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By William Maley
Land Rover is expected to finally show off the new Defender sometime this year as part of the brand's 70th anniversary celebration. But there is already talk about adding more variants, one of those being a pickup.
Autocar reports that Land Rover will launch this model in 2020 to go up against the likes of the Mercedes-Benz X-Class, Toyota HiLux, and others. Unlike most trucks that offer a range of cab styles, the Defender pickup will only be offered as a regular cab. This is due to the Defender's unibody structure as it is easier to adapt a regular cab layout then a crew cab. Engines are expected to be 2.0L gas and diesel engines from Jaguar Land Rover's Ingenium family.
Land Rover is expected to offer a wide range of specifications from a spartan work truck to a very luxurious to take on the X-Class. The model is expected to be sold in Europe, Africa, South America, and the U.S. The last one is interesting as the majority of pickups sold in the U.S. tend to be extended or crew cabs, which could hurt the Defender pickup if it arrives.
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By William Maley
Mercedes-Benz has officially unveiled the Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury concept at Auto China following a leak last week spilling key information about the concept. We can confirm that the Ultimate Luxury concept is a fully electric vehicle with four motors producing 750 horsepower. An 80-kWh battery provides a range of over 200 miles (about 500 kilometers on the European test cycle) - much less than the 310 mile figure we reported last week. A fast charge system can provide 60 miles of range within five minutes.
But why a sedan/SUV hybrid design? It is most likely due to sedans and SUVs being the most popular body styles for luxury vehicles in China.
"The Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury is a totally new archetype of a kind never seen before. Our concept combines the DNA of an SUV with that of a sedan to produce an ultra- modern SUV of three-box design. With sensual and pure sophistication, we have created a timeless vehicle that underscores the position of Mercedes-Maybach as the ultimate luxury brand," says Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer at Daimler AG.
"Totally new archetype of a kind never seen before"? Is Daimler ignoring the AMC Eagle, Subaru Outback Sedan, and Volvo S60 Cross Country which can be argued as being archetypes of this idea? Maybe Wagener's comments are coming from a place where it is a first for ultra-luxury brand to do, but still...
There are other traits that are influenced by the Chinese market. The wood trim used in the concept is ebony or what Mercedes calls"Magic Wood." This is used in traditional Chinese furniture design. The other is special accommodations for those sitting in the back. The seats provide a number of adjustments and sitting in between is a complete tea set, complete with a heated tray.
While we expect certain details of the concept to appear on an upcoming Maybach SUV, don't expect the Ultimate Luxury concept
World premiere of Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury
Exclusive motoring at the highest level Apr 24, 2018 – Stuttgart/Beijing - At "Auto China 2018" in Beijing, Mercedes-Benz is presenting the Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury. The design of the crossover, based on an exclusive high-end sedan and an SUV, follows the philosophy of Sensual Purity. The show car combines the comfort and typical strengths of both body styles. These include the raised seating position and the athletic looks. The Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury is conceived as an electric vehicle with four compact permanent-magnet synchronous motors and fully variable all-wheel drive.
"The Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury is a totally new archetype of a kind never seen before," says Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer at Daimler AG. "Our concept combines the DNA of an SUV with that of a sedan to produce an ultra- modern SUV of three-box design," says Wagener. "With sensual and pure sophistication, we have created a timeless vehicle that underscores the position of Mercedes-Maybach as the ultimate luxury brand."
Continuing the Mercedes-Maybach success story
The concept vehicle not only embodies the Mercedes-Maybach design language, it also reflects the traditional brand values while continuing the successful Mercedes-Maybach story. True to the principle of creating "the very best from the very best," Mercedes-Maybach stands for the ultimate in luxury while uniting the perfection of Mercedes-Benz with the exclusivity of Maybach.
The show car also merges influences from the Western and Far Eastern hemispheres to deliver an appealing automotive cultural dialogue. For instance, use is made of "Magic Wood" ebony, which is traditional in Chinese furniture design. The same motif is also underlined by the combination of SUV and notchback sedan, which are the most successful body styles not only internationally, but especially on the Chinese market.
In the Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury, spaciousness and comfort, in combination with the raised seating position, elegant design and finest materials, particularly in the rear, give rise to a luxury experience at the highest level. The vehicle stands in exemplary manner for the typical Mercedes-Maybach values: traditional craftsmanship, uniqueness and individualization.
Exterior design: harmony of sensuality and purity
Smooth, extravagant surfaces with no beads or sharp edges create an image of sporty elegance: the Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury has a majestic look. With its balanced proportions, the vehicle has tremendous presence.
The front end is accentuated by the distinctive chrome-plated radiator grille with its fine vertical bars in the style of a pinstripe suit. The new grille design celebrated its world premiere in the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6, the exclusive coupe concept car that delighted aficionados and fans of the brand in 2016. It also inspired the latest reinterpretation for the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class.
