Sunday, November 30, 2008

Pantry Must Haves.

I love cooking. It's an unfortunate fact for Sean who has to bear with me constantly trying out new recipes and the endless food tasting. I've been asked what are the few things that I feel are staples that every pantry should have. These are not items that are crazily expensive like foie gras or caviar or summer truffles. 

These items which I recommend you to stock up are items that can make a change in a meal or help you to eat well; simple stuff that can make a dish go from blah to WOW.

What are the 3 most important ingredients in French cuisine? Butter, Butter, Butter. A good butter makes a huge difference to cooking. Whether you are making a savoury dish or a dessert. If you are not up to making your own butter, why not buy a good one? I highly recommend Beurre Echire from France. 

This is a famed artisan French butter, from the milk of cows of the small village of Poitiers and La Rochelle. Known as one of the best butters in France, Echire butter is served in the finest dining establishments (which is why the French covet this butter and keep 85% of the production within France). This sophisticated butter won AOC (Appellation d'Origine Controlee) protected status, and is produced mostly by hand. A light texture, light salting and subtle flavor make this butter just about divine. It is packaged in its traditional lovely basket.

You can get this from Culina in Singapore. It costs SGD$14 per 250g basket.

I've mentioned so much about these Griottines Cherries. These are really yummy whether baked in a cake, over ice-cream, with meat and on its own. You can pour champagne or sparkling white over the syrup and a few cherries for a quick cocktail.

A 50cl bottle (in the picture) costs $25 at Culina.

Porcini mushrooms or Ceps. These are usually found dried in gourmet grocers. They are bought by weight. You need to pour hot water over them and soak them for a while, squeeze the water from them and add them to pasta, mushroom soups, or even risottos. If you are able to get them fresh, pan fry them with a knob of butter. This variety of mushroom is very aromatic. Some grocers even sell it in powder form (I won't recommend).

Eating the truffle itself may be too rich for everyday eating, however having a pinch of truffle salt won't hurt. Truffle and eggs are best friends. Put a pinch of it in your scrambled eggs, or do a truffle salted french toast with a slice of parma ham. You can use it in your cooking in place of normal salt to enhance the aroma of your dish. Why not roast a turkey with it? It is sure to cause a small commotion.

Parmigiano-Reggiano or Parmesan Cheese. I'm not talking of the cheap knock offs that you find on the shelves of your supermarkets. Parmigiano-Reggiano is a hard, fat granular cheese, cooked but not pressed, named after the producing areas of Parma, Reggio Emilia, Modena, Bologna, in Emilia-Romagna, and Mantova, in Lombardy, Italy. Only buy those that are cut from the head itself. Grate a little over pasta, eat on its own (with truffle honey), or stirred into soups. It has a sharp, complex fruity/nutty taste and a slightly gritty texture.

You can buy it by weight at Jones the Grocer.

Finally, my favourite Champagne house, Bollinger. It will be tacky if I had told you that if it is good enough for James Bond, it is good enough for me. Bollinger has been managed by the same family since they started producing champagne in 1829. It is one of the last remaining independent Champagne houses left. I love all their different labels. I rate their Special Cuvee as the best non vintage Champagne. Why? The blend includes up to 10% reserve wines, which may be up to fifteen years old. This gives the special cuvee complexity and structure. Hate to boast but this non vintage does taste better than some of the vintages out there and definitely cost cheaper.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Ice Hotel, Sweden

Everyone knows about the Ice hotel, Sweden by now. It's not a new story and even National Geographic has covered it, so why am I still interested in it?

For a very simple reason. Every year when they rebuild the hotel, they change the design and the "artwork" made from ice and snow is made by different groups of artists. You'll never know what to expect. It's like a new hotel every year at the same spot made from ice and snow.

The concept from the ice hotel started with a group of foreign guests, equipped with reindeer hides and sleeping bags, decided it would be a good idea to use the cylindrical shaped igloo as accommodation. The following morning the brave group raved about the unique sensation of sleeping in an igloo. This gave the idea of building a huge igloo like hotel for others to experience their experience.

The 08/09 hotel has started its construction on the 24th November and the hotel is set to be completed on 7th January 2009. The completed hotel will be opened from the 10th January to 18th April. However, they do sell rooms from the first phase while they are constructing the rest of the hotel, at a much cheaper rate 10th December to 28th December 2008. 

