I was sort of was pushing for a birdie at the last to try and shoot under par. Just tried to hold a three-wood up into the wind and over did it a little bit. A disappointing finish. Get back out tomorrow morning and try to rectify that mistake and start again.”

McIlroy was impressive from tee to green, picking up early birdies at the third and fourth before missed greens led to bogeys at the tough sixth and par-three seventh.

Little dropped for him on the greens but he only had to hole a five-footer for par at the 12th in an otherwise excellent display until that costly late mistake sent him tumbling from the top 20 to within one stroke of the cut line, tied for 56th.

“If you look at the back nine, the 18th was the hole that was going to present the best chance for a birdie,” he said.

“I was trying to make four there. I felt my best way to make four was to hit three-wood and get it up by the green or on the green and go from there. It was the right shot. I just didn’t execute it the right way.

“I feel like I was pretty solid out there. I didn’t do much wrong. I struggled to read the greens. I hit a couple of putts that did the exact opposite of what I thought they were going to do.

“Just fairways, greens, and sort of grind out pars and try to pick up birdies when they come along. If the wind stays like this, it’s going to be a tough week.

“Big picture, I’m so happy to be playing, and this is my third week in a row and don’t feel any ill effects from health-wise or mentally or anything like that. 

“Usually when you play your third week in a row, you feel like you’re looking forward to the week off. But I feel great. 

“Obviously disappointed how I finished today but excited to get a chance to go out there tomorrow again and shoot a good score and find my way back up the leaderboard.”

There was also trouble for his playing partners Pádraig Harrington and Adam Scott on a day of attrition at the Champion Course.

The Australian was two-under par with four holes to play but dropped five shots at the Bear Trap run from the 15th to the 17th in a 73 as Harrington found water with his approach to the 16th before three-putting for a triple bogey seven en route to a six-over 76.

It was a better day for Graeme McDowell, who left the hangover of his closing 77 in the Genesis Open behind him as he birdied his last two holes for a level par 70 to share 21st with the 14-time major winner Tiger Woods and European No 1 Tommy Fleetwood.

Shane Lowry worked hard for a one-over 71 to share 34th, knowing he must win if he’s to break into the world’s top 50 before Monday’s cut-off and qualify for next week’s WGC-Mexico Championship.

Seamus Power got off to a horrible start as he went out on the back nine at the back of the field, eventually carding a 77.

He bogeyed the 10th, found water off the tee at the 11th to run up a double-bogey, then bogeyed the 12th and dropped four shots at the Bear Trap where another visit to a lake cost him a double bogey five at the 15th and he followed that with bogeys at the 16th and 17th.

Out in eight-over 43, he did well to get home in one-under 34, picking up shots at the third and fourth before failing to get up and down from greenside rough at the ninth.

As for Woods, he described his level par 70 as “easily” the best of the seven rounds he’s played since returning to the PGA Tour last month.

“I played hard today,” said the American (42), who led early after birdies at the 11th and 13th before following a bogey at the 16th with a double bogey seven at the third and a birdie at the fourth. 

“I’m starting to really get a feel for scoring again and scoring in tournaments, and today was a day that I’m very proud of because I missed the ball in the correct spots.”

Noren, who lost to Jason Day in a Monday playoff for the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines last month, dropped just one stroke in an impressive, four-under 66 and a share of the lead 

“I couldn’t believe I got in” – Moynihan

At the European Tour’s Commercial Bank Qatar Masters, The Island’s Gavin Moynihan got no practice round and just four hours sleep after his last-minute call-up, carding a five-over 77 to Darren Clarke’s 76 to lie second last in the 138-strong field.

“I couldn’t believe I got in,” said Moynihan, who was undone by a quadruple bogey eight after driving into a bush at the second, his 11th hole, at Doha Golf Club. 

“I was the 12th reserve on Saturday afternoon, so I got in after midnight last night and only got four hours sleep.

“I was one under despite not making anything on the greens but I made a few silly mistakes on the back nine, hit in a bush on the second and had to take penalty drop too.

“It’s a great course but a few putts got away from me and a practice round would’ve have been nice.”
Set to play in the Tshwane Open in South Africa next week but unlikely to make the field for the Hero India Open, he may have to wait until April’s Spanish Open for his next start after that.

England’s Aaron Rai (22) closed with an eagle three for a 65 and a share of the lead with France’s Grégory Havret and compatriot Eddie Pepperell on seven-under-par.

They’re one clear of Oliver Fisher, former Ryder Cup player Edoardo Molinari, Spain’s Alvaro Quiros and Germany’s Marcel Schneider.

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