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BMW: BMW 1 Series 2005

BMW is poised to shake up the compact executive segment with the arrival of the new 1 Series. Featuring four engines, three gearboxes and rear wheel drive, a combination not found in any of its competitors, the BMW 1 Series makes its entrance in Autumn 2004 and will immediately offer a new benchmark to driving dynamics in its class.

A 1.6-litre petrol engine producing 150Nm of torque at 4,300rpm powers the entry-level BMW 116i. The 115bhp unit achieves a zero to 62mph time of 10.8 seconds and a top speed of 125mph.

BMW 1 Series 2005
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Even with this high level of performance, the 116i achieves an economical fuel consumption of 37.7mpg.

The high-performance four-cylinder petrol model is the BMW 120i with its 150bhp and 200Nm (at 3,600rpm) 2.0-litre VALVETRONIC petrol engine. Light and nimble, the 120i covers zero to 62mph in 8.7 seconds before going on to achieve a maximum speed of 135mph.

The BMW 1 Series launch line-up is completed with two versions of the powerful yet frugal 2.0-litre common rail diesel engine. The 122bhp BMW 118d averages 50.4mpg while posting a zero to 62mph time of 10 seconds and reaching a top speed of 125mph.

BMW 1 Series 2005
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BMW 1 Series 2005 BMW 1 Series 2005
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BMW 1 Series 2005

BMW 1 Series 2005
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The higher-performance 163bhp BMW 120d achieves 49.6mpg yet is capable of a 7.9 second zero to 62mph time and a 137mph top speed. Instant turbo power delivered smoothly to the red line results in the 120d posting sharper performance figures than its 2.0-litre petrol equivalent.

In-gear overtaking in both diesel models should prove rapid thanks to a maximum torque of 280Nm and 340 Nm respectively, much of this urge available from a low 2,000rpm. Both diesel-engined derivatives and the two petrol units are EU4 emission compliant.

Power is delivered to the road via a six-speed manual in 118d, 120d and 120i models, while the 116i has a five-speed manual gearbox. An optional six-speed automatic will also be offered on 120i and 120d models.

Although a new car in a new premium segment, the 1 Series has the traditional BMW design trademarks - the front kidney grille, double headlamps and 'Hofmeister kink' on the C-pillar all feature. These punctuate a genuinely head-turning styling that ensures the new 1 Series will stand out amongst its competitors.

After slipping behind the wheel and firing up the engine via a starter button, the driver will go on to enjoy BMW's renowned 50:50 weight distribution and front engine, rear wheel drive set-up - unique in this class. Coupled with a technically elaborate aluminium front axle and five-link rear suspension, this ensures optimum handling and traction, and the most invigorating drive in the compact executive segment. A drag coefficient of just 0.29 helps the new BMW 1 Series slip through the air with maximum efficiency and the minimum of noise. Standard fit 16-inch run-flat tyres also means the days of motorway hard shoulder tyre changes are over.

Measuring just 4.23 metres long, but with a relatively long wheelbase of 2.66 metres, driving dynamics have been cleverly worked into a practical four-seater. The new 1 Series offers ample shoulder and legroom for rear passengers and, thanks to split fold rear seats that fold virtually flat, a similarly generous luggage capacity of between 330 to 1150 litres of storage space.

BMW 1 Series 2005 BMW 1 Series 2005
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Dynamic Stability Control, Dynamic Traction Control, Dynamic Brake Control and Electronic Differential Lock help ensure the 1 Series provides the highest standards of active safety without impacting unnecessarily on driving enjoyment. An airbag system that includes head airbags for all occupants means the new BMW 1 Series also meets the most stringent passive safety requirements.

 BMW 1 Series 2005
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The high level of standard safety features combined with structural integrity means that the new 1 Series is clearly aiming for five stars in the EuroNCAP crash test.

BMW 1 Series 2005
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Meanwhile, optional extras include Bluetooth capability, sports seats with backrest width adjustment, acoustic Park Distance Control at the front and the rear and Bi-Xenon headlights. The pioneering iDrive controller when mated to a navigation system is also an option. Keyless access and voice-activated radio and navigation systems will appear after launch.

BMW 1 Series 2005
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Prices for the all-new 1-Series will be announced later in the Spring.

 03/23/2004

Photos: BMW AG

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