Spa: Six BMW Z4 GT3s and 24 hours.

This weekend, the iconic Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium is the venue for the next highlight of the 2014 endurance season. The 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps sees four BMW teams in action, fielding a total of six BMW Z4 GT3s in the Ardennes mara...

This weekend, the iconic Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium is the venue for the next highlight of the 2014 endurance season. The 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps sees four BMW teams in action, fielding a total of six BMW Z4 GT3s in the Ardennes marathon.

A host of BMW works drivers will bolster the driving line-up within the individual teams. The race forms the highlight of the season in the Blancpain Endurance Series. BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS from Belgium will run two BMW Z4 GT3s in the Pro Cup category at its home race. At the wheel of the number 66 car will be the two BMW DTM drivers Maxime Martin, who recently claimed his maiden victory in the DTM, and Augusto Farfus. They are joined by BMW works driver Jörg Müller. The second car, number 77, will be driven by BMW works drivers Lucas Luhr and Dirk Werner, alongside Markus Palttala. The TDS Racing team competes at the “Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps” with two BMW Z4 GT3s in the Pro-Am Cup category. BMW works driver Jens Klingmann joins Henry Hassid, Nick Catsburg and Pierre Thiriet in the cockpit of the number 12 car. The French quartet of Eric Clément, Benjamin Lariche, Nicolas Armindo and Olivier Pla will share driving duties in the number 10 TDS Racing car. Another BMW works driver, Alexander Sims, is taking on the challenge of Spa-Francorchamps: he will drive a BMW Z4 GT3 for Ecurie Ecosse alongside Olivier Bryant, Andrew Smith and Alasdair McCaig. The sixth BMW Z4 GT3 in the field belongs to ROAL Motorsport, and its team principal Roberto Ravaglia. Stefano Comandini, Eugenio Amos, Stefano Colombo and Michela Cerruti will alternate behind the wheel of the number 43 car. Ecurie Ecosse and ROAL Motorsport start in the Pro-Am Cup category. The 24-hour race at Spa-Francorchamps gets underway at 16:30 on Saturday 26th July. The race finishes at 16:30 on Sunday 27th July. Quotes ahead of the 24-hour race at Spa-Francorchamps. Maxime Martin (BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS, Number 66): “It is great to be back at Spa-Francorchamps. It is my home race and the most important race in Belgium. I know BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS pretty well and I think we have a really good line-up this year, composed of very experienced and fast drivers. That is important for a 24-hour race: you need experience and speed. So I think with this line-up we are well prepared. My DTM win in Moscow has obviously given me a confidence boost ahead of my home race.” Augusto Farfus (BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS, Number 66): “I am extremely motivated because Spa-Francorchamps is a brilliant track. I have really fast team-mates and we have a strong team behind us. Our car is extremely good in the infield. Therefore, I think we definitively have a chance to fight for the overall victory. In addition, Spa is the only one of the five most important 24-hour races which I have not yet contested. I have already raced in Dubai, Daytona, Le Mans and at the Nürburgring with BMW, and now I will compete at Spa. This makes me extremely proud.” Lucas Luhr (BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS, Number 77): “I am really looking forward to Spa. The circuit in the Ardennes is in a beautiful location, and I always describe it as a ‘mini Nordschleife’ with all its uphill and downhill sections. What makes the 24 Hours of Spa so challenging is the incredible number of cars on the track – and they are all GT3 cars. We have seen in recent years that the race has been more and more fiercely contested. It is important to get through the traffic as well as possible. However, that is not so easy, as all the cars are roughly as quick as each other – in theory, at least.” Dirk Werner (BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS, Number 77): “The 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps is special because only GT3 cars compete there. You don’t get that anywhere else. This means that all the cars on the track are also direct rivals, which is a special challenge. The circuit is great. Together with the Nürburgring it is one of my favourite racetracks. Because of this, I am very much looking forward to the weekend. The race will be very tiring. There are a lot of quick corners, but not many opportunities to catch a breather. You always have to wait and see how races like this develop. However, I feel we have the total package to be right up there at the very front of the field.” Jens Klingmann (TDS Racing, Number 12): “I drove at Spa-Francorchamps last year, and am delighted to be back again this year. The TDS Racing team may be new to me, but we spent a successful test day together. I was well received by everyone in the team. We compete in the Pro-Am class, which means that Nick Catsburg and I will share the cockpit with two gentlemen drivers. That will be interesting. We are well prepared and have our sights set on victory in the Pro-Am class.” Alexander Sims (Ecurie Ecosse, Number 79): “I know the Ecurie Ecosse team well as we race together in the British GT championship. I think that we can be pretty competitive. Whether or not we can fight for the win in the Pro-Am class remains to be seen, but we will obviously do our best. The challenge at Spa itself is always very difficult. Usually, a lot of cars retire over the course of the 24 hours, so the first priority is to finish the race. It would be good if we can qualify in a good position and just stay out of trouble at the start. I know that our BMW Z4 GT3 is very reliable so my confidence is high and I am really looking forward to the challenge.” Michela Cerruti (ROAL Motorsport, Number 43): “I am really looking forward to Spa-Francorchamps. Every year, this is the race I wait for more than anything else. I love 24-hour racing and I love the race in Spa. The first and biggest challenge will be to stay out of trouble and to finish the race. If we achieve that we will have a good chance of a strong result. This season in the Blancpain Endurance Series, the ROAL Motorsport team has already enjoyed a great win at Monza and then another podium in Silverstone. We have always been strong on race day. Spa is also important for the team for the championship, as we can score a lot of points with a good result.”

