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    • Preview of BMW's front wheel drive era and 0-Series - BMW's 113 MPG Active Tourer Outdoor Concept

      Nothing really new here but BMW issued a press release and blogs jump on any bone BMW throws them so here we are. This is the BMW Concept Active Tourer Offroad. Essentially the same thing BMW already showed last year with the Active Tourer plug-in hybrid concept people seem to be forgetting about. Just like the previous Active Tourer concept the Outdoor version borrows drivetrain components from the i8 (1.5 liter three-cylinder) which should supposedly make it good for 113 mpg (imp).

      The 190 horsepower hybrid drivetrain powers the front wheels. It can travel an amazing 19 miles in electric only mode (/sarcasm). Yes, a front wheel drive hybrid from the company that used to make fun of front wheel drives. Hey, whatever sells right? So, it's a front wheel drive plug-in hybrid with an 'ECO PRO' mode that should make hippies giddy.

      Kind of hard to have a car for going outdoors or off-road without all wheel drive isn't it? The only outdoor place this will take you is to the paved parking lot of your local park.






















































      The BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor.

      1. The BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor: Highlights.

      The BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor will take to the stage at the OutDoor Friedrichshafen fair, treating the premium compact segment to another view of how interior space can be cleverly utilised for sport and leisure purposes. This concept car presents solutions that take a fresh route to combining sporting aesthetics and style with sustainable drive technology, compact dimensions and functionality. The environmentally friendly plug-in hybrid drive system, bringing together a combustion engine and an electric motor to provide a very special form of power delivery, ensures efficiency of the highest order.

      - Compact dimensions, sporty design with generous levels of interior space. Variable rear compartment designed to accommodate sports and leisure equipment.
      - Transversely mounted 1.5-litre petrol engine with front-wheel drive. New plug-in hybrid (PHEV) drive concept combines the benefits of an electric motor and the attributes of a traditional combustion engine to outstanding effect.
      - Exclusive Gold Race Orange exterior paintwork accentuates the sporting appearance of the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor.
      - Easy-care, hard-wearing interior materials, such as MoonWhite and MoonRock Grey leather, stand up well to contact with outdoor equipment.
      - A carrier system for two bicycles (integrated into the interior) and other clever details make the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor the ideal companion for active recreational sports enthusiasts.

      2. Functionality and dynamics enhance the sporting and leisure experience: The BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor at the OutDoor Friedrichshafen fair.
      BMW is using the presentation of the new BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor at the outdoor activities summit meeting in Friedrichshafen to demonstrate how a compact vehicle can combine comfort and the use of space with the enjoyment of sports and leisure. The plug-in hybrid also offers a preview of drive variants that promise to feature in compact class vehicles in the future. The BMW eDrive concept familiar from the BMW i8, which enables the car to run on electric power alone (and therefore produce zero local emissions), will cover all the brand's electric and plug-in hybrid drive systems in the years ahead. eDrive spans all the components of the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor's electric drive system, such as the electric motor (developed in-house), the lithium-ion high-performance battery and the intelligent energy management system. The combination of a combustion engine and an electric motor delivers sporting performance coupled with average fuel consumption of approximately 2.5 l/100 km (113 mpg imp) and C02 emissions of under 60 g/km.

      Combination of sporty looks and impressive variability.
      Its harmonious proportions ensure the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor cuts a sporty figure from any angle. With an exterior length of 4,350 millimetres, width of 1,833 millimetres and height of 1,576 millimetres, the plug-in hybrid blends compact dimensions with an attractive, sporty design and hallmark BMW aesthetics. The long wheelbase (2,670 millimetres), a higher roofline and a compact, transversely mounted engine sending its power to the front wheels combine to deliver generous interior space. The variable rear compartment of the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor offers both all-round everyday usability and sufficient space for outdoor sports equipment, as the hybrid drive system's batteries are fitted underneath the load compartment floor.

