BMW i8 Will Set the Pace in Upcoming Formula E Championship

Nearly every professional racer has a safety car lying in wait in the pits just in case something goes wrong. The car itself tends to vary depending on the type of racing. For example, Formula One gets the Mercedes SLS, DTM gets the BMW M4, and IndyCar gets the Honda Accord.

About the  Formula E Championship

The BMW i8 is the Formula E safety car

2014 BMW i8

For the new FIA Formula E Championship, the safety car will be even more appropriate than any of these: a BMW i8. Formula E is intended to be the highest class of competition for single-seat, electrically-powered racing cars—essentially the electric counterpart of Formula 1. So it makes sense that the FIA would choose a modified hybrid sports car for its safety car.

The i3 will also be joining it as part of the support fleet, and both will feature inductive charging. What this means that while one is out setting the pace or picking up drivers, the other will be charging—wirelessly—in the pits. Not bad!

Of course, you don’t have to attend a Formula E race to see an i3 or i8 in action. Just stop by Casey BMW instead. It’s free!

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Its that time! Fall Car Maintenance Tips

As the kids head back to school and you get amped up for football season, don’t forget to take care of your BMW. Here are a few simple fall car maintenance tips to keep you running smoothly.

  • Fall Car Maintenance - Check the Spare TireReplace your wiper blades. As fall arrives, it usually brings more rain. Your wiper blades should be swapped out at least once a year and fall is a great time to do this.
  • Check your spare. While most cars these days have automatic tire pressure sensors to let you know when your tire pressure is low, don’t forget about your spare tire. If you get a flat tire, but your spare isn’t inflated properly, it won’t do you much good. Pop your trunk and give your spare a check.
  • Replace the air filter. Your car’s engine air filter should be changed twice a year. Having a dirty filter hampers your car’s fuel economy and performance.
  • Fall Car Maintenance - Battery HealthCheck your lights. As the days get shorter, you don’t want to be stuck out on the road in the dark. Be sure all your lights are working, both in the front and in the back.
  • Check your battery. Be sure your battery terminals are clean and there are no loose cables.

Of course, all of these basic maintenance steps are things many people do themselves, but if you want us to give you a hand and make sure your car is in tip-top shape, schedule an appointment with the friendly service department here at Casey BMW.

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Jay Leno Auctions Unique BMW i8 for $825,000

Autoweek is reporting that the 2015 BMW i8 hybrid made quite an impression at this year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, with the first deliveries of the all-new vehicle being taken by select VIPs. Also, a one-of-a-kind model was auctioned off for $825,000 by comedian and car enthusiast Jay Leno.

Jay Leno BMW i8 auction

This particular i8 had BMW Individual frozen gray metallic paint with a Dalbergia brown leather interior and BMW i blue accents. The $825,000 bid was donated to Monterey County youth.

The i8 has a turbocharged 1.5-liter gasoline engine and an electric motor, the two of which combine to produce 357-horsepower and 420 lb-ft of torque. The i8 can go from 0 to 60 mph in just 4.2 seconds, and can do all that while getting an impressive 76 mpg-e.

BMW i8 in Newport News

2014 BMW i8 - Jay Leno BMW i8 auction

BMW i8 – available soon from Casey BMW

The BMW i8 hybrid will be going on sale this fall, and when it does, you can get yours here at Casey BMW – and we promise that ours will be a lot cheaper!

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BMW Record Sales in July 2014 Have Been Building All Year

will the i8 contribute to BMW record sales?

BMW i8

GoUpstate.com is reporting that BMW set a new record for U.S. sales in July 2014. BMW of North America sold 32,220 vehicles in July, a 7% increase over the 29,993 units that the company sold last year in July 2013.

During the first seven months of this year, BMW delivered 213,754 vehicles to customers, compared to 202,780 units delivered during the same period in 2013 – more than a 5% increase.

BMW Record Sales

“The sales momentum that’s been building all year reached its year-to-date peak in July, setting a new BMW record for the month,” said the president and CEO of BMW of North America, Ludwig Willisch. “There’s certainly more to come, especially with the new X4 and 4 Series Gran Coupe now hitting the market and our revolutionary hybrid-electric BMW i8 on the horizon.”

To test drive the increasingly popular X4, BMW i8, or any of the other great models that are being sold in record numbers, stop by Casey BMW today.

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Rally Driver Jumps From Car While BMW i3 Parks Itself

BMW i3 Parks Itself

No Driver Required – for parking, anyway.

The 2014 BMW i3 is a luxury vehicle that comes complete with a wide range of features. One of them is called Parking Assistant, which helps you fit into tight spaces when you are looking for parking. A radar-based sensor on the front bumper detects if the i3 can fit into a parking spot and then alerts the driver, who only has to stop and continually press the Parking Assist button to make the vehicle do all the work of parallel parking.

