New 9-Series BMW modeled after Rolls-Royce Phantom is in the works
Reports from various news sources state that the Munich-based automaker is considering a range-topping coupe which will potentially rival the Mercedes Benz S-Class Coupe, known as the CL-Class until recently. BMW’s 7 Series was widely considered the Mercedes Benz S-Class competitor for decades, but BMW has never created a vehicle specifically designed to go head-to-head with the S-Class Coupe – at least until now.
Reportedly named the 9 Series, the new vehicle will be built using the next-generation Rolls-Royce Phantom as its platform, meaning that BMW certainly isn’t planning to go compact. The 9 will be pretty big but sources say it will also be remarkably light. The vehicle will be made up of carbon fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP), aluminum, and ultra-high-tensile steel, keeping things as streamlined as possible without sacrificing size or cabin space. BMW has revealed that the 9 will borrow one more thing from its Rolls-Royce sibling: a set of super sleek, rapper-ready suicide doors.
Naturally, the Phantom isn’t the 9’s only design inspiration. Industry rumors indicate that the 9 Series’ design is also partly based on the 2016 BMW 7-Series and the Vision Future Luxury Concept, which you’ll remember from its featured spot at the 2014 Beijing Auto Show. The vehicle will borrow the bulk of its mechanical components from the 2016 7, though. Sources say the 9 Series will either come with two 3.0-liter straight-six engines, or a diesel- or gasoline-powered engine. Midrange models are rumored to have a twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 or a V12 under the hood. A gasoline-electric plug-in hybrid model (tentatively known as the 940e) will be introduced later on in the production run. Supposedly, the 940e will be sold alongside the twelve- and eight-cylinder engines in the US.
What can we expect from the interior? Information is scarce, but we do know that the inside of the 9 will be equipped with the same technologies and luxurious features that graced the 7, including heated armrests, remote-control parking, and an infotainment system that can read gestures.
Everything about the 9, from its trims to its most basic materials, is planned to be of extraordinarily high quality. While BMW hasn’t confirmed the vehicle’s alleged specs, the company certainly hasn’t gone out of its way to deny them either. Naturally, rumors of a range-topping BMW aren’t new to the auto world and many never materialize at all. BMW’s relative silence regarding the rumors circling the 9-Series could be a good sign, meaning that consumers can probably expect the 9 to come as reported. Since the next Phantom is due out in 2016, the 9 could arrive as early as 2017. We may not have much longer to wait for confirmation.
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