Autocar October 6, 2021

Autocar is the car nut’s weekly fix, delivering you a unique mix of the latest news, opinion, features, first drives of new cars and in-depth road tests – all complemented by the best photography in the business. No other magazine covers the subject you love with such enthusiasm, insight and quality every week of the year. Autocar stands for the highest quality in car journalism – and is rewarded with access to the best new cars and the biggest news stories before any of the opposition which we share with you, our readers, every week.

United Kingdom
Haymarket Media Group Ltd
51 Issues

in this issue

1 min
fuel crisis underlines how vital cars are

THAT OUR WEBSITE, among many others, saw big traffic spikes in stories about electric cars and car ownership during the fuel crisis shows a mindset shift may have occurred among the wider public about how to steer clear of such regrettable scenes should they happen again. Perhaps people are also mindful that the unrelated wider energy crisis has already pushed up diesel prices to a record high, with petrol prices not far behind. Although the doubling of domestic electricity supply costs in one year makes charging an EV more expensive as well. Whatever the reasons behind it and whatever happens next, the fuel crisis showed most of all just how important personal mobility and car ownership are to people. Whatever powers it, the car itself and the freedom it gives us is…

6 min
reborn 3 series to usher in new electric era

BMW will kick-start the third phase of its electrification strategy in 2025 with an all-new executive saloon that will serve as the vanguard for a reinvented line-up based on a new EV architecture. It will feature Munich’s sixthgeneration electric powertrain, long-range battery technology, rapid-charging capability, lightweight construction, a fully customisable digital operating system and a new mix of sustainable construction materials. Set to be sold alongside other new battery-electric and combustion-engined saloons, the new model, known under the internal working title NK1, will be the first car based on the Neue Klasse EV platform, paving the way for a whole new generation of EVs, including an extended line-up of SUVs. The NK1 is likely to be initially positioned as an electric alternative to the next-generation 3 Series, in a relationship mirroring that between…

1 min
what neue klasse means the second time around

BMW’s decision to revive the Neue Klasse name for its next generation of cars might suggest a desire to go retro, but it actually serves notice of its radical intent. The original Neue Klasse models, produced from 1962 until 1977, set many of the design trends that BMW still follows today: Hofmeister kinks, the classic three-box shape and so on. But the real success of the Neue Klasse era was how it repositioned BMW through a new design and engineering direction. BMW models became less stodgy and more dynamic, repositioning and reviving the brand and setting the course for everything that has come ever since. In the 1960s, that brand shift was sparked by BMW’s financial difficulties, but that’s not an issue in 2021. Instead, BMW is reacting to the dramatic shifts…

1 min
bmw still betting on solid-state batteries

While the first Neue Klasse models will use battery technology familiar from today’s electric cars, BMW has repeatedly pledged a commitment to introducing solid-state batteries as a means of increasing range and reducing costs. The brand remains tightlipped on when such batteries could enter the mainstream market, but it has said that it will deploy the technology in a demonstrator vehicle by 2025. That is likely to be in the vein of the new fuel cell powered iX5 Hydrogen, which will be used for customer trials but isn’t yet planned to go on general sale. As well as offering enhanced usability by requiring fewer charges, the solid-state batteries will also be recyclable in line with BMW’s ambitious sustainability pledges and will be produced “in a European value chain”, as confirmed earlier this…

2 min
new bmw 2 active tourer gets bolder look and roomier cabin

THE SECOND-GENERATION BMW 2 Series Active Tourer has been revealed with a bold new look, an overhauled powertrain line-up and a raft of enhanced technology. It is available to order now in the UK before customer deliveries begin in March 2022, with prices starting from £30,265. It continues to be related to the 2 Series Coupé – which was recently renewed itself – in name and styling only, retaining the front-driven FAAR architecture also used by the BMW 2 Series Gran Coupé, BMW X1 and Mini Countryman. But an overhaul inside and out brings it into line with its new namesake. The most obvious differentiator from the outgoing car is the upsized front grille, which houses the radar sensor for some of the new advanced driver assistance functions and an active air flap…

4 min
rolls-royce announces 2023 ev

Rolls-Royce will launch its first series-production electric car in late 2023 and has pledged to phase out internal combustion across its entire model range by 2030. The first product to emerge from this rapid-fire electrification strategy will be the all-new Spectre, which has been previewed ahead of the “imminent” start of what will be a highly publicised on-road development programme. Resembling the retiring Wraith coupé, the development prototype is adorned with one of the best-known quotes from company co-founder Sir Henry Royce: “Strive for perfection in everything you do. Take the best that exists and make it better. When it does not exist, design it.” This is most likely a nod to the Spectre’s bespoke mechanical make-up, which Rolls-Royce claims is “free of any group sharing strategy”. Rather than using the Cluster Architecture…