      The design: sporty and functional.
      The BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor proves that compact dimensions, functionality and variability can be blended skilfully with dynamic design. The exclusive Gold Race Orange exterior paintwork accentuates the sporty appearance of the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor. A dominant element of the characteristic BMW front view is the striking, slightly forward-leaning BMW kidney grille, complete with eye-catching orange accent strips for two of the grille bars. The twin headlights with LED accent lights positioned like eyebrows above them extend far into the front wings and, together with the multifaceted front apron, strengthen the presence of the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor. The two large outer air intakes below the main headlights emphasise the sporting impression of the front end.

      When seen in profile, even at standstill, the elongated silhouette with its suggestion of a wedge shape lends the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor a dynamic aura that is unmatched in this class. 20-inch wheels partly painted in Gold Race Orange reinforce the car's sporting looks.

      Defined horizontal body lines headline the rear-end view of the compact BMW. The large rear lights, extending well into the car's flanks, accentuate the broad face of the wheels, lending visual emphasis to the car's consummate road presence. The large tailgate offers convenient access to the load compartment, thanks to its low loading sill and wide aperture. The exhaust tailpipes integrated into the rear apron of the BMW Active Tourer Outdoor are likewise in Gold Race Orange.

      New feeling of space, with hard-wearing materials.
      The BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor's interior is generous in its design, creating a completely new feeling of space. The centre console appears to be floating between the front seats and flows smoothly into the instrument panel. This arrangement provides the driver and front passenger with the greatest possible legroom. The raised seats with their semi-command position offer outstanding all-round visibility, setting the seal on the car's unimpeachable levels of usability and comfort. The Alu Mesh MoonGrey trim surface, made from a high-quality aluminium-fronted material, provides a visual connection between the instrument panel's upper trim surface in MoonRock Grey Steron and lower surface in MoonWhite leather. The same materials headline the door trim and front seats, while the brightly perforated leather seat inlays and leather door armrests are particularly durable and easy to clean. Added to which, Gold Race leather accent surfaces for the door trim and understated orange leather applications for the seats underline the car's sporting character. The interplay of colours generated by the materials extends as far as the rear compartment. In order to meet the challenges presented by leisure activities – in any weather – the load compartment floor covering comes in a robust, easy-to-clean, studded plastic material in MoonRock Grey. A refreshing contrast is provided by the leather stowage compartment covers for the load compartment floor and the left-hand side trim in Gold Race Orange.

      Superbly equipped for sport and leisure: the integrated bicycle carrier and other clever details.
      One example of the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor's clever utilisation of space is the carrier system for two bicycles presented for the first time in Friedrichshafen. In contrast to conventional solutions, this carrier is not mounted on the outside of the vehicle, but instead integrated into the interior to save space. As well as keeping bicycles dry and clean, this also has the advantage of protecting them extremely effectively from theft and damage. And when not in use, the carrier system disappears away into the side structure of the car or the load compartment floor, without restricting interior space.

      Thus equipped, the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor is ready to tackle a wide range of everyday and leisure-time transportation tasks. And that makes it the ideal companion for outdoor activities such as mountain biking, trekking and bicycle racing, especially as the last 20 to 30 kilometres (12 – 19 miles) of the journey to the start line can be completed on electric power alone and therefore with zero local emissions. However, the BMW also demonstrates impressive functionality in urban conditions. For example, the clever bicycle carrier offers an environmentally friendly mobility option where city centre parking is at a premium; the BMW can be parked outside overcrowded central areas and the journey completed in far more relaxed fashion on two wheels.

      The extended functionality of the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor is underpinned by a level load compartment floor created by folding down the rear seats. The carrier system is mounted against the left side of the boot area and consists of a rail system with a pivoting bracket. The rail is fitted with two mounts which hold the top tube of each bicycle in place. The bikes' saddles must be removed and front wheels detached before they are secured in place, which, with the quick-release mechanisms of modern sports bikes, should take only a few seconds. It is also amazingly easy to stow the wheels in a separate holder, which is integrated into the right-hand rear backrest and simply folded out when needed.

      Securing the bicycles themselves is also simple and extremely convenient. The pivot bracket opens out and slides out from the interior on the rail. The bicycles are then placed on the carrier transversely to the direction of travel and fixed in place. Once the bracket has been closed again, the bicycles can be pushed back effortlessly into their resting position in the interior.

