BMW M135i LCI photo gallery

F20 BMW M135i LCI

LCI—the three most important letters to the F20 1 Series range—they stand for Life Cycle Impulse which is BMW speak for get the fugly out of here!

Finally, the 1 Series has been give a front-end makeover and here is the new M135i. True, it’s still not the world’s prettiest car, but at least its dorky eyes have been lost in favour of a treatment more inline with the much more visually pleasing 2 Series.

For Australian readers enjoy these pictures, because they’re as close as you’ll ever get to a three-door M135i. Not only that, the car in these pics is fitted with a 6-speed manual gearbox. Remember them?


Punter shows BMW how to design a car

BMW M135i with M235i front

The front end of the F20 1 Series is awful. The M135i makes a small improvement, but it’s still no match for the much easier on the eye treatment on the M235i.

Which begs the question, why didn’t BMW just get it right the first time? And why have they left it so long to fix up the problem?

Clearly there’s one guy who couldn’t wait any longer and he went and put an M235i front end on his M135i. Regardless of the cost we can’t imagine he would ever regret taking that step. It just looks so much better!

There’s a few more pics after the break, including an ugly duckling before pic.

[Source: BimmerPost]


Restyled BMW 1 Series on sale early next year

BMW 1 Series LCI

Restyled front noses seem to be a thing right now with new sightings of the facelifted BMW 1 Series out on German roads. The ugly eyes of the M135i are perhaps its greatest weakness and it’s expected BMW will pretty much lift the more attractive 2 Series front-end and replicate it on the 1er.

It’s predicted we’ll see the finished article at the Detroit Auto Show in January with a sale launch to follow shortly thereafter.

[Source: Autocar]


This is one facelift that can’t come soon enough

BMW 1 Series facelift spied

This spy shot is one we welcome very much, it shows the F20 BMW 1 Series LCI (life cycle impulse) model is drawing closer to release. To you and I that means the facelifted 1 Series should look a lot better than it does now.

Based on this photo we’re not sure it will look quite as smart as the M235i we saw a few months back, but anything will be better than what is currently offered up on the F20 hatch.

Our tip hope is the headlights and grille will be connected, as seen on that M235i and first seen on the F30 3 Series.

[Source: Autoblog | Pic: CarPix]


That’s not gone well

BMW 2 Series prototype crash in Germany

Last time we brought you photos of BMW’s forthcoming new 2 Series we had a big smile on our face. We liked the front end that has done away with the gawkiness seen on the 1 Series hatch on which it is based.

This, we don’t like so much. Here you can see the aftermath of a 2 Series prototype following a coming together with the guardrail on the A72 near Zwickau in Germany.

As far as we can tell the driver suffered minor injuries and nobody else was hurt. Although, as many as four other cars travelling in the opposite direction were also damaged, forcing the highway to be closed in both directions while the mess was cleaned up.

Normally you’d reckon a cushy test driver gig with BMW would be a great job to have. But it just goes to show even factory test drivers have a bad day at work sometimes.

[Source: SZ-Online via 2addicts | Thanks to John for the tip]


BMW M135i – Australian pricing announced

BMW M135i

Our tip for the pricing of the BMW M135i was $68,900. Turns out we were $500 too expensive!

So, with an officially confirmed list price of $68,400 we think it will only be the M135i’s cumbersome looks that will prevent it from being an overwhelming sales success when it lands down under in October.

Although, BMW Australia boss, Phil Horton, says he’s already sold quite a few: “Since being unveiled the M135i has drawn huge interest both here and overseas and eager Australian customers have already snapped up almost a quarter of our first production allocation.”

Looks aside, who can blame those who have already expressed an interest to buy? The M135i gets pulses racing thanks to its N55-based turbocharged 3.0 litre straight six engine. With 235kW, the M135i has only 15kW less than the now iconic 1 Series M Coupé, yet matches its 450Nm of torque. Coupled to an 8-speed auto transmission, it’s enough to equal the 1M’s 4.9 second 0–100km/h time.

While an official spec sheet is yet to be published by BMW Australia their press release below states the M135i will come with the following standard equipment (and more):

  • 18″ M Double Spoke alloy wheels (225/40R18 front and 245/35R18 rear tyres)
  • M Sport Brake System (four-pot up front, two-pots at the rear)
  • M aerodynamics exterior body package
  • M leather steering wheel
  • Sports Seats with Dakota leather upholstery
  • Bi-Xenon headlights
  • Extended connectivity of Bluetooth devices including voice control

Hmm, are you about to put in a call to your local BMW dealer too?


