Archive for bmw x6

BMW: what’s next?

Posted in Alt-Fuel, Car conception, Crap cars, Desirable machines, General opinions, Upcoming cars with tags , , , , , , , on 16/04/2010 by Alexander

I am not a BMW fan. They make some excellent cars, though nowadays the entire range is all ugly, probably a consequence of ex-chief designer Chris Bangle’s atrocious taste. BMW, like Mercedes and Audi, thrives as a badge-brand, with cars no better than rivals yet insultingly more expensive, thus more attractive to morons.

But before the said morons start leaving stupid comments, let me say more. Before the 90’s, BMW made beautiful cars. The old 1602’s were a regular sight here in Portugal, and I miss them and yelp for joy when I see one running. The E34 5-series was and is a properly good-looking car, that’s easily prettier than most of what came after, and not just in comparison to the following 5-series or other BMW ranges for that matter.

If there’s anything that BMW do undeniably well, it’s creating engines. Their early 90’s 2.5 litre turbodiesel engine was revolutionary (525tds, remember?), and today they still churn out a host of amazing powerplants. And some pretty amazingly-engined vehicles are coming soon too.

And this is an interesting dilemma for me. On one hand, the Bavarian brand is making really head-turning stuff, like the Dynamics-Efficiency-complicated-name thing, while on the other, it offends good taste everywhere by farting out the X-range. The most recent example is their killing the next 6-series M-version for a V8, pollution-farter, while on the other their making a range below the 1-series (probably an Isetta-inspired affair) and a triturbo diesel engine.

Let me delve into each matter shortly. Firstly, the 6-series is something I’ve always wanted to hate, but shouldn’t and can’t. It’s a coupé, and it’s not exactly gut-churningly ugly, as other BMW’s. It also has a diesel in its midst, which gives it a rare status, i.e., a grand tourer that does more than just chew fuel. It’s a well-balanced, interesting coupé, although it’s Achilles heel (apart from the badge) is it’s obscene price tag. And at the risk of sounding incoherent, I don’t think it’s a good idea to leave the M6 out of the next generation. Yes, M-BMW’s are “fuel-chewingly” mad, but all car models have a big-engined, multi-hundred horsepower version in their range. Not having one seriously cheapens the whole line-up of 6-series models. I think this is silliness on BMW’s part.

On the other hand, the prospect of a triple-turbo engine sounds insanely cool. The thought of accelerating and feeling turbo after turbo kick in is exhilarating. Let’s wait and see what the Bavarian brand has in store.


Citroen: back in the s**t

Posted in Crap cars, Upcoming cars with tags , , , , , , , , , on 06/02/2010 by Alexander

This can be a slanted blog. I freely admit I like Citroens, and it shows. Saab nearly hit the shitter, Toyota went from super-reliable to utterly liable overnight, and I didn’t breathe a word on the subject. But Citroen announces some pathetic plan for the future and I start tapping away at my keyboard. No other carmaker (perhaps apart from Volvo) can prompt me more to write than the Marque, though if the following piece of news is true, this could change.

It would seem Citroen is returning to its dingy days of corporate, accountant-run projects. After the renaissance of its characteristic quirkiness, embodied by cars like the C3 Pluriel, the C4 and C6, Citroen’s decided it’s time to cash in. After announcing the Essentialle line, which was supposed to be dedicated to making cheap, simple cars and be a counterpoint to the luxury DS-badged line-up and represented by the C-Cactus concept, Citroen have chickened out of the basic concept:

Research has uncovered aspects of the car that potential buyers were not happy with. The lack of dashboard and the way its instruments are clustered around the steering column were said to be particularly off-putting.

Citroen is also considering fitting electric windows instead of the concept’s wind-up units, which reduce complexity.

At least the comments on the article were far more lucid than Citroen’s judgement on this issue, expressing that what Citroen is doing is basically alienating their regular customers while failing to garner new ones. And it’s a pretty clear most people who take part in the aforementioned research are idiots.

And the utmost worst was reserved for last. Of all production cars in existence, the only one I would want, given the choice, is the Citroen C6. It’s the Citroen flagship, and the defining model of the Citroen’s line-up and the standard by which the quirky-factor can be measured. And make no mistake, if Citroen cock up the C6, all is lost.

Citroen is also working on a successor to the C6, although the replacement will, according to Banzet, be “something different”. It will still be a flagship car, but of an as-yet-undisclosed format, though some kind of crossover seems possible.

A crossover. The most pointless, stupid, pathetic brainfart of the car industry of the last two decades. Big Citroens are the epitome of innovation and style, and they’re a beacon of good taste for those who can’t stand the nouveau-riche vulgarity of BMW’s, Audis and Mercedes. To give it a format that’s only driven by morons is to defeat its point. To drive a big Citroen you have to have intelligence and taste. To drive a crossover you have to have no passion for cars, only for flashiness and feeling taller than other people. And these people who will go for SUV’s and such utter crap aren’t going to buy a Citroen. They’re going to buy stuff like a BMW X6 or a Q7, because they’re only made to sport badges. If anything, a big Citroen driver shows that he/she doesn’t care about the fricking badge, because he/she knows that people who are impressed by badges can only be shallow, slimy weasels.

So Citroen, show some sense. Don’t let a brand that probably has more legendary cars to its name than any other fall into the muck and lunacy of the rest of the herd.