BMW to assemble the highly affordable 1-series in India during 2013

Thursday 27 December 2012, 11:58 AM by

The premium series of hatchbacks from BMW, the 1 series, are expected to be available in India from 2013. These vehicles will be assembled at the Chennai factory, where the 3 series, 5 series, X1 and the diesel X3 are being assembled. The 1 series would be the most affordable range of BMW vehicles in India.

BMW to assemble the highly affordable 1-series in India during 2013  |
BMW to assemble the highly affordable 1-series in India during 2013

BMW hatches would not be as small as conventional ones, but are much longer. In fact, at a length of 4.2 metres, they appear more as saloons rather than hatches. However, they are quite agile and powerful and would ably carry forward BMW's USP, which has always been to manufacture fun-to-drive vehicles. Additionally, these five door hatchbacks would be rear wheel driven.

In a rear wheel drive vehicle, wheels gain better traction, since they exert pressure on the ground during heavy acceleration. However, when these vehicles tend to lose traction, they become more responsive and gain a tendency to over steer. Also, there is better weight distribution between front and rear in rear wheel driven cars, which implies that they turn more easily than front wheel driven ones.

Assembled vehicles attract lesser duty than CBUs (Completely Built Units), which would allow BMW to price the 1 series aggressively. Currently, the Chennai facility produces 11,000 units per annum, which would go up in order to meet the demands of the 1-series. To expand the capacity of this plant, BMW India would require to make further investment.

Two different engines will be available for the 1 Series, with the petrol version offering two power options. The 1.6 litre petrol engine would be offered in terms of 136bhp and 170bhp versions, whereas a 2.0 litre diesel variant will pump out 116bhp, 143bhp or 184bhp, depending on which variant is brought to the country. This will certainly be one vehicle by BMW in India which will be much popular amongst performance aficionados, especially since it would be more affordable than ever before.

The 1-series has been built on the same platform as the BMW 3-series. Forward leaning kidney grille, with shark-tailed headlamps gives this vehicle a premium and aggressive look. Tail lights are now at the end of the rear, which provides a larger tailgate aperture. At an expected price between Rs. 18-20 lakhs, this vehicle would compete directly with the Mercedes A-class.

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