I can't wait to check out the artwork that will be installed in the latest reincarnation of the hotel. 

Ice Hotel Exterior.

Ice Tunnel.

A ice bed from 2007/2008.

Artwork in one of the Ice Suites 2007/2008.

Forest Artwork from an Ice Suite 2007/2008.

Artwork in a room 2007/2008.

Absolut Icebar 2007/2008.

Ice Church 2006/2007.

Ice Church 2007/2008.

Ceiling of the Ice Church 2007/2008.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Some of the Most Best Florists.

I love flowers. I love them wild, a little messy as though you were to walk out of your home and picked them out of your garden. Unfortunately for me, most of the good florists in Singapore are into the structured, very avant garde look. I get really put off by that because it certainly looks like a crime against nature.

I have picked out a couple of florists which I love and highly recommend.

Grandiflora from Potts Point, Sydney has flowers to die for. They are simply gorgeous. It also goes to show that simplicity does go a long way. It's no wonder they are the best florist in Sydney and some say Australia.

Sydney has Grandiflora, Melbourne has Pollon. Located just behind St Paul's Cathedral in a shop which was a part of the cathedral, Pollon has the most beautiful shop-front. Their arrangements are beautiful with a good measure of quirkiness. 

Domain Flowers has lovely picks for fresh flowers for the table. It is situated opposite the Kings Domain and the Royal Botanic Gardens in a group of boutique shops and cafes. This location has been a flower shop for 25 years but only 7 years with the current owners. I used to live near them for a short while during my stay in Melbourne. They always had the freshest and most luscious blooms.

What about if you are like me? Stuck in Singapore? I've always loved the flowers from The Link. You can order through their boutique but they have raised their prices. Orders start from SGD$200. I found out a few years ago that they order their flowers from Sebastian Ee (order directly from Sing See Soon, orders start at $60 onwards, which is more reasonable). Sebastian is well known in the floristry circle. He does not have a florist of his own (he works in his family owned nursery which does flowers too) and his services do not come cheap. His most lavish wedding that he did, set the client back by 1 million dollars. Who can afford to pay 1 million dollars for floral decorations? Royalty.

Fortunately for Sean and I, we paid much less for his work but the result is still nothing short of spectacular. 

His work from the Link website.

My Wedding Bouquet.

The Flowers Along The Aisle. I Designed the Grosgrain Ribbon and Hyman Hendler & Sons, New York made them for me. I wanted them to sit prettily in a heap on the carpet.

The Big Picture. In front of the altar are 3 box hedges and flanking the altar on both sides are short palm trees. I wanted to make it look a little like a park.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Dark Chocolate and Griottines Cupcakes with Lemon Icing.

I love black forest cake so this is my version of it as a cupcake without the cream. Don't be deceived by the different icings. They are all the same cake. Thought I'd practice my decorating skills.

Lilac Icing with gold cachous.

With the Griottines Cherries on the top.

A batch for my colleagues with green and red sugar sprinkles.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Sandra's Favourite Cars

Sean and I bonded over cars and this two blogs are part of our "He Loves, She Loves".  As I was doing some research, I realised that most of the cars that I have picked are mainly vintages. No one makes cars like they used to. Cars now are more industrial and muscular, gone are the suave, charming looks.

One problem we have judging by the cars we've picked is there is there isn't enough space for anyone else except us. Ah the life of the "free" and "barren". haha

1957 Jaguar Roadster XK-140

This model in 1956 was the first car that Jaguar decided to offer an automatic gear box option. It was in production from 1954 - 1957. How can anyone resist its cherry red exterior and it's sexy curves?

1956 BMW Isetta 300.

The most iconic Bubble car in the world. Made famous by BMW but the Isetta had many other previous manufacturers like Iso, Velam and Romi.

In October 1956 the Isetta Moto Coupe DeLuxe (sliding-window Isetta) or Isetta 300 was introduced. The bubble windows were replaced by longer, sliding side windows. The engineers had enlarged the single cylinder to a 72 mm bore and 73 mm stroke, which gave a displacement of exactly 298 cc, and at the same time they raised the compression ratio from 6.8 to 7.0:1. In this way the engine now generated 13 hp (10 kW) at 5200 rpm, and the torque rose to 18.4 N·m at 4600 rpm. The maximum speed remained at 85 km/h (53 mph), yet there was a marked increase in flexibility, chiefly noticeable on gradients.