In combination with the low-profile front headlamps with three lamp units, the grille dominates the front view of the vehicle while emphasizing its brand affiliation. The large air inlets along with the horizontal air inlet with integral chrome blades underline the sportiness of the SUV sedan while lending it a dynamic look. The air inlets are crossed by the brand's typical honeycomb pattern. A continuous trim strip extends from the split bonnet across the roof through to the rear end.
Unlike a conventional sedan, the Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury offers a significantly higher, SUV-typical seating position and therefore a sublime driving experience. This addresses the desire of many customers for a feeling of protection and security – a challenge for the designers. Ultimately, the task was to harmoniously transfer the familiar three-box design – hood, passenger compartment and trunk – to an SUV-like architecture. This produces an interesting tension between the poles of sportiness and Mercedes-Maybach luxury.
The upright C-pillar, long, gently forward-sloping hood and compact notchback dominate the sportily elegant side view. The muscular volume of the flank is accentuated by a long wheelbase and short rear overhangs. The overall appearance is rounded off by 24-inch turbine-look wheels.
Truncated running boards in machined aluminum are integrated in the lower door area. They are illuminated in white and bear the Maybach logo. The overall vehicle is accentuated by subtle chrome trim above the running boards as well as in the lower area of the front and rear ends. The electrically extending door handles are flush with the sides.
At the rear end, the three-part lamps are reminiscent of the design of the front headlamps. Situated above them is the visually vertically split rear window. Another striking feature is the modeled underride guard with diffuser look. It, too, is permeated by the Maybach pattern from the front end.
Sublimeness meets lightness: interior design
The interior of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury features an exciting contrast between high-level sportiness and luxurious spaciousness. This show car is the ultimate embodiment of a luxury dream automobile. The goal of the interior designers was to provide echoes of the series-produced vehicles while transporting them into an unprecedented world of luxury. They created a symbiosis of sportiness, modernity and elegance, giving an idea of coming generations of Mercedes-Maybach models.
Exclusive materials with high-grade highlights exude exquisite quality in the interior, thereby underlining the vehicle's superlative luxury. The generous feeling of spaciousness, together with the high-contrast color compositions, make for an unattained luxury experience. The colors employed are typical of the brand, such as rose gold, crystal white and pearl grey. Flowing forms, delicate fabrics and aluminum parts create an exciting contrast between the sportily elegant details of an SUV and the lightness of a sedan.
As the Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury is intended primarily for chauffeur-driven use, its design is strongly focused on the rear passengers and their well-being. It is in the rear that the feeling of cozy spaciousness is at its most intense.
The driver's area and cockpit are reduced to the essentials. Air vents, which reflect the design of the radiator grille, surround the free-standing Widescreen Cockpit with double 12.3-inch displays. The feeling of spaciousness is further enhanced by a light, contrasting bottom part of the instrument panel as well as by the reduced height of the dashboard. Overall, the interior creates an atmosphere of luxurious coziness that allows the occupants to relax pleasantly. To emphasize the visual lightness, the rose gold frame of the front seats is open, exposing the white leather to view. The color/material scheme celebrates the superlative luxury of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach with exquisite materials and breathtaking surfaces.
The luxurious lightness of the interior is emphasized by the color crystal white, the finest Nappa leather and a sensual shade of brown that features a light metallic finish on the instrument panel. Gleaming surfaces in polished aluminum generate exciting reflections while mirroring the highlight: the rose gold-coated seats. The claim to the ultimate in luxury goes hand-in-hand with extreme technical challenges. For instance, the intense Mercedes-Maybach signature red metallic finish is applied by expert hand in several coats. Tradition and modernity are reflected in the form of appealing contrasts. The entire interior is surrounded by a large-area trim level. Dark ebony forms an exciting contrast with the surrounding areas of white leather. Wave-like, flowing lines of light are integrated flush into the wood surfaces, impressively uniting the analogue and digital worlds. The tailored seat upholstery layouts take up the lines of the trim while giving a reinterpretation to the typical diamond shape. The fine perforations are in rose gold. Thought through down to the smallest detail, crafted with love and affection.
Modelled on the S-Class
As in the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class, the especially comfortable seats impress with their adjustment kinematics. Unlike in a conventional sedan, the backrest is adjusted separately while the footwell and seat reference point remain unchanged. The cushion can be adjusted separately, while the seat angle and height adjustment are combined. Extra-soft knee cushions afford protection and comfort. The reclining seats feature a calf support, which is freely adjustable for length and angle. The crystal white Nappa leather seats are enhanced by diamond stitching in rose gold.
The wide center console extends through to the rear. It is equipped with an integral, heated tray with teapot and cups, allowing exquisite tea-drinking enjoyment while on the road. The philosophy of tea plays a key role in bringing body and mind into balance while discovering the path to inner calm and vitality.
The tea service is integrated into a sculpted wooden tray made of ebony, known as "Magic Wood." At the press of a button, the handmade service of finest china can be electrically retracted into the console under a sliding cover finished in high- gloss black.
