In our continuing focus on the BMW product portfolio for the Indian market, we now take a close look at the sedans BMW offers the Indian buyer. If your interest is in SUVs, read this CarToq report.
In the sedans segment, BMW offers the 3-series, 5-series, 6-series, 7-series, Z4 and M-series. The price starts from Rs. 24 lakh and goes beyond Rs. 1 crore for the top end 7-series. The listing below is in increasing order of price (and all prices are ex-showroom Delhi).
Before the X1 SUV came to India, the 3-series was the most affordable BMW in the country. There are five variants of the 3-series sedan in India which includes the 320i, 330i, 320d Corporate Edition, 320d Executive and 320d Performance Edition.
BMW 320i (Price: Rs. 24 lakh)
The 320i is powered by a 1995 cc, 4-cylinder engine that generates 170 bhp of maximum power and 200 Nm of max torque. The car can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/hr in 9.8 seconds and achieve a top speed of 218 km/hr. The 320i is a gateway BMW and those who have owned one can only go further up the ladder.
The 320i has Park Distance Control, a standard feature fitted at the car’s rear, which warns the driver about the proximity of obstacles with clear audio signal, thus making the parking task easier and safer too.
The car will give you ample bragging rights, and with an overall fuel consumption of 12.1 km/litre, it is remarkable frugal.
BMW 320d (Price: Rs. 24.90 lakh)
The 320d offers more or less the same features as the 320i, which includes airbags, ABS, climate control, power windows, alloy wheels, fog lamps etc.
The car is powered by a 1995 cc diesel engine that produces 181 bhp of max power and 380 Nm of peak torque. The car accelerates from 0 to 100 km/hr in 7.6 seconds and can achieve a top speed of 233 km/hr.
There is also the 320d Corporate Edition (Price: Rs. 24.4 lakh) which is essentially the same car but misses out on some features like the sunroof, CD changer and wooden garnish. This variant will allow you to save about Rs. 7-9 lakh as against the Exclusive and Performance Editions of the 3-series.
With an overall fuel consumption of 16.1 km/litre, the diesel engine is substantially more fuel efficient compared to its petrol powered siblings.
BMW 330i (Price: Rs. 34.40 lakh)
BMW calls the 330i sedan 330i sports, the word ‘sports’ being the key here. This specific variant is focused on customers who want a little more performance and the cars powerful 2996 cc, 4-cylinder engine is substantially more powerful than its 3-seires siblings.
The large engine generates 255 bhp of maximum power and 300 Nm of maximum torque what these figures translate into is a 0 to 100 km/hr time of 6.6 seconds and a top speed of 250 km/hr.
You will have to compromise on fuel economy though for all that grunt leaves the 330i with a mileage of only 9.5 km/litre.
Mercedes-Benz C-Class (Rs. 29.7 lakh-Rs. 36.70 lakh)
Audi A4 (Rs. 31lakh- Rs. 41.3 lakh)
The real thrill of owning a BMW though starts from the 5-series, as these Bavarian executive sedans have subtle sporty looks, luxurious but proportionate dimensions and the typical German finesse you would expect from a BMW. BMW offers five variants of the 5-series namely the 523i, 535i, 520d, 525d and 530d, with prices ranging from Rs. 39.50 lakh to Rs. 58 lakh.
BMW 523i (Price: Rs. 39.5 lakh)
The 523i is the least expensive 5 series sedan and is powered by a 2,497 cc, 6-cylinder engine that generates 204 bhp of maximum power and 250 Nm of maximum torque. This petrol motor can thrust the car from 0 to 100 km/hr in 8.5 seconds and allows the 523i to achieve a top speed of 234 km/hr.
The 523i features Brake Energy Regeneration, Dynamic Stability Control, Traction Mode (DTC), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), CBC and Braking Assistant, Airbags (6), Park Distance Control, iDrive Controller and display.
You will not be a very happy customer if you buy the BMW 5-Series for fuel efficiency. That said the overall fuel economy for this sedan is 8 km/litre (We’re not complaining considering the grunt and brute force you get with this sedan).
BMW 535i (Price: Rs. 38.9 lakh)
The 535i is powered by 2,979 cc, 6-cylinder engine that generates 306 bhp of max power and 400 Nm of max torque. If you’re one of those people who like to be the first out of stop lights, this car will get the job done. The 525i accelerates from 0 to 100 km/hr in 6.1 seconds and can achieve a top speed of 250 km/hr (Of course, no law abiding citizen will be able to verify that!)