Why is the production of the Isetta significant to BMW? In the early 1950s, the automotive division of BMW was in financial difficulties and a shareholders meeting was held to decide whether to go into liquidation or find a way of carrying on. It was decided to carry on and to try to cash in on the current economy car boom enjoyed so successfully by some of Germany's ex-aircraft manufacturers such as Messerschmitt and Heinkel. Therefore the rights to manufacture the tiny Italian Iso "Isetta" were bought using a modified form of BMW's own motorcycle engine. This was moderately successful and helped the company get back on its feet.

A total of 161, 728 Isettas were sold before they ceased production. There is news that BMW may be coming up with a new Isetta in 2010.

2008 Porsche 911 GT2 (997)

The new 997 GT2 remained based on the 3.6 litre flat-6 engine, but now featured twin variable geometry turbochargers, which generated 390 kW (523 hp) at 6500 rpm. The GT2 accelerates in 3.7 seconds to 100 km/h (62 mph) and in 11.2 seconds to 200 km/h (124 mph) and has a maximum top speed of 329 km/h (204 mph). This makes it the first Porsche 911 to exceed the 200 mph (322 km/h) top speed, with the exception of the 1998 Porsche 911 GT1 which is not considered by enthusiasts to be an actual Porsche 911 due to its mid-mounted engine. The Porsche 997 GT2 also has a curb weight of 1440 kg (3175 lb), 680 N·m (500 ft·lbf) of torque from 2200 to 4500 rpm, and a 6-speed manual gearbox.

This is my pick for an understated racer.

2008 Aston Martin DB9

The DB in its name refers to the owner of Aston Martin, David Brown. DB9 comes in two variants; coupé and "Volante" convertible, each producing 470 bhp (350 kW/477 PS) coming from a 6.0L V12 engine, originally taken from its sister car the V12 Vanquish. In fact, this V12 engine is why Aston Martin did not call the car the DB8, which could suggest that it has only eight cylinders. One report states that Aston Martin believed that this car was such a huge leap from the Jaguar XJ-S based DB7 that it named it DB9 instead of DB8, which they thought would indicate a gradual evolution.

If it's good enough for Bond, it's good enough for me. After all, it's an Aston Martin.

2005 Maseratti MC12

The Maserati MC12 is a grand tourer produced by Maserati to allow a racing variant to compete in the FIA GT Championship. The car entered production in 2004 with 30 cars produced (five of which were not for sale). A further 25 were produced in 2005 making a total of 50 cars available for customers, each of which were pre-sold for €600 000.

It was built on the chasis of an Enzo Ferrari but when it was finished, the final car was bigger. The MC12 sports a 232 kilogram (511 lb), six-litre (5,998 cc/366 cu in) Enzo Ferrari-derived V12 engine, mounted at 65°. Each cylinder has four valves, lubricated via a dry sump system, and a compression ratio of 11.2:1. These combine to provide a maximum torque of 652 newton metres (481 lbf·ft) at 5500 rpm and a maximum power of 465 kilowatts (632 PS/621 bhp) at 7500 rpm. The redline rpm is indicated at 7500—despite being safe up to 7700—whereas the Enzo has redline at 8200 rpm.

The Maserati MC12 can accelerate from 0–100 kilometres per hour (62 mph) in 3.8 seconds.

1954 Porsche Speedster (356)

This is one of the most desirable collector models. It comes with bucket seats, a low, raked windshield (which can be removed) and a minimal folding top.

21, 045 of them were produced.

2000 BMW Z8 (E52)

The Z8 was the production variant of the 1997 Z07 concept car, which was designed by Henrik Fisker at BMW's Designworks in Southern California. The Z07 originally was designed as a styling exercise intended to evoke and celebrate the 1956-'59 BMW 507. The Z07 caused a sensation at the '97 Tokyo Auto Show. The overwhelming popularity of the concept spurred BMW's decision to produce a limited production model called the Z8. 5,703 Z8s were built, approximately half of which were exported to the USA.

The $128,000 car had an all aluminum chassis and body and used a 4.9 L (4941 cc) 32 valve V8, that developed 400 hp (294 kW) and 500 Nm (363 lb·ft). This engine was built by the BMW Motorsport subsidiary and was shared with the E39 M5. The engine was located behind the front axle in order to provide the car with 50/50 weight distribution. The factory claimed a 0 to 100 km/h (0 to 62.5 mph) time of 4.7 seconds.

