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For those who still prefer a formal limousine instead of a SAV or SUV, BMW Malaysia offers a new 740Le xDrive M Sport which arrives in Malaysian showrooms this weekend together with the locally-assembled X7 XDrive40i Pure Excellence. Like the X7, the 740Le xDrive M Sport is also assembled in Malaysia at the BMW facility in Kedah, and is priced from RM591,503.05 (without insurance) until June 30, 2021.

The locally-assembled 740Le is differentiated from the CBU version with M Sport treatment. This is largely from the M Sport Aerodynamic Package which includes 19-inch M light alloy wheels in Double-Spoke style 647 M Bicolour, and M Sport brakes. A new striking rocker panel also underlines the sporty appeal of the BMW flagship.

2021 BMW 740Le xDrive M Sport CKD

Customers can choose from 4 classic colours for the exterior finish which has the Individual High-gloss Shadow Line. These colours are Mineral White, Carbon Black Metallic, Donington Grey, and Bernina Grey with Amber effect. Depending on the colour chosen, interior themes have Black or Cognac stitching for the exclusive Nappa leather upholstery.

From EfficientDynamics to Electromobility
BMW Group Malaysia has long been a promoter of electrification, a progression from its EfficientDynamics technology which has pursued sustainable mobility since 2007. It has been a leader of electromobility in the market, putting over 20,000 vehicles with hybrid and full electric powertrains on the road, and these include the 7-Series.

2021 BMW 740Le xDrive M Sport CKD

394 bhp/600 Nm… but goes 36 kms/litre
For the 740Le xDrive M Sport, the 3-litre in-line 6-cylinder petrol engine is paired with an electric motor which draws energy from a lithium-ion battery pack. The combustion engine produces 286 bhp/450 Nm while the electric motor can generate up to 83 kW (equivalent to 113 hp) with peak torque at 265 Nm.

The combined system output of 394 bhp/600 Nm gives the car a capability of going from standstill to 100 km/h within a claimed 5.1 seconds. The top speed is beyond 250 km/h, but BMW has decided to limit it to that speed.

Such performance, in the past, would have meant rather high consumption. However, with the hybrid powertrain and 8-speed Steptronic transmission delivering power to all four wheels, the claimed fuel consumption is as much as 36 kms/litre.

Interior appropriate for a flagship
As would be expected of a flagship model, the 740Le xDrive M Sport has an elegant interior which is appointed with  ‘Fineline’ Fine Wood Trim in Black with High Gloss Metal Effect and the BMW Individual Alcantara Anthracite headliner. A Sky Lounge panorama glass roof is standard with roller sunblinds for the rear side windows to provide privacy.

2021 BMW 740Le xDrive M Sport CKD

2021 BMW 740Le xDrive M Sport CKD

While it is likely that the owner will spend travelling time mostly in the back, on the occasions when he does drive the car himself, he will find it has a sporty feel with the M-Sport steering wheel and a host of driver assistance systems to make driving safer and more enjoyable. Besides the comprehensive array of meters, there is also a Head-Up Display on the windscreen glass.

As with many BMW models, the 740Le’s ‘command centre’ is the BMW Live Cockpit Professional with a fully-digital 12.3-inch Instrument Display. This is complemented by the BMW Navigation System Professional on a 10.25-inch Control Display. Voice commands and BMW Gesture Control help improve driving safety as the hands need not leave the steering wheel so often.

2021 BMW 740Le xDrive M Sport CKD

Standard equipment includes the Rear-seat Entertainment Professional with 10-inch touchscreen monitors mounted on each headrest of the front seat. These monitors can provide personalised entertainment throughout the journey and can also mirror some of the displays from the dashboard panel.

2021 BMW 740Le xDrive M Sport CKD

Financing and booking
The 740Le xDrive M Sport can be purchased using one of the financial packages offered by BMW Group Financial Services Malaysia and monthly instalment plans start from RM 6,558.00 (terms and conditions apply). Booking can be done with a deposit of RM5,000  via BMW Shop Online (from May 11, 2021, onwards).

Every owner of the 740Le xDrive M Sport is promised a complete premium ownership experience. This includes peace of mind with a 5-year/unlimited mileage warranty, BMW Roadside Assistance and Accident Hotline and the BMW Group Loyalty+ Mobile App – BMW Privileges Card. BMW Service Online is available and there’s also a Free Scheduled Service Programme.

Locally-assembled BMW X7 xDrive40i Pure Excellence launched today, priced from RM673,323

Visit www.bhpetrol.com.my for more information.

It used to be that only models that could sell in sufficiently large volumes would be assembled locally, limiting the number of models that could enjoy preferential taxation policies. With BMW Group Malaysia, that meant just the 3-Series and 5-Series, with the 7-Series having been assembled briefly. But it’s different these days as the company keeps widening its BMW and MINI range of models assembled locally each year at its facility in Kedah.

The latest to be added is the X7 xDrive40i Pure Excellence, which is the model that the top of the SAV (Sports Activity Vehicle) range. According to Hans de Visser, BMW Group Malaysia’s new Managing Director, this move to localise the assembly of one of our largest models in the BMW X range further demonstrates the company’s longstanding confidence in Malaysia’s potential as a regional hub for the luxury automobile segment.

“We are proud to be redefining the ‘Story of Progressive Luxury’ with a new addition to our portfolio of locally-assembled vehicles in Malaysia. The new model is also a testament to our commitment in the local market, as we further innovate our fleet of premium Sports Activity Vehicles to complement the most luxurious of lifestyles in Malaysia,” said Mr. de Visser.

Similar looks as CBU model
The locally-assembled X7 has a similar appearance to the model that was introduced two years ago, with the kidney grille creating a strong presence with its massive size. The massiveness is contrasted by slender BMW Laserlight headlights that can give strong illumination up to 600 metres ahead.

