Bmw: M3 on 2040-cars
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Auto blogMon, 09 Sep 2013
Few tuners benefit from the kind of factory support that Alpina does, giving the pseudo-aftermarket firm nearly as much official status as BMW's own M division. And this is its latest product.
Set to debut, as expected, at the Frankfurt Motor Show this week is the new Alpina D3 Bi-Turbo, which you can consider, for all intents and purposes, the diesel M3 that BMW never built. While the outgoing D3 (which was Alpina's best-selling model) used a four-cylinder engine, Autocar reports that the new model packs a 3.0-liter, twin-turbo inline-six diesel to drive a respectable 345 horsepower but a mammoth 516 pound-feet of torque to either the rear wheels or all four through the optional availability of xDrive. (European buyers will also be able to choose between sedan and wagon bodystyles.)
The engine is the same as you'd find in the XD3 and D5 (Alpina's diesel performance versions of the X3 and 5 Series, respectively), but in the lighter 3 Series form can propel the D3 Bi-Turbo up to 62 miles per hour in 4.6 seconds and on to an Autobahn-crunching top speed of 173 mph. And as per Alpina tradition, visual cues are minimal, with a subtly optimized aero kit and 19- or available 20-inch alloy wheels. Unfortunately, the 7 Series-based B7 is the only Alpina we get on this side of the Atlantic, but an oil-drenched performance enthusiast can dream.
Ladies and gentlemen, Bimmerphiles and automotive voyeurs of all stripes: here is your next-generation BMW 7 Series. Captured in photographs for the first time ever while doing a spot of cold-weather testing in Sweden, this newly slim 7er will most likely debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2015 and launch in the 2016 model year.
Sources indicate that BMW is targeting a much lighter curb weight for the 7 Series, and will use learnings gained with the i3 and i8 development to add carbon fiber-reinforced plastics in the construction. In return we'd expect the new model - which uses the internal model designation "G11" - to offer improvements in handling, acceleration and fuel economy. As with the current 7 Series lineup, expect the engine range to include turbocharged inline-six engines, one or more V8s and a V12 option.
It's fair to say that, with the car's debut still years down the road, that BMW will work to launch with an impressive suite of in-car technology, too. A completely new version of iDrive shouldn't be ruled out. These shots mark the beginning of a long journey to 2015, and we expect to have loads more information to share in the coming months and years, so stay tuned.
It's easy to look at racing video games as just a time waster or a hobby. In reality, though, they're often powerful tools for aspiring racers to learn tracks, race craft and how to set up a car in an easily accessible, risk-free environment. We aren't just talking about proper computer-based sims, like iRacing. Console-based racers like Forza Motorsport and Gran Turismo provide a test bed for racers of all sorts.
For Mario Bonfante, Jr., a former motorcycle racer that was involved in a brutal accident that left him in a wheelchair with only limited use of his arms, Forza is a bit more. It allows him to perfect the setup of his personal racecar, a heavily modified E46 BMW M3, complete with hand controls.
Check out Mario's inspiring story.