The 535i gets all the features of the 523i and also gets TV function for analogue and digital reception, Rear-seat entertainment with two tilt able 8-inch screens.
The overall fuel economy of the 535i is 8.4 km/litre.
BMW 525d (Price: Rs. 42.50 lakh)
The 525d is essentially a 525i with only the diesel engine to differentiate the two machines. It is powered by 2,993 cc 6-cylinder diesel engine that generates 204 bhp of maximum power (That’s 102 bhp lesser than the petrol variant) and 450 Nm of maximum torque (50 Nm more than the petrol). This diesel power plant helps the sedan reach the 100 km/hr mark in 7.2 seconds and achieve a top speed of 236 km/hr.
The 525d gets 8-speed automatic transmission Steptronic, electronic gear selector switch, Adaptive Transmission Management, Brake Energy Regeneration, Dynamic Stability Control, Traction Mode (DTC), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), CBC and Braking Assistant, Airbags (6), Park Distance Control and iDrive Controller and display.
The overall mileage of the 525d is 6 km/litre but since the price of diesel is always much lower than that of petrol the 525d still makes sense for those who want to save a little (You will really be saving ONLY a little!).
BMW 530d (Price: Rs. 47.37 lakh)
The 530d is essentially the same as the 525d barring some features like a TV function for analogue and digital reception (DVB-T, Rear-seat entertainment with two tilt able 8-inch screens and a paddle shift.
The 530d is powered by 2,993 cc 6-cylinder diesel engine that makes 245 bhp of maximum power and 540 Nm of maximum torque. This car accelerates from 0 to 100 km/hr in 6.3 seconds and can achieve a top speed of 250 km/hr.
The 530d gets all the features of the 525d and gearshift paddles on the steering wheel. Further, the 530d gets TV function for analogue and digital reception, Rear-seat entertainment with two tilt able 8-inch screens.
The overall mileage of the 530d is 6 km/litre.
BMW 520d (Price: Rs. 37.93 lakh)
This is probably the car most people would prefer as it has an amazing overall fuel economy of 19.23 km/litre which helps the rich stay rich. The 520d is powered by a 1,995 cc, 4-cylinder diesel engine that produces 184 bhp of maximum power and 380 Nm of maximum torque. It’s reasonably fast too and 100 km/hr comes up in 8.1 seconds, if you push the car on open roads it has the potential of reaching a top speed of 225 km/hr.
The 520d engine has a lower power/torque (184 hp/ 380 Nm) when compared to the 525d (204 hp/450 Nm) and further, the 520d has a lesser top speed (225 km/hr than the 525d (236 km/hr).
All 5-series cars are mated to 8-speed automatic gearboxes that are equipped with Steptronic, electronic gear selector switches and Adaptive Transmission Management. These technologies offer the performance-oriented driving experience equivalent to that of a manual gearbox.
Though the 5-series sedans outdo their competition when it comes to engine performance and handling, they fall a little short in rear seat comfort offered by its rival models.
Mercedes-Benz E-Class (Rs. 44.65 lakh to Rs. 55.70 lakh)
Audi A6 (Rs. 43.55 lakh to Rs. 52.28 lakh)
BMW Z4 (Price: Rs. 61.80 lakh)
The Z4 is not a sedan but it is one of the most interesting cars BMW offers in its Indian line up. It is a roadster that has a retractable hardtop making it a two-seater coupe as well and is priced at Rs. 66.50 lakh. The Z4 is powered by a powerful 2,979 cc engine that belts out an impressive 306 bhp of maximum power and 400 Nm of maximum torque.
The Z4 can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/hr in a mere 5.1 seconds and can achieve a top speed of 250 km/hr.
The Z4 has run-flat tyres, roll-over system, high-performance braking system, adaptive headlights and headlight beam throw control, safety features including head-thorax airbags
It is surprisingly fuel efficient and gives 10.8 km/litre.
Audi TT (Rs. 46 lakh)
Porsche Boxter (Rs. 53 – 70 lakh)
Nissan 370Z (Rs. 57.47 lakh)
Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class (55.30 – 89.52 lakh).
BMW 6-Series (Price: Rs. 81 lakh)
The BMW 6-Series is a classy looking convertible based on the 5-series platform and has an unmistakable BMW design. Only one variant of the BMW, the 6-series convertible is available in India and is priced at Rs. 81 lakh.
It is powered by a humongous 4,395 cc engine that generates 407 bhp of maximum power and 600 Nm of max torque (If you rev it too hard on sand, you will create a crater).The 100 km/hr mark comes up in just 5 seconds and the car can achieve a top speed of 250 km/hr.
