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SIGFEST, and new 2023 BMW models

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

2023 BMW M340i
Inverted angel eyes and blacked out intakes give the car an aggressive look.

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.

2023 BMW M340i
The M340i gets a revised look throughout.

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.

BMW M340i
The shifter gets replaced with a toggle switch.

2023 BMW M3 50 Jahre Edition and M Performance Parts showcase

2023 BMW M3
The 50 Jahre Edition M3.

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.

2023 BMW M3
The digital dash is here to, as in the M340i.
2023 BMW M3
BMW won’t tell you what number your car is off the line, so you just get “1/500”.
2023 M3 digital dash
The dash itself has a cool futuristic display.
2023 BMW M3
I’m not a fan of the buttons going away. It’s much harder to change the climate control at a glance.

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.

BMW M4 M Performance parts
The spoiler is a better fit for the M4 vs the more upright M3.
BMW M3 M Performance parts
I like the full kit look.
BMW M Performance Exhaust
BMW 2 Series
Also there was an M240i fitted with M Performance Parts. These wheels are beautiful.
2023 BMW M240i

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.

2023 BMW X7
The X7 M60i is the first car to get BMW’s new S68 V-8.
2023 BMW 7 Series
From the side, there are shades of Rolls Royce on the new 7.
2023 BMW 7 Series
This is an imposing car in person, especially in shark skin matte grey

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.

2023 BMW M8
The 2023 BMW M8
2023 Alpina B8
Wheels are part of the special vibe this car has.
2023 Alpina B8
The grille is new, along with the bumper, but it’s hard to tell a difference in this LCI.

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.

BMW V-10
The E60’s V-10, a classic M motor.
BMW chassis
A bare 5 Series chassis was on display, and it’s no wonder these cars are as stout as they are.
BMW training
In garages like these, BMW trains technicians on the complications of the modern car.
The famous E46 M3 GTR Stars and Stripes
The famous E46 M3 GTR was also on display.

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!

Limerock Park Edition
BMW E92 M3
I do not see pin striping done anymore, so this was fun to catch.
E36 race car
BMW M2
These decals are a kit available from BMW.
BMW G80 M3
The CCA was out in force.
Alpina B5
An E34 Alpina B5
BMW E30 M3
BMW E30 M3
E30 invasion.
BMW CSL
CSL goodness
G80 M3
This is Frozen Brilliant White.
BMW G82 M4
A Fire Orange M4 looked great next to the E92.
BMW 8 Series
The original 8.
BMW E92 M3
A Limerock Park Edition E92 M3. One of these just sold at auction for over $200,000. Stop this behavior.
BMW M Coupe
Clown shoe.
E36 M3 GTR
The E36 M3 GTR is a rare bird to see.
BMW Motorrad
A rolling dyno was available for some bike testing.
SIGFEST
BMW M1000 RR
BMW’s first M bike, what’s not to love?
BMW E30 M3
Thanks to BMW for hosting!

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I use Nikon camera bodies and lenses, a Westcott Ice Light 2, Manfrotto tripod, B + W filters and an iMac Pro to make the art you see here.

Email me at mike@machineswithsouls.com with any questions. Follow along on Instagram @machineswithsouls

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