BMW Parks Itself

Here’s a video, courtesy of Car Scoops, that shows a flexible Romanian rally driver named Vali Porcisteanu going to great lengths to prove the new BMW’s self-parking capabilities. In the brief one minute clip, Porcisteanu somehow rigs the Parking Assist button so that it will stay pressed while he climbs out of the front window and watches the i3 parallel park with no one inside it.

It’s a fascinating glimpse into the future of self-driving automobiles, which BMW is at the forefront of through technological innovations such as Parking Assistant.

If you would like to see the Park Assistant feature in action, stop by Casey BMW and take the i3 on a test drive (although we will ask that you please remain seated inside the car at all times).

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BMW Expanding Electric-Car Fast Charging Networks

Though the benefits of driving an electric car can be pretty obvious (saving the environment, tax write-off, money in your pocket), many car buyers hesitate when they are faced with the reality of purchasing one. One of the main hesitations is the amount of time it takes to charge an electric car. To battle this key obstacle in the acceptance of electric cars, BMW has recently launched two new campaigns to make electric-car fast charging more acceptable than ever.

First Iniative for Electric-Car Fast Charging

The first move occurred this week, when BMW revealed a deal with U.S.-based NRG Energy Inc., allowing BMW i3 electric cars to recharge their batteries for free through 2015 at NRG eVgo charging stations, which offer fast-recharging, in California.

Alongside this new deal, the German carmaker will be collaborating with Robert Bosch GmbH, a German engineering and automotive-technology company, to offer a compact fast-charging station that will be sold to BMW dealers and other businesses for $6,548, which is about one-fifth the price of other fast-charging systems.

With this move towards introducing fast charging networks to more individuals, BMW is making their all-electric i3 more appealing than ever before. Make sure to stop in to Casey BMW today to receive more information about the BMW i3 and to give it a test drive!

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BMW is the largest exporter of cars from the US

With BMW’s push to increase carbon fiber production and production of the X7 at the Spartanburg, SC facility, they must be planning on making a lot of cars, right?  Turns out, BMW is already the largest US exporter of cars.

BMW X6 Passenger Interior

BMW X6 Passenger Interior

Business for BMW is booming.  The auto group sold more than 1,000,000 vehicles in the first half of 2014 alone, an increase of almost 7% over the first six months of 2013.

“June is the latest in a long line of record months and the figures confirm we’re on the right track to achieve our target of delivering more than 2 million vehicles in 2014,” stated Ian Robertson of the BMW AG Board of Management, Sales and Marketing BMW. “We aim to continue our sales growth in the second half of the year, when exciting new vehicles like the BMW X4 and BMW 2 Series Active Tourer will come onto the market.”

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BMW opened the South Carolina plant 20 years ago in 1994.  Though the company is based in Munich, the choice to build the plant in the US came from increasing energy costs and labor rules in Germany.  The plant was built to provide more direct links between the departments of the assembly plant so the production halls, body shop, paint shop and other sections could work more efficiently together.

Spartanburg was chosen as a production hub thanks in part to its location near Interstate 85 and a nearby airport for cargo deliveries.  The town’s proximity to the Charleston seaport, crucial for engine delivery as well as the beginning of the export process.

Rising costs in Germany (German auto workers costing the company 47% more than American workers) made the choice to expand the Spartanburg plant an easy one.  BMW plans on investing

In 1994, BMW hoped to produce 50,000 cars a year.  Now, after continued and upcoming investment for a grand total of $7.3 billion, BMW is looking to produce as many as 450,000 vehicles per year and provide 8,800 jobs.  Currently, 70% of the cars manufactured in Spartanburg are exported to over 140 countries.

The plant builds almost all of BMW’s SUV (sport utility vehicles) including models X3, X4, X5, X6 and the new flagship model X7.

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2015 BMW X6 is the Luxury Crossover Vehicle You Have Been Waiting For

When the 2015 BMW X6 is introduced later this summer, we at Casey BMW want to make sure you are fully prepared for your test drive.  Updates for the 2015 version are elegantly applied; while maintaining the 2014 model’s shape, stylish interior and exterior details coupled with powerful drivetrain additions will make this crossover a must-have.

BMW X6: Luxury Crossover

The BMW X6 was introduced 6 years ago as a Sports Activity Coupe and has been stealing the hearts of luxury crossover fans since.  This sporty car provides unexpected functionality and sheer driving pleasure.

The mid-size crossover segment includes cars that combine the attributes of a sports utility vehicle (SUV) like high ground clearance and all-weather ability with the positioning and styling of a coupe including the sloping roof line.

2015 BMW X6 Updates

Striving for greater aerodynamics, the X6 design features include air curtains incorporated in the outboard intakes as well as a coupe roofline and air deflectors on the wheel arches.  Located on the fenders are air breathers, designed and placed to improve ventilation and engine efficiency while providing a sporty detail.