With an overall length of 5.1 metres and overall width of 2 metres, the X7 is a really big vehicle with an obviously spacious cabin containing three rows of seats. As a flagship variant, it features the opulent ‘Crafted Clarity’ handmade diamond-cut trim element and a range of standard equipment including a sport leather steering wheel and electrically adjustable comfort seats.

Large instrument panel with HUD
The BMW Live Cockpit Professional, which runs on the BMW Operating System 7.0, combines the fully digital, user-configurable 12.3-inch instrument cluster with an equally large central Control Display with touchscreen functionality. The most important information the driver would need while in motion is also projected on the windscreen by the Head-Up Display. And to minimise taking the hands away from the steering wheel, there’s the voice-controlled BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant and BMW Gesture Control.

Other highlights of the X7 include the Welcome Light Carpet feature, 5-zone air conditioning, a Harman Kardon Surround Sound System with 16 loudspeakers, and electric roller blinds for each window. The Rear Entertainment Professional system is also available while the spaciousness is further enhanced by the large panoramic sunroof complemented by large windows.

While the doors feature a soft-close, the tailgate is powered to open and close on its own without the owner having to even touch the door. When open, there’s easy access to a variable-volume luggage compartment with up to 2,120 litres available with the backrests folded down.

Those who have an iPhone can make use of the BMW Digital Key which not only locks/unlock the doors but can also program certain vehicle functions with limitations, in the event it is driven by someone other than the owner. There’s also wireless charging for compatible mobilephones as well as smartphone connectivity.

3-litre TwinPower Turbo engine
Under the long bonnet is a 3-litre 6-cylinder petrol engine which can produce up to 340 bhp/450 Nm. With an 8-speed Steptronic Sport transmission, the 2,320 kg SAV can get from 0 to 100 km/h in a claimed 6.1 seconds. Fuel consumption at its best is said to be 10.5 kms/litre which means a full 83-litre tank should give a range of almost 900 kms.

The xDrive badge means all four wheels are powered, not just for off-road driving but also to maximise traction, agility and handling stability (especially on slippery surfaces). Additionally, there is Dynamic Stability Control which takes note of the load on board as registered by the air suspension sensors and factors this data into braking modulation for optimum stopping performance. Executive Drive Pro with active roll stabilisation is included as standard.

Assisting the driver
The X7 driver can enjoy the drive while electronic systems help make mundane tasks easier. For example, the Reversing Assistant assists in safely manoeuvring out of a tight parking space, while the Driving Assistant has a comprehensive range of functions to help avoid accidents. The Active Cruise Control varies cruising speed to maintain a safe gap with other vehicles and can operate right down to standstill.

The X7 xDrive40i Pure Excellence will be in the showrooms from this weekend and if you already know you want one and it’s just a matter of choosing the colour, here are the exterior/interior choices available: Black Sapphire and Sophisto Grey exterior with Cognac Leather Vernasca upholstery; Phytonic Blue and Manhattan Metallic exteriors with all-Black design-perforated Leather Vernasca interior; and Leather Vernasca in Coffee with Black design perforations exclusively with the Mineral White exterior finish.

Monthly instalments from RM7,468
Priced from RM673,323.61 (excluding insurance), booking can be done via BMW Shop Online with just RM5,000 but due to a scheduled website maintenance at this time, the facility will only be from May 11, 2021 onwards. Those who use BMW Group Financial Services Malaysia can choose from various financing packages with monthly instalment plans starting from RM7,468 (terms and conditions apply).

BMW Group Malaysia was the leader in the premium automotive segment in 2020

Visit www.bhpetrol.com.my for more information.

Meanwhile, the Penang branch of Auto Bavaria, an authorised BMW, Motorrad and MINI dealership, has introduced its first-ever dedicated BMW and MINI Service Fast Lane Centre. The stand-alone facility will complement the services provided by its main service centre.

The BMW & MINI Service Fast Lane Centre has a floor area of 30,000 sq. feet and is fully air-conditioned with a premium customer lounge, 6 service bays, and two RATC (Reception at the Car) bays. The centre specialises solely on quick service and repairs with emphasis on regular vehicle maintenance, wear and tear repairs, tyre replacement, cosmetic repairs and more, for better efficiency and time optimisation.

Auto Bavaria Service Fast Lane

Quotation before work commences
According to Sime Darby Auto Bavaria’s MD, Vi Thim Juan, the Service Fast Lane concept aims to help customers optimise their time while getting the necessary service and repairs for their cars. The cost of service or repair as well as the duration needed to complete the service will be discussed in advance when a customer calls to book for the Service Fast Lane.

“Our Service Fast Lane Centre is designed to fit customers’ routines with minimal interruption. Service appointment scheduling is also flexible, allowing customers to bring in their cars at a time most convenient to them. With Service Fast Lane, service and repairs are done in a fraction of the time while customers sip their coffee and relax at our lounge,” said Mr. Vi.

Auto Bavaria Service Fast Lane

Customers can be assured of receiving cost estimates, including itemised costs for parts and labour prior to any work commencing, as Auto Bavaria continues to deliver on its promise of price transparency for customers to make informed decisions about the maintenance of their vehicles. The centre operates 6 days a week, except on public holidays.

For more information on BMW or MINI products and services in Malaysia, visit www.bmw.com.my or MINI.MY.

RM570 million Sime Darby Motors City officially opened at Ara Damansara in Selangor

BMW Group AG has announced the appointment of Hans de Visser as the new Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer of BMW Group Malaysia, effective May  1, 2021. Mr. de Visser will assume the role and responsibilities from Harald Hoelzl who will take on a new role at BMW Group AG.