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The first BMW 6 Series model. E24 history

The BMW 6 Series is known as a BMW luxury car -and this is where it all begun. Have a look at the first generation, together with a BMW designer who belonged to the development team. The E24 was a replacement for the CS and CSL coupés first produced...

The BMW 6 Series is known as a BMW luxury car -and this is where it all begun. Have a look at the first generation, together with a BMW designer who belonged to the development team. The E24 was a replacement for the CS and CSL coupés first produced in 1965. The CS 3.0 was almost changed by adding a few centimeters in height to make it easier for customers to get into the car. However, Bob Lutz rebelled against the decision and rough drafted an alternative version that soon became the 6 series. Production started in March 1976 with two models: the 630CS and 633CSi. Originally the bodies were manufactured by Karmann, but production was later taken in-house to BMW.

The first BMW 6 Series model. E24 history

In July 1978 a more powerful variant, the 635CSi, was introduced (for the time being not available in North America and Japan) that featured as standard a special close-ratio 5-speed gearbox and a single piece black rear spoiler. The bigger bore and shorter stroke facilitated max 218 hp at 5200rpm and a better torque curve. For the first year, the 635CSi was offered in three colors (Polaris, Henna Red, Graphite), and could also be spotted by the front air dam that did not have attached fog lights. These simple cosmetic changes reportedly worked to reduce uplift on the car at high speeds by almost 15% over the non-spoiler body shape. This early model shared suspension components with the inaugural BMW 5-series, the E12. In 1979 the carburetted 630CS was replaced with the 628CSi; this car had a fuel injected 2.8L engine taken from the BMW 528i. In 1980 the 635CSi gained the central locking system that is also controlled from the trunk. Also, the E24 body style converted from L-jetronic injection to a Bosch Motronic DME. In 1982 (Europe) and 1983 (US), the E24 changed slightly in appearance, with an improved interior and slightly modified exterior. At the same time, the 635CSi received a new engine, a slightly smaller-bored and longer-stroked 3430 cc six to replace the former 3453 cc engine and became available with a wide-ratio 5-speed manual or an automatic. This slight change in 1982 (Europe) was in fact a major change as pre-1982 cars were based on the E12 5-series chassis; after mid-1982, e24s shared the improved E28 5-series chassis. The only parts that remained the same were some of the exterior body panels. This fact can be verified by studying the parts lists. E24s produced after June 1987 came with new, ellipsoid headlamps which projects beam more directly onto road surface (newly introduced E32 series also sporting them). The sleeker European bumpers were also discontinued. Previous cars had either a European-standard bumper or a larger, reinforced bumper to meet the US standard requiring bumpers to withstand impact at 5 mph (8 km/h) without damage to safety-related components. 1989 was the last year for the E24 with production stopping in April. The E24 was supplanted by the considerably heavier, more complex, and more exclusive E31. [Source: Wiki] The article The first BMW 6 Series model. E24 history appeared first on BMW BLOG

