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BMW brings hot hatch allure to 1 Series with 125i

More for more: BMW’s 125i may provide more performance and better fuel economy than Volkswagen’s Golf GTI but it costs $5210 more.

New 125i promises Golf GTI-beating performance from BMW’s 1 Series hatch

13 Mar 2012

BMW has announced the addition of a more powerful 125i variant to its 1 Series hatch line-up, fitted with the brand’s 2.0-litre N20 turbo-petrol engine and additional standard equipment to top the range at $45,700 plus on-road costs.

The 125i is available from March production and 1 Series customers can also now spruce up their purchase with the M Sport package, now offered on all variants except the entry-level 116i and priced at $5385.

The Bavarian luxury brand claims the new engine, which produces 160kW at 5000rpm and develops 310Nm of torque from 1350rpm, provides the 1 Series with hot hatch performance and class-leading fuel consumption.

Compared with the popular Volkswagen Golf GTI, which costs $5210 less than the BMW in five-door form, the 125i produces 5kW more power and 30Nm more torque.

Combined with the traction advantage of rear-wheel-drive, this enables the 125i to better the Golf’s 6.9-second 0-100km/h sprint time by half a second.

14 center imageLeft: BMW M135i concept from Geneva.

hen specified with the standard six-speed manual transmission, the 125i’s fuel consumption of 6.6 litres per 100 kilometres and CO2 emissions of 154 grams per kilometre are 1.3L/100km and 26g/km lower than the equivalent Golf GTI.

The 125i gets BMW’s variable sports steering with Servotronic as standard, which is claimed to improve straight-line stability without sacrificing sharp off-centre steering and varies the amount of assistance depending on road speed.

Also included are a sports leather steering wheel and wider 17-inch star-spoke alloy wheels.

The M Sport options package includes sports suspension, 18-inch alloy wheels, body kit, leather upholstery, sports seats and a sports steering wheel.

A Sport+ setting is also added to the driver experience control system and exclusive options including special Estoril Blue metallic paint and brake upgrades become available, while the optional adaptive suspension system comes at a discounted price.

As GoAuto has reported, BMW unveiled a three-door 1 Series hatch concept at the Geneva motor show last week, witted with the brand’s potent 3.0-litre turbocharged six-cylinder engine.

It previewed the likely arrival of an M135i flagship variant to the 1 Series hatch line-up as part of BMW’s new M Performance Vehicles range, which serves up high-performance versions of BMW’s existing vehicles that stop short of being full-blown M cars.

The first M Performance Vehicles to reach Australia will be the X5 M550d and X6 M550d, both of which are powered by a new six-cylinder triple-turbo diesel engine and due to arrive here in the third quarter of this year.

Australian 1 Series sales are up 119.3 per cent so far this year due to the popularity of the second-generation F20 hatch that launched here last October, helping the brand to a 9.7 per cent rise overall.

A good start to the year and the recent arrival of its all-new F30 3 Series mean BMW is in good shape for a strong 2012 after sales in Australia shrank 2.7 per cent in 2011.

BMW 1 Series hatch pricing (plus on-road costs):
116i $36,900
118i $42,800
118d $43,500
125i $45,700

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