Well the moment has finally arrived and BMW has released full details on its 1 Series M Coupé. As expected this morning’s performance data is bang on the money. So, we now have a new M car on the block. How does it stack up?
Well the flared guards and model specific cosmetic tweaks help set this car apart from other 1er coupés. It must be said the lower rear valance is a bit too fussy. And that side vent that’s not actually a vent is also a bit of a disappointment. Small faults, though, on what is otherwise a purposeful looking machine. AUSmotive has always rated the 1 Series Coupé highly, and despite a few flaws, we think the 1M looks pretty damn good.
Inside things look impressive, as well. Again it’s pretty standard 1 Series fare, but there’s just enough tweaking from the M brigade to let you know you’re in something special. Well, special in a typically teutonic way, of course.
It would be remiss to leave the heart of the 1M without mention. If the M enthusiasts had their way, this car would have its own unique engine, rather than a spooled up 135i donk. But, the turbocharged 3.0 six from the 135i is one of the world’s great engines (fuel pump issues aside). Now with twin turbos, the peak numbers of 250kW and 450Nm of torque mean this M car won’t exactly hang about. It will be quick. Be that as it may, it would be nice if BMW’s finest found the time to free up a few more ponies than can be had in a Z4 sDrive35is.
Like us, you’re probably a bit tired of seeing the Valencia Orange paint colour promo shots. But don’t go expecting a kaleidoscope of alternate options; Alpine White and Sapphire Black complete the range. Similarly, BMW has restricted the transmission to a 6-speed manual only. We like that. Will BMW resist the urge to fit the 1M with a DCT in future, though?
The 1M is a car that promises so much, right from Dr Segler’s first promise of goose pimples. Without driving the car and basing our initial opinion on the glimpses granted by others, we’re pretty sure the 1 Series M Coupé will be a special car. Will it warm the hearts and minds of M enthusiasts as strongly as the original E30 M3 did a quarter of a century ago? Judging by the last set of pics below BMW thinks it will. We’re not so sure and will reserve our judgement for the time being.
Earlier readers will notice we’ve tidied up our intro piece above and that also means, in addition to BMW’s press release, the full gallery of 79 images can now be seen after the break. If you still want more check out the info available in the Closed Room section over at M-Power.com.
Inspiring Through And Through. The BMW 1 Series M Coupe.
The letter M now comes to the segment of the BMW 1 Series to symbolise outstanding power delivery and the highly dynamic driving properties of a high-performance sports car. In the BMW 1 Series M Coupe, the technology of a high-performance car is combined with the agility and lightness of a compact model to create a whole new dimension of sports-style driving pleasure. With this 2-door model, BMW M GmbH is now realising for the first time in this vehicle class its concept of racing-oriented performance characteristics in a car developed for everyday use . This further extends the company’s model range, paving the way for younger target groups to be able to access the hallmark driving experience offered by an M car.
The BMW 1 Series M Coupe embodies the unmistakable M feeling in a highly concentrated form. Its in-line 6-cylinder engine with M TwinPower Turbo and petrol direct injection develops a maximum output of 250 kW/340 bhp with an engine-speed-oriented characteristic curve typical of BMW M cars. With chassis technology derived directly from motor racing, a power-to-weight ratio reduced to 4.4 kilograms per bhp and precisely optimised aerodynamic components including innovative air curtains at the front end, supreme conversion of superior propulsion power into thrilling driving dynamics is guaranteed. The BMW 1 Series M Coupe accelerates in 4.9 seconds from zero to 100 km/h and reaches the 200 km/h mark after 17.3 seconds. In the area of efficiency, too, it achieves top figures within its performance category. Its average fuel consumption in the EU test cycle is 9.6 litres per 100 kilometres, while CO2 emissions are at 224 grams per kilometre.
The outstanding sporty flair of the BMW 1 Series M Coupe is outwardly expressed by the athletic character of its body design. In the exclusively designed interior of the 4-seater, high-quality materials and an M-specific cockpit create the ambience of a premium sports car. In its standard configuration, the BMW 1 Series M Coupe displays the concept harmony so characteristic of M cars: able to cope both with the extreme demands of the race track and the diverse challenges of everyday traffic. What is more, individual preferences in terms of comfort, safety and infotainment.