Mr. de Visser brings with him over 29 years of experience in various roles within the BMW Group. He started as a Manager in Marketing Communications at BMW Motorrad in Munich and before his current role in BMW Russia as the Marketing Director, he served in various Sales and Marketing roles across several markets globally as well as in the BMW Group headquarters in Germany.

“Hans’ broad experience in various roles in marketing and sales, as well as his international background will be extremely valuable in his new position,” said Hendrik von Kuenheim, Senior Vice-President Region Asia Pacific, Eastern Europe, Middle East, Africa.

For more information on BMW or MINI products and services in Malaysia, visit www.bmw.com.my or MINI.MY.

BMW Group Malaysia was the leader in the premium automotive segment in 2020

Making the purchase and ownership of cars as convenient as possible is important to retain customers so they continue with the brand the next time they replace or get an additional car. For many companies, providing convenience has been through making retail outlets 3S – offering sales, service and spare parts. In this way, they are a one-stop centre for all the customer’s needs, from the time of purchase through owning the vehicle.

Sime Darby Motors has gone further by not only having 3S outlets but also clustering them at one site so that customers can choose from a wider range of models from different brands without having to go to different locations. The site is the new Sime Darby Motors City located in the township of Ara Damansara within the Klang Valley, near Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport (formerly Subang International Airport) which is claimed to be the largest automotive complex in Southeast Asia.

Porsche Centre Ara Damansara 2020

It is the realisation of an idea which has been considered for at least the past 30 years, perhaps gaining more relevance as the number of brands increased from the early ones such as Ford and BMW to now include Porsche, Hyundai, Jaguar, MINI, Motorrad (BMW motorcycles),  Land Rover and Volvo. Though operational for over a year now, the official opening of Sime Darby Motors City has taken place only today due to COVID-19 pandemic and Movement Control Orders which restricted public events.

6 showrooms plus pre-owned business unit
The complex of 6 flagship showrooms and service centres is built on 8.6 acres of Sime Darby land adjacent to the highway to the airport. The built-up area is considerable – 1.3 million square feet – with up to 8 levels, some of which are for the service centres.  It has a Green Building Index (GBI) certified facility built with sustainability in mind and incorporates technologies to cultivate a paperless organisational culture.

There is also an indoor facility with space for almost 100 vehicles that are managed by the Sime Darby Auto Selection unit dealing with pre-owned vehicles. Sime Darby Motors City also has mobility collaborations with SOCAR (a car-sharing network) and myTukar (an online used car trading platform).

Auto Bavaria has this special area for handover of new vehicles to customers.

First automotive facility with IoT
Each showroom has its own identity in keeping with the brand image, and aftersales services are provided with the highest standards, both in terms of equipment and personnel. Sime Darby Motors City is Malaysia’s first automotive facility that deploys Internet of Things (IoT) technologies, enabling improved service capacity, and supporting the company’s growth by accelerating efficiencies to deliver world-class services to its customers.

“As one of the key players in the automotive industry, Sime Darby Motors has always been committed to pursuing excellence as we strive to provide world-class services to our customers. The launch of Sime Darby Motors City is a testament to this steadfast commitment,” said Andrew Basham, Managing Director of Sime Darby Motors.

At the heart of the facility’s digital infrastructure is its Vehicle Tracking Management system which utilises a camera-based parking guide and customisable signages to ensure a higher level of guidance, security and convenience for the customer. It also allows for quicker collection of vehicles upon completion of service. Internally, the facility’s digitalised infrastructure communicates the status of each vehicle in real-time, ensuring greater efficiencies are achieved.

IoT-powered Automated Number Plate Recognition cameras have also been installed as part of a contactless self-check-in system, enabling customers’ appointment data to be accessed, upon their arrival. Concurrently, a service advisor will be alerted and automatically assigned to the customer, allowing for a seamless experience. The deployment of these technologies will be rolled out progressively throughout Sime Darby Motors City.

Customers visiting showrooms and service centres can relax and have snacks and drinks or even do work in comfortable surroundings.

RM570 million was spent on building Sime Darby Motors City so it is not a project that may be replicated in other parts of the country. “We have no plans for another similarly sized complex but we could explore other approaches in future,” said Jeffrey Gan, Managing Director, Retail and Distribution for Malaysia, Sime Darby Motors.

Future-ready for EV era
With an eye on the future of the business, Sime Darby Motors City is future-ready as the automotive industry continues to evolve towards EV. It is equipped with specialised EV-certified technicians and designated areas for EV charging, storage and repairs, which are currently available at Auto Bavaria, Auto Hyundai, Auto Performance and Swedish Auto, all of which have brands that offer electrified models.

Sime Darby Auto Performance, which represents the Porsche brand, has installed Malaysia’s first fast Direct Current (DC) high-performance charger, operational since September 2020, within its  Porsche Centre. Capable of delivering a maximum of 175 kW, it is able to provide a nearly full charge within 36 minutes, which is at least 8 times faster than the fastest Alternating Current (AC) charger available at 22 kW.

Grand Launch Weekend
This weekend (April 16 – 18) will be a good time to visit Sime Darby Motors City as there will be a ‘Grand Launch Weekend’ event with attractive deals at all the showrooms. However, it is recommended that those going there contact the showroom they wish to visit so that an appointment can be made. This is to adhere to the government’s COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures on crowd control and physical distancing.

BHPetrol Euro5 Diesel

It was an exciting evening for BMW Malaysia yesterday as the company introduced the first-ever BMW 330Li M Sport, making it the first ever-long wheelbase variant in the company’s compact executive sedan portfolio. Also that evening, BMW also introduced a new variant to the X3 line-up – the sDrive20i

The new BMW 3 Series long wheelbase variant offers an increased overall length of 4,819mm (+110) and an increased wheelbase length of 2,961mm (+110mm) form the main visual differentiator of the BMW 330Li M Sport from the current BMW 330i M Sport, accompanied also by an increased height of 1,441mm (+6mm) relative to the latter.