The 6-series has Head-Up Display projecting current speed directly on the field of vision helping the driver keep his eyes always on the road, BMW Night Vision by scanning the road ahead using the infrared camera fitted in the kidney grille and warning the driver revealing objects up to 300 meters.
The 6-series will bless you with 9.35 km/litre, which isn’t too bad for such a vehicle.
Jaguar XK convertible (Rs. 1 crore)
Mercedes-Benz SL-Class (Rs.96 lakh)
The BMW 7-series is for those who love to be spoilt. It is a full sized luxury car with a long wheelbase of 3,210 mm. The 7-series offers oodles of space on the inside and is available in four variants namely, the 730Ld, 740Li, 750Li and the 760Li. Prices of the 7-series range from Rs. 82.50 lakh to Rs. 1.30 crore (Ouch!)
The 7-series gets Integral Active Steering that varies the steering angle of the rear wheels at high speeds for better comfort and also can decrease the turning circle at low speeds, integral V rear axle and air suspension for unparalleled comfort.
BMW 730Ld (Price: Rs. 83.40 lakh)
The 730Ld is the entry level model for the 7-Series and though it isn’t as peppy as its more expensive siblings it still offers a great driving experience and has been designed specifically for those who will spend most of their time in the back seat.
It is powered by 2,993 cc, 6-cylinder diesel engine that makes 245 bhp of max power and 540 Nm of max torque. This car elegantly accelerates from 0 to 100 km/hr in 7.3 seconds and luxuriously transports you to a top speed of 245 km/hr.
With a composite fuel economy of 13.7 km/litre it does make a lot of sense if you aspire to foray into this segment.
BMW 740Li (Price: Rs. 86.40 lakh)
Now the 740Li is dearer by roughly Rs.3 lakh when compared to the 730Ld, what you get for those extra bucks is a 2,979 cc, 6-cylinder petrol engine that produces 326 bhp of max power and 450 Nm of max torque. It takes 6 seconds (Read two blinks of an eye) to reach 100km/hr and can achieve a top speed of 250 km/hr.
The fuel economy of the 740Li is a very acceptable 10 km/litre, whether the price is justified however is more of an individual opinion and we find it best not to stray into those waters.
BMW 750Li (Price: Rs. 98.60 lakh)
Now the 750Li is where the true grit of the 7-series comes out, the car is powered by an insane, preposterous, outrageous (Think of ten more adjectives) 4,395 cc, 8-cylinder petrol engine that belts out 408 bhp of max power and 600 Nm of max torque.
It is a tad faster than its less powerful siblings when it comes to the 0 to 100 km/hr run and takes only 5.1 seconds. Its top speed once again is 250 km/hr.
The 750Li will give you 11.4 km/litre.
BMW 760Li (Price: Rs. 1.31 crore)
If the 750Li is powerful, the 760Li is, well, the most powerful 7-series variant with a (Silently recite all adjectives used above again) 5,972 cc petrol engine that belts out a massive 544 bhp of max power and 750 Nm of max torque (Rev it hard on sand and voila you have the Grand Canyon!).
It accelerates from 0 to 100 km/hr in a derisory 4.6 seconds while the top speed of the 760Li is 250 km/hr (If you’re wondering why the top speed for all Beamers is the same it’s because they are electronically limited). The composite fuel consumption of the 760Li is 13 km/litre which is great for a 6.0 litre engine.
The 7-series is full of wonderful cars but the Mercedes-Benz S-Class (Rs 85.58 – Rs. 99.37 lakh, ex-showroom, Delhi) is still the favorite pick among buyers in this segment.
In 2010, Mercedes-Benz sold 1,131 units of S Class as against the 556 units of 7-series sold by BMW.
BMW M models (Price: Rs. 76 lakh- Rs. 1.30 Crore)
BMW has two M models in its Indian product portfolio, the M3 Coupe and the M3 Convertible. The M3 Coupe is priced at Rs. 78.14 lakh while the M3 Convertible is priced at Rs. 83.66 lakh.
The M3 Coupe as well as the M3 Convertible is powered by a 3,999 cc, 8-cylinder engine that makes 420 bhp of maximum power and 400 Nm of maximum torque. Both accelerate from 0 – 100 km/hr in about 4.8 seconds and have a top speed of 250 km/hr.
As per BMW, the M3 Coupe returns a composite mileage of 8.1 km/litre while the M3 Convertible returns a composite fuel economy of 7.8 km/litre.
Audi RS5 (Rs. 85.31 lakh)
Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG (Rs. 69.90 lakh)