      The carrier system's user-friendly pivoting mechanism also offers another advantage. The transverse rest position for the bikes allows assembly and maintenance work to be carried out effortlessly.

      This area of the car includes another particularly clever detail. The storage compartment recessed into the centre of the load area floor offers space for the bike saddles, all kinds of tools and small parts, while the pull-out cover can be used as a seat or step.

      Cutting-edge display experience with extended black panel technology.
      The cockpit of the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor boasts BMW's customary level of driver orientation, which means all the important controls are within easy reach. The multifunction instrument display, complete with extended black panel technology, allows drivers to feast their eyes on totally new display functionality. The four-dial view will be familiar, but the COMFORT, SPORT and ECO PRO driving experience modes, for example, are all given their own display sections and individual colour schemes, enhancing safety and efficiency and providing exceptional driver focus. Indeed, the driver benefits from an instrument display showing information tailored optimally to the situation at hand.

      The large 8-inch display in the centre of the instrument panel is used to access the suite of BMW ConnectedDrive services and the new navigation system's route planning functions. The central Control Display also shows the current operating status of the hybrid system, which means the driver is kept informed at all times on the usage profile of the combustion engine and electric motor and given a better understanding of the energy flow within the system. The hybrid drive system's power electronics are linked up to the intelligent Navigation system Plus, allowing it to work as efficiently as possible. The data gained as a result, such as the route profile, speed limits and traffic situation, prepare the vehicle for imminent requirements and therefore allow the available energy to be used with maximum efficiency.

      eDrive: the drive system powering the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor.
      The BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor is designed as a plug-in hybrid (PHEV = Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle) linking up the advantages of an electric motor with those of a traditional combustion engine to maximum effect. Plug-in hybrid vehicles normally have a range of well over 30 kilometres (approx. 20 miles) in all-electric mode, allowing them to operate just as efficiently on both short and long journeys as well as in hybrid mode. The BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor's lithium-ion high-performance battery can be recharged from a standard 220V domestic socket. Energy can be recovered at both axles of the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor and fed back into the lithium-ion high-performance battery to further enhance the eDrive system's efficiency. The highly sophisticated 1.5-litre BMW TwinPower Turbo petrol unit from the new BMW Group EfficientDynamics engine family works in perfect tandem with a synchronous electric motor.

      With a total system output of over 140 kW/190 hp, the combustion engine and electric motor combine to give the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor undeniably sporty performance credentials, while keeping fuel consumption and emissions figures extremely low. As a result, the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor darts to 100 km/h (62 mph) from stationary in under eight seconds, going on to a top speed of around 200 km/h (125 mph). Despite these impressive performance figures, it returns average fuel consumption figures of under 2.5 litres per 100 kilometres (113 mpg imp) and posts CO2 emissions below 60 g/km.

      Wide selection of BMW EfficientDynamics measures.
      Needless to say, the new BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor comes equipped with a host of other features packaged under the far-reaching BMW EfficientDynamics strategy. One of its key aims is to maximise range in all-electric mode, something that is achieved by minimising the energy consumption of the ancillary units. To this end, ECO PRO mode reduces the output of the air conditioning and other electrically operated comfort-enhancing functions when appropriate, as well as adapting the operation of all drive components to maximise efficiency. ECO PRO mode can also provide the driver with valuable driving tips, and the Bonus Range Display shows how many additional kilometres can be added to the car's range by keeping to the fuel-economy-maximising ECO PRO mode. The Proactive Driving Assistant works with the Navigation system Professional to anticipate local conditions and send the driver tips to prepare for the situation ahead. ECO PRO Route also plays its part in minimising fuel consumption by setting out the most efficient route based on volume of traffic, personal driving style and local conditions.

