There seems to be a flurry of activity in the life of BMW these days. Not that this is new, but lately it appears only full throttle is the order of the day. Because there’s so much to talk about, we’ll just try and highlight on a few items, the ones we believe are the most relevant and important for the South African market.
Firstly, a new entry-level 3 Series model has been announced. At the launch of the new 3 (F30), we spoke to the MD of BMW South Africa, who hinted at a car sitting lower than the 320i. Here comes the 316i then. Although it hasn’t been confirmed for Mzansi, we believe there is a strong case for this car which produces 100kW and 220Nm of torque from its 1.6-litre turbo. We think if not a 316i, then a 318i (125kW, 250Nm) could be the right entry point.
Secondly, the 550i Gran Turismo gets a notable power boost off its 4.4-litre twin turbo V8, from 300kW to 330kW, while torque goes from 600Nm to 650Nm. This is great news for the rest of the range, so we can expect cars like the 550i sedan, X5 xDrive50i and the 750i to follow suit when their respective updates come around. Starting with the 750i and X6 xDrive50i facelift later in the year. The 530d Gran Turismo also goes higher to 190kW and 560Nm, returning a claimed 5.8 litres per 100km.
Lastly, every model in the 5 series range will soon be specified with the optional 16 speaker Bang & Olufsen High End Surround-Sound System with a dashboard-mounted central speaker that automatically rises when power is switched off.