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      09-19-2013, 10:00 AM   #1
Jason
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Post BMW 1 Series GT Hits the Ring (Video)

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BMW 1 Series GT Hits the Ring
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Like it or not (and we don't), FWD BMWs are coming. The first of the front wheel powered BMW models to come to market will be the 1 Series GT, spied here undergoing Nurburgring testing.

It has been developed on BMW's UKL platform, a FWD platform which will be shared between the new MINI Cooper to be revealed in a couple of months, and the upcoming FWD BMW lineup.

The final 1 Series GT design has recently been revealed in a set of patent design images.

How many FWD BMWs should we expect?

According to a report from late last year, up to 12 BMW and Mini cars were already approved for the UKL platform as of last year. These already-approved models will account for 40 percent of the group's unit sales of cars to be underpinned by the platform, or variations of it, within eight to 10 years. Europe will be the main market for BMW FWD cars.

"We've got plans to produce up to 20 new models on this platform. Not all of them have been approved yet – we’ve got approval on 10-12 new models," confirms Ian Robertson, member of the board of management at BMW, in the same report.

BMW believes that its new FWD architecture, known as the UKL platform (which will be shared with future MINI models), will be key to driving the company's future growth.

The company projects that the premium small car market will become the fastest-growing segment and it needs to expand aggressively into this market in order to battle for the top spot in luxury car sales over the next decade.

As for the doubters and traditionalists who fear and lament over BMW's expansion into the FWD market, BMW's product manager for front-wheel drive, Frank Niederlaender, assures: "In the '90s we broke with tradition when we began selling SUVs along with our sedans. Customers realized they could get the driving dynamics BMW is renowned for from an SUV. We will see the same transition happening with front-wheel drive."

Draeger adds that by 2020 the automaker expects to have a huge share in fwd models. "We are entering into new segments and are getting new customers who will learn you can drive very well with front-wheel drive."


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      09-19-2013, 10:57 AM   #2
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Aiming for a sub 7 minutes time?
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      09-19-2013, 11:05 AM   #3
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It will probably be a promising tuner car to compete with the golfs, Fucus St, mazdaspeed and others. Just keep the price at bay.

Still not for me though. As long as BMW keeps making rwd 2 series and 3/4 series vehicles I'll be interested.
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      09-19-2013, 11:06 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by as7920
Aiming for a sub 7 minutes time?
That would actually be a great PR stunt if they could pull it off.
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      09-19-2013, 11:15 AM   #5
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nice
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      09-19-2013, 11:25 AM   #6
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Definitely faster on the Ring than the i8

Last edited by advantage20; 09-19-2013 at 12:47 PM.
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      09-19-2013, 11:41 AM   #7
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Do not understand why BMW is betting the front wheel drive.
OK for MINI.
But not for BMW.
I did not use the real wheel drive?
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      09-19-2013, 12:28 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason
Like it or not (and we don't), FWD BMWs are coming. .......

........ Customers realized they could get the driving dynamics BMW is renowned for from an SUV. We will see the same transition happening with front-wheel drive."

Draeger adds that by 2020 the automaker expects to have a huge share in fwd models. "We are entering into new segments and are getting new customers who will learn you can drive very well with front-wheel drive."
I'm not sure how we'll get the same driving dynamic from a FWD, will be trickier to get 50:50 weight distribution and it won't oversteer when pushed - I bet it'll just come off the road
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      09-19-2013, 12:35 PM   #9
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Not sure there is a market for this and the X1.
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      09-19-2013, 01:42 PM   #10
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Not sure there is a market for this and the X1.


Trust me, there's a market for everything. Even a "Shoebrella".
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      09-19-2013, 02:03 PM   #11
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Why test this at the Ring? Test it at the local parking lot and clogged highways, where it will be 90% of the time.
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      09-19-2013, 04:26 PM   #12
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Sigh.
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      09-19-2013, 04:41 PM   #13
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This is pretty quick for what it is. I think this car makes perfect since for Europe but not too much any where else due to BMW having more of a premium image than it does in Europe. Every competitor including Merc and Audi have FWD compact cars so it's about time BMW moved that way. As long as the 2 series and up are RWD then I don't see why not.
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      09-19-2013, 05:04 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by r3dbimmer89
This is pretty quick for what it is. I think this car makes perfect since for Europe but not too much any where else due to BMW having more of a premium image than it does in Europe. Every competitor including Merc and Audi have FWD compact cars so it's about time BMW moved that way. As long as the 2 series and up are RWD then I don't see why not.
?

Really? I think BMW is pretty premium here in the uk.
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      09-19-2013, 11:53 PM   #15
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Can someone please explain to me exactly what the point of or advantage of a fwd car is? Still to this day I don't know.
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      09-20-2013, 12:36 AM   #16
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Can someone please explain to me exactly what the point of or advantage of a fwd car is? Still to this day I don't know.
It is cheaper to produce than RWD, has less drivetrain power loss, and it allows more practical packaging inside the car, giving you more cabin space.

For 95 percent of all customers, these things are more important than driving dynamics, and in some situations in winter conditions, FWD cars are actually less likely to get stuck than RWD cars.

Since I belong to the other 5 percent, I am worried that the last RWD hatchback is eventually doomed. I have been talking to the product responsible for the main BMW dealer in Norway about this, and he indicates that the one-series will stay RWD for the powerful versions in the next generation. Unfortunately these will also be very expensive in our country.
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      09-20-2013, 01:13 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by palpatine_us View Post
Why test this at the Ring? Test it at the local parking lot and clogged highways, where it will be 90% of the time.

He was probably going faster around the Ring than 90% of the M3 owners on this forum could go with their M3.
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      09-20-2013, 04:47 AM   #18
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I'm not sure how we'll get the same driving dynamic from a FWD, will be trickier to get 50:50 weight distribution and it won't oversteer when pushed - I bet it'll just come off the road
Assuming sensible road conditions, It'll probably still take the same amount of commitment to get the back end out as it does on most lesser engined RWD BMW's these days anyway.

Besides, for a vehicle of this type, safe predictable under steer and winter friendly FWD would be the preference. The target demographic will probably not drift-kings!
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      09-20-2013, 06:58 AM   #19
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The Active Tourer will be sold in North America.
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      09-20-2013, 12:37 PM   #20
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Trust me, there's a market for everything. Even a "Shoebrella".

LOL! indeed. And as long as they make the vehicle I want.. it's ok with me if they make a shoebrella (aka FWD) for someone that wants that. More Money in BMWs pocket from mainstream models should allow for more niche models.
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      09-20-2013, 02:27 PM   #21
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Why test this at the Ring? Test it at the local parking lot and clogged highways, where it will be 90% of the time.

Love it!

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      09-20-2013, 03:59 PM   #22
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It seems to be fast for being a little car. The weight savings due to FWD result in better power/weight -ratio. The majority of small cars are FWD for a good reason. Them being lighter means they are quicker and more efficient. They have more space for their size as well.

Larger cars with more power should be RWD or even better AWD since they need more traction for getting all the big power down.
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