Engine:I-6cyl, 3.2L, 333HP
Is there an existing warranty?: Other Makes
Number of doors: 2
Exterior Color: Black
Trim: Base Coupe 2-Door
Interior Color: Black
Drive Type: RWD
Number of Cylinders: 6
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Auto blogTue, 23 Jul 2013 08:29:00 EST
Tesla isn't the only manufacturer that is facing a backlash over its plans to sell cars directly to customers. BMW is under fire from its German dealerships over its desire to sell its cars via the internet.
BMW has plans to sell the new i3 through the World Wide Web, while a "Mobile Sales Force" will be making house calls. According to Automotive News Europe, Head of German Sales Roland Krueger told German weekly Wirtschaftswoche, "We can imagine that Internet sales could be expanded to all models." This is the particular caveat that has traditional brick-and-mortar dealers so up in arms.
According to the head of BMW's German dealerships Werner Entenmann, "We told BMW in no uncertain terms that we cannot accept direct sales channels." Reuters reports that an anonymous dealer has gone so far as to pledge not to use the sales force in Germany. Krueger, for what it's worth, told Wirtschaftswoche that the "backbone" of BMW sales will still be traditional dealerships.
BMW's decision to make the upcoming 2-Series Active Tourer front-wheel drive has been polarizing to say the least, but like it or not, that is the direction the company will go in the near future - one rumor put the number as high as 23 front-wheel-drive models for Mini and BMW combined. The next-generation X1 won't send all its power to the front wheels, though, when it launches in early 2016. While it will use the same platform as the Active Tourer, rumors suggest all models will use all-wheel drive - at least at launch.
A "high-ranking," unnamed BMW manager confirmed to AutoWeek that the new model will switch to transversely-mounted three- and four-cylinder engines and the same six-speed manual and eight-speed automatic transmissions as the Active Tourer. The new, smaller platform will allow for more efficient packaging, and despite the smaller size, interior space will remain comparable. All the changes should make it significantly lighter too.
Don't start wailing just yet because BMW surely won't be entirely abandoning sporty models. AutoWeek claims that the Bavarians are working on a higher-output version of the 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with power closer to 300 horsepower, about a 72-hp boost. It's also rumored to offer a sporty version of the X1 that may be called the X2.
With six confirmed public debuts scheduled for the upcoming Frankfurt Motor Show, BMW is definitely going to have its hands full. While we've already driven models like the 4 Series and the i3, one of the more interesting introductions is a "concept" plug-in hybrid version of the new F15 BMW X5 called the BMW Concept X5 eDrive.
As the second concept to wear the eDrive name, this X5 combines a 95-horsepower electric motor with a turbocharged four-cylinder engine to balance performance and efficiency. On the green side of things, BMW says that the eDrive system allows the X5 to reach speeds of 75 miles per hour and a range of 19 miles (although we're guessing not at the same time) under electric power only, to go with fuel consumption of about 62 miles per gallon US (3.8 liters per 100 kilometers). For performance, this plug-in can still accelerate from 0-60 in under seven seconds, and drivers can select from three PHEV modes: one that operates the system automatically, an all-electric mode and a Save Battery mode to preserve the battery's current state of charge.
Aside from the obvious plug port on the left front fender, the X5 eDrive is differentiated from the 2014 X5 with slightly restyled front and rear fascias, subtle blue accents tying in with the BMW i line and lightweight, aero-tuned 21-inch alloy wheels. There is no definitive word on whether the Concept X5 eDrive will make it to production, but judging by BMW's recent commitment to plug-in vehicles, we wouldn't be surprised to see an X5 PHEV on the roads within the next couple of years. We'll see the Concept X5 in just a few weeks in Frankfurt, but until then, scroll down for the official press release.