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2012 BMW 650i Convertible - 2011 Detroit Auto Show

January 10, 2011

BMW of North America has redone its 6 Series Convertible for the new year. The automaker said the new 650i drop-top will arrive in the U.S. as a 2012 model this spring, ahead of the fixed-top version, an unusual move.

BMW says the four-seater’s new exterior design exudes “athletic elegance.” The new muscular profile includes a sweeping hood and aft-set passenger cabin. The redesigned chassis is about 3 inches longer and an inch-and-a-half wider.

The new styling includes new head and larger tail lights, but the rear end’s spoiler looks very similar to the prior model. The early buzz on the new styling is already a mixed bag. Some aficionados are giving it the thumbs up over the outgoing model, but others don’t like the looks.

Under the hood is the BMW V-8 Twin Power Turbo and direct fuel injection delivering 400 horsepower and 450 foot pounds of torque, the same as the 5 and 7 Series sedans. The new powertrain for the 650i Convertible translates to 40 more horses and an added 90 foot pounds of torque, with a top speed of 155 miles per hour. The transmission choices are either a six-speed manual or eight-speed, automatic sports and BMW figures both should do 0-to-60 miles per hour in 4.9 seconds.

Inside, the freestanding, 10.2-inch Central Display of the standard iDrive system is now flat instead of recessed on the outgoing version.

BMW said the new 650i Convertible is the first car in its class that can be equipped with Integral Active Steering that adds a new steerable rear axle to the outgoing model’s front axle-only system, allowing for better high-speed stability and parking maneuvering.  Standard on the car will be Driving Dynamics Control, which lets the driver pick from a range of settings for driving ride and sportiness.

JEAN HALLIDAYis a seasoned journalist with the nation's longest consecutive run covering auto advertising. Her years in the trenches include stints at Automotive News, Adweek and Advertising Age. The native New Yorker now lives outside the Motor City. You can read Jean's blog at

This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
2012 BMW 650i Convertible - 2011 Detroit Auto Show - Autotrader