Enhanced user experience at the highest level
The Mercedes-Benz user experience, too, represents the definitive embodiment of a luxury dream car. The design language is warmer and brighter, creating a luxurious atmosphere. The car was created entirely in a 3D real-time graphic environment. Like a butler, the Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury acts with anticipation, instead of offering long menus and lists. The vehicle plays music to match the current mood, knows the appointment calendar and plans the routes accordingly. In the rear, various flavors of tea and relaxation programs are on offer, depending on who the rear passenger is.
The familiar ENERGIZING Comfort has been carried over from the S-Class. Systems such as massage, fragrance, light and music are combined, helping to regenerate and improve concentration. This holistic comfort and infotainment system can be individually programmed and adapted for every world market.
The highlight of the Mercedes-Benz user experience in the Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury is the comprehensive touch control concept – a combination of touchscreen, touchpad on the center console and Touch Control Buttons on the steering wheel. Alongside the intuitive control experience, reduced driver distraction is a further advantage.
The control concept of the free-standing Widescreen Cockpit comprises three levels with rising information density: home screen, base screen and a submenu. The voice control adjusts to the user's voice and adapts new vogue words or changed use of language. In addition, the system does not employ stereotypical responses, but uses interactive variation.
On the aesthetic front, it is based on the traditional Chinese ink painting style with its simplicity, white surfaces and balanced proportions.
State-of-the-art powertrain and suspension technology
The Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury is conceived as an electric car. Thanks to its four compact permanent-magnet synchronous motors, it offers fully variable all-wheel drive. The output from the powertrain is 750 hp (550 kW). The flat underfloor battery has a usable capacity of around 80 kWh, producing a range of over 200 miles (500 kilometers according to the NEDC). The top speed is electronically limited to 155 mph (250 km/h).
The fast-charging function is also convenient: thanks to DC charging based on the CCS standard, the system allows a charging capacity of up to 350 kW. In just five minutes, enough power can be charged to achieve an additional range of around 60 miles (100 kilometers).
The battery can be charged by cable at public charging stations, conventional domestic socket outlets or, even more conveniently, by induction. The charging current is contactlessly transmitted by an electromagnetic field below the car.
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By William Maley
The Lexus ES has always been the safe, conservative choice in the midsize class. There was nothing controversial or exciting about it. But that is changing with the seventh-generation model that made its debut today at Auto China.
Lexus has already given us a preview of what most of the ES looks like last week, but we weren't sure about what the back end looks like. We now know and it looks very similar to the current GS with a short trunk lid, triangular taillights that extend into the rear fenders, and sculpting on the bumper. This generation of the ES will also get for the first time an F-Sport package with a mesh grille, body kit, and new wheels.
In terms of dimensions, the 2019 ES sees a 2.6-inch increase in overall length, 2-inch increase in wheelbase, and a 1.8-inch increase in width.
The interior borrows a fair amount of ideas from the LS and LC with a trapezoidal gauge cluster and control knobs sitting on either side; real wood and aluminum dash accents, and a large infotainment screen measuring out 8- or 12-inches. The ES will be the first Lexus model to get (finally) Apple CarPlay intergration. Those with Android phones are just out of luck.
Lexus will offer two engines for the U.S. market. The ES 350 packs a 3.5L V6 producing 302 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque. For those who care about fuel efficiency have the ES 300h which pairs a 2.5L four-cylinder with an electric motor to produce a total output of 215. The V6 gets an eight-speed automatic, while the ES 300h makes do with a CVT. Platform-wise, the ES uses a variant of the GA-K platform found in the new Camry and Avalon. Lexus added extra reinforcement for the ES to improve overall rigidity.
The 2019 ES arrives at Lexus dealers in September.
A New Level of Performance and Sophistication—The Next Generation Lexus ES
Emotional Design Reflects New Dynamic Capabilities Introduction of the First F SPORT Model in the ES Lineup Hybrid Model Delivers Exceptional Mileage and Improved Performance BEIJING, April 25, 2018 — After six generations of unprecedented success in the entry-luxury sedan category, the next-generation Lexus ES is forging a new, more ambitious path. Long known for its unparalleled comfort, refinement and luxury appointments, the seventh-generation ES builds on its strengths with an all-new chassis that allows for a more dynamic exterior design and the introduction of the first ES F SPORT.
Representing the third vehicle in the Future Chapter of Lexus that started with the LC coupe and LS sedan, the new ES expands that vision of the brand’s future to a broader audience. Traditional buyers will find the new ES more spacious, quieter and safer than ever before while a new generation of customers will be introduced to a sedan with sharpened performance, class-leading active safety technology and a level of craftsmanship rarely found in this segment.
The New Dimension of ES Design
Built on the all-new Global Architecture – K (GA-K) platform, the new ES pushes the limits of design in the luxury sedan class. This ES is longer (+2.6 in), lower (-.2 in) and wider (+1.8 in.) than before with wheels that have been pushed closer to the corners thanks to a two-inch longer wheelbase and wider tracks front (+.4 in) and rear (+1.5 in). Its stance and proportions reflect its newfound performance capabilities and give the ES the kind of eye-catching appearance that will make owners take a second look as they walk away.
