After finding out that BMW is the most valuable automobile manufacturer in the world, we’re now hearing that the German moniker intends to return to DTM for the 2012 season. The return to the German Touring Car Masters is seen as a move to challenge the already competing racing versions of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class AMG and the Audi A4. BMW will have to fulfill the requirements set by ITR in order to compete in the 2012 edition of the racing series that stretches across France, the Netherlands, Spain, and the United Kingdom. DTM is currently raced exclusively by cars manufactured by the premier BMW rivals such as Audi and Mercedes. BMW last participated in the series in 1996.
A Millward Brown survey has rated BMW as the most valuable car brand in the world, valuating it at around $21.82 billion. BMW overtook last year’s winner Toyota, which is now positioned at the second place with an overall estimated worth of $21.77 billion. It is noteworthy that both companies reflected worth was a lot lesser than last year owing to the economic downturn that hampered the global economy.
The biggest losers in this year’s survey were Porsche which was down by 31 percent and Toyota that saw a downfall of 27 percent compared to the estimated value last year. VW rose up in value by 20 percent and Ford also registered a rise of 19 percent. On the other hand, Audi, which self proclaims themselves to be the best premium brand, stood at a disappointing ninth place with an overall value of $3.62 billion.
BMW and Audi, the two German premium brands have their daggers drawn at each other and no one is in the mood to spare the other. The already popular ad campaign war between the two has now headed to Hong Kong where BMW is a tiny bit ahead after buying a huge ad space — where they display the new BMW 5-series — directly above the Audi showroom in Hong Kong.
And from what we can tell, this board effectively displaces the Audi dealership from viewing. Those following this battle closely will remember the two premium German brands competing with billboard adverts in the US, too, in California. Considering the ongoing battle, this sure is an impressive move by BMW while Audi needs to figure out the source that gave BMW the ad space. We wonder what will be their next step.
We are sure used to admiring the bimmers but this time around there is a different task at hand. We’ll be more inclined towards admiring ‘The Dwelling Lab’ which is a BMW 5-Series Gran Turismo inspired sculpture showcased during Salone Internazionale del Mobile in Milan. The Sculpture aspires to make the people focus on the interior of the car first rather than the exterior as we do under normal circumstances. It is formed of five conical geometric shapes that jut out to invite the onlookers. The sculpture is sponsored by BMW, along with Danish textile specialists Kvadrat and Italian lighting firm Flos. Spanish architectural designer Patricia Urquiola and Italian designer Giulio Ridolfo have together finished this mammoth sculpture which aims to render a dwelling experience.
Not sure what to buy between the BMW M5, the Audi S6 or the Mercedes E63 AMG? Here’s something that may help you decide. I’d go for the E63 to be honest … how about you guys?
Veils will definitely be taken off the next generation BMW X3 at this year’s Paris Motor Show if not earlier given the testing stage its prototype has reached. The next-generation X3 was spotted doing rounds in the streets of Munich Germany and the prototype looked almost production ready. Compared to the current generation model, the X3 slated to arrive in the future is a tad bigger. The X3 will be a powered by a number of engine choices which include the regular 3.0-liter six, a turbocharged version of the same unit and a diesel option which might hit the market sometime later after the petrol variants get introduced. [via WindingRoad]
BMW is desperate to jump on the green bandwagon and as per the company sources the German automobile brand is targeting to produce hydrogen fuel cell vehicles by 2014. The targeted drive-train for the hydrogen fuel cell options includes a petrol engine clubbed with a 5 kW fuel cell, and an 82 kW ( 110 hp) electric motor. At low speeds it is the hydrogen fuel cell that will power the rear wheels and when there is a need to pelt, the petrol engine will kick in to power the front wheels. It is noteworthy that both combinations can also work together to render speedy acceleration.
The first spy shots of the third generation BMW 6 Series coupe (F12) have surfaced on the web as the car was spied testing in the streets of Munich. Interestingly, the images reveal that the coupe version has different tail-lights than the cabriolet (F13) which was spied sometime earlier.
Though the automobile was heavily camouflaged, there are a number of elements which were still evident. For instance, the rear end has become flatter and smoother compared to the present generation 6 Series model. The side skills and the side panels have also been differently designed and the side windows look similar to those spotted on the cabriolet. The rear section of the glass will obviously be different because of the hard top compared to what you saw on the cabriolet.
[Images via WCF]