      3. BMW and the Tyrol join forces: Route guide takes car drivers, mountain bikers and hikers on exclusive routes into the heart of the Alps.
      Delivering maximum driving pleasure over fascinating routes and laying on breathtaking experiences of nature amid impressive mountain scenery are the twin aims of the "Heart of the Alps" route guide. Co-developed by BMW and the tourist board of the Austrian Tyrol, the guide sets out exclusive premium routes in the Seefeld, Φtztal and Zillertal regions and offers a lead-in to enticing outdoor activities. BMW employs its technical expertise and the impressive functionality of its BMW ConnectedDrive mobility services to good effect to optimise and lend as much flexibility as possible to the tour planning process. The aim is to ensure "Heart of the Alps" users enjoy a peerless summer mountain experience.

      The cooperation between BMW and the Tyrol has not come about by chance. The two partners share similar values; indeed, the typical leisure activities enjoyed by visitors to the Tyrol and prospective BMW Concept Active Tourer customers are very much comparable. BMW is a byword for innovative technology and sporting dynamics in the premium car segment, while the Tyrol has carved out a status as a leading Alpine destination with an outstanding reputation in Europe and beyond. This prestige is rooted in its magnificent nature and an outstanding tourism infrastructure boasting 25,000 km (over 15,500 miles) of hiking trails, 5,100 km (approx. 3,200 miles) of mountain bike trails, 780 km (485 miles) of cycle tracks, 1,300 mountain restaurants and huts, more than 100 climbing areas and 24 golf courses – all of which allows it to offer a top-class mountain experience.

      BMW has rolled out its winter activities (including attractive premium packages for winter sports enthusiasts, the BMW xDrive Cup ski and snowboard competition, BMW Winter Driver Training courses and the BMW xDrive Guide) across 23 European winter sport destinations, from Scandinavia to southern Spain. And now, enjoyable summer activities in the mountains – such as mountain biking, climbing and hiking – can be added to the mix, courtesy of the company's new partner region, the Tyrol. These are just the sort of pursuits that will be popular among many future BMW Concept Active Tourer drivers and their families. Plus, the Tyrol also has a huge amount to offer guests heading for the mountains to recharge their batteries and enjoy peace and relaxation, or "pleasure tourists" seeking culinary and/or cultural highlights.

      Perfectly prepared, thanks to BMW ConnectedDrive.
      The online route guide can be accessed via the BMW or Tyrol websites, or even more quickly at www.summerdrive-tirol.com. This takes the user directly to the brand-new premium tours through the heart of the Tyrol. Each of the suggested routes has its own character, defined by its contours, scenery and points of interest along the way. Some take guests over challenging mountain routes, others major on must-visit museums and areas of natural interest. BMW and the Tyrol tourist board supply detailed additional information and photos for each tour suggestion, offer recommendations on stops along the way and give helpful restaurant and hotel tips. Stages for drivers, cyclists and hikers can be also be combined as desired. Once the route planning stage has been completed, the relevant information can be transferred to a smartphone, ensuring it is available at all times during the bike or hiking stages.

      On the move and online in a BMW.
      BMW drivers can also send route information directly from their home computer into their car. With this in mind, an increasing number of BMW models come as standard with an integrated SIM card. The browser-based BMW Online information portal, with its mobility services and service products, can be accessed inside the car using the intuitive operating system BMW iDrive Touch, which displays the desired content on the navigation system's Control Display. This ensures the passengers receive all relevant information for their route during the course of the journey. For example, they can find out while under way what the weather is like at their destination and where they can find a free parking space nearby. And last but not least, destinations and stages of the journey can be changed at short notice should, for example, a sudden change in the weather or heavy traffic make an alternative necessary.

      BMW ConnectedDrive.
      Its extensive range of mobility services has enabled BMW ConnectedDrive to promote the intelligent link-up of drivers, their vehicles and the outside world for a number of years now. As well as an in-car SIM card (integrated into an ever expanding number of models), highly effective interface technology allows extensive use of external mobile phones and numerous Bluetooth office functions for internet-based services. The free BMW Connected app provides access to social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, as well as web radio and iPhone calendar functions, among other services. A new addition is the dictation function with full speech recognition. This feature types out spoken texts, which can then be sent as an SMS or email. Spoken and received text-based messages are shown in the Control Display.

