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New BMW Cars

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The first of the BMW new cars came in 1927. The BMW Dixi was an Austin Seven manufactured under license. BMW later bought the Dixi Company and renamed the model the BMW 3/15. The first of the original BMW models came in 1933—the BMW 303 was a two-door coupe. The next model appeared in 1936, the 326 four-door sedan.

The outbreak of World War II found BMW drafted to produce aircraft engines.

At war’s end, BMW was nearly out of business.

The company bought a license to produce the Isetta, an Italian-designed micro car. The 1955 BMW Isetta saved the company when it became top-selling single cylinder car in the world.

Over the ensuing years, a couple of interesting new BMW sports cars found their way out of the BMW factory, the most notable being the legendary 1956 BMW 507 roadster. However, BMW’s big break came with the 1960s development of their “New Class” line of cars.

In 1961, the company introduced the BMW 1500—a compact sedan with the underpinnings of a sports car. Front disc brakes, an independent rear suspension system, and the free winding BMW 1.5-lite four-cylinder engine made the new BMW cars an absolute delight to drive. This established the driver-oriented DNA of new BMW models, which continues to this day. Two door versions of the 1500 appeared in 1966, which ultimately evolved into the renowned BMW 2002, which in turn evolved into today’s mainstay of the BMW marque, the 3 Series.

The forerunner to BMW’s 5 Series cars was launched in 1968, when inline six-cylinder engines found their way into the New Class platform. Four years later, this line of cars became the new 5 Series BMW models. The success of these cars fostered an expansion farther upmarket and the 6 Series coupes and 7 Series sedans appeared.

With the continued expansion of the SUV boom of the late 20th century BMW introduced the X5, its take on the SUV concept. The spiritual successor to the 507 emerged in 1995, with the introduction of the new BMW Z3 sports cars (the X5 and the Z3 were also the first new BMW models to be built in the United States).

Today, the company manufactures a full line of new BMW cars from the compact to the luxury class, along with a brace of Sport Utility Vehicles. Additionally, the BMW group owns the MINI and Rolls Royce brands, in addition to a thriving line of motorcycles.