BMW India is actively considering a launch of the 1 series luxury sedans and MINI brand of cars to tap in the demand for luxury cars below Rs. 20 lakh. The company has not yet set any time frame to launch these models in India.
Andreas Schaaf, President of BMW India has told PTI that the company was re-looking at both BMW Mini and One-Series cars for launching in India. He added that the company had thought about launching these cars a couple of years ago but decided that the Indian market was not ready for such products. But BMW is doing considerably well in India now, and sales of luxury vehicles are rising. Times have changed, and it is no wonder that BMW India is exploring the entry-level luxury car market now.
BMW sells the 1 Series in many international markets. In the US market, the 1 series is available in a range of petrol variants such as 116i, 118i, 130i and 120 I and diesel variants such as 118d, 120d, 116d and 123d.
The 130i petrol 1 series is powered by a 3.0 litre, 6-cylinder engine producing 285 hp of maximum power and 315 Nm of maximum torque. The engine can accelerate the car from 0 – 100 km/hr in 6.1 seconds and achieve a top speed of 250 km/hr.
The 123d diesel 1 series is powered by a 2.0 litre, 4-cylinder motor producing 204 hp of maximum power and 400 Nm of maximum torque. This diesel engine can accelerate the sedan from 0 -1 00 km/hr in 7 seconds and can achieve a top speed of 238 km/hr.
BMW is currently testing the next-generation 1 series which will likely be launched late this year in the US market. The new 1 series will be made available in hatchback, coupe and convertible body types. When launched in India, the price of the 1 series could be between Rs. 18 lakh to Rs. 25 lakh. Also read: BMW Mini launch plans
In Novemeber 2010, DwsAuto has reported that MINI range of cars will be launched in India. BMW will sell the MINI cars via its selected dealer network especially in metros and cities like Bangalore and Hyderabad. The cars will be imported as completely built units from MINI’s Cowley plant in OxfordShire, UK.
MINI has two brands, the MINI Cooper and the MINI Countryman. The Cooper is a hatchback while the Countryman is a SUV. The Mini Cooper is powered by a 1.6 litre, 4-cylinder petrol engine producing 112 hp of maximum power and 160 Nm of maximum torque. The engines are mated to either a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic. When the MINI Cooper is launched in India, it would be one of the most premium hatchbacks. Expect the MINI Cooper to cost about Rs. 24 lakh. Also read: BMW starts engine assembly operations in India
MINI Countryman is powered by 1.6 litre common rail diesel engine that produces 112 bhp of maximum power and 270 Nm of maximum torque. The engine is mated to a6-speed manual transmission. Countryman can reach a top speed of 180 km/hr while accelerating from 0 – 100 km/hr in 10.9 seconds. The Countryman is expected to be priced in the Rs. 18 lakh – Rs. 20 lakh range. When launched in India, the MINI Countryman will take on Honda CR-V, Skoda Yeti, Toyota Fortuner and its likes.
BMW India is serious about its business expansion in Indian market. The launch of BMW X1 has stirred volumes for the company and with the launch of 1 series and MINI brand of cars, the German luxury car maker will put up a tough fight to Mercedes Benz and Audi.