      A host of other information and office services, as well as travel and leisure planners, make life even easier for those on board. For example, the Concierge Service from BMW ConnectedDrive offers a very special range of services. At the touch of a button it connects to a BMW Call Centre agent, who will then send information on a particular restaurant, the nearest ATM or 24-hour duty pharmacy, for example, directly to the car's navigation system. The BMW Call Centre agent also takes care of hotel bookings and table reservations quickly and reliably.

      Finally, the BMW driver can request a real-time update on the current traffic situation via RTTI (Real Time Traffic Information) and take advantage of any diversion recommendations. RTTI relays its information with unrivalled reliability and precision, and covers motorways, dual carriageways, country roads, and main and minor routes through city centres.

      BMW ConnectedDrive contract customers can make changes to all routes as desired. In addition, users can send tours planned on their home computer to their car – either via the in-car USB interface or by saving them beforehand on the BMW Online portal.

      This article was originally published in forum thread: Preview of BMW's front wheel drive era and 0-Series - BMW's 113 MPG Active Tourer Outdoor Concept started by Sticky View original post
      Comments 25 Comments
      1. Linracing's Avatar
        Linracing -
        Ill take one. Looks good!
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Linracing Click here to enlarge
        Ill take one. Looks good!
        The styling is nice of course but a BMW is more about how it drives. If you want a front wheel drive hybrid by all means go for it.
      1. whoosh's Avatar
        whoosh -
        So I guess you're $#@!ed if you're into kayaking instead of cycling since there are no roof rails.

        It does look good, but let's face it - it's a German Prius from the German Toyota. <yawn>
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by whoosh Click here to enlarge

        It does look good, but let's face it - it's a German Prius from the German Toyota. <yawn>
        Amen.
      1. MrClean335i's Avatar
        MrClean335i -
        Well if this means BMW is going to be able to get more money to fund the new M1, I am all for it.
      1. inlineS54B32's Avatar
        inlineS54B32 -
        I am so tired of this hipster influence on everything - this world is going to $#@!. Active Bike Tour? WTF? Is this a BMW or a Subaru?
      1. inlineS54B32's Avatar
        inlineS54B32 -
        ^EDIT - it can't be a Subaru, because it's not even AWD - this is ridiculous. Click here to enlarge
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by MrClean335i Click here to enlarge
        Well if this means BMW is going to be able to get more money to fund the new M1, I am all for it.
        Just like the GT funded a Z4 M. Oh wait...
      1. G0TB00ST?'s Avatar
        G0TB00ST? -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        Just like the GT funded a Z4 M. Oh wait...
        This
      1. Flinchy's Avatar
        Flinchy -
        car looks gumby.. how can you think it looks good?.. looks like a b class merc :/

        the guy in the pics looks exactly like the person who'd want to own it

        idrive screen looks even more tacked on than the a class mercs... the seats look like a park bench.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        I don't even get why this is being hyped. It's the same basic thing BMW already previewed except now they show people biking with it as if they traversed some insane off road trail to get to the best bike path on the planet. OMG front page news OMG OMG.

        $#@!ing lame...
      1. 654's Avatar
        654 -
        Only the combustion engine drives the front wheels, so this is not an FWD only car. The electric motor drives rear wheels, enabling all wheel drive when needed going up the icy Alps.

        I don't think BMW is as environmental friendly as they look. Let's face it. BMW is actually the bad boy that does this only for decreasing the fleet average emissions to the regulated 130 grams per km so that it doesn't need to reduce the emissions of the new M3 and M4 that much. For letting the M-series cars to emit more than 130g CO2/km, they need these low CO2 cars for them to achieve the allowed average. It would be impossible to have a real M-car to meet the 130g/km limit by itself. Perhaps, if they would have 2-liter engines and less horsepower. But then, M-car enthusiasts would start complaining even more.
      1. Legionofboom's Avatar
        Legionofboom -
        To me it looks like the car broke down on the side of a dirt road and now they have to use the bikes to get home. Click here to enlarge
      1. alex@ABRhouston's Avatar
        alex@ABRhouston -
        Meh, I'll wait till BMW releases the technicians manual and read up on it. The manual is almost better than going to BMW Skool- all that is a paid vacation out of the dungeon dealership you work at lol
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 654 Click here to enlarge
        Only the combustion engine drives the front wheels, so this is not an FWD only car. The electric motor drives rear wheels, enabling all wheel drive when needed going up the icy Alps.
        Transversely mounted 1.5-litre petrol engine with front-wheel drive. New plug-in hybrid (PHEV) drive concept combines the benefits of an electric motor and the attributes of a traditional combustion engine to outstanding effect.


