750i/750iL – March
BMW will start 2016 in style by introducing the flagship variants in its new-generation 7 Series range.
The 750i and 750Li inject some twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8 grunt into the luxury German limousine to the tune of 330kW and 650Nm, launching the duo from 0-100km/h in 4.7 seconds.
Priced from $289,600 in regular 750i spec and $312,700 for the long-wheelbase 750Li, the pair comes standard with 20-inch alloy wheels, laser headlights with selective beam control, dynamic damper control, TV reception for the infotainment system, and the Executive Drive Pro system that includes automatic electromechanical roll stabilisation and anticipatory chassis control.
Additionally, the 750Li gains heated, ventilated and electrically controlled rear seats, a massage function built into the front and rear seats, panoramic sunroof, and a rear seat entertainment package.
M2 – April
The BMW M2 will sneak in under $90K when it lands in Australia in April.
The entry-grade M2 Pure six-speed manual will kick off from $89,900, while the flagship BMW M2 (available with either the manual or a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission) will cost from $98,900 (both plus on-road costs).
Under the bonnet of both is a turbocharged 272kW/465Nm 3.0-litre inline-six that (when paired with the dual-clutch) launches the baby M car from 0-100km/h in just 4.3 seconds.
Flared wheel arches accommodate wider front and rear tracks, 19-inch forged aluminium wheels and Michelin Pilot Super Sport tyres and aggressive brakes (380mm front discs with four-piston calipers, 370mm rear discs with two-piston calipers).
Strong and lightweight aluminium is used throughout the front and rear suspension structures as well as the reinforcing plate between the front axle sub frame and the side sills.
BMW’s Active M Differential is also employed, as is the M Dynamic Mode that allows a little wheel slip for “controlled drifts” on the track.
X5 xDrive40e – May
Plug-in technology will extend beyond BMW’s niche ‘i’ sub-brand in 2016 with the introduction of the X5 xDrive40e and the 330e.
Rather than being a volume-driver, the X5 xDrive40e will be a technological halo for the German brand.
The all-wheel-drive X5 xDrive40e features a drivetrain consisting of a four-cylinder turbo petrol engine and an electric motor with a total system output of 230kW.
It achieves a combined fuel consumption figure of 3.3 litres per 100 kilometres and completes the sprint from 0-100 km/h in 6.8 seconds.
It can be recharged by connecting to any standard domestic power socket or a BMW i Wallbox, as well as at public charging stations.
When its high-voltage battery is fully charged, the vehicle has a range of up to 31km in the all-electric mode with a limited maximum speed of 120 km/h.
330e – May
The BMW 330e, along with the X5 xDrive40e SUV, will bring plug-in technology to the first of the German brand’s regular model lines in 2016.
The 330e features a 135kW 2.0-litre petrol engine and an 80kW electric motor for a total drivetrain output of 185kW and 420Nm.
It has a claimed electric-only driving range of 35km, and a combined fuel consumption rating of just 2.2L/100km under the European testing scheme.
Pricing and complete specifications will be confirmed closer to its introduction in May.
M4 GTS – June
Just a handful of examples of the motorsport-inspired BMW M4 GTS will arrive in Australia in June, making it one of the brand’s most exclusive ever offerings in our country.
The M4 GTS’s uprated engine develops 368kW of power and 600Nm of torque, an increase of 51kW and 50Nm over the standard M4.
Weight is down to 1510kg thanks to the use of carbonfibre-reinforce plastic for the bonnet, front splitter, roof, rear spoiler, rear diffuser, and instrument panel bracing tube. BMW has also removed the M4’s rear seats.
BMW claims the M4 GTS is good for a 3.8-second 0-100km/h sprint, making it three tenths quicker than standard car.
The wheels, tyres and brakes are all optimised for track use, while the cabin sports carbonfibre bucket seats and Alcantara and orange trim throughout.
Global production is limited to just 700 units.
1 Series update – second half
BMW’s 1 Series hatchback line-up is set to get an update in the second half of 2016, though little is known about it at this stage.
After a significant mid-life update in June 2015, the 2016 upgrades are expected to be focused predominantly on pricing and equipment, ensuring BMW’s smallest model remains competitive with key rivals, the Audi A3 and Mercedes-Benz A-Class.
The updates should mirror changes to the 2 Series range, due around the same time.
2 Series update – second half
The BMW 2 Series range will benefit from an update in the second half of 2016.
Little is known about the upgrades at this stage, though any specification changes should mirror those introduced to the 1 Series hatch range, which is also due for an update around the same time.
Some design changes may be on the cards for the 2 Series coupe and convertible models, given they’re so far stylistically unchanged from their global launch in 2013.
3 Series Gran Turismo update – second half
The BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo will benefit from a series of updates in the second half of next year that will bring it into line with the regular 3 Series sedan and Touring range.
Expect some subtle design changes, along with significant equipment upgrades and some drivetrain revisions.
Outputs for the entry-level 320i GT will remain the same (135kW/270Nm), while the 320d GT will gain 5kW and 20Nm for 140kW and 400Nm in total.
The 330i GT will replace the 328i GT at the top of the range, adding 5kW for peak outputs of 185kW and 350Nm.
4 Series update – second half
The BMW 4 Series will come into line with the 3 Series line-up when the updated range is introduced in the second half of 2016.
The 420i and 420d variants will continue as the entry points to the mid-sized coupe and convertible range, while the 428i and 435i variants will make way for the new 430i and 440i models.
Expect small styling revisions, along with enhanced specification across the line-up.
i3 update – second half
A new battery pack for the BMW i3 will give the electrified city car a range boost in the second half of next year.
As we reported in November, it’s understood BMW has developed a new lithium-ion battery with a higher power density.
The improvements will reportedly increase the i3’s pure electric driving range from 130-160km to approximately 200km on a single charge.
The new battery should feature in both the EV and the range-extender i3 variants.