Project Chief Designer, Yasuo Kajino, describes the look of the ES as “provocative elegance”.
“The ES has always been an elegant luxury sedan. For this generation, we have added daring design elements that challenge the traditional expectations of buyers.”
To create a dynamic yet fluid shape, Kaijino’s team used the low hood enabled by the new ES platform to produce a distinctive silhouette emphasized by an aggressive downward slant. Up front, the ES offers two dramatically different grille designs. The standard ES 350 and the ES 300h use elegant vertical bars that radiate out from the center while the ES 350 F SPORT model adopts a blacked out pattern consisting of “L”-shaped clusters with corresponding cut outs at each corner of the fascia.
In a break with ES models of the past, the seventh-generation design uses a fast roofline that emphasizes its lower stance and slippery aerodynamics. The rear end is clean and sharply chiseled, with LED taillamps that wrap around the quarter panels to provide a continuous styling line from any angle. F SPORT models add a rear spoiler, additional rear badging and a dark lower valance to further refine the look. There are three different wheel designs (standard 17-inch, two 18-inch) for the ES 350 and ES 300h while the ES 350 F SPORT gets standard 19-inch wheels with a design similar to that found on the LC coupe.
A dozen colors make up the exterior paint palette including two new shades, one green and one beige, that are anything but typical. Moonbeam Beige Metallic was designed to mimic light reflecting off fresh snow, while Sunlit Green replicates the color of ocean water brightened by the sun. F SPORT models get an exclusive Ultra Sonic Blue Mica 2.0 color that complements its high-energy design.
The Future of Lexus Interiors
When designing the look and feel of the ES’s interior, Kajino’s team started with the Lexus Future Interior concept which blends a driver-centric cockpit with a spacious and comfortable area for the front passenger. In the ES, the driver’s focus is kept on the road ahead by placing the center display screen, instrument panel and available heads up display in a tight cluster in the driver’s field of view. Front passengers, on the other hand, get a more open and spacious environment that promotes relaxation.
Rear seat passenger comfort has long been a hallmark of the ES and the seventh-generation model still prioritizes rear package capability despite the sleeker exterior roofline. A lower hip point and a carefully configured headliner preserve headroom while the longer wheelbase delivers generous legroom.
To create an entirely different appearance for the inside of new F SPORT model, an all-new kind of metallic cabin trim was developed that is unlike anything else Lexus has done before. Inspired by the making of a traditional Japanese sword, Hadori aluminum trim features fluctuating wave patterns that give it a three-dimensional appearance that varies depending on the viewing angle. The effect is subtle yet indicative of the level of detail and craftsmanship that Kajino’s team put into giving the F SPORT a unique place in the lineup. The standard ES 350 and ES 300h will continue to offer traditional materials like Matte Bamboo, Linear Dark Mocha and Linear Espresso wood which give the ES a hand-crafted appearance that luxury buyers expect in this category.
A New Era of Performance
The engineering team led by Yasuhiro Sakakibara had one clear goal when it came to the ES: transform the image of the ES. That meant turning a sedan known primarily for comfort and quietness into one that is equally capable of delivering class-leading handling and power that you can feel and hear.
According to Sakakibara, this ES was built to deliver a fundamentally higher level of performance than any of its predecessors. “We knew that this ES had to feel responsive and easy to drive, no matter what kind of road it was on and that can only be achieved with a solid foundation.”
The starting point was the newly developed GA-K chassis. It’s an exceptionally rigid front-wheel drive chassis, rivalling the GA-L rear-wheel drive platform used for the LC coupe and LS sedan in terms of torsional stiffness. Various grades of high-tensile steel reduce weight versus previous platforms while additional enhancements like an all-new multi-link rear suspension design, rack-mounted electric power steering and a V-brace mounted behind the rear seat gave the engineers the flexibility to tune the ES with a newfound level of precision.
All of the upgrades to the chassis were designed to deliver a sense of comforting predictability coupled with a feeling of quick response to every movement. Yoshiaki Ito, chief test driver for Lexus, describes the ES’s heightened level and refined definition of comfort by saying: “We want every kind of driver to feel a sense of complete control when they are behind the wheel of the ES. It’s a level of comfort that goes beyond merely delivering a smooth ride.”
For an enhanced level of dynamic performance, F SPORT models offer an Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) similar to that found on the LC coupe. AVS adds adjustable dampers at each corner that feature 650 levels of damping force for the ultimate in control over any surface. Another F SPORT exclusive is a Sport+ mode for the Drive Mode Select system that selects the most aggressive engine, transmission and suspension settings for maximum performance. A new Engine Sound Enhancement feature is also activated in Sport+ mode that adds an additional layer of engine noise that enhances the natural rhythms of the spirited driving.
Standard V6 Power and a New 8-Speed Direct-Shift Automatic Transmission
All ES 350s are powered by a 3.5-liter V6 that is designed to deliver commanding acceleration along with an invigorating sound. With an update to D4-S fuel injection, the impressively smooth engine now develops 302 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque. Both of those numbers are up significantly (+34 hp, +19 lb-ft) compared to the previous generation V6.
