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We've already shown you spy images of the latest member of the BMW Gran Coupe family, the 4 Series Gran Coupe. Following the trend of the larger 6 Series Gran Coupe, the 4 Series variant grafts a spare set of doors onto its two-door body.
Now, the f30post forum has come up with what it says are patent drawings of the new 4GC (originally from Chinese site Autohome.com), giving a glimpse of what the coupe-sedan-thingy looks like without its camo in the way. What we're seeing is seemingly a mix of the 3 Series GT (noticeable around the rear window) with the larger Gran Coupe styling, while retaining the current 4 Series front end.
We can't say it looks great, but as these are merely renderings, it's far too early for us to come to a final conclusion on the overall look of the 4 Series Gran Coupe. Have a look up top at the patent images. We've also included our spy photos of the new Gran Coupe below. Let us know what you think of the latest niche product from BMW down in Comments.
While BMW makes plenty of machinery to keep enthusiasts interested, its most enticing models are often based on more ordinary ones. That's what made the arrival of the i8 so captivating, emerging as the first stand-alone BMW sports coupe since the M1. But if its dual purpose - trying its best to both embrace the earth and traverse it rapidly - somehow left you disappointed, the next development could prove to fix that.
According to Automobile, BMW is working on a more potent i8S model. The hardcore version of the hybrid sports car would offer more power and a stiffened chassis to make it that much more aggressive. The Bavarian automaker is reportedly still evaluating two potential powertrain options: The first would pair a 2.0-liter twin-turbo four-cylinder good for 320 horsepower to an electric motor with another 204 hp. The second would use a 3.0-liter straight six with 480 hp and an electric motor with 109 hp. Both would be mated to a nine-speed dual-clutch transmission and an integrated starter motor packing an extra 27 hp.
Either way, we'd be looking at a combined output well in excess of 500 horsepower - far more than the existing i8's 228-hp turbo three and 129-hp electric motor - dropping the 0-62 time down from 4.1 seconds to an estimated 3.5. Couple that to a more advanced carbon chassis, wider tires and other goodies, and the i8 would be transformed into a far more capable performance machine than it already is.
Few characters carry the kind of clout among performance enthusiasts as the letter M. For 35 years now, that one letter has adorned over 300,000 BMWs, each tuned to deliver a higher degree of performance than the stock models on which they're based.
The M division has worked up nearly 100 different models over the past third of a century, which can leave even the most expert among Bimmer fanatics bewildered. Fortunately British auto loan service Carfinance247 has commissioned this handy infographic to make sense of it all, and you can check it out below to see what the letter M really stands for.