BMW 1-Series Luxury Sedan: Star Of The 2016 Guangzhou Auto Show

Dec 03, 2016 08:37 AM EST | Matthew Cruz

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The BMW 1-Series may be the German automaker's smallest sedan in its lineup, but it has no shortage of star power. According to Forbes, the 1-Series is BMW's most significant reveal in China for 2016, and BMW waited until this year's Guangzhou Auto Show to finally give the compact, premium sedan a formal introduction to motorists.

For now, the BMW 1-Series Luxury Sedan will only be available in China, where BMW is working with Brilliance, a Chinese automaker, to produce the sedan. Brilliance and BMW are longtime partners, working with one another to produce multiple models like the 3-Series and 3-Series L, the 5-series L, 2-Series Active Tourer and X1-Series L. 

China remains the biggest market in the world for luxury vehicles and for cars in general. In fact, premium-compact vehicles have made significant inroads in the China market, with sedans second only to SUVs in sales. The BMW 1-Series Luxury Sedan is projected to be direct competition for the Audi A3, Mercedes-Benz CLA and Acura ILX, according to Motor Authority.

The BMW 1-Series Luxury Sedan is built on the front-wheel-drive platform of the company referred to as the UKL. The carmaker has used this same platform in a wide array of existing models, like the whole Mini brand, X1 and 2-Series Active Tourer and Gran Tourer.

At its launch, three powertrains will be available for the 1-Series: a 136hp 1.5 turbo, available on the standard variant 118i, a 192hp 2.0 turbo on the 120i Luxury and a 231hp 2.0 turbo on the 125i Sport. A 6-speed manual comes as the standard transmission, but buyers can also opt for an 8-speed automatic.

The BMW 1-Series Luxury sedan's interior is vintage BMW, with a layered dashboard featuring an 8.8-inch infotainment system screen and a rotary dial as the main controller aimed at the driver. The sedan also boasts a panoramic sunroof and split-folding rear seats, providing a generous amount of space for extra baggage.

Specific innovations to the BWM 1- Series Luxury Sedan include high-tech systems that warn the driver of collision and pedestrians, and even when a driver starts to depart from their lane. For all these features, the sedan's price range is from 180,000 to 260,000 yuan, or $26,100 to $37,720.

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