Design: classic coupe proportions, M-style aesthetic appeal.
The dynamic proportions with which the BMW 1 Series Coupe proclaims a brand of driving pleasure unique within the competitive field provide the perfect foundation for the instantly fascinating appearance of the first ever high-performance model in the compact segment. Measuring 4,380 millimetres in length and 1,420 millimetres in height, the BMW 1 Series M Coupe is the both the shortest and the flattest model in the BMW M GmbH range. It is also 55 millimetres wider than the BMW 135i Coupe: the width of 1,803 millimetres is the result and the expression of a track width at the front and rear axle optimised to enhance driving dynamics in a way which is specific to this model.
The design of the front end impressively reflects the outstanding performance capabilities of the BMW 1 Series M Coupe. The powerfully shaped front apron forms a homogeneous surface, dominated in the lower section by three large-format air intakes. In order to optimise the aerodynamic properties, so-called air curtains are used for the first time in serial production vehicle. The in-flowing air is routed into two ducts by means of openings in the outer section of the front apron. These openings are designed so that the air flows along the inside of the front apron in a closed duct to the wheel arches, where it is discharged through a very narrow opening at high speed, just passing the outer wheel flanks. The escaping air stream covers the side of the front wheels like a curtain, thereby reducing aerodynamically unfavourable turbulence around the wheel arches.
The BMW 1 Series M Coupe is fitted as standard with bi-xenon headlamps. The twin circular headlights characteristic of the brand are truncated in the upper section by an LED-fed positioning light. This is what creates the typical focussed look of the BMW 1 Series M Coupe.
With the greenhouse conveying an impression of lightness, the powerfully distinctive shoulder line and the elaborately sculpted surfaces symbolise precisely controllable athleticism from the side perspective. The wheel arches of the 2-door model bulge out especially voluminously at both the front and rear. One hallmark M feature is the chrome gill element on the front wheel arch which is particularly elongated. It bears both the side turn indicator and the M brand logo, as well as forming the starting point of the bead line running via the door openers to the rear. What is more, a vertical contour edge starts at the gill element which leads down to the side sill. Fine-tuning in the wind tunnel has also shaped the design of the exterior mirrors. In their basic shape they are the same as those of the BMW M3.
The powerfully arched wheel arches also make the rear of the BMW 1 Series M Coupe seem especially broad. Horizontally arranged lines accentuate this impression. A discreet spoiler lip on the luggage compartment lid generates additional downforce on the rear axle at high speeds. The rear apron has side openings which echo the look of the air intakes in the front apron. The characteristic M visual symmetry is created by chrome twin tailpipes, each positioned towards the outer edges. L-shaped rear light clusters with red glass covers create a characteristic night-time illumination. Inside these, the rear light is provided by two light banks fed by LED units.
The exterior paint finishes Alpine White non-metallic, Sapphire Black metallic and the exclusive Valencia Orange metallic are available for the BMW 1 Series M Coupe. The standard 19-inch M light alloy wheels in Y-spoke design provide perfect road contact and a striking appearance.
In-line 6-cylinder engine with M TwinPower Turbo and engine-speed-related performance characteristics.
An in-line 6-cylinder engine with outstanding performance, sensational free-revving properties and long-lasting thrust provides the BMW 1 Series M Coupe with its power source for delivering supreme driving dynamics. The 3.0-litre power unit combines hallmark M performance characteristics with contemporary efficiency. It has been modified in M style so as to be able to handle the requirements of both everyday traffic and the race track. The result: with an engine output of 250 kW/340 bhp, the BMW 1 Series M Coupe achieves almost exactly the level of the third-generation BMW M3, while in terms of driving dynamics this compact, top-flight athlete is clearly superior to the latter model, which was replaced just a few years ago.