In addition to the boost in power, the ES 350 also benefits from a new eight-speed Direct Shift automatic transmission. It uses an ultra-thin torque converter and a multi-plate lock up clutch to more efficiently transfer power to the front wheels, and has been tuned to deliver crisp, precisely timed shifts with quick responses. With a wider spread of ratios, the new eight speed is able to utilize high torque gears on the low end for quick starts and tall gearing on the high end for optimum efficiency.
Fourth Generation Hybrid Drive System
Not to be outdone by its gasoline siblings, the ES 300h is capable of delivering exceptional fuel efficiency, responsive performance and minimal emissions for an entry-level luxury sedan. A new, fourth-generation Hybrid Drive System couples an ultra-efficient, Atkinson cycle 2.5-liter, four-cylinder gas engine with a lighter, more compact, more power dense electric motor and self-charging hybrid system. Together they deliver a combined 215 total system horsepower and a preliminary estimate of 44 mpg in combined driving.
An all-new engine, the 2.5-liter four-cylinder incorporates fast-burn combustion technology that makes it one of the most thermally efficient engines ever offered in a Lexus. The result is more power without increasing emissions or fuel consumption. Various methods were used to achieve such impressive results including straight intake ports, increased valve angles and laser-clad valve seats. A variable capacity oil pump, multihole injectors, VVTi-E on the intake valves and a variable cooling system also contribute to the engine’s impressive heat and combustion management.
Overall drivability of the ES 300h has been improved thanks to a more sophisticated hybrid system control computer that is better able to mimic the feel and power delivery of a standard gas engine. An all-new nickel metal hydride battery is smaller than before which allows it to be mounted underneath the back seat so it doesn’t infringe on trunk space.
Unparalleled Safety Comes Standard
One element of the ES that hasn’t been radically transformed is its dedication to safety. All versions of the seventh-generation ES feature the new Lexus Safety System+ 2.0 as standard equipment. Already one of the most sophisticated systems of its kind, LSS+ 2.0 adds new features that further expand its capabilities.
One such feature is daytime bicyclist detection which is part of the comprehensive Pre-Collision System (PCS). Already designed to detect an oncoming vehicle or pedestrian, the PCS system’s ability to potentially detect a bicyclist addresses a common accident scenario. PCS has also been enhanced to help better detect a pedestrian at night by increasing the radar’s sensitivity and dynamic range.
Technology That Connects and Simplifies
Staying connected has never been so important to ES owners, so there are now multiple ways to engage with technology in a safe and convenient manner. For example, the seventh-generation ES is the first Lexus product to offer Apple CarPlay™ phone functionality, enabling drivers to control their iPhones® through the dashboard display screen or with Siri Eyes Free® voice control.
The ES is also Amazon Alexa®-enabled, so drivers can use natural language commands to control a variety of functions. That functionality includes car-to-home and home-to-car commands, so owners who have Alexa enabled devices in their home can interact with their ES before they ever get behind the wheel.
On board Wi-fi powered by Verizon is also available on the ES as part of an optional navigation system that includes an easy-to-read 12.3-inch wide dashboard display. Along with its on-board data set, the navigation system is also capable of receiving over-the-air updates for improved routing and the latest Points of Interest (POIs). Models without navigation will use an 8-inch display and all interactions will be controlled through the Remote Touch Interface (RTI) trackpad.
The Next Chapter of ES
When it goes on sale in September, the 2019 Lexus ES will usher in a new era for one of the brand’s most popular models. Much like the flagship LS, the new ES sedan addresses the need to engage a broader range of customers. It delivers everything that traditional Lexus buyers expect along with elements that will draw in those who haven’t considered the brand before. Bolder styling, more dynamic performance, unique cabin materials and the latest technology add a chapter to the ES story that hasn’t been told, but that all changes in 2018.
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By William Maley
BMW's M division thought the M2 wasn't hot enough, so they went to work and the end result is the 2019 M2 Competition.
It begins under the hood with the 3.0L twin-turbo inline-six where BMW has increased the output to 405 horsepower and 406 pound-feet - up 40 and 63 respectively. This launches the M2 Competition to 60 mph in 4 seconds with the seven-speed dual-clutch transmission or 4.2 seconds with the six-speed manual. Both times are a tenth of a second faster than the standard M2. Top speed is electronically limited to 155 mph, but can increase to 174 with the M Drivers package.
The larger M3/M4 donate some parts to the Competition in the form of a racing-bred engine oil supply system, partially aluminum front and rear axles, and cooling system from the M4 Competition. A new exhaust system features two electronically controlled flaps to make yourself known or not.
For handling, BMW has added a carbon-fiber reinforced plastic strut brace found on the M3/M4 to improve overall rigidity. The Active M Differential, steering, and stability control systems have been recalibrated to allow a bit more driver involvement. Larger brakes on all four wheels help slow down the M2 Competition.
