Building on the success of BMW’s M cars and M Sport models, BMW is launching BMW Performance, a new range of driving-oriented aftermarket accessories. Designed to focus purely on the driving experience, the range of individual retrofit components includes upgrades to the engine, braking system, suspension and alloy wheels, as well as interior and exterior enhancements, all for BMW 1 and 3 Series cars.
The BMW Performance products were showcased on the recent BMW 1 Series Concept tii concept car at the Tokyo Motorshow in 2007.
Carl Whipp, BMW UK’s Aftersales Marketing Manager, said: “BMW has had unprecedented success with M models in the UK. To that end, BMW UK is the second largest market for M cars in the world. In addition, we have the M Sport range of cars in almost every model series. The launch of BMW Performance offers existing owners another tier of dynamic, driving-focussed products, this time on a retrofit basis.
“The BMW Performance components are designed to be installed on BMW 1 and 3 Series models and the majority of the parts will fit either M Sport or SE models. Rather than the BMW Performance offering a complete car, like BMW M does, we expect customers to mix-and-match the elements of the range that are most important to them.”
Sporting and agile engineering
The strength of BMW Performance is the depth of its engineering. To deliver improvements in engine performance, owners of six-cylinