BMW 1-Series hatchback launched at a tempting Rs. 20.9 lakh

This is the most inexpensive BMW you can buy in India. If you really wanted to own a luxury marque, here’s your chance, with the new BMW 1-Series hatchback launched at a tempting price of Rs. 20.9 lakh for the base petrol variant, going up to Rs. 29.9 lakh for the fully kitted out diesel variant, all-India ex-showroom.

This BMW hatchback retains its rear-wheel drive configuration and fun-to-drive characteristic and will appeal to buyers looking for a sporty, luxury hatchback that they will drive themselves.

Prices and variants

BMW 116i: Rs. 20.9 lakh

BMW 118d: Rs. 22.9 lakh

BMW 118d Sport: Rs. 25.9 lakh

BMW 118d Sport Plus: Rs. 29.9 lakh

The BMW 1 Series is available in petrol (BMW 116i) and diesel variants (BMW 118d, BMW 118d Sport and BMW 118d Sport Plus). The Sport and Sport Plus have more features and aggressive design elements. The car comes in eight colour options: Black Sapphire, Deep Sea Blue, Glacier Silver, Midnight Blue, Mineral Grey, Valencia Orange, Alpine White and Crimson Red. Also read: BMW 3-Series road test and review

Sporty, muscular design

Unlike other hatchbacks the BMW 1-Series retains its sedan like look from the front with a long bonnet and also a long wheelbase when seen in profile. The fenders have been given a bit of a bulge to give it a muscular appearance. It is a proper four-door hatchback.

The dashboard and layout of the controls are similar to the 3-Series, and once seated in the car you won’t realize you are in the smallest BMW there is. The rear is relatively spacious as well, almost as much as the X1 for comparison. It features 60:40 split folding seats to increase luggage space when needed.

Two engine options

The flagship engine of the 1-Series is the twin-turbo (or as BMW calls TwinPower Turbo) four-cylinder diesel engine that puts out 143 bhp of power and 320 Nm of torque. It can accelerate to 100 kmph in 8.6 seconds with a top speed of 212 kmph. The diesel has a claimed fuel economy of 20.58 kmpl. The BMW petrol variant comes with a turbo-charged petrol engine putting out 136 bhp of power and can do 0-100 kmph in 8.7 seconds, with a top speed of 210 kmph. Fuel efficiency is a claimed 16.28 kmpl.

Both engine options come with an eight-speed automatic transmission as standard, driving the rear-wheels in typical BMW style. It also features multiple drive modes – eco pro, comfort and sport. The Sport and Sport Plus variants also have an additional sport plus mode, which alters the driving characteristics dramatically. Also read: BMW X1 launched at Rs. 27.9 lakh

Feature rich

In terms of safety the BMW 1-Series comes with six airbags, dynamic stability control and run-flat tyres in addition to the standard safety features such as ABS, crumple zones, and impact-absorbing bumpers.

It also has features such as auto start-stop and brake-energy regeneration to save fuel, Bluetooth, a multi-information display with colour screen, parking sensors, as standard in all variants. Optional features include a tablet DVD system that snap fits into the car, aerodynamic kit including spoilers and fins and trim elements. The Sport and Sport Plus variants feature leather steering with red stitching, sports fabric upholstery and an electric glass sun-roof option.

Compared to the Mercedes A-Class, the BMW 1-Series appears far sportier and more powerful, and should definitely be an attractive buy for buyers looking at a sporty entry-level luxury car. That is, until the Audi A3 sedan comes in to spoil the party perhaps. Also see: BMW X-Drive basics, what a BMW SUV can do