Every Z8 was shipped with a color-matching metal hardtop with rear defroster. Unlike many accessory hardtops, which are provided for practical rather than stylistic considerations, the Z8 hardtop was designed from the outset to complement the lines of the roadster.

1957 Ferarri 250 GT California Spider LWB

Designed for export to America, the 1957 250 GT California Spider was Scaglietti's interpretation of an open-top 250 GT. Aluminum was used in the hood, doors, and trunk lid, with steel specified elsewhere for most models, though a few aluminum-bodied racing versions were also built. The engine was the same as in the 250 Tour de France racing car with up to 240 hp (179 kW). All used the long 2600 mm (102.4 in) chassis.

About 45 were made before it was replaced by the SWB version in 1960.

One was auctioned on August 18, 2007 at Monterey, California, for 4.9 million dollars to a collector.

1957 Mercedes 300SL Roadster.

The 300SL was best known for both its distinctive gullwing or butterfly wing doors and for being the first-ever gasoline-powered car equipped with fuel injection directly into the combustion chamber. The gullwing version was available from March 1955 to 1957. In Mercedes-Benz fashion, the "300" referred to the engine's cylinder displacement, in this case, three liters. The "SL", as applied to a roadster, stood for "Sport Leicht" or "Sport Light."

The engine, canted at a fifty-degree angle to the left to allow for a lower hoodline, was the same 3.0 litre straight-6 as the regular four-door 300 but with a Bosch mechanical direct fuel injection system that almost doubled its original power of 86 kW (115 hp) in the original carbureted trim. This new injection system was a first in any gasoline-powered car - apart from the rather small Gutbrod where the Mercedes engineers, who had developed the principle for the DB 601 fighter aircraft engine, had to work after the war. It allowed a top speed of up to 260 km/h (161 mph) depending on gear ratio (several options were available) and drag (bumpers were optional, and race tyres fitted for tests), making the 300SL the fastest production car of its time.

1963 Jaguar XK-E

The E-Type was initially designed and shown to the public as a grand tourer in two seater coupé form (FHC or Fixed Head Coupé) and as convertible (OTS or Open Two Seater). The 2+2 version with a lengthened wheelbase was released several years later.

70,000 cars were produced in its lifespan.

When released Enzo Ferrari called it "The most beautiful car ever made". If Mr Ferarri says so, it must be true. 

In March 2008, The Daily Telegraph UK, ranked it as the most beautiful car in its "100 most beautiful cars" of all time.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Sean's Ten Favourite Cars

So everyone says that now is the best time to buy a car. Anyone that knows my husband would know that he LOVES cars (and that is an understatement). I asked him which would be the 10 on his list of all time favourites? 

Here it goes...

1981 Ferrari Berlinetta Boxer (512i BB) 

The first Boxer was the 365 GT4 BB shown at the 1971 Turin Motor Show. Designed to answer rival the Lamborghini Miura, it was finally released for sale in 1973 at the Paris Motor Show.

The 512i BB was the facelift model of the earlier 512 BB (which was the successor to the 365 GT4 BB). 1007 512i BB were produced from 1981 to 1984 and then the model was retired. 

Measured performance: 0-100 km/h 5.9 s, 100-200 km/h 14.8 s, max 288 km/h (179 mph). 

1968 Lamborghini Miura S

I will never forget the story of the origin of Lamborghini. Spite can bring on unwanted competition.

Founded by Ferruccio Lamborghini, Lamborghini started out as a tractor building company in the Italian village of Sant'Agata Bolognese. However, Ferruccio Lamborghini's priorities changed when he went to meet Enzo Ferrari at the Ferrari factory to complain about the quality of the clutch in his Ferrari 250, and received a dismissive answer from Ferrari, who suggested he look after his tractors. A resentful Lamborghini went back to his factory, summoned up his engineers and instructed them to build the faster sport car, which will make Ferrari turn pale.

The first car, the 1963 350GT was produced in 2 years. It was a Grand Tourer which mirrored the performance of a Ferarri and had 143 cars produced (a big quantity for an expensive and relatively unknown car), then in 1966 the 400GT was born. It was a 2+2 seater Grand Tourer with a longer wheelbase. From 1966 to 1968, 247 units were sold.

