All photos by BMW
From the time you see the new 2012 BMW 650i xDrive Convertible, it’s clear that you are reaching the very high end of automobile design, as this is one fine looking car. Both inside and out, BMW has raised the bar for her rivals, delivering for those who are truly searching for the best of the best.
In my neck of the woods, you don’t see a whole lot of cars that compare to the all new 2012 BMW 650i xDrive Convertible, so you can just image the kind of stares and gawking that accompany a car of this stature. Our test model looked exquisite in mineral white metallic with a fully-lined black power soft top with heated rear glass window. The sheet metal is nothing short of amazing with the traditional BMW slightly forward-slanting kidney grille sporting full LED headlights and a rear that is both classy and upscale with a flare for those who are looking for some sportiness. This car has such a beautifully designed exterior that we heard words like “breathtaking” and “irresistible” to describe their takes on the 650i convertible. A sweeping hood, 20-inch wheels, long wheelbase and muscular profile embody the hallmark proportions of a BMW Convertible and distinguish this car from the rest of the pack. Our media car was absolutely on the money with automatic high beams, LED fog lights, Xenon adaptive headlights with dynamic auto leveling, corona headlight rings and cornering lights.
You know you are in a special car when entering the cabin of the all new 2012 BMW 650i xDrive Convertible, as the interior is just as much of a homerun as the exterior design and finish. We agree with the folks at BMW that, “The luxurious ambience of the interior is highlighted by a driver-oriented cockpit which wraps the front and rear passengers in a feeling of aesthetic security. Nowhere is the high-class functionality of the interior underlined more prominently than in the redesigned freestanding 10.2” Central Display of the standard iDrive control system.”
How BMW accomplished this pleasing interior and still concentrate on the driver’s experience is anyone’s guess. Our 650i had thick vermilion red nappa leather seating that was as comfortable as any seat we have sat in. Other features including the cold weather package with heated seats and heated steering wheel, premium sound package with satellite radio, premium high fi system, iPod and USB adapter, ambiance lighting, comfort access keyless entry, navigation system with voice command and real time traffic information, AM/FM stereo and CD/MP3 player audio system with HD radio, and BMW assist with Bluetooth wireless technology.
Opening and closing the roof is very easy and quick, as the automatic opening and closing operation for the roof is activated by holding a button on the center console. Opening the roof takes 19 seconds; the closing process takes 24 seconds. Importantly, as with the preceding generation, both operations can be activated while on the move at speeds up to 25 mph (40 kmh). The new BMW 650i Convertible is designed to be a 2+2-seater, and we found plenty of space for 2 adults in the rear. And despite its lower height, the new BMW 650i Convertible offers greater headroom in both front and rear seats. The height adjustment of the driver and front passenger seats also cover a greater range of travel. The increase in the width of the interior is noticeable from all four seats, and passengers in the rear seats benefit from additional legroom. Storage space is plentiful with very respectable trunk space that will accommodate most trips to the store or long road travels.
Driving the 2012 BMW 650i xDrive Convertible is bliss for those who appreciate power and handling, and BMW was serious when they dropped a V-8 engine with High Precision direct injection and turbocharging. The 4.4-liter V-8 engine develops a maximum 400 horsepower between 5,500 and 6,400 rpm and makes peak torque of 450 lb-ft between 1,750 and 4,500 rpm (preliminary). This unique “reverse-flow” engine, whose turbochargers are positioned in the V-area between the cylinder banks, produces an instantaneous and sustained wave of power, making it an energetic delight for the enthusiast driver. The 8-speed sport automatic transmission fitted to the new BMW 650i Convertible boasts a perfect combination of speed, flexibility, sportiness and efficiency. Its minimal torque converter slip and rapid gear changes set it apart. An innovative gear set configuration allows this transmission to offer eight gears, optimizing the sprinting power yet allowing the driver to save fuel by driving at low revs. Naturally, the driver can choose to select gears manually via shift paddles on the standard Sport leather steering wheel.
There is so much to this car, including four driving modes from comfort, normal, sport and sport +. Yes, we spent most of our time behind the wheel in sport + mode, where the Dynamic Traction Control mode of the standard Dynamic Stability Control system is activated, raising the thresholds for stability intervention in the most sport-oriented driving circumstances, and that includes tight corners that this car simply owned all day long. Fuel efficiency was respectable coming in at 15 mpg in the city and 19 mpg in highways driving.
There is so much that could be written about the stunning 2012 BMW 650i xDrive Convertible and we would refer you to http://www.bmwusa.com/ for the complete story, but believe us when tell you this is a special kind of vehicle. Pricing isn’t for the faint of heart as our media car stickered out at a cool $106,045, but this is for a targeted customer in search of the best in design, luxury and driving experience.
Click the thumbnails below to see full versions of each photo.