BMW 1-Series M Car Coming In 2011

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About a year ago, BMW's M Division development chief said a 1-Series M car was off the table, and hopes were consequently deflated. But now new reports of an entry-level M car are back, this time built around the current 1-Series Coupe equipped with a 350-horsepower twin-turbocharged six-cylinder engine.

The reports peg the car as a high-strung version of the 1-Series tii concept (pictured), with a heavily tweaked straight-six twin-turbo tucked into a shell that's expected to be about 150 pounds lighter than the standard 1-Series Coupe on which it’s based. Toss in a seven-speed M-DCT dual-clutch gearbox and a good rear differential, and you've got what functionally amounts to an M3-killer.

Other modifications, standard to other M treatments, would likely include upgraded shocks and springs, larger, more fade-resistant brakes, unique wheels, a custom aero package, and unique interior treatment.

The information was revealed by M division boss Kay Segler, who explained that he wanted to “set a clear signal” that M products were financially accessible. As the rest of BMW's M range goes further upscale, attracting new and younger buyers to the brand means BMW needs a car positioned accordingly. Expect pricing to start out around the $45,000-$50,000 mark in the U.S., about $5,000-$10,000 below a typical M3, if the project does become reality.

The expected release date for the 1-Series M car is the middle of 2011.


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Comments (9)
  1. decrease headlight size, change headlight shape, change rear light shape, alter front spoiler... the list goes on. this is basically what a bmw would look like if it came out of a lexus dealership

  2. We will see what will actually become from this project, somehow I don't think that BMW will make another rival to their M3 model.

  3. Given that the 135i is almost as fast as the M3 with an extra 30bhp it may well beat it al 0-60

  4. BMW M division’s head Kay Segler is a huge supporter of the car, that could have a starting price of around £32,000 ($47,128 USD).

  5. Considering the current 3 Series coupe is roughly the same size/power/displacement as a 1980's 6-Series, creating an M1 (the 1 Series is roughly the same size as a 1990's 3 Series) kinda makes sense...
    ...but I'd rather see a 200hp 2.0L 4 cyl in the 1 Series for the US first.

  6. Nice writeup and photos. Hopefully the car shown won't be upwards of $35k, but this is BMW, so we should prepare ourselves.

  7. Hmm, I wonder if BMW will castrate it so as not to compete with the M3 as Porsche did with the Cayman? As said above, the 135i already almost matches the M3's performance, a lighter, more powerful version could potentially blow it away, especially with a mild 'map and intake/exhaust.

  8. Oh, and bepsf,
    You can bet your blue and white roundel that they won't call it an "M1". I'd expect something like "135-M" or even "135-tii" like the concept and in homage to the 2002tii of the '70s.

  9. And here I thought it was going to get a high powered 4 cylinder.

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