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BMW 6-series coupe concept revealed

BMW AG will give its new 6 series coupe a more classically elegant form than the bullish appearance of the existing car.

The new-generation 6 series will debut later this month at the Paris auto show as a concept that will be very close to the production car.

The concept´s refined styling was first shown on the four-door Grand Coupe concept in April at the Beijing motor show and it provides the 6 series with clear visual links to other recent BMW models.

Most notably, there´s a strong resemblance to the 5 series with which it shares rear-wheel-drive underpinnings.

The new 6 series continues BMW´s design revolution under Adrian von Hooydonk, whose mold-breaking Z9 Grand Turismo concept car first shown in 1999 laid down the styling template for today´s 6 series.

“With this car, I feel like I have come full circle. I was lucky enough to influence today´s 6 series, and I´ve also been heavily involved in defining the new look of the coupe concept,” he said.

Despite its billing as a concept, von Hooydonk confirms that the production version of the new 6 series will get only minor changes, including different mirror housings, tailpipes and less flamboyant wheels. “What you see is largely what we intend to place into production,” he said.

The 6 series receives what von Hooydonk describes as “a shark-like nose” featuring highly technical headlamp graphics (to be offered with optional LED corona lenses like those featured on the concept), a forward-leaning kidney grille and a full air duct within the lower part of the bumper designed to accentuate width.

The long hood -- a design cue reflecting the 6 series´ longitudinal engine mounting -- is more contoured than before, and like the rest of the car´s steel body, it boasts tauter surfacing than today´s somewhat bloated-looking model.

The addition of chrome around the side window graphic, which is virtually similar to that of the outgoing model, is aimed at enhancing overall elegance, giving the new 6 series a more upmarket flavor.

At the rear there are characteristic L-shaped tail lamps that use LED graphics similar to those seen on the 5 series. The trunk is also more integrated than before and now boasts a subtle spoiler integrated into the metal.

A fabric roof convertible version is also due in 2011.

BMW hasn´t provided official figures, but company insiders confirm that the new 6 series is virtually the same length though it´s a good deal wider and slightly lower than the current car.

It also boasts an incremental increase in wheelbase along with wider tracks front and rear--measures that help ensure the confident stance of the outgoing model is retained. The added dimensions also boost interior accommodation, most notably in the rear.

Driver´s car

Inside, BMW´s design team gave the new 6 series a unique asymmetrical dashboard that channels the German carmaker´s early models by adding a center console angled toward the driver.

“It´s a coupe, a driver´s car,” von Hooydonk said. “We think it should have a more driver-centric feel than our regular models.”

BMW is not revealing the engine line, though the 6 series will use an eight-speed automatic gearbox. Topping the range will be a successor to the M6 running a twin-turbocharged V8 in combination with a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox.


Posted on Tuesday, September 21, 2010 @ 10:26:43 LKT


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