BMW hopes to draw in young Chinese customers with smallest-ever 1-Series sedan

Article by Christian A., on December 19, 2016

BMW has officially launched its newest sedan at the Guangzhou Auto Show. The BMW 1-Series Sedan made exclusively for the Chinese market is the first compact sports variant under BMW. Since more and more people opt for the premium compact car segment not just in China but globally, BMW has explored a new product range to attract its targeted consumer group.

Jochen Goller, senior sales marketing for BMW, said that the smallest sedan is built for China’s “young generation”. Despite the small size however, the new BMW 1 Series’ build quality and performance has never been compromised.

Just like the BMW 2 Series, the 4-door variant’s main attraction goes to the LED dual headlights and double kidney grille. In other words, there is no shortage of BMW’s iconic styling cues with this one. Moreover, the compact sedan’s short overhangs and extended hood design make it a good competitor to other cars in its class. Some of which include Citroen DS5, Volvo S40, Mercedes Benz CLA-Class and Audi A3.

Based on the initial information, China’s BMW 1 Series will be equipped with the iDrive system with built-in 8.8-inch LED monitor. Other than BMW’s optional interior upgrades, the sedan will also come with leather trim, dual-zone climate control and colored heads-up display as standard features.

BMW has yet to release the complete specs for the new compact car. However, it is believed that BMW employed the same UKL front-wheel drive platform as that of the BMW X1 and Mini Cooper. The choices for its engine are expected to include 231hp 2.0 Litre turbo, 192hp 2.0 litre turbo and 136hp 1.5 litre turbo among other variants. As always, all engines will be offered with an 8-speed automatic or a 6-speed manual transmission.

Even so, the new BMW 1 Series has been developed and tested at the BMW headquarters. Chinese engineers worked closely with BMW to ensure that the car is built to perform under China’s different road, terrain and climate conditions. Their teamwork also helped BMW develop specific enhancements and fine-tuning based on the Chinese customers’ driving habits.

The new sedan is actually the fifth BMW model to be made in China. Other BMW models made in cooperation with Brilliance Auto include the BMW 5 Series, 3 Series, 2 Series Active Tourer and the X1 SUV. The price range for the all-new BMW 1 Series is somewhere from $26,000 to $37,000 or equivalent to 180,000-260,000 Chinese Yuan. It will be sold exclusively in China around the first quarter of 2017.

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