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BMW’s 1 Series moves up a notch

Facelifted BMW 1 Series gets fresh face and more gear – but no three cylinder yet

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BMW logo3 Jun 2015

BMW Australia has shuffled its 1 Series pack, revising the line-up and pricing of the facelifted model that will get a new look and more equipment when it hits showrooms this month.

Crafted by Australian-born designer Calvin Luk in BMW’s Munich design studio, the mid-model revamp for the five-door, rear-drive hatch includes a new nose with slimmer headlights, stretched kidney grille and LED running lights, plus a new rear treatment with L-shaped LED tail-lights.

Gone from the Australian line-up is the entry level 116i, replaced by the 118i that, confusingly, has the same 1.6-litre 100kW/220Nm turbo-charge four-cylinder engine as the discontinued 116i, along with the same price tag of $36,900 plus on-road costs.

The change in model designation has been made because of the advent in Europe of a new three-cylinder, 80kW/180Nm 316i that is currently out of bounds to BMW Australia but under consideration for launch here at a later date.

For now at least, the new 118i kicks off the range that gains a rear-view camera, real-time sat-nav traffic information and Sport Line interior pack as standard equipment.

Other gear on the refreshed 118i includes 16-inch alloy wheels, sat-nav, rear parking sensors, rain-sensing wipers and sports steering wheel.

An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard on 118i and all other 1 Series variants offered in Australia.

The old 118i has been elevated to 120i status, with power from the 1.6-litre turbo engine boosted by 5kW, to 130kW. Torque remains unchanged at 250Nm, but the price has been cut $1100 compared with the old 118i, to $40,300.

Along with the additional equipment installed in the new 118i, the 120i has bigger 17-inch alloy wheels, fog-lights, better climate control and phone connectivity systems, Driving Assistant safety warning systems, more instruments and upgraded upholstery.

The biggest price cut has been reserved for the diesel 118d which will cost $2700 less, at $40,300, and bring it into line with the new 120i.

The 118d gets the same equipment as the 118i, including the Sport Line cabin fitout.

The 125i keeps its 2.0-litre 160kW/310Nm four-cylinder turbo performance, but cops a $900 price increase, to $48,900.

However, the M Sport package that was a $3000 option is now standard on the 125i. This includes M Sport adaptive suspension and 18-inch M light alloy wheels.

As well, the 125i comes with leather trim, adaptive headlights, DAB+ digital radio, “professional” sat-nav, folding and dimming exterior mirrors and high-line audio speakers.

The range-topping BMW M135i gets an extra 5kW of power from its tweaked 3.0-litre six-cylinder turbocharged engine that now punches out 240kW of power.

Torque remains the same, at 450Nm, but the price has been sharpened by $2030, to $62,900.

The M135i has a similar equipment level to the latest 125i, with leather and M Sport package.

BMW Group Australia head of product and market planning Shawn Ticehurst said the company had received “no shortage of enthusiasm” from would-be customers since the revised 1 Series range had been revealed in January.

“We are confident our pricing will further fuel demand for this exciting car,” he said.

“We are particularly excited by the Australian influence which has helped shape the new model, with Sydney’s Calvin Luk delivering an enthusiastically received facelift of an enthusiastically performing car.”

While the petrol 1 Series variants will all be available in Australian dealerships this month, shipments of the 118d will not arrive until July.

BMW 1 Series pricing*
118i (a)$36,900
118d (a)$40,300
120i (a)$41,990
125i (a)$48,900
M135i (a)$62,900
*Excludes on-road costs.

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