        ???
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 654 Click here to enlarge
        Only the combustion engine drives the front wheels, so this is not an FWD only car. The electric motor drives rear wheels, enabling all wheel drive when needed going up the icy Alps.
        I can't find it? Says they both send power in tandem?

        PHEV = Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle) linking up the advantages of an electric motor with those of a traditional combustion engine to maximum effect. Plug-in hybrid vehicles normally have a range of well over 30 kilometres (approx. 20 miles) in all-electric mode, allowing them to operate just as efficiently on both short and long journeys as well as in hybrid mode. The BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor's lithium-ion high-performance battery can be recharged from a standard 220V domestic socket. Energy can be recovered at both axles of the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor and fed back into the lithium-ion high-performance battery to further enhance the eDrive system's efficiency. The highly sophisticated 1.5-litre BMW TwinPower Turbo petrol unit from the new BMW Group EfficientDynamics engine family works in perfect tandem with a synchronous electric motor.

        With a total system output of over 140 kW/190 hp, the combustion engine and electric motor combine to give the BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor undeniably sporty performance credentials, while keeping fuel consumption and emissions figures extremely low
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 654 Click here to enlarge
        Only the combustion engine drives the front wheels, so this is not an FWD only car. The electric motor drives rear wheels, enabling all wheel drive when needed going up the icy Alps.
        More:

        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Car and Driver Click here to enlarge
        Like it or not, BMW will soon introduce several front-drive compacts, and this Concept Active Tourer Outdoor is the most realistic glimpse yet of the brand’s upcoming FWD people mover. A mild evolution of the Active Tourer concept shown at the Paris auto show last year, the specs of the Active Tourer Outdoor may make purists wince. Its tall body measures 171.3 inches long, 72.2 inches wide, and 62 inches high, and it rides on a 105.1-inch wheelbase. Power comes from a force-fed three-cylinder engine and an electric motor mated to an automatic transmission. With the new, slightly toughened Outdoor treatment, it is even something of a crossover.

        Yes, this is a front-wheel-drive vehicle, but its architecture will be shared with the third generation of the BMW-engineered Mini Cooper,
      1. 654's Avatar
        654 -
        They are just not saying it. Read e.g. this
        http://m.autocar.co.uk/car-news/new-...-active-tourer
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by 654 Click here to enlarge
        They are just not saying it. Read e.g. this
        http://m.autocar.co.uk/car-news/new-...-active-tourer
        All that says is it is developed with all wheel drive possibility essentially like the Mini Countryman. Mini is adding all wheel drive so of course it makes sense but this concept is still front wheel drive and the basis for the front wheel drive BMW's.

        The UKL1 platform is engineered for both front- and all-wheel drive layouts. UKL1 is derived from the German words ‘unter klasse’, meaning sub class or entry level.

        The switch to front-wheel drive is an about turn for BMW, which has always said longitudinal engine layouts provide better weight distribution and a more dynamic drive. It also makes a mockery of some previous BMW advertising campaigns, but the about turn is driven by the need to reduce production costs and provide competitive packaging for a new generation of small cars.
      1. 654's Avatar
        654 -
        Third paragraph: "The five-door hatchback, on display at the New York motor show, is a plug-in hybrid with four-wheel drive. A transversely mounted engine drives the front wheels – an acknowledgment that entry-level BMWs from the new small car line-up will come with front-wheel drive – and the rear wheels are powered by an electric motor."