The front of the new 330Li M Sport is distinguished by the kidney grilles now framed in chrome, while state-of-the-art Adaptive LED Headlights capable of automatically adjusting to varying road conditions.

Other features that complete the exterior are the M Aerodynamics and M Sport Packages, a set of 18” M light alloy wheels in Double-Spoke style 848 M bicolour with mixed tyres and run-flat tyres, double-sided exhaust tailpipe finishers with a trapezoidal design in the rear, as well as the panorama glass roof, and welcome light carpet on both sides.

At the heart of the elongated 3-Series is a four-cylinder TwinPower Turbo petrol engine capable of a maximum output of 258 hp at 5,000 – 6,500 rpm and a peak torque of 400 Nm at 1,550 – 4,400 rpm. Power is transmitted via a Steptronic Sport transmission. Accelerating from 0-100 km/h is done in only 6.2 seconds, and the new sedan’s top speed is capped at 250 km/h. Fuel consumption is marked at 6.4 litres per 100 km of travel, while carbon emission is measured at 147 g/km.

As for the interior, a modern ambience and luxurious design are paramount, with interior trim finishers in Aluminium Tetragon with highlight trim finishers in Pearl Chrome furnishing the cabin. The new dimensions are reflected in an increase of 4mm in headroom compared to the BMW 330i M Sport, as well as an additional 42mm legroom available for rear passengers – providing unparalleled spatial comfort and luxury. Boot space is measured at 480 litres, improved with the storage compartment package that offers more stowage possibilities.

In the cockpit, drivers are greeted with an M leather steering wheel and M-specific pedals. For greater utility, automatic anti-dazzle function is also equipped for both interior and exterior mirrors, as well as electric seat adjustment with memory function for the driver. Other interior highlights of the First-Ever BMW 330Li M Sport are velour floor mats, ambient lights with 11 predefined lighting designs, automatic air-conditioning with three-zone control, and a HiFi loudspeaker system for entertainment on the road. The Comfort Access System that also comes standard provides an added layer of convenience for owners of the First-Ever BMW 330Li M Sport.

The infotainment, navigation and driver display systems in the First-Ever BMW 330Li M Sport come in the form of the BMW Live Cockpit Professional with a fully digital 12.3-inch instrument display, as well as the BMW Navigation System Professional with 10.25” touch sensitive display. Instrument panel in Sensatec and Galvanic Embellishers for controls further lends an exclusive ambience to the interior, integrating functionality and luxury.

To enhance convenience and assistance, the First-Ever BMW 330Li M Sport comes comprehensively equipped with Cruise Control with braking function, Parking Assistant with rear view mirror, and the BMW Active Pedestrian Safety system. Driving Assistant also comes standard and includes features such as lane departure warning, lane change warning, front collision warning, cross traffic warning and rear collision prevention. The Intelligent Emergency Call functionality also ensures live assistance and support are available at all times.

The First-Ever BMW 330Li M Sport comes in two colour offerings – Mineral White and Carbon Black. Leather Vernasca upholstery in Mocha with black stitching complement both the exterior colour offerings.

The BMW 330Li is now in the market for RM300,800.

BMW X3 sDrive20i

The new locally-assembled BMW X3 arrives with new the xLine package, complemented by LED headlights with Extended Contents inclusive of cornering lights. 19-inch light alloy wheels in Y-Spoke Style 694 with runflat tyres also complete the New BMW X3 sDrive20i. Body details are stylishly accentuated in aluminium, as the new SAV also features the BMW Individual Exterior Line and roof rails both in Aluminium Satinated.

Powering the New BMW X3 sDrive20i is the four-cylinder TwinPower Turbo petrol engine capable of a maximum output of 184 hp at 5,000 – 6,500 rpm and a peak torque of 300 Nm at 1,350 – 4,000 rpm. And is capable of a century sprint in 8.2 seconds, and records a top speed of 215 km/h. Carbon emissions are capped at a lowered 163 g/km and an equally lowered fuel consumption of 7.1 litres per 100 km of travel. Transmission is in the form of an 8-Speed Automatic Steptronic with Automatic Hold Function.

Inside, the New BMW X3 sDrive20i is fitted with interior trim finishers in Black High-Gloss with highlight trim finishers in Pearl Chrome, complete with interior and exterior mirrors that are equipped with the automatic anti-dazzle function.

Comfort in the new SAV is elevated with the sport seats for the driver and front passenger, as well as velour floor mats, ambient lighting, and the three-zone automatic air conditioning system. Drivers will also be able to enjoy electric seat adjustment with memory function, while a 12-Speaker HiFi sound system provides endless entertainment for the road ahead.

In terms of digital assistance, the New BMW X3 sDrive20i arrives fully-furnished with the Driving Assistant and Parking Assistant. A premium navigational and infotainment experience is offered via a 10.25-inch touchscreen control display, complemented by a Sensatec Instrument Panel and controls with Galvanic Embellishers. These features are also offered alongside the BMW Live Cockpit Plus and the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant.

The Intelligent Emergency Call, and the convenient call function with extended smartphone connection also offer safety and convenience to owners of the New BMW X3 sDrive20i. Meanwhile, there is also the Comfort Access System, along with the Storage Compartment Package that equips the new SAV with 550 litres of luggage capacity.

Owners will now be able to have greater digital interaction with the New BMW X3 sDrive20i via the new My BMW App that provides easy access to a wide range of remote services, on-the-go navigation, and e-mobility features. The application will replace the BMW Connected App come July 2021, and is now available for download on both Android and iOS-enabled smartphones.