The M2 Competition stands out from the standard M2 with a larger kidney grille, blacked out trim, 19-inch wheels, and an M Competition badge. The interior comes with redesigned seats and the addition of M1 and M2 buttons on the steering wheel. The latter allows a driver to set a preset driving model and select them.
Here's the most interesting bit: When the M2 Competition goes on sale this summer, it will take the place of the current M2 coupe. So if you want a standard M2, you might want to hurry to your BMW dealer.
The First Ever 2019 BMW M2 Competition
BMW M TwinPower Turbo engine offers 405 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque. Larger front and rear brake disks with 6-piston front and 4-piston rear calipers. New M Sport Seats with Illuminated M2 logo Top speed of 174mph with optional M Drivers Package Woodcliff Lake, NJ – April 17, 2018 …Today, the BMW Group shows off its latest pride – the BMW M2 Competition. The 2019 BMW M2 Competition replaces the BMW M2 Coupe while retaining the compact dimensions, characteristic BMW M proportions and the BMW M TwinPower Turbo inline 6-cylinder engine, rear wheel drive and a standard manual transmission with an optional M DCT transmission that have made the M2 beloved by many enthusiasts. The exciting new addition to the BMW M portfolio provides a distinctive M design complemented by improved dynamics and track capabilities with a 0-60 sprint time of 4.0 seconds. The BMW M2 Competition will be available in summer of 2018. With pricing to be announced closer to Market launch.
New engine with 405 Horsepower.
The heart of the new BMW M2 Competition is its new engine, based on the power unit from the BMW M3 and BMW M4. The inline 6-cylinder engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology delivers 405 hp between 5,230 and 7,000 rpm. The engine’s peak torque of 406 lb-ft is on tap between 2,350 rpm and 5,230 rpm. The power unit boasts an insatiable appetite for revs and offers exceptionally linear power delivery across a broad rpm range. A dual exhaust system with electronic flap control provides the distinctive M sound, while the M TwinPower Turbo technology delivers outstanding efficiency.
The first ever BMW M2 Competition completes the sprint from standstill to 60 mph, in as little as 4.0 seconds (with DCT and 4.2 seconds with the manual transmission). The top speed is electronically limited to 155 mph. The car can be combined with the M Driver’s Package to raise the top speed to 174 mph. The carefully designed oil supply system for the engine is taken directly from motorsport, while the cooling system from the BMW M4 with Competition Package is used with some M2 specific adjustments. The BMW M2 Competition’s track-ready variants of the oil supply and cooling systems have been tested by BMW’s many years of motor racing experience. Enlarged BMW kidney grille openings and a new front skirt with increased air flow are exterior indicators to the use of this enhanced cooling system. The kidney grilles are finished in high-gloss Shadow Line black paint as are the side gills on the front fenders. A quartet of black chrome plated tailpipes finish off the twin exhaust system. A dark M Competition Badge graces the rear end of the car.
BMW M engineers have adjusted the driving dynamics of the BMW M2 Competition to take the new model’s increased performance into account. The striking CFRP high-precision strut from the BMW M3/M4 is immediately recognizable in the engine compartment. This improves front section rigidity and increases steering precision. The electromechanical power steering, the Active M Differential and the Dynamic Steering Control (DSC) system have all been enhanced.
Selector switches to adjust settings.
The BMW M2 Competition is the first BMW M2 to be equipped with selector switches in the center console that allow instant control of settings for the engine, steering and Drivelogic functions, if M DCT is available. The various configurations can be combined in whichever way the driver prefers and can be stored for easy access using the M1 and M2 buttons on the steering wheel. The standard range of equipment now includes the red start/stop button, Active Driving Assistant and Park Distance Control (PDC).
Exciting new features.
The new, standard M Sport seats are a real highlight in terms of both form and function. The bucket-style shape borrows heavily from motorsport and provides drivers with optimized support, while the headrests are integrated into the seat back rest. The backrest also features an illuminated M2 logo. The black leather upholstery boasts design perforations in the seat and backrest, available in either blue or orange. Two new optional paint colors are available on the BMW M2 Competition: Hockenheim Silver, which replaces Mineral Grey Metallic and is exclusive to the M2 Competition and Sunset Orange Metallic.
Rapid response behavior thanks to M TwinPower Turbo technology.
BMW M TwinPower Turbo technology consists of two rapid-response MonoScroll turbochargers, High Precision Injection, VALVETRONIC variable valve control and Double-VANOS variable camshaft timing. The valve and camshaft timing work in tandem for maximum variability of the control intake valve lift. Razor-sharp responses and optimal power delivery are the result. Spray on LDS (Lichtbogendrahtspritzen) coated cylinder walls lead to a significant reduction in weight over traditional cylinder inserts. A lightweight forged crankshaft helps the engine to rev to a redline of 7,600 rpm.
Maintaining consistent levels of oil supply is particularly important on the track, thanks to the increased performance of the BMW M2 Competition. This is where the extensive motor racing experience at BMW M GmbH has the chance to shine. For example, an additional oil sump cover helps limit the movement of lubricants when the car quickly changes direction. Under extreme longitudinal acceleration and deceleration, an oil extraction pump and a sophisticated oil return system situated close to the turbochargers help to maintain uninterrupted oil circulation. Sufficient oil is therefore supplied continuously to all engine components in all driving situations – whether on the road or the track.