The M TwinPower Turbo Technology used in the BMW 1 Series M Coupe consists of two relatively small turbochargers which, because of their low inertia moment, are active even at low engine speeds, each providing three cylinders with compressed air. This results in an unusually spontaneous level of responsiveness. The drivetrain provides its maximum torque of 450 newton metres at as little as1500 rpm. This is available up into the 4500 rpm range and can be increased by another 50 newton metres in full throttle by means of an overboost function. The maximum level of 500 newton metres permits highly dynamic acceleration manoeuvres, and the forward thrust once again available after each gearshift makes for a linear speed increase typical of M vehicles. The engine reaches its maximum output at 5,980 rpm. With this engine-speed-related performance curve, the 6-cylinder power unit embodies the characteristic M properties of a high-performance engine: the BMW 1 Series M Coupe spurts in just 4.9 seconds from standing to 100 km/h, and the urge to accelerate is limited at 250 km/h by means of intervention in the engine control system.
The cooling system of the power unit is designed to enable it to do justice both to its outstanding performance potential and to the particularly high demands of constantly drawing on maximum power output. An additional separate radiator and a specific air duct deal with the increased thermal stress which can be generated by driving in a particularly sporty style on the race track.
The engine’s outstanding efficiency is mainly due to direct injection which allows for high-precision fuel supply by means of piezo injectors placed centrally between the valves. In addition, Efficient Dynamics measures such as brake energy regeneration and needs-based control of auxiliary units ensure that the average fuel consumption on the EU test cycle is limited to 9.6 litres per 100 kilometres and CO2 emissions to 224 grams per kilometre.
The transmission of propulsion power in the BMW 1 Series M Coupe is taken care of by a 6-speed manual transmission. This newly developed transmission is operated using a very short M gearshift lever.
Chassis technology: low weight, high rigidity.
The BMW 1 Series M Coupe has a chassis whose elements have run through BMW M GmbH’s racing-oriented development process. Numerous key components were originally conceived for the BMW M3 and are now to be found in the compact high-performance coupe in modified form specifically adapted to the new model. In creating the vehicle set-up, a procedure which includes test runs on the Nürburgring Nordschleife, the interaction of the engine, chassis and body was optimised here again so as to create a characteristic, consistent overall set of properties taking into account the low vehicle weight of 1,495 kilograms.
Both the double pivot front axle and the five-link rear axle of the BMW 1 Series M Coupe are made almost entirely of aluminium. Tubular stabilisers, axle links made of forged aluminium and aluminium shock absorbers round off the lightweight construction concept as applied to wheel suspension.
As standard: variable M differential lock, compound brakes, DSC with M Dynamic Mode, Servotronic.
The BMW 1 Series M Coupe is fitted as standard with a variable M differential lock. This generates lock-up torque as required and completely variably up to 100%, thus providing for optimum traction on all road surfaces. The variable M differential lock responds to differences in rotational speeds in the right and left rear wheel, redirecting drive torque within a fraction of a second. So where there are significant differences in friction coefficients between the right and left rear wheel, for example, optimum traction and maximum propulsion power are ensured. The principle of the engine-speed-sensing M differential lock supports the dynamic qualities of rear-wheel drive both on slippery surfaces and when accelerating out of bends.
The M-specific compound high-performance brake system of the BMW 1 Series M Coupe provides impressive stability even under extreme stress, as well as being extremely light. The design principle of the brake system is derived from motor racing and guarantees excellent deceleration figures with significantly reduced heat sensitivity. Their inner-vented and perforated grey cast iron discs with a diameter of 360 millimetres at the front and 350 millimetres at the rear are linked to the aluminium disc chamber on a floating basis by means of cast-in premium steel pins.
In the BMW 1 Series M Coupe, power transmission to the rear wheels also provides the ideal basis for thrilling driving dynamics due to the consistent separation of drivetrain and steering functions. The rack-and-pinion steering is fitted with the hydraulic power steering system Servotronic which regulates its supportive effect in relation to road speed.