Colour offerings for the New BMW X3 sDrive20i include Alpine White, Glacier Silver, Black Sapphire, and Phytonic Blue. All exterior offerings are paired with black Leather Vernasa upholstery with black stitching.

The new BMW X3 sDrive20i is now in the market for RM286,674.00.

Visit www.bhpetrol.com.my for more information.

BMW’s successful executive sedan series – the 5-Series – has received updates for the locally assembled 530e M Sport and 530i M Sport. The two models are not on sale yet and registrations of interest can be made on the BMW Shop Online platform. Estimated retail pricing (on the road, without insurance) is RM343,000 for the new 530e M Sport and RM396,000 for the 530i M Sport.

The new variants will be available in Alpine White or Carbon Black, paired with either the Black or Cognac Leather Dakota upholstery; or in Phytonic Blue, Sophisto Grey or Bluestone paired with Black Leather Dakota upholstery.

Two powertrain choices
As the ‘e’ and ‘I’ in the model designations denote, one has a plug-in hybrid powertrain while the other is conventional combustion petrol engine alone. Both have the familiar 4-cylinder BMW TwinPower Turbo 2-litre engine, with the 530e M Sport having the latest generation of the BMW eDrive electric motor as well. An 8-speed Steptronic transmission system is standard for both variants.

The 530e M Sport’s total system output is 292 bhp/420 Nm of torque, of which 37% is contributed by the electric motor. With a fully-charged battery pack, the car can run on electricity alone up to a claimed distance of 67 kms. In daily driving, the fuel consumption is claimed to be as low as 43.5 kms/litre while still having a top speed capability of 235 km/h and a 0 to 100 km/h time of 5.9 seconds.

Electric drive up to 140 km/h
The standard AUTO eDRIVE setting enables all-electric driving up to a speed of 110 km/h; using MAX eDRIVE mode enables all-electric speeds up to 140 km/h. The BMW Xtra Boost mode is also available giving the vehicle additional power of up 40 bhp during acceleration. Of course, increased performance demands would also have implications on the range. Depending on the charging method use, the battery pack can be fully recharged within about 3.5 hours or no more than 6 hours with a conventional power outlet.

As for the 530i M Sport, the engine output is 252 bhp/350 Nm, which gives claimed 0 to 100 km/h capability of 6.4 seconds and a top speed of 250 km/h. Fuel consumption is said to be up to almost 15 kms/litre, which means the 68-litre fuel tank can allow for a range of about 1,000 kms.

Updated cosmetic features
Apart from the M Aerodynamics package, the latest versions have larger kidney grilles and slimmer headlights with a new daytime running light (DRL) design. The 530e M Sport has Adaptive LED Matrix headlights, in addition to the standard LED headlights, while the 530i M Sport uses BMW Laserlight. Both include the anti-glare BMW Selective Beam high-beam assistant with turning lights, and adaptive cornering function.

Additional visual enhancement is provided by the BMW Individual high-gloss Shadow Line for the 530e M Sport while the 530i M Sport has the BMW Individual Exterior Line Aluminium Satinated. The front and rear bumpers on both variants are also redesigned with larger air intakes, alongside new LED taillight elements in the signature BMW L-shape. For the first time, the light source is integrated directly into the taillight’s outermost layer, maximising the 3D effect.

New for 2021 are 19-inch M light alloy Y-Spoke 845 M Bi-Colour Jet Black wheels with both mixed and run-flat tyres. The new cars also come with Adaptive Suspension and the M Sport brake with blue-painted M Sport brake calipers. Along the Double-sided exhaust tailpipe finishers with a trapezoidal design and a distinctive diffuser insert identify these models.

Sporty, premium interior ambience
The interior of the two cars continues to include M-specific items with interior trim finishers in Aluminium Rhombicle, Dakota Leather upholstery and the BMW Individual anthracite headliner. Illumination within the car is provided by ambient lighting while the electrical glass roof offers overhead lighting which enhances the ambience of spaciousness. The dashboard includes a lighter-coloured contrasting seam, which continues onto the door trims, as well as control buttons in the centre console in high-gloss Black magnifies the interior design language.

As with most other BMW models, there’s BMW Live Cockpit Professional running the latest BMW Operating System 7. This infotainment concept is distinguished by its restructured display set-up, consisting of a user-configurable 12.3-inch instrument cluster and an equally large touchscreen Control Display. BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant is included,

taking interactions between driver and car to the next level. Various functions can be accessed and controlled via the system, including sunblind activation and automatic lowering of all windows.

Exclusive to the 530i M Sport is BMW Gesture Control, Head-Up Display, BMW Display Key and a Harman Kardon surround sound system. For additional convenience and comfort the new variants have Comfort Access with contactless tailgate operation as well as automatic air-conditioning with 4-zone control, and electric roller sunblinds for rear windows.

Audio warning to pedestrians
Besides advanced active and passive safety systems, the 530e M Sport also has a feature which emits a sound via a loudspeaker system when the car is moving in electric mode at speeds up to 30 km/h. This is to alert pedestrians and cyclists ahead as the car will be running quietly when using the electric motor.

Financing schemes available
BMW Group Financial Services Malaysia offers financial schemes for the vehicle purchases and for the new 530e M Sport and 530i M Sport, monthly instalments can start from RM3,808.00 and RM4,398.00, respectively (terms and conditions apply).

New owners are assured of a premium ownerships experience with benefits such as BMW’s 5-year/unlimited mileage warranty, Free Scheduled Service Programme, BMW Roadside Assistance and Accident Hotline, BMW Group Loyalty+ Mobile App – BMW Privileges Card, and BMW Service Online.

