BMW 535d Review: The Olympic Drive to Lake Placid, N.Y.

By Jonathan Spira on 11 November 2014
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38+ MPG Fuel Economy and Superb Handling Make for a Frugal Yet Satisfying Drive

Lake Placid, New York is located in the Adirondack Mountains in northeastern New York State, and is best known as the host of both the 1932 and 1980 Winter Olympic Games and the site of the “Miracle on Ice,” the medal-round of men’s hockey in which the U.S. team defeated the Soviet Union for the gold medal. Currently, the village has a population of 2,521 and offers visitors a taste of nature and Olympic winter sports.

Our drive started on Long Island on a sunny late summer afternoon, with a stop in White Plains in Westchester County, continuing the next day to our destination, the Whiteface Lodge in Lake Placid.

Once across the Throgs Neck Bridge, one of three that connect Long Island to the mainland United States, we headed to the Bronx River Parkway, the first limited access highway in the United States to begin construction although it was beat by the Long Island Motor Parkway in its opening.

BMW 535d at the Ritz-Carlton, Westchester

BMW 535d at the Ritz-Carlton, Westchester

Construction began in 1907 and the Bronx River Parkway had a number of firsts, including being the first highway to use a median strip to separate opposing lanes of traffic. It was the first highway to run through a park and also the first where intersecting roads crossed via overpasses.

The initial leg of 27 miles (45.5 kilometers) took about 45 minutes. The remainder would be driven the following morning once my colleague and associate editor Jesse Sokolow joined me following a Lexus RC drive held at the Ritz-Carlton Westchester.

At 301 miles (484 kilometers), the total trip would be the longest the 535d has taken since picking it up at the BMW Welt in Munich last December.

Click here to continue to Page 2The Drive to Lake Placid, the New York State Thruway, and BMW’s EfficientDynamics

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