BMW Cars: 2018 Set to be an Amazing Year
The successful German car maker is set for a new model bonanza, with 40 new releases in the pipeline
BMW, the hugely popular Bavarian premium brand, are set to build on their sales of over 2.3 million cars worldwide in 2016 with some 40 new variants across its three luxury brands (BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce), all of which are scheduled to appear before the end of 2018.
The main focus will be on adding to their comprehensive SUV (Sports Utility Vehicle) range with new models and replacements for market favourites such as the X3 and X5, and additions to their electric and hybrid powered offerings such as an all-electric version of the new 3 Series.
BMW’s sustained success with established market leaders such as the 3 Series saloon is a far cry from their near financial ruin back in the late 1950s. Along with increases in sales each year – they sold 5.3% more cars in 2016 than in 2015 – their revenues and profits are on the up.
Their popularity means it’s comparatively easy to sell old BMWs as their driver appeal, quality, technical advancement and the prestige badge makes them a popular choice used as well as new.
The car maker competes in various market sectors ranging from compacts (1 Series), executive saloons (3 and 5 Series) and a now huge presence in the SUV market – one in three BMW’s sold is an SUV – with their X range of cars offering most sizes from the compact X1 to the forthcoming Range Rover rival, the X7.
New models for 2018
Here’s an overview of BMW’s forthcoming new cars:
The company’s stylish and desirable roadster’s replacement will feature a fabric roof as opposed to hard top, and weight saving techniques coupled with more powerful and efficient engines will see performance gains from this already-rapid sports car.
The Z4 continues to be rear wheel driven and the most powerful versions will boast 300bhp.
Every time this market leading car is replaced most wonder how the outgoing model could possibly be bettered, but BMW always seem to manage to make worthy improvements to the new version.
It’s slated to be similar to the fairly recent (February 2017) 5 Series in design; a new chassis will make it lighter and thus more efficient, and it’s likely an all-electric version will be available too.
6 Series GT
The sloping back Gran Turismo version of the 5 Series has been one of BMW’s less successful variants, so the new one – while still a derivative of the 5 Series – is being repositioned by use of the 6 Series name in the hope it will ‘distance’ itself from the 5 Series saloon. It’s scheduled for the latter half of 2018.
The existing i8 Coupe will also gain a minor revision when its soft top stablemate arrives. As with the Coupe, power is provided by a 1.5 litre petrol engine and electric motor hybrid.
The fastest and most sports-inclined version of the latest 5 Series (although many see the M range as a standalone part of the BMW stable) will set buyers back some £85,000. In return they’ll be getting an eye-waveringly fast car capable of doing the 0-62 mph sprint in 3.5 seconds.
Powered by a 4.4 litre twin turbo V8 engine, the 610bhp power is controlled by an advanced four wheel drive set up.
One of two all-new SUVs to join the ranks, the X2 joins the ‘style’ range comprising the X4 and X6 as the baby of the range as opposed to the more ‘upright’ and traditional X1, X3 and X5 lineup.
It uses the same front-wheel-drive platform as the X1 although will offer a four-wheel-drive option, and power comes from four cylinder petrol and diesel engines.
The highly successful X3 is renewed for 2018; the main change is to a new rear drive chassis and the addition of a 400bhp M version.
The X4 is effectively a coupe version of the X3 and slots into the ‘style’ SUV range. The outgoing model has only been in production for three years, but the underpinnings ‘borrowed’ from the also-outgoing (see above) X3 are over seven years old so BMW are taking the chance to replace both models.
Therefore, the new platform shaves over 50kg off the existing car’s kerb weight and other new features include a likely hybrid for this variant that sold some 60,000 units in 2016.
The original X5 marked BMW’s entry into the SUV market back in 1999, and in 2018 the fourth generation version will hit showrooms. Advance photographs show it as an evolution of the present car in design although new, lighter platforms and more advanced engine technology should make the next X5 faster and more efficient.
Yet another SUV release; the X7 is an all-new model to enter the luxury SUV niche dominated by Range Rover.
Starting at around £70,000, BMW’s offering is based on the 7 Series saloon’s underpinnings and will likely offer a seven seat configuration. Large areas of glass are designed to make for a light and airy cabin, and hybrid options will be available.
And beyond 2018 to compete with Tesla
BMW’s new release strategy is mapped out beyond 2018, too. Perhaps the most interesting plan is their intention to compete head on with Tesla, the innovative American car maker, who have pioneered all-electric automotive development.
Currently dubbed ‘iNEXT,’ this project takes the form of a luxury all-electric saloon incorporating advanced connectivity and automation technology. It’s clear the Bavarian car maker isn’t resting on its laurels.