The BMW M2 Competition features a range of measures designed to deal with the increased cooling requirements, compared with the previous model. An enlarged BMW kidney grill and a new front skirt with modified air flow improve the flow for the front of the car. The car also makes use of the track-tested cooling system of the BMW M4 with the Competition Package, consisting of one central radiator, two side radiators and an additional engine oil cooler. Cars making use of the optional seven-speed M Double Clutch Transmission (M DCT) also feature a transmission oil cooler.
Dual exhaust system with two electrically-controlled flaps.
The BMW M2 Competition’s S55 engine exhales through a completely new exhaust system. The dual-branch design features a new muffler and the four tailpipes, finished in black chrome, identify the car immediately as a BMW M model. Two electrically-controlled flaps ensure that the BMW M2 Competition delivers the distinctive BMW M Sound, which the driver can adjust by selecting a driving mode with M Dynamic Performance Control via the selector switch in the center console.
Choice of two transmission variants.
The new BMW M2 Competition comes standard with a six-speed manual gearbox, which is notable for its compact design and light weight. The use of a new type of carbon-fiber friction lining enhances the manual shift feel. The BMW M2 is equipped with rev matching technology which blips the throttle on downshifts and lowers the engine’s revs on upshifts, making gear changes even smoother. This lends the car additional stability during hard driving on the track.
The seven-speed M Double Clutch Transmission (M DCT with Drivelogic) can be ordered as an option. This system effectively combines two gearboxes, each with its own clutch, and enables either extremely fast gear changes with no interruption in the flow of power or ultra-smooth shifts. The driver can change gears either in automated or manual mode by using the gearshift lever on the center console or shift paddles on the M leather steering wheel. In both automatic and manual modes, Drivelogic provides the driver with a choice between three preconfigured driving programs: COMFORT, SPORT and SPORT+. In automatic mode, the driver can then adjust the speed of the gearshift, its intensity, and the automatic throttle blipping function on downshifts.
Increased front-end rigidity for greater steering precision.
The engine compartment contains the most striking component: the CFRP high-precision strut brace from the BMW M3/M4. This one-piece brace made from extremely light, yet high-strength, carbon fiber weighs in at just 3.3 lbs. Together with the bulkhead strut from the M4, it significantly increases front section rigidity and improves steering behavior and precision.
The high-performance chassis utilizes the lightweight aluminum intensive front and rear axles from the BMW M3/M4. In order to ensure extremely precise wheel location, tight tolerance ball joints are used to transmit transverse forces. The control arms and wheel carriers of the new five-link rear axle are made from forged aluminum. A racing-derived rigid connection, dispensing with rubber bushings, is used to fix the lightweight steel grid-type rear axle sub frame to the body. This improves wheel location and tracking stability.
BMW M engineers have adjusted the operation of the electromechanical power steering to further improve performance and increase front end rigidity. The integrated Servotronic function with M-specific characteristics controls the level of steering assistance electronically according to the car’s speed and to the Drivelogic settings made by the driver, allowing power steering assistance to be adjusted based on personal preference.
Active M Differential and recalibrated DSC.
The Dynamic Stability Control has been completely recalibrated for the BMW M2 Competition. Electronics exercise even more delicate control, providing improved traction in wet and slippery conditions, and ensuring that traction is not interrupted during drifts. Support is provided by the Active M Differential, an electronically controlled multi-plate limited-slip differential that takes traction and directional stability to a new level of precision and speed. The locking effect can vary between 0 and 100 percent, according to the driving situation, and reacts to the car’s steering angle, accelerator position, brake pressure, engine torque, wheel speed and yaw rate. The control unit uses this analysis of the driving situation to detect the threat of traction loss on one side of the car and calculates the required locking effect, which is engaged by an electric motor. The full locking power of over 1,800 lb-ft is available within 150 milliseconds. This allows the system to prevent a wheel from spinning in extreme conditions on slippery road surfaces or when the two rear wheels are experiencing significant differences in friction coefficient.
In certain situations, the Active M Differential even works proactively. When pulling away on slippery surfaces, the lock is closed by a defined percentage even before a wheel can start to spin, to ensure that both wheels develop equal slip at the same time. The lock is also closed by the required percentage through enthusiastically driven corners, according to the levels of lateral acceleration and drive at work. This prevents the low-traction inside wheel from starting to turn too quickly. This permanent and infinitely variable differential control also increases agility, avoids understeer on the way into corners and improves directional stability under braking and load changes.
M Dynamic Mode (MDM) is a sub-function of Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) that can be activated automatically by either selecting SPORT+ mode, or engaging manually via the DSC button. In certain situations – e.g. track driving – it allows a greater degree of wheel spin. The DSC mode stabilizing measures now intervene later, increasing the freedom available to drivers at the limit. The extra wheel slip enhances traction and therefore forward propulsion. More significant oversteer and understeer situations are possible, as are moderate, controlled drifts, but the Dynamic Stability Control active safety aids can still be relied on in critical situations.