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BMW defends plan to build X7 SUV

After years of promoting the image of EfficientDynamics, BMW has recently announced their plants to build a large SUV, a side step from the “green message” promoted by the brand. The BMW X7 is scheduled to arrive in 2017 and will be built...

After years of promoting the image of EfficientDynamics, BMW has recently announced their plants to build a large SUV, a side step from the “green message” promoted by the brand. The BMW X7 is scheduled to arrive in 2017 and will be built at the Spartanburg plant in South Carolina. BMW first considered building an X7 before the 2008 economic crisis but abandoned that idea to focus on smaller crossover vehicles that consume less fuel and the BMW i sub-brand. The general strategy for many carmakers over the last few years was to move away from large vehicles which, despite the latest efficiency developments, are difficult to be “greenified”.

BMW defends plan to build X7 SUV

But like rivals Audi and Mercedes-Benz, BMW is unwilling to take this track because its customers still demand high-performance sedans and SUVs. “The X7 is a perfect reflection of the premium carmaker’s dilemma,” says Arndt Ellinghorst, head of automotive research at ISI Group. “On the one hand they need to launch more environment-friendly cars, on the other they have to make money to be able to afford to do so.” BMW steps in to defend their upcoming large SUV. BMW said its decision to build the X7 is “thoroughly in accordance with the subject of sustainability . . . With large vehicles and SUVs there is often the blanket assumption that these have a very high [fuel] consumption. Our SUVs are efficient.” Norbert Reithofer, BMW CEO, said there is no contradiction between the company’s green goals and its SUV line-up, including the X6 which weighs more than two tonnes and emits 236g carbon dioxide per km (petrol version). “Customers worldwide have very different needs, and in the US, in particular, customers have always asked for a model above the X5. We are now responding to those wishes,” he told investors in May. The X7 is also partly a response to its competitor Mercedes-Benz, which already has the GL, a seven-seat, 2,455kg, 5.1 meter SUV in its line-up. Audi has also given the go-ahead for a range-topping Q8 SUV to complement its chunky Q7. [Source: FT.com] The article BMW defends plan to build X7 SUV appeared first on BMW BLOG

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BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

At the international media launch of the BMW 2 Series Active Tourer in Solden, BMW is also showcasing BMW Accessories for the front-wheel drive minivan. Our photos show, among other things, the roof box, the new bike carrier on the rear and one of th...

At the international media launch of the BMW 2 Series Active Tourer in Solden, BMW is also showcasing BMW Accessories for the front-wheel drive minivan. Our photos show, among other things, the roof box, the new bike carrier on the rear and one of the three available child seats. The interior also can be fitted with a tablet holder in different variants for the Apple iPad or the Samsung Galaxy Tab. A special attention deserves to be given to the bicycle carrier since this can be stowed away in just a few steps in the lower floor of the trunk, and therefore can always remain in the vehicle.

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

With a weight of 12 kilograms, the BMW bike carrier is lightweight yet it can carry safely two up to 30 kilograms bikes, even in extreme driving maneuvers. The bike carrier is also available without restriction for e-bikes with electric drive. Here is a photo gallery:

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier

The article BMW 2 Series Active Tourer: Accessories from wheels to bicycle carrier appeared first on BMW BLOG

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2015 Volkswagen Lineup Updated

Last year for Eos, Routan discontinued. ...

