The 135is proves BMW can still make a sports car

The 2013 BMW 135is restored my faith in "The Ultimate Driving Machine." Many years ago, I owned a 325is, of the E30 generation, which taught me what BMW was all about. But over the last few years, coinciding with the launch of the X6, the brand seemed to take a turn for the mundane, turning out cars tuned for the mass market rather than enthusiasts. After driving a particularly placid 3-series, I was beginning to fear the worst.

Now, the little 135is has convinced me that BMW still knows how to make a sports car.

Despite the 1 … Read more

BMW 135is: The most 'BMW' of them all? (CNET On Cars, Episode 21)


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I remember when the first BMW 320i hit U.S. shores when I was in high school. It forever changed my idea of what a sporty car could and should be, and did the same for much of the world's car-buying public. Today's 1 Series is the nearest thing to the 320i, and I approached it that way when we got our hands on a 135is on the road and on the track. Turns out it may be BMW'… Read more

Second-generation BMW X3 grows up, slims down

Perhaps it's BMW's fault for cramming so many similarly sized vehicles, between-size variants, and remixed configurations into its lineup, but I had the hardest time deciding if the 2013 BMW X3 xDrive28i is too big or too small.

The second-generation vehicle's aesthetic is more wagonlike and it seems to press down into the ground when viewed in the round, which makes it look smaller -- both in photographs and in person -- than the pre-2010 model, which has a more angular, upright design. However, put the models side by side and it becomes apparent that the new … Read more

BMW updates online services, supports Android

Almost every new BMW model will come with an integrated SIM card, enabling a dedicated data connection into the car. BMW also announced this week that it would release an Android version of its Connected app, currently only available on iOS, this summer.

This week's announcement comes as part of a larger reorganization of the connected components of BMW's iDrive cabin electronics.

As we saw in BMW 750Li, recently reviewed by CNET, the automaker currently includes music coming in through satellite radio, traffic data delivered as an FM radio signal, the BMW Online service, and the BMW Connected … Read more

Automakers embrace online music apps

Just about every new car comes with a USB port and Bluetooth streaming, letting you bring in digital-audio devices and play music through the car's stereo. But many people have already moved from stored media to online music services.

Automakers are just beginning to keep up, integrating existing online music services with new models.

Click through for the full photo gallery and more details.

Not only can a built-in interface for an online music service make a car more attractive to a devotee of that service, but it also provides a safer interface. Where a Pandora fan might hook … Read more

Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse: Priciest car we've ever driven (CNET On Cars, Episode 19)


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Well, I don't know what to say about the Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse that hasn't already been said. Add to that the fact that we only had access to it on public streets with moderate speed limits and you can see I was in a pickle. So I chose to seek out the essence of the car and tell some of its less-told stories. I hope you find it at least something of a departure from the usual … Read more

New BMW X5 makes navigation, apps standard

BMW used to make even iPod integration an option, but those days seem to be over. The new X5 will come standard with many tech features, from a USB port and navigation to BMW Apps, which integrates social media running on an iPhone with the car's dashboard.

Exterior changes reflect evolving BMW design language, and give the vehicle looks similar to the X1. Aerodynamic changes include something BMW calls Air Curtains, which funnel air into, then out of, the wheel wells. LED fog lights will come standard on the new X5, while adaptive LED headlights are optional.

BMW will … Read more

Must-see videos from the New York auto show

This week our Car Tech team was on-hand at the 2013 New York auto show, busily scouring the floors in order to bring you the best from the event, here in video format.

1. 2014 Kia Soul

The 2014 Kia Soul is the surprise of the 2013 New York auto show and a hit of the "box on wheels" movement, plus it comes stacked with some nifty tech.

BMW adding Rhapsody and Audible to app roster

NEW YORK--Adding to its existing roster of app integration, which currently comprises Pandora and Mog, BMW announced its next four apps to work with BMW cars at the New York International Auto Show. Music fans will be able to easily use Rhapsody and TuneIn, book lovers can listen to Audible, and Glympse lets drivers share their current whereabouts and destination.

Each app shows up on the LCD in BMW models equipped with the app integration feature, in a format similar to other car applications, such as navigation or the hands-free phone system.

Rhapsody subscribers will get a similar feature set … Read more

T-Mobile gets iPhone, kills the contract

CNET Update keeps it simple:

Tuesday's Update explains T-Mobile's new plans and how its selling top smartphones for less than the competition.

Also featured in this tech news roundup:

- Google+ allows animated GIFs for profile pics

- Google+ updates apps with new photo tools and location sharing

- Facebook creates comment threads with reply option

- New BMW 6-series takes dictation, shows virtual gauges

- Sneak peek of New York Auto Show (pictures)

Watch CNET Update in the video above, and subscribe to the podcast via the links below.


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