The athletic presence of the X6 is facilitated with graceful crease lines running down the body.  While the last model X6 had one crease line, the 2015 model incorporates two with an additional line rising from the arch of the air breather.

As a result of the aerodynamic and design updates, the 2015 X6 looks dynamic even while parked.

Since the X6 is based on the Sports Utility Coupe design, both the front and rear interior seats offer space.  Various storage options are strategically positioned throughout the cabin.  For extra storage space, the rear bench folds in a 40/20/40 split, allowing for an additional 53.6 cubic feet of cargo space.

Two convenience features stand out for this model:  the sunroof and the power rear gate.  With the key on your person, the power tailgate will open with just a touch of the trunk handle, great for when your arms are full.  The sunroof, a standard feature, has been updated for the 2015 model to include 5 more inches of length.

Twin power turbo engine

We haven’t even had a chance to tell you about the BMW ConnectedDrive or the Xdrive 50i engine that accelerates from 0-100mph in 4.8 seconds.  Those features are best experienced by taking a test drive at Casey BMW.  Keep an eye on our website for the release of the new X6 then stop by and experience the luxury yourself!

 

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BMW Laser Headlamps Are First to Market

When BMW says #HelloFuture, they aren’t kidding around.  In the rush between two great automakers – Audi and BMW – to bring laser lighting technology to their cars, BMW laser headlamps made it to market first.

BMW included laser headlamps in concept cars over the years before announcing that the i8 would be the first production car to include them.  On June 5, 2014 in Munich, Germany, BMW delivered the first i8 electric vehicles with laser lighting technology.

Why BMW laser headlamps? Warning:  Science Ahead

Headlamps, or headlights, have gone from the early incandescent bulbs to halogens to the modern LEDs (light-emitting diodes).  New laser lighting for cars aren’t quite the lasers shown in sci fi movies that blow up things, or even like your cat’s favorite toy.

BMW laser headlamps use three blue-laser diodes aimed at a set of mirrors that send the light through a cloud of phosphorus.  Phosphorus is a natural element that glows when properly stimulated.  The phosphorus emits a brilliant white light that gets bounced off reflectors and diffused to shine out the front of your vehicle.  By the time it leaves your car, the laser is reduced to safe, non-explosion levels.

Laser headlights can shine up to 1,000 times brighter than LED headlights and display light close to sunlight, providing a farther, clearer view at night. Estimates say laser headlamps consume 2/3 to ½ of the power as well as weighing less.

Visit HowStufWorks.com for a longer, more detailed article on laser headlamps and how they work.

Laser is an acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation.

Enough science, already. I want them.

For now, the US version of the i8 will include regular LED headlights.  US regulations require headlamp intensity to be no greater than 150,000 candelas; in Europe, the intensity can go up to 430,000 candelas.

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2011 BMW 3 Series Named Best Certified Pre-Owned Luxury Car

When the 2011 BMW 3 Series was first introduced, car review site Edmunds.com called the car the ‘best entry-level sedan’ and ‘one of the finest automobiles on the globe’.  The best-selling luxury car has gotten a new accolade after 3 years on the market: Kelley Blue Book’s website www.KBB.com has ranked the BMW 3 Series its number 1 top choice on their list of 10 Best Certified Pre-Owned Luxury Cars under $30,000.

KBB.com’s list included 10 other standouts from the 2011 model year, all luxury cars, from manufacturers such as Audi, Lexus and Infiniti.

Edmunds 2011 BMW 3 Series review noted its turbo powered yet easily-driven engine and other systems for its handling balanced with fuel efficiency.  The availability of a diesel engine was also a positive note.

The 3 Series was offered in three body styles: sedan, wagon, coupe and convertible.

BMW CPO program

Certified pre-owned (CPO) programs allow drivers access to used luxury cars for the price of another manufacturer’s new model.  The BMW Certified program ensures used car buyers can feel assured the vehicle has been thoroughly inspected, and peace of mind is protected with the BMW CPO Certification and CPO Warranty.

CPO Certification starts with later model year cars that have less than 60,000 miles.  Those cars are then tested against the comprehensive BMW Certified Pre-Owned vehicle inspection checklist by a trained technician.  During the inspection, every system and part is tested from transmission to headrests.

Each BMW CPO vehicle comes with a protection plan.  The basic warranties covers the car for a total of 6 years/100,000 miles: the CPO warranty covers 2 years/50,000 miles (whichever comes first) after the 4year/50,000 new vehicle limited warranty expires.  Another protection plan, BMW Certified Pre-Owned Elite, covers newer model year cars with lower mileage.

Learn more at the Casey BMW Certified Pre-Owned Program website, or search Casey BMW’s current inventory of Certified Pre-Owned Cars.

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