Last year for Eos, Routan discontinued.

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Remembering James Garner, The King of Hollywood Car Guys

Known for his role as Pete Aron in “Grand Prix.” ...

Known for his role as Pete Aron in “Grand Prix.”

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Lincoln Appoints Kumar Galhotra As Brand President

Formerly Ford vice president of engineering. ...

Formerly Ford vice president of engineering.

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Gorgeous Scenes From BMW M3/M4 European Delivery Group Trip

Check out this set of gorgeous photos from our BMW F80 M3 / F82 M4 European Delivery group trip, courtesy of SF848! ...

Check out this set of gorgeous photos from our BMW F80 M3 / F82 M4 European Delivery group trip, courtesy of SF848!

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Drag race: BMW X5 M50d vs. Range Rover Sport Supercharged V8

In a clash that just ten years ago would have seemed impossible or just downright silly, Car.co.za lined up BMW’s most powerful diesel SUV, M50d, against the new Range Rover Sport, which uses an engine shared with the Jaguar F-Type to develop a...

In a clash that just ten years ago would have seemed impossible or just downright silly, Car.co.za lined up BMW’s most powerful diesel SUV, M50d, against the new Range Rover Sport, which uses an engine shared with the Jaguar F-Type to develop an incredible 375kW (502hp). The 2014 BMW X5 M50d is powered by a six-cylinder in-line diesel engine boasts comes with three-stage turbocharging and common rail direct injection. From a 3.0-liter displacement it develops output of 280 kW /381 hp and a peak torque of 740 Newton metres (546 lb-ft). BMW BluePerformance technology as standard means the M Performance Automobile is also EU6-compliant. The diesel unit’s power is transferred to the road by an eight-speed automatic transmission and BMW xDrive all-wheel drive.

Drag race: BMW X5 M50d vs. Range Rover Sport Supercharged V8

Both manufacturers claim their cars accelerate from 0-100km/h (0-62mph) in the same time, but which car would win over a quarter mile drag race? The article Drag race: BMW X5 M50d vs. Range Rover Sport Supercharged V8 appeared first on BMW BLOG

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2015 Ford Mustang GT or 2015 BMW M4 – Take Your Pick

MotorTrend comes back with another daring comparison, the new 2015 BMW M4 against the 2015 Ford Mustang GT. Clearly an apple-to-oranges comparison, but nonetheless an interesting one. The new 2015 Ford Mustang GT  is powered by the 5.0-liter Coyote ...

MotorTrend comes back with another daring comparison, the new 2015 BMW M4 against the 2015 Ford Mustang GT. Clearly an apple-to-oranges comparison, but nonetheless an interesting one. The new 2015 Ford Mustang GT  is powered by the 5.0-liter Coyote V8 which received upgrades for 2015, which raise output by 15 hp and 10 lb-ft from the previous Mustang GT. All 5.0-liter V8s received bigger intake and exhaust valves along with the Boss 302′s valve springs. At 435 hp and 400 lb-ft of torque, the 2015 Mustang GT is down 9 hp from the Boss 302, though it makes 20 lb-ft more.

2015 Ford Mustang GT or 2015 BMW M4   Take Your Pick

The 2015 BMW M4 is powered by a twin-turbo 3.0-liter inline-six which makes 425 hp and 406 lb-ft. That’s barely up from the last-gen M3′s peak 414 hp, but up significantly in the torque department. The 2015 Ford Mustang GT starts at $32,925, while the 2015 BMW M4 has a base price of $65,125. The 2015 Mustang GT manual weighs 3705 pounds, which is 87 pounds more than last year’s model and 175 pounds more than the 2015 BMW M4 manual’s 3530-pound curb weight. With all the stats before you, which one would you pick as your next car? Let us know in the comments below.   The article 2015 Ford Mustang GT or 2015 BMW M4 – Take Your Pick appeared first on BMW BLOG

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