The driving stability control system DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) of the BMW 1 Series M Coupe includes such elements as the Antilock Brake System (ABS), an anti-slip control function (ASC), the brake assistant Dynamic Brake Control (DBC), a drive-off assistant, Cornering Brake Control (CBC), an anti-fading function and a dry brake function. In the wet or on slippery surfaces the driving stability systemintervenes early on but discreetly so as to prevent oversteering. As an alternative to normal operating status, the driver can activate M Dynamic Mode (MDM) by means of a switch on the instrument panel, thereby raising the intervention threshold of the driving stability control system. This facilitates driving off on snow or loose sand by means of controlled slip. MDM also enables specifically applied, dynamic oversteering.
Exclusive and characteristically M: sports car ambience on the inside.
It is not least due to the exclusive interior design that the unmistakable M feeling can be sensed even before the engine is started. The characteristic M cockpit and a model-specific colour and materials concept create a style which perfectly recreates a sports car ambience. The standard sports seats in Boston leather offer both driver and front passenger excellent lateral hold even when taking bends in dynamic style. The design, created exclusively for the BMW 1 Series M Coupe, includes orange contrast stitching on the black surfaces of the seats and backrests as well as the M logo embossed in the front of the headrests.
It is characteristic of sports cars that dark colours dominate inside the vehicle, thereby enhancing the driver’s concentration on the road. In the BMW 1 Series M Coupe this effect is created by the anthracite-coloured BMW Individual roof liner but also by the exclusive design of the interior trim strips, door panels and cockpit scoop in dark Alcantara. These design elements also feature the orange-coloured contrast stitching, as do the gearshift and handbrake lever gaiter. An M driver footrest and M entry sills round off the exclusively styled interior.
The model-specific design of the characteristic M cockpit in the BMW 1 Series M Coupe also contributes to optimum vehicle control. In the instrument panel, grey dial faces for the tachometer and a speed indicator going up to 300 km/h with red needles are combined with white display illumination.
The M leather steering wheel, which also comes as standard, has multifunction keys for operating the audio and telephone systems. In addition, the characteristic M button on the right steering wheel spoke enables the driver to switch spontaneously to a sports-style vehicle set-up. This configuration activates a particularly sporty characteristic curve in the engine control. Here, accelerator pedal commands are implemented with greater spontaneity.
Extensive range of standard equipment, high-quality options and innovative BMW ConnectedDrive features.
In addition to those features characteristic of M vehicles and other elements specific to this particular model which directly contribute to creating an exclusive driving experience in a high-performance sports car, the BMW 1 Series M Coupe also features an extensive range of standard equipment which underscores its premium character. The 2-door model shows its practical qualities with such features as four fully-fledged seats, a level of comfort which is geared towards covering lengthy distances and a luggage compartment with a capacity of 370 litres. Additional comfort needs can be fulfilled with a range of innovative options which are largely unique within the competitive field.
In addition to air conditioning and cruise control, the audio system BMW Radio Professional with MP3-capable CD player and six speakers, two-zone automatic air conditioning, a rain sensor and Park Distance Control with sensors at the rear come as standard. Optional extras include comfort access, automatic anti-dazzle interior and exterior mirrors, the Harman Kardon Surround Sound System and the navigation system Professional with hard drive storage. In conjunction with the navigation system the BMW 1 Series M Coupe is fitted with the operating system iDrive which enables control of infotainment, navigation and communication functions using the Controller and an 8.8-inch Control Display.
The range of features available from the BMW ConnectedDrive development area includes the driver assistance systems Adaptive Headlight and High Beam Assistant. Innovative technologies to integrate mobile phones and music players are available for the BMW 1 M Series Coupe in combination with the navigation system Professional including mobile phone preparation and internet connection. Thanks to the new interface technology, the latest generation of the Apple iPhone and the Apple iPod touch can be controlled via the iDrive menu. As the latest addition to the range of office functions also developed within the BMW ConnectedDrive program, owners of a BlackBerry smartphone by the mobile phone manufacturer RIM (Research In Motion) can now display e-mails on the vehicle monitor of the BMW 1 Series M Coupe via Bluetooth.