BMW Group Malaysia was the leader in the premium automotive segment in 2020

BMW’s iDrive interface has been around for some 20 years now and with each version, users – primarily the driver although it is also designed for passenger use – have gained better interaction and ‘intelligence’ with the system. Soon iDrive8 will make its debut in the new iX and i4 models with a new generation of displays, controls, software, and extremely powerful connectivity and data processing.

The new iDrive 8 can constantly process large amounts of not only self-generated data but also data collected from the BMW Group vehicle fleet to implement the driver’s wishes in a context-related way. Paving the way for greater personalization is BMW ID, a system which recognizes repetitive situations, learns from them and provides suggestions on how functions can be activated accordingly. Remote Software Upgrade allows the new iDrive to benefit from regular over-the-air improvements, integrate additional functions and stay up to date – without the owner having to bring the car to the service centre.

2021 BMW iDrive 8

The integration of third-party apps is more comprehensive than ever too. The most important applications in each individual market around the world can be imported seamlessly into the vehicle’s operating system. The display and operation of these apps will be familiar to customers from their smartphones, expanding the functionality of in-car systems.

Simplifying management of systems
BMW’s iDrive appeared in 2001 with the 7-Series of that model year. It ushered in a new era of in-car operating technology with the aim of getting a grip on the constantly expanding array of functions. As more and more electronic systems could be incorporated for safety, comfort or convenience, it was important that the driver manage them easily and intuitively.

2001 BMW iDrive
The original iDrive Controller in the 2001 7-Series.

2001 BMW iDrive

2001 BMW iDrive
A second Controller was also provided for rear occupants to manage the iDrive, with a screen between the seats,

BMW’s paradigm shift with the iDrive minimized the buttons and controls throughout the cockpit and in their place was a colour screen in the centre of the instrument panel (the control display) and a rotary dial on the centre console (the iDrive Controller). This multifunctional system allowed drivers to control a large number of vehicle settings, entertainment, navigation and telecommunications functions with a single operating tool. Within the space of a few years, iDrive effectively became the new industry standard and proved to be extremely future proof.

20 years later, the developers and designers focusing on user interaction and on the user experience have faced a new set of challenges – a constant stream of new functions is joining the fray, functions are gaining in complexity all the time, and operating them needs to become easier and more natural.

The BMW cars of today are intelligent and able to build a detailed picture of their surroundings and make sense of it using modern sensors and data processing. They are permanently connected to the BMW Cloud and therefore benefit from the combined computing power, long-term and real-time data, machine learning, and swarm intelligence generated by the 14 million connected BMW vehicles out on the roads.

The developers of the new iDrive have carried over the car’s expanded technical abilities into an all-embracing user experience distinguished by its intelligent symbiosis of hardware and software. Looking ahead, the car will become an increasingly smart and automated device which maintains a natural dialogue with the user. This interaction will involve the user simply making iDrive aware of their wishes and requests, while the system learns how its user behaves, comes up with suggestions in real time (based on an extensive pool of detailed knowledge) and actively proposes them to the driver – who then only needs to confirm.

2021 BMW iDrive 8

What began with the introduction of a rotary dial and a digital display is now an all-encompassing, intelligent, multi-sensory experience tailored to the user. It brings about another paradigm shift – this time to a natural dialogue between the user and their vehicle: more intuitive, personal, but also engaging.

The new iDrive 8
The first BMW vehicle to receive the new iDrive 8 system will be the iX all-electric Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV). In order to provide an improved interactive experience with this more technologically sophisticated and complex product, voice control and touch functions of the BMW Curved Display are prioritized. The number of buttons and switches has been reduced by almost half compared to current vehicles. At the same time, control clusters for relevant and frequently used basic functions are retained where customers expect to find them.

The control panels on the center console and instrument panel have an all-new minimalist design. The familiar iDrive Controller is the central control element. The Touch Controller is designed in an extremely smart glass-effect finish while the colour and materials used for the centre console give it a very sophisticated appearance.

2021 BMW iDrive 8

The Controller is enclosed by a panel with a High-gloss Black frame, a glass-effect surface and white backlit buttons. On the centre console, the control surface with active haptic inputs subdivided by feeler bars is used to select the iDrive menus, My Modes and other functions. The Controller, the rocker switch for gear selection, the audio roller control and the seat adjustment buttons can also be specified in an optional polished crystal finish.

The new generation of iDrive brings with it a new design language with eye-catching graphics, modern colors, futuristic textures and forms and expanded use of light to create an immersive visual experience. At the same time, the user interface has been optimized to present just the right amount of information in an easy-to-understand way.

2021 BMW iDrive 8

The extensive individualization options available for the screens in the instrument display can be accessed quickly via the function keys on the steering wheel. The two-axis operating system enables user-friendly vertical list navigation of on-screen content with the rotating key, as well as toggling between menus by tilting the key horizontally.

BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant
The new generation of iDrive also brings additional abilities for the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant. For a more personal interaction, users can still give the system a name of their choice, which they then use as a prompt. The BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant has an important role to play in creating a natural dialogue between the user and their vehicle. The personal assistant is the central interaction interface with the user – the ‘face’ of the in-car intelligence.

To also enable non-verbal communication with the vehicle occupants in the future, the user experience designers gave the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant a visual form that also allows it to display gestures. This was based on studies with test persons who were asked to answer selected questions non-verbally. Their movements were recorded, and patterns were established in how certain moods and activities were expressed. These patterns were carried over to the new geometry of the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant’s visual image with the help of insights from art, as used in the making of animated films.