M Sport brakes developed from motorsport experience.
The new high-performance M Sport brakes provide maximum brake performance and are a product of the extensive motorsport experience at BMW M GmbH. Compared to the outgoing M2’s M compound brakes, with blue metallic brake calipers (front 4-piston fixed caliper and 380 mm diameter disks and rear 2-piston fixed caliper with 370 mm diameter disks) the new M Sport brakes found in the M2 Competition have larger brake disks (front: 400 mm in diameter, rear: 380 mm in diameter) as well as larger brake calipers(front: 6-piston fixed and rear: 4-piston fixed), painted in a grey finish. These high-performance brakes provide excellent deceleration in all conditions and impress with their resistance to fade and heat.
New forged wheels with two color options.
The new 19-inch forged wheels are available (front axle: 9J x 19, rear axle 10J x 19) with the Y-spoke design in a high-sheen finish, and in two color options: light high-sheen (bi-color), or with a black front surface. The front 245/35 R19 tires meet the most demanding requirements in terms of lateral stability, directional stability, steering feel and steering precision. The rear 265/35 R19 tires deliver optimal traction, and the required lateral and directional stability.
When opening the door of the new BMW M2 Competition, drivers are greeted by the M2 Competition logo on the sill plate. They can then settle into the ergonomically and visually stunning M Sport seat. The bucket-style shape of the seat borrows heavily from motorsport and provides drivers with optimum support, while the headrests are integrated into the seat back rest.
An illuminated M2 logo nestles in the backrest of the M Sport seat. The seat and the backrest boast black leather upholstery with design perforations, available in blue or orange. These touches of color are also reflected in the leather stitching on seats and armrests, while Alcantara leather is used to cover the sides of the side bolsters. The classic BMW M stripes have been woven into the M safety belts and the M-specific stitching can also be found on the steering wheel.
A glance at the dashboard reveals the welcome layout for the instruments, which displays the M2 Competition logo for a few seconds at startup. A red start / stop button underlines the motorsport heritage of the car.
Selector switches on the center console.
The first ever BMW M2 Competition provides drivers with two selector switches in the center console that allow direct access to adjust various vehicle characteristics and settings, a feature familiar from other BMW M models. The switches can be used to directly access various settings for stability control, for example the three engine characteristics, or the steering modes. Drivers can also use the selector switches to adapt the settings they want for various areas and combine these as they please. They also adjust Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) – a short dab activates MDM mode, while holding the switch down longer switches DSC off.
M1 and M2 buttons on the steering wheel.
The M1 and M2 buttons on the steering wheel also provide direct access to the range of driving modes. Drivers can save their own personal configurations chosen from the settings for stability control, engine characteristics and steering - control over the personality of the BMW M2 is at their fingertips. The M1 and M2 steering wheel buttons are preprogramed with a Comfort and a Sport program as standard and drivers can return to these settings at any time.
New equipment details.
The evolution of the BMW M2 Coupe into the new BMW M2 Competition has been accompanied by some upgrades to the standard features as well. The sporty coupe now boasts Active Driving Assistant and Park Distance Control (PDC) which monitors the car’s surroundings and keeps an eye on what is in front of the car, as well as to the rear.
The extensive range of equipment provided as standard marks the BMW M2 Competition as one of the most dynamic sports cars around. This includes the lightweight M Sport chassis, the six-speed manual gearbox with throttle blipping function and the Active M Differential on the rear axle, guaranteeing optimum traction and unbeatable directional stability. Electromechanical M Servotronic power steering and the M Dynamic Mode (MDM) for Dynamic Stability Control are also available allowing aspiring racing drivers to easily enjoy controlled drifts on the circuit. M Sports seats, the M leather steering wheel, an M footrest and knee pad on the center console and trim strips with surfacing in open pore carbon fiber all adorn the interior.
Customers can add additional individual touches to their car with a hand-picked range of options. The list of options includes highlights such as the seven-speed M Double Clutch Transmission (M DCT) with Drivelogic, allowing gear changes with no interruption in the flow of power, or the M Driver’s Package, which raises the limit on the top speed of the new BMW M2 Competition to 174 mph and comes with a BMW Driving Experience voucher for a track training course at the BMW Performance Center East or West.
BMW Personal CoPilot enhances safety, comfort and entertainment.
New BMW M2 Competition customers can make use of numerous driver assistance systems and mobility services through BMW Personal CoPilot. The range of optional driver assistance systems includes the standard Active Driving Assistant, which comprises features such as Collision Warning and Pedestrian Warning with City Braking function, and Lane Departure Warning. Speed Limit Info flashes up traffic signs and the permitted top speed. The rear-view camera teams up with standard rear Park Distance Control to assist drivers with reverse parking and maneuvering. The standard Navigation Professional offers an ultra-sharp map display and the iDrive Touch Controller ensures the various functions are even easier to use.
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