Why is all this history so important? From all the profits that he made from 350GT and 400GT, he was able to produce his very first sports car, the Miura (named after a famous fighting-bull trainer, Don Eduardo Miura). 761 units were produced and this propelled Automobili Lamborghini to the world of exotic car makers.

365 hp/272 kW @ 7700, 0-60mph at 6.7s, max speed: 276km/h

2000 BMW Mini Cooper S Mk I Coupe

This is definitely my favourite car among all his choices. If I didn't love it, I wouldn't have bought a Cooper. 

When production of the classic Mini ceased in 2000, BMW (the new owner of the brand) announced the successor to the Mini – which is variously called the "BMW MINI" or the "New MINI". The brand name for the new car is MINI (written in capital letters).

Some Mini enthusiasts reject the claim that the MINI is the natural successor of the original car - others simply dislike it - yet others were amongst the first to buy the new MINI when it was launched. There are many reasons offered for the negative point of view. One notion is that the classic Mini could have continued in viable production for many more years had it not been 'killed off' to make way for the MINI. The new MINI is larger than the classic Mini. It is around 55 centimetres (22 in) longer, 30 centimetres (12 in) wider, weighing 1,050 kg (2,315 lb) rather than 650 kg (1,433 lb). That, together with the departure from the spartan minimalism of the original, has proven objectionable to some enthusiasts. Others resent the manner in which BMW took the Mini brand name from the Rover group. However, many Mini owners take the opposite view and embrace the new car as a logical succession of the original and view it as the only way the concept could have continued in the light of modern safety, emissions and manufacturing principles. Some Mini clubs go so far as to ban MINIs from their club meetings - others actively seek car enthusiasts from both camps. Fortunately, we don't get any of these in the Mini clubs in Singapore.

I can go on and on on the history of this lovely car but I shan't. Sean and I share the same sentiments. We both love the design of the 2001 model of the MINI but the engine of the 2007 MK II model. I guess you can't have the best of both worlds.

Anyway, in 2007, the 1 millionth MINI rolled out of production after 6 years of production, just 1 month longer than it took for the same total of classic Minis to be produced in 1965.

It is reported in road tests that this takes the MK II from 0-62 mph in a claimed 7.2 seconds and has top speed of 215km/h.

1996 Ferrari 456GT

This is a front engine Grand Tourer and as its name suggests, each cylinder displaces 456cc. The chassis is a tubular steel spaceframe construction with a one-piece composite bonnet and body panels of aluminium. The body panels are welded to the chassis by using a special "sandwich filler" called feran that, when laid between, allows steel and aluminium to be welded.

It produced 436 hp (325 kW) with 4 valves per cylinder and Bosch Motronic 2.7 engine management. It could push the 1690 Kg car and four passengers to 302 km/h (188 mph) making it the world's fastest production passenger car. Acceleration to 100 km/h (62 mph) was just 5.2 seconds, with a 13.4 second quarter-mile time. At the time of its development it was the most powerful road car ever developed by Ferrari (aside from the F40).
Approximately 3,289 of all versions where built worldwide.

2003 Lamborghini Gallardo 

The car is named after a famous breed of fighting bull. The Spanish word gallardo (/ɡaˈʎaɾðo/) translates into "gallant," and from Italian into "striking".

The Gallardo was designed as a competitor to the Ferrari 360, and now competes with its replacement, the Ferrari F430. The Gallardo has a rear-biased all-wheel drive system which differentiates it from its rear-wheel drive competitors. Lamborghini's parent company Audi is renowned for its quattro 4WD system, however Lamborghini uses a system of its own.
Unlike the Countach, Diablo, and Murciélago models, the Gallardo does not have scissor doors.

The Gallardo was designed by Luc Donckerwolke, who won the 2003 red dot design award for the design of both the 2004 Gallardo and 2002 Murciélago.

0-100km @ 4.1s, Top Speed 310km/h, 493bhp @ 368kW

2007 Ferrari 599GTB Fiorano

The Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano (internal code F139) is Ferrari's 2-seat Gran Turismo flagship model, replacing the 575 M Maranello in 2006 as a 2007 model. The 599 GTB debuted at the Geneva Motor Show on February 28, 2006. Styling of the 599 GTB was handled by Pininfarina, under the direction of Ferrari stylist, Frank Stephenson. It is named for its total engine displacement (5999 cc), Gran Turismo Berlinetta nature, and the Fiorano Circuit test track used by Ferrari.