2021 BMW iDrive 8

The personal assistant follows the shy tech principle of design in terms of how and where it is visible. When it is spoken to, it appears in a fluid animation on the relevant screen (information or center control) area and spreads out over the displays. The BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant can distinguish who is talking to it. If the driver is actively engaged, the Intelligent Personal Assistant’s visual image appears in the right-hand area of the information display or in the BMW Head-Up Display and signals its readiness to accept spoken instructions. If prompted by the front passenger, the assistant’s image appears in the right-hand area of the BMW Curved Display

2021 BMW iDrive 8

When interacting with the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant and using the new iDrive 8, drivers benefit from increased personalization of the user experience based on the BMW ID. Current BMW ConnectedDrive customers are able to use their existing credentials to access their BMW ID. In future, it will be possible to securely store more personalized settings in the BMW ID and transfer them between vehicles. Once the BMW ID has been loaded, the driver will receive a personal greeting which will include the customized profile image that can be uploaded in the My BMW App.

Technology and connectivity
The iDrive 8 is the most powerful and encompassing technology ever created by BMW. In recent years, there has been a huge increase in the software scopes for the iDrive system. Today, BMW’s iDrive handles a wide array of tasks that extend far beyond a conventional display and operating concept. These range from integrating telematics and connected services to data processing and preparation, connecting to devices and deep integration of third-party apps or projected modes, as well as seamless integration of cloud-based services like BMW Maps.

2021 BMW iDrive 8

The BMW Group has been developing the central control unit and software integration platform in-house, entirely on Linux since 2013. Having complete control over software is crucial for creating a stable, upgradeable, high-quality system that distinguishes the brand. In the past, the BMW display and iDrive system has been overhauled on average every 3 years, a cycle that is roughly half as long as the complete product development cycle for a vehicle.

In the era of fast-paced digital development, it is no longer enough to completely update a model’s digital features every three years, and this resulted in a fundamental change of approach in 2018. The arrival of Remote Software Upgrade means owners have been able to keep their vehicle up to date with the latest software at all times. New functions can be imported quickly and easily over the air, either using the car’s built-in SIM card or via the My BMW App. Remote Software Upgrade has a crucial role to play in the new iDrive 8 by offering the possibility of performing extremely complex and large software updates in areas such as driving assistance and partial automation.

2021 BMW iDrive 8

5G mobile technology
The iX will be the first premium model available worldwide that is compatible with 5G mobile technology. 5G offers extremely high data bandwidth and low latency – meaning fast data transmission – and also expands the possibilities for connectivity between the vehicle and its environment. It forms the basis for real-time reception and transmission of large volumes of data and sensor system information to the BMW Cloud. Together with the quality of service offered by the 5G network, this will bring about significant enhancements and innovations in the areas of entertainment, infotainment, automated driving and road safety. The iDrive 8 has been prepared for making optimum use of the data speeds offered by 5G.

BMW iX, an all-electric SAV, will be the first model to have the new iDrive 8 system.

BMW iX – the new technology flagship of the BMW Group revealed

Starting off 2021 in high gear after a successful year before, BMW Group Malaysia has unveiled four new models in the BMW and MINI brands. The new models solidify its portfolio of offerings to Malaysian buyers while reaffirming the company’s investments in the local automotive landscape.

BMW X7 xDrive40i Pure Excellence
Assembled at the BMW facility in Kedah, the new X7 xDrive40i Pure Excellence is the largest model in the BMW X range. Its imposing appearance and stature belies versatility and agility, complemented by advanced powertrain and chassis technology.

The bold design of the X7 is fronted by the imposing kidney grille which gives exceptional road presence to the vehicle. This makes the slender BMW Laserlight headlights look even slimmer. The headlights can illuminate up to 600 metres ahead and are supplemented by LED foglights and high-beam assistant.

The X7 variants has large windows and a long, dynamically flowing roofline that hints at a spacious interior. Equally striking are the 21-inch light alloy wheels in Y-spoke style 753 Bicolour with run-flat tyres as standard. The variant also features a fully-electric tailgate in the rear with the Comfort Access feature.

Under the large bonnet panel is the familiar inline 6-cylinder petrol engine which has an output of340 bhp/450 Nm. This is enough to take the large SUV – sorry, BMW terms their SUVs as SAVs (Sport Activity Vehicles – from standing still to 100 km/h within a claimed 6.1 seconds. And with all the advanced engine technologies, the fuel consumption of the vehicle, which weighs around 2,300 kgs, can still be as good as 10.5 kms/litre.

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Power is distributed to all 4 wheels via an 8-speed Steptronic Sport transmission and BMW’s xDrive system. The sophisticated chassis design has a two-axle air suspension which, along with Dynamic Stability Control, enhances handling and stability on the road.

As with the imported variant, the locally assembled variant X7 comes with Executive Drive Pro that includes active roll stabilisation. Ride comfort is further enhanced by the intelligent Dynamic Damper Control system which processes data from the navigation system and front camera.

The interior features opulent ‘Crafted Clarity’ handmade diamond-cut trim element and a range of standard equipment including a sport leather steering wheel and electrically adjustable comfort seats with active seat ventilation in front. The BMW Live Cockpit Professional with BMW Operating System 7.0 is interfaced with the fully digital, user-configurable 12.3-inch instrument cluster and an equally large central touchscreen Control Display.

A Head-Up Display is also standard, projecting important running information on the windscreen. Together with the voice-controlled BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant and BMW Gesture Control, the driver will not have to take the hands off the steering wheel so much, improving safety.

The X7 is offered with a choice of 5 exterior finishes and selected interior colour combinations. The price is not announced yet, but customers can register their interest at authorised dealerships or BMW Shop Online at shop.bmw.com.my/.

BMW 430i Coupe M Sport
The signature kidney grille of the BMW 4-Series Coupe has generated controversial debate. Its designers explain that it is a homage to historic icons in BMW’s history (such as the BMW 328), reinterpreting the iconic form and embodying it into a sporty, contemporary coupe form.