BMW’s M135i is much better than it looks

BMW M135i

If you only read the spec sheet of the BMW M135i there’s a fair chance you’d want one. A hot hatch featuring an N55 turbocharged straight-six, sending 235kW/450Nm directly to the rear wheels, is a compelling package. Indeed, with a new slick 8-speed auto you can see off 100km/h in just 4.9 seconds. But there’s a catch. Of course, there’s a catch.

The elephant in the room with the M135i is the way it looks. Being polite, it’s just bloody ugly. To be fair, BMW has slightly improved the troublesome front end with a new styling package compared to the regular F20 1 Series.

But a question only you can answer: if the M135i was head and shoulders the best car in its class, could you do it? Because, as it turns out, there’s a fair chance the M135i is the best car in its class. Here’s what the early reviews are saying:

Autocar (Richard Bremner): “While some may desire the more uncompromising character of the 1M Coupé, the fact is that this M135i’s ride is less maskingly firm, its steering more delicate and its character easier to live with. And it’s also a whole lot cheaper, being almost £10k less.”

Car (Chris Chilton): “It might not look as sexy as a Scirroco, or feel quite so single-minded as a Megane RS, but the BMW is faster, better built and just feels more special than any of them. We can’t think of a more desirable, more exciting top-drawer hot hatch on the planet than this M135i.”

Evo (David Vivian): “The best thing about the M135i, though, is the grin it puts on your face on a twisty road… But I can’t help thinking the real achievement is the focus on something I’d feared the M people had lost sight of: the bloke behind the wheel. Three hearty cheers for that.”

So when can you get your hands on one? BMW Australia is bringing the M135i here in a five-door layout only and hope to have it in showrooms before the end of the year. And we hear BMW is hoping to have M135i on sale with a list price of around $68,900. Assuming it’s relatively well equipped, and doesn’t require too many ticks on BMW’s expensive options list, that pricing is quite good.

So, we ask again, could you do it? We’ve got a couple of videos for you after the break that may or may not seal the deal.


BMW M135i revealed

BMW M135i

BMW has today released images and details for its three-door 1 Series. In amongst that material is info on the new M135i. We figured that was of more immediate note and so have prepared these pictures for you, starting with a handful of five-door pics.

The M135i is the first petrol powered model from the M Performance Automobiles division. And it’s plenty fast, too, able to reach 100km/h in 4.9 seconds with optional 8-speed automatic transmission (5.1 seconds for standard 6-speed manual).

On paper, then, it’s a near match for the mighty 1 Series M Coupé. Here’s the relevant bits from the introductory BMW press release:

First ever BMW M Performance automobile to feature a petrol engine: BMW M135i with a 3-litre, straight six-cylinder engine and 235 kW/320 hp as well as M-characteristic suspension components and aerodynamically optimised body features; Highest level of performance and the most outstanding efficiency within the competitive environment; Typical M-style coherence between drive, suspension technology and aerodynamic balance as well as model-specific interior design for unmistakeable driving pleasure in a compact model; BMW M135i also available as a five-door version.

In addition, an all wheel-drive xDrive spec M135i will be available from November 2012 production.

More pics, including the three-door M135i, and further press information can be seen below. There’s also a promo video included that will never make it to Australian TV screens.

UPDATE: BMW Australia has advised the M135i will be coming to Australia, but at this stage in five-door configuration only. A launch date is yet to be confirmed, but they are hoping to have it in showrooms before the end of the year.


BMW M135i to offer all-wheel drive option

BMW Concept M135i

Dr Friedrich Nitschke, president of BMW’s M division, has confirmed the production version of the Concept M135i will be offered with all-wheel drive.

Speaking to Car and Driver Dr Nitschke revealed: “The real car will be virtually identical to the concept. It will be powered by the N55 engine, and you will be able to buy it with a manual or automatic transmission. We will also offer optional all-wheel drive.”

So there you go. He also had some interesting things to say about turbocharging and manual transmissions.

Friedrich Nitschke on turbocharging: “Turbos were never a taboo; that was always a question of the best option. Back then, the naturally aspirated engine was the best option. But today you can have much more efficient engines with the turbo, and we will continue to follow this approach. We always choose the best technology.”

