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The 8 Series: Making a Comeback in 2020

The 8 Series: Making a Comeback in 2020 - Motorwerkes - BMW Repairs Calgary

Since its unveiling at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 1989, the 8 Series has been one of BMW’s most distinctive high-performance coupes. While it’s easy to get nostalgic about that sleek, early ‘90s look, this classic is no longer just a relic of the past!

The Original 8

Some may look at those pop-up headlights and chuckle, but the 8 Series was undeniably impressive for its time. With functional perks like its 0.29 drag coefficient and stability and traction control, not to mention electronic novelties including a hard-wired cell phone and a memory function for its adjustable steering column, it was every bit the “future car” it aspired to be. Powertrain options varied, but the 8 Series reached a peak in 1993 with the 6-speed manual 850CSi. Designed as a truly high-performance powerhouse, its 5.6-litre V12 with 381bhp could get you to 62 in under 6 seconds. Not too bad, considering that 4,354lb curb weight.

Room For Improvement

Despite being one of BMW’s key flagship vehicles during the ‘90s, the 8 Series eventually declined in popularity due to a number of technical and circumstantial snags. For one thing, its high price tag didn’t fare well among those hit by the early ‘90s recession. The rising popularity of SUVs over large coupes, a poorly reviewed driving experience, and the sheer difficulty of home repair and maintenance added up to a cease in American sales in ‘97 and in Europe in ‘99. By the end of the decade, the numbers for the 8 weren’t stellar, so a sequel never came.

The Next Generation

The potential for a modern overhaul of the 8 Series has been the subject of speculation and rumour for quite some time. In light of new information from BMW’s R&D centre in Munich, it looks like BMW is finally planning to unveil a new 8 Series concept vehicle by 2018, going into production in 2020. Many are expecting either a four-door hard-top coupe, a two-door with a cabriolet variant, or perhaps even both. In any case, an impressive and well-priced comeback for the 8 Series might serve as a formidable stake in the full-size luxury coupe market for BMW, competing with the Mercedes-Benz S-Class in ways that the 7 Series can’t.

Are you a fan of the full-size coupe? Whether it’s an 8 Series or not, you’ll need to keep it in the best condition possible. Give Motorwerkes a call today at (403) 768-3162 to find out what we can do for your BMW!

Tire Inflation: Why You Shouldn’t Go Too Far

Tire Inflation: Why You Shouldn’t Go Too Far - Motorwerkes - BMW Repair Calgary

There are a few reasons why a driver might choose to over-inflate their tires. Unfortunately, almost all of them are myths, and doing this comes with its own problems. Try to keep these points in mind if you find yourself wanting to inflate too far.

Myths and Misunderstandings

Tire inflation in general is cause for a significant amount of misunderstanding among drivers. Perhaps one of the most common reasons for over-inflation is an effort to improve fuel economy. The idea is that with higher-than-recommended pressure, you have as smaller contact patch on the road and therefore less rolling resistance. Firstly, this has been roundly debunked as an ineffective way to boost mileage. Secondly, even if it did make some small difference, you’d be paying the price in the safety department.

The Consequences

It’s important to appreciate the fact that a great deal of testing and research went into determining the recommended pressure range for your tires. It is the optimal level of inflation for your traction and braking, the comfort of your ride, and the durability of the tires themselves. Deviating from it will compromise these aspects of the drive. It can also be cause for confusion. It’s all too common for us to see customers bring their BMWs in with the tire pressure light on assuming that it’s indicating low pressure when the tires are actually over-inflated!

Is it Ever a Good Idea?

Generally, the bottom line is that you need to stick with the tire pressure recommendation on the sticker of your doorjam or in your owner’s manual. But is there any occasion when over-inflation is justified? If you’re storing your BMW, inflating to the maximum psi indicated on the sidewall will help to avoid developing flat spots, which are particularly prone to happen during winter storage due to the effects of lower ambient temperature on rubber compounds. Max inflation is a much better option than removing your tires and placing the vehicle on blocks, as leaving the suspension hanging for a while is not advisable. Other than this, always follow the indicated pressure recommendations so that you can stay safe and make those tires last!

When it comes to complex machinery, sometimes even the smallest thing can make all the difference in the health of your BMW and your driving experience. Still have questions? Give Motorwerkes a call at (403) 768-3166, we’d be happy to help!

Run-Flat Tires: Things to Consider

Run-Flat Tires: Things to Consider - Motorwerkes - BMW Repair Calgary

Using run-flat tires for your BMW offers plenty of advantages when it comes to safety and convenience. That being said, there are a few things that are important to consider. This list of run-flat do’s and don’ts should give you the right idea.

Don’t: Use on Cars Without Tire Pressure Monitoring

Because run-flat tires are designed to let you drive for a certain distance after a puncture has occurred, it’s a bit more difficult to tell when one has happened. If your vehicle doesn’t have a monitoring system that will tell you when something’s up, you may not know until it’s too late!

Do: Think Ahead

If you’re planning on a long trip on a stretch of road that is remote and poorly maintained, you should avoid depending too much on your run-flats. They can only last so long after damage has occurred, and their functionality won’t do you much good if you’re too far out to make it safely to a service station. In these cases, you might want to keep a spare.

Don’t: Underestimate the Weather

Run-flats are a highly clever and practical technology, but they have their compromises when it comes to certain driving conditions. During winter or on wet roads, for instance, run-flats may not perform as well as regular tires in the traction department. Always bear this in mind!

Do: Consider Your Budget

In most cases, you can’t repair run-flats after a puncture. Instead, you’ll have to replace the affected tire more or less every time. With this in mind, expect a bit of a financial disadvantage compared to regular tires, which are less expensive to replace.

Don’t: Forget About Your Rim

The common assumption with run-flats is that you don’t need to carry a spare. This is true in some ways, but don’t forget your rims! They will actually be more susceptible to damage due to the low profile of this type of tire. Even if you catch the damage early and can repair a mild puncture, there’s no getting around a bent rim.

Do: Stay Safe!

No matter how sophisticated and convenient your dealer made those run-flats out to be, never underestimate the factors that can lead to an accident. Blowouts are still possible, so as always, drive safe and stay smart!

At Motorwerkes, your safety, the integrity of your vehicle, and your customer experience are our top priorities. To learn more about our services, give us a call at (403) 768-3166 today!

Frequent Short Trips and Their Effect on Your BMW

Frequent Short Trips and Their Effect on Your BMW - Motorwerkes - BMW Repair Calgary

There several different kinds of stress out there that BMWs are commonly subjected to by drivers. You may have heard that frequent brief trips are a good example. So why is this and what can you do to curb the effects if necessary?

Why it Should Be Avoided

Firstly, let’s define “too brief” and “too frequent.” As an example, if you’re driving 5-10 kms several times a week, you might want to reconsider. One of the main concerns this raises for your BMW is the health of your battery. These trips drain power without allowing enough time for a proper charge. In addition to this, as you learned from our blog on operating temperature, brief trips prevent your system from warming up adequately. If things aren’t lubricating the way they should and condensation doesn’t have a chance to burn off, you’re only putting more stress on your vehicle, especially during this time of year!

Don’t Have a Choice?

If, however, you find yourself in situations where you don’t have a choice and need to make a few brief trips in succession, there are measures you can take to mitigate the effects that it could have over time. As mentioned, be careful about cold starts. The typical battery doesn’t have a chance to begin accepting charge until after about 15 minutes, so a warm-up of this duration is advisable. It’s also critical to keep an eye on your oil change frequency. Staying within our recommended interval of 5,000-8,000 kms will keep you in good shape, but going earlier can serve to ease the consequences.

Taking Care of That Battery

Unfortunately, it’s pretty common for us to see customers come in to get their battery charged every two weeks. This is a sign that better measures need to be taken to make your battery last longer and do its job efficiently. During winter, you should be particularly vigilant. Inspect your battery frequently to check for corrosion, small parts in need of replacing, and other signs of wear. A trickle charger may also be necessary if you find that short trips are completely unavoidable.

Still having trouble with your battery? This time of year can be hard on your BMW, so don’t hesitate to call us at (403) 768-3166 to set an appointment. It’ll be our pleasure to help you keep it in top condition year-round!

A Few Things You Didn’t Know about the BMW

A Few Things You Didn’t Know about the BMW - Motorwerkes - BMW Service Calgary

In addition to all the technical help, you’re probably aware that we love to dig into BMW history and trivia. Excluding the facts covered in our previous blogs, here’s some fun assorted info that you may not already know!

The Signature Grill

The “kidney” grill that BMW’s vehicles have become known for was first introduced in 1933 on the BMW 303. It has changed slightly in appearance since then, and was one of the company’s many early efforts in pioneering aerodynamic vehicle design.

The Headquarters Building

You may know that the headquarters building located in Munich was modeled after a four-cylinder engine, or even that it was finished in time for the 1972 Olympic games. However, few aficionados are aware that the branding of the building had to be removed during the games to comply with the International Olympic Committee’s rules on product placement.

The April Fool’s Day M3 Pickup

One of BMW’s most impressive April Fool’s Day jokes was the infamous M3 pickup. The fusion between pickup truck and classic M3 structure may have been a prank, but the vehicle is in fact fully operational and boasts a number of impressive specs. Along with horsepower matching its M-series relatives, these include a 450 kg load capacity and even a drag coefficient in league with the M Coupe.

The Development Codes

One particularly unique feature of BMW’s approach to manufacturing is their development code system. For much of the company’s history, every model has been designated a codename consisting of a letter (E, F, or G) followed by consecutive numbers. “E” was the first letter used for these codes and stands for “entwicklung,” the German word for “development.”

The Mercedes Rivalry

BMW was quite close to bankruptcy in the late ‘50s due to a number of factors, including the postwar vehicle market and difficulty adhering to design trends. Mercedes attempted an aggressive takeover of BMW at its most vulnerable moment, before they were saved by collaborative investment from a wide range of sources including its workforce. Things were really back on track by 1959 when a majority share was purchased by German businessman Herbert Quandt.

There will always be more to learn about BMW, whether it’s about the vehicles themselves or the company that creates them! To learn about the needs of your vehicle, give Motorwerkes a call at (403) 768-3163 today!