By virtue of its purist design language, the 430i Coupe M Sport utilises techniques in proportions and minimal number of lines to accentuate its athletic stature, combining it with the aerodynamics and sporting elegance. It has the longest coupe doors to be found on any BMW, creating an overall elongated and dynamic impression.

Compared to its predecessor, the dimensions are slightly larger with 130 mm more length, 27 mm more width and 6 mm added to the height, while the wheelbase has been extended by 41 mm.

Standard equipment includes 19-inch M light alloy wheels in Double-spoke style 797 M Bicolour with mixed tyres and runflat tyres, and M Sport brakes with blue-painted brake calipers and ‘M’ designation. Under the rear end are exhaust tailpipes finished in high-gloss chrome.

All 430i Coupe M Sports sold in Malaysia come with a M Aerodynamics Package already installed at the factory. They are also fitted with BMW Laserlights with High-beam Assistant, LED foglights, and the BMW Individual high-gloss Shadow Line.

With 258 bhp/400 Nm on tap, the TwinTurbo 4-cylinder petrol engine will take the 430i past the 100 km/h mark in a claimed 5.8 seconds, after which continued acceleration will get it up to a terminal velocity of 250 km/h. The upgraded 8-speed Steptronic Sport Transmission is said to have improved efficiency which can return a fuel consumption figure of 15.2 kms/litre. But that would be if the driver is not enjoying the full performance of the car – which may be hard to resist!

For exploring the high limits of handling, there are advanced control systems such as ARB technology (actuator contiguous wheel slip limitation), which enables significantly faster and more sensitive wheel slip control. Further enhancing the sporty driving dynamics are the M Sport suspension, M Sport brakes and Variable Sport Steering.

The cockpit is designed with the sporty driver in mind, as BMWs have always been. A high centre console separates the zones for the driver and front passenger. Seamless integration of the instrument cluster and Control Display forms a large workspace, displaying extensive information but in an easily accessible manner. Visually enhancing the interior ambience are the welcome light carpet and ambient light with 11 predefined lighting designs.

The rear seats provide passengers with a sporty seating experience of a coupe, while still providing ample headspace. A 40/20/40-split for the rear backrests allows the 440-litre luggage compartment to be varied in length to carry more or longer items.

The 430i Coupe M Sport has a choice of four exterior colours and the leather Vernasca upholstery with black decor stitching comes in Black, Tacora Red or Cognac. Authorised BMW dealers nationwide have the car on display, and you can also make a booking via BMW Shop Online for RM1,000.

New MINI Countryman variants
The original Mini cars were assembled in Malaysia from the 1960s until 1982. In 2018, locally assembled versions of the modern MINI began rolling off the line at the plant in Kedah and the range has continued to expand. To start off 2021 are the new Cooper S Countryman and Cooper SE Countryman.

The Countryman, measuring over 4 metres, is the biggest and the most versatile member of the MINI family. It offers significant optimisation in terms of space, versatility, functionality and ride comfort, and includes a plug-in hybrid drive variant.

Both the new Cooper S Countryman and Cooper SE Countryman now feature the MINI ALL4 Exterior Optic. The differentiated front and rear bumpers with decorative elements and sump guard in aluminium matt provide a rugged look. They also come with auto LED headlights with cornering lights, bonnet stripes, roof rails and side sills.

The Union Jack Rear Light now represents an abstract interpretation of the Union Jack, with a more block-designed triangular surface, resulting in stronger lighting. A special detail is the dark tinted cover which lends a distinguishing mark to the lighting units.

Run-flat tyres are standard rubber for the Cooper S Countryman which is fitted with 19-inch MINI Turnstile Spoke. The Cooper SE Countryman also has similar tyres but have different 19-inch wheels.

Inside, both variants feature the MINI Yours Illuminated cockpit in Shaded Silver, combining the illuminated cockpit bezel in Shaded Silver with the Dark Silver door bezels and Hazy Grey. The interior ambience is enhanced with a Satellite Grey Headliner and Leather Cross Punch in Carbon Black. The steering wheel is wrapped with MINI Yours Walknappa leather Steering and a signature Union Jack insignia is also featured at the bottom of the steering wheel.

For the first time, the Countryman has a 5-inch digital instrument cluster. But drivers can look down less at the instruments as there is a Head Up Display which shows them vital operating information on the windscreen ahead of them.

The updated 8.8-inch  touchscreen display with navigation has a refined surface look, with the audio control panel and switchgear seamlessly integrated into the control unit. In-car entertainment comes from a 12-speaker Harman Kardon system.

A 2-litre TwinPower Turbo engine powers the Cooper S Countryman, its 192 bhp/280 Nm giving a 0 to 100 km/h capability claimed to be 7.5 seconds with a 7-Speed Dual Clutch Sports Automatic Transmission. As for the Cooper SE Countryman, a 1.5-litre TwinPower Turbo engine with an electric motor (pictured above) provide a combined output 224 bhp/385 Nm of torque. This hybrid powertrain can rocket the car to 100 km/h in a claimed 6.8 seconds and on to a top speed said to be 194 km/h.

The Cooper SE Countryman, which comes with all-wheel drive, has the latest eDrive technology which includes a high-voltage lithium battery pack. Recharging the battery pack takes from 3.25 hours to 5 hours, depending on the type of power supply and outlet available. A fully charged battery pack can give a pure electric range of up to 48 kms.

Owners can access the eDrive Services on their MINI Connected App which provides information such as current battery status, electric range, charge timer, personal efficiency status data, the nearest charging station and pre-conditioning.

Authorised MINI dealerships nationwide now have the new Countryman variants which come with a choice of 6 colours including, for the first-time, Sage Green – a captivating hue inspired by nature. The MINI Online Shop at www.mini.my/minionlineshop has more information and also accepts bookings.

BMW Group Malaysia was the leader in the premium automotive segment in 2020

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