BMW’s Front Wheel Drive Dreams Come True

BMW is now a company that produces front wheel drive vehicles. That’s unarguable. But it gets worse/better depending on your affiliation. In the next several years BMW’s front wheel drive line-up all swell to at least 12 vehicles. It wasn’t long ago that BMW was all 3, 5 and 7 series. Now we’ve got this:

  • F45 BMW 1 Series hatchback / Fall 2014
  • F46 MPV (not for the U.S.) / Spring 2015
  • F56 MINI hatch / Spring 2014
  • F55 MINI four door / Fall 2014
  • F57 Convertible / Spring 2015
  • F54 Clubman / Fall 2015
  • F48 X1 / Fall 2015
  • F49 X1 Long Wheel Base / Spring 2016
  • F52 1 Series Four Door Sedan / Spring 2016
  • F47 X2 / Fall 2016
  • F60 Countryman / Spring 2017
  • F61 Paceman / Spring 2018

What does it mean? Financial success and independence? Or a complete loss of soul? Will consumer care or even notice? Bookmark this and let’s come back to it in five years. We’re betting on the former, but time is the ultimate judge.

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  • Virginia Mae Jackson

    How disappointing.

  • Virginia Mae Jackson

    I really hate that BMW has become such a soft company. Gone are the days of pure driving pleasure.

    • Herr26

      But replaced by Freude Am Fahren. Sheer Driving Pleasure.

  • Nick Dawson

    To be competitive in a ferociously competitive global market, BMW had no choice but to go with front-wheel-drive on its smaller models. Let’s not overlook that the third generation 1-Series Hatchback (a vitally important model in Europe due in 2017/18) will also be based on the UKL1 platform. The 2-AT is, of course, an ‘Active Tourer’ and not a Hatchback.

    I’m not sure that the F49 7-seater X1 will have a longer wheelbase than the 5-seater F48. Surely a longer wheelbase X1 would tread on the toes of the X3. The 7-seater Active Gran Tourer uses the same wheelbase as the 5-seater 2-AT, with the space for the third row of seats being provided by a slightly longer rear overhang and an extended rear roofline.

    • Herr26

      In some way we can look at the Active/Gran Tourer as substitutes for a Touring model. Back in the days there was serious consideration in 2003 for a full family of the 1er and BMW had many ideas to impact the market with its first compact car in a long time.

      I remember a viewing in 2003 of the (then) new Sporthatch but also shown alongside the Coupe and Cabrio were a Sedan and a Touring. They were considered but dropped ahead of direct competition with the 3er (the upcoming E90).

      Of course the full extent of the 2er is still to be played out in this and next generation.

      The X1L now arrives in all markets , the next X3 also receives an L version but will both be sold under another Sport Activity Term. BMW see the L series of the X line in between the bookends of the standard and Coupe models of the X cars. Which is why the X2 is imminent as is an X7. It allows both five seat , seven seat and sportier coupe configurations therefore increasing profits , appeal and cost effective manufacturing

      • Nick Dawson

        Thanks for that. Still not confirmed, the X8 is mooted as a more sporting version of the X7, upon which it would be based, and would be aimed at markets such as the US, Russia, China and the Middle East, and would rival Audi’s Q8.