Actually, not just SIGFEST. That’s a special meetup just for E30 owners. Instead, I went to the BMW CCA’s show before the show (this is New Jersey, after all). Held at Woodcliff Lake, home to BMW of North America, it gave me special access to new 2023 BMW models. There’s a bunch of cool stuff to go over, so here’s what’s coming up.
The 2023 BMW M340i
We’ll start with what I think is a big improvement. The 2023 BMW M340i gets a facelift, and much in the vein of the F90 M5, it’s quite the upgrade in front.
Painted fetching Skyscraper Grey Metallic and trimmed with Shadowline, the car gets some new wheels and revised rear trim on the bumper. If you liked the G20 before, there’s no reason to stop now.
Inside, the shifter goes away. I guess that’s ok – the paddle shifters on the wheel are still there. And it now gets carbon fiber trim, but BMW oddly left it off of the cup holder cover and it looks terrible. This is still a $70,000 car fully loaded.
It also gets the full digital dash (one screen) that will soon infest the entire BMW lineup. Good-bye buttons.
2023 BMW M3 50 Jahre Edition and M Performance Parts showcase
Next up, it’s the 2023 G80 BMW M3, and it’s not really an LCI for this car yet. Instead, just the digital dash replaces…a digital dash. Like in the base 3 Series, it’s now a single screen.
The Jahre Edition gets what I consider to be a bit of a half-ass treatment. It’s a fully loaded M3 Competition with M xDrive, carbon fiber exhaust tips, special door sills and center console plaque, and in this car’s case, Techno Violet Individual Paint (you can also get Interlagos Blue, a personal favorite.)
Sticker price? $112,000. That’s almost $30,000 more than my G80. I will leave that fact there for you to decide which to go after.
Also there were an M3 and M4 fully outfitted with M Performance Parts. You know my opinion on the exhaust, but for carbon fiber trim, you can’t beat the quality of this OEM+ offering.
The 2023 BMW X7 and 7 Series
I previewed these cars back in May, and now here they are.
The important bit for the X7 is BMW’s new S68 V-8. An improved version of the S63, it might very well be BMW’s last V-8 to power a car without any major electrical assist.
This car also breaks a major rule – it’s a normal BMW, but receives an “S” engine, which have always been reserved for full M cars in the past. I’m not sure what this will mean going forward.
As for the 7 Series, it does not receives the S68 in the M760. BMW killed its V-12, and in its place is the hybrid M760e xDrive. It’s BMW M’s first hybrid car, and it has…a B58 six inside. Still, over 500 horses await. Judgement will be passed at a later date.
Take the styling as you will, but the car has a presence that finally rivals the S Class from Mercedes. It’s also beautifully finished inside.
The 2023 M8 and Alpina B8
While the G20 M340i received a meaningful LCI, sometimes BMW does a very simple nip and tuck. Updated last year, the 8 Series has always been beautiful, but unless you lined the pre-LCI up against this one, I not sure I can tell the difference.
As for the Alpina, it’s stunning and it should be for what is currently BMW’s most expensive car. With news that Alpina was sold to BMW, I wonder how they will assimilate these special models under the corporate umbrella.
Inside BMW’s headquarters
The BMW campus has many buildings, and the one we were allowed to enter housed the training program for BMW technicians.
As you walk down the hallway, you’ll find various rooms with lifts and many different BMW cars and engines laid out. It was a cool chance to get to be next to a naked S85 V-10.
The CCA parking lot and vintage metal
The new stuff was fun, but plenty of vintage goodies were on display in the parking lot. Have a look!
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