Thursday, January 21, 2010

Hot News: BMW to Release 6-Series 4-Door Coupe?

After years of turning the other, four-door, cheek, BMW is preparing to hit back at Mercedes-Benz's big-selling, slinky CLS four-door limousine.

Insiders insist BMW will build a four-door version of its upcoming 6-Series alongside the traditional coupe and convertible in an effort to stem the flow of cash attracted by Benz’s sexier E-Class. And it could come as soon as late 2011.

While its arch-rival has made piles of money by dropping the CLS's unique body and interior on top of the existing E-Class architecture, BMW has long explained that its 5-Series was sufficiently sporty and good-looking to compete with both Benzes.

But with the second-generation CLS previewed in sculpture at this month's Detroit Motor Show and Audi confirming it will build its own big, four-door "coupe", the A7, BMW has been forced to act.

"There won't be a coupe version of the new 5-Series; just a Touring and a long-wheelbase," our source confirmed, "But if I was you, I'd be looking very closely at the next 6-Series to see where our CLS rival will come from."

Sources have confirmed that BMW has spent the last few years developing its "Backbone" large-car engineering strategy to finally allow it to compete with the swoopy Benz. The Backbone strategy has appeared too late to underpin the Concept CS (pictured) that had all the makings of a competitor to the CLS. Hopes for that concept reaching production were dashed as BMW battened down in preparation for the Global Financial Crisis.

While the last-generation of the 7-Series and 5-Series shared very few parts, 5-Series Project Director, Josef Wüst confirmed the new 5- and 7- share around 55 percent, while the 5- and the 5-Series GT share closer to 70 percent.

"With backbone, a CLS rival could be built very easily. It makes it a difficult question for marketing and product planning, but a very easy question for technology and engineering," Wüst admitted.

"The 5 is already close to a coupe in its design. If we would do this kind of car, the character of a coupe must come out much, much more because it has to be a big step and then it is not for the traditional 5-Series customer.

"It has to be something different."

Thanks to: Car Point

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