0 - 60 m/h @3.7s, Top Speed in excess of 330km/h, 612bhp@7200rpm

2008 BMW M3 Convertible, Written By Sean

The BMW M3 Convertible (internal code E93) is the latest variant of the M3 family launched in 2008.  Available in both a standard manual transmission or the optional M-DCT (Double Clutch Transmission), the M3 convertible goes from 0-100km/h in 5.3s [5.1s for M-DCT]. Powered by a 4 litre V8 engine, the M3 convertible has a maximum power output of 420hp and a maximum torque of 400Nm. This high revving engine revs cleanly all the way to an astronomical 8300rpm. And just like all other BMW M cars, the engine comes with individual throttle butterflies for every cylinder and an advanced engine management system that ensures the car responds rapidly to any of the driver's commands. With the new M-DCT, the car not only accelerates faster but also drinks less petrol. The M DCT Drivelogic uses two transmission structures. Second, fourth and sixth gears are assigned to one structure, and first, third, fifth and seventh to the other. When you switch up or down, the system simply switches between the two. So while one gear is being disengaged, the next is already in position. By overlapping the clutch and declutch, the transmission of power remains uninterrupted. Six manual and five automatic programs allow you to access the whole spectrum of gear behaviour, from dynamic and pure to harmonious and comfortable.

I have always loved the 3 series convertible and now it is available as with a M version. Just like the 3 series convertible, the M3 convertible comes with a 3 piece retractable hard top. You get the best of both worlds; you get a coupe and a convertible in one car depending on your mood. The M3 convertible may not be the most driver focused of the M3 family, but it certainly makes my day when you drive it with the top down and with the wind in your hair.

 Mclaren F1 (1992-1998), Written By Sean

The Mclaren F1 reigned supreme as the world's fastest production car between 1994 and 2005. Engineered and produced by Mclaren Automotive, it is still the fastest naturally aspirated car in the world today. In the heart of the Mclaren F1 lies the 6.1 litre V12 engine which was supplied by BMW's M division. The standard Mclaren F1 achieved a top speed of 371km/h.
The V12 engine (codenamed S70) featured 12 individual throttle butterfiles and BMW's variable valve timing (VANOS) to produce a maximum power of 627hp and a maximum torque of 651Nm. To insulate the carbon fibre body panels and monocoque, the engine bay was lined with gold foil, which proved to be a very efficient heat reflector. The Mclaren F1 was capable of a 0-60mph timing of 3.2s, something that even most modern supercars are unable to reach.

Technical data aside, the Mclaren F1 is a real beauty in the looks department. With its gull wing doors and unique 3 seater design, I was mesmerized by it when I first laid eyes on it in a car magazine. Now more than 10 years on, I had a chance to see it in the flesh when I visited the BMW Mobile Tradition in Munich. The car still loves unbelievable after so many years. 

1986 Porsche 959

The Porsche 959 was manufactured from 1986 to 1989, first as a Group B rally car and later as a legal production car designed to satisfy FIA homologation regulations requiring that a minimum number of 200 street legal units be built.

During its production run, it was hailed as being the most technologically advanced road-going sports car ever built and the harbinger of the future of sports cars: it was one of the first high-performance vehicles to use an all-wheel drive system; it provided the basis for Porsche's first all-wheel drive Carrera 4 model; and it convinced Porsche executives of the system's viability so well that they chose to make all-wheel drive standard on all versions of the 911 Turbo starting with the 993 variant. During its lifetime, the vehicle had only one other street legal peer with comparable performance, the Ferrari F40. The 959's short production run and performance have kept values high.

337 units were manufactured and some of its famous owners include Bill Gates, Jerry Seinfeld (Porsche Enthusiast) and Paul Allen.

0-60 mph @ 3.7s, 444bhp. Top speed 317km/h.

BMW 6 Series (1976 - 1989), Written By Sean

The original 6 series was the successor to the BMW 3.0CSI. Launched in August 1976, the car featured a 3.2 litre inline 6 engine producing a modest 197 bhp. In 1980, BMW launched the 635CSI. This came with a bigger 3.4 litre inline 6 engine and produced a maximum power of 218 bhp.  Perhaps the most important of all the first generation BMW 6 series models ever produced was the M635CSI. This was one of the first M cars ever built. The engine was derived from the BMW M1 and it produced to maximum power of 286 bhp and propelled the car from 0 - 100km/h in just 6.2s.