Monday, December 22, 2008

BMW 650i Convertible Review

 Chris Bangle will be remembered as the most influential automobile designer of the early 21st century. All of the hip cars of our times have Bangled butts and complicated interfaces. The BMW 650i convertible is arguably the finest expression of Mr. Bangle's "flame surfacing." Viewed from the front, the vehicle resembles a shark. In grey or dark blue colors, the 650i has a distinctly ominous presence. If you did nothing more than stare at the front end of this car, you'd feel it was $80k well spent. Unfortunately, eventually, you will walk around to the back …

The 650i's back end is the Bimmer's most badly Bangled bit. The chopped roofline of the soft-top narrows to a slit for the rear window, with dorsal fins protruding back from the rear edges. I'm not sure quite what visual impact Bangle's boyz intended, but the design sure makes backing-up or checking for cars on your flanks an exercise in trust in your fellow man. If you raise the 650i's trunk, step back and imagine what the vehicle might have looked like with a more conservative tail line, you get the feeling Chris snatched pretension from the jaws of greatness.

 

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