Friedrich Nitschke on manual transmissions: “Sporty drivers always chose a manual over the automatic transmissions, which used to be inefficient and have just three or four gears. But technology has moved forward… Our new M5 and M6 have so much power that a mismatched shift can easily destroy the transmission. It’s not easy. Therefore, for the first time, we have advanced our software to cut spikes and protect the transmission electronically.”

[Source: Car and Driver]


BMW 1 Series – Australian pricing

BMW 1 Series

BMW Australia has announced the local launch of the new F20 1 Series will take place on 22 October. To begin with dealerships will have three models on their floors: 116i, 118i and 118d.

The 116i and 118i will be powered by a 1.6 litre four cylinder petrol engine fitted with a twin-scroll turbocharger. The 118d is helped along by a 2.0 litre four cylinder diesel featuring common-rail direct injection.

BMW’s marketers have come up with TwinPower Turbo to label the 1 Series engine range. Terms such as “new generation”, “sporty personality” and “exceptionally low fuel consumption” follow close behind.

Entry level pricing is marginally less than the outgoing 1er and BMW boasts improvements in efficiency and equipment across the range. One example is the optional 8-speed auto transmission, which joins the standard 6-speed manual box. BMW say the 8-speed slushbox is a first for its class.

Other standard equipment includes Bluetooth, cruise control with brake function, dual zone climate control, auto stop/start, a 6.5 inch colour display, 17″ alloy wheels and more.

BMW Australia’s introductory press release is available below. For more coverage of the new 1 Series click here.

BMW 1 Series – Australian pricing*

  • 116i – $36,900 (1.6l 4 cyl petrol, 100kW/220Nm, 5.7l/100km, 0–100km/h 8.5s)
  • 118i – $42,800 (1.6l 4 cyl petrol, 125kW/250Nm, 5.9l/100km, 0–100km/h 7.4s)
  • 118d – $43,500 (2.0l 4 cyl diesel, 105kW/320Nm, 4.5l/100km, 0–100km/h 8.9s)

OFFICIAL: The new BMW 1 Series hatch

BMW 1 Series hatch (F20)

Here are the official words and images for BMW’s new world order 1 Series. For now, we’re still in rear-wheel drive mode, but don’t forget there is a front-wheel drive 1er is on the way, too.

The slightly bloated F20 1 Series is 85mm longer and 17mm wider than the E87 model it replaces. Overall height remains the same. Other measurements of note to change include the wheelbase, 30mm longer, and, significantly, the front track is now 51mm wider and the rear track has had 72mm added. All that means there’s now an extra 21mm legroom for rear seat passengers and the rear cargo area now offers 360 litres of space, up from 330 litres.

Five four-cylinder engines are offered in this initial release and, for the first time in the compact class, an 8-speed auto is available. The 135kW 120d is the quickest model announced to date and can reach 100km/h in 7.2 seconds. You can thank a generous 380Nm of torque for that.

There are two other diesel engines provided, as well. The 118d has 105kW/320Nm and reaches 100km/h in 8.9 seconds. The entry-level 116d offers 85kW/260Nm and requires 10.3 seconds to reach the speed limit. All feature common rail injection, TwinPower Turbo technology and use around 4.5 litres of diesel per 100km.

Completing the engine range is a 125kW/250Nm 118i (7.4s 0-100) and a 100kW/220Nm 116i (8.5s 0-100). Like the diesels, the petrol engines rely on forced induction and boast fuel consumption in the high 5s per 100km.

So far it looks like the new 1 Series isn’t winning many fans for its looks. We’re still convinced feelings will soften once we start seeing the 1er on the road, but tend to agree it’s certainly not the prettiest car BMW has ever made.

After the break there’s a concise press release and a massive image gallery of 85 pics to help you get used to the new look.

UPDATE: The press material released by BMW Australia only lists info on the 118i, 116i and 118d; surely giving a hint to their model plans for the F20. They’ve also offered a far more detailed press release, which has now been added below.

UPDATE 6 June: BMW Australia is expected to launch the new 1 Series some time after October this year.


New BMW 1 Series (F20) hatch under development

BMW 1 Series (F20) hatch

Development of the next generation (F20) BMW 1 Series hatch is well underway as this video from the Nürburgring shows. There appears to be at least five development cars at the company’s Nürburg facility.

Aside from the evolutionary development of the love it or hate it five door hatch body style there’s not much else to learn from this clip. BimmerFile tells us the F20 1er will be seen in or near production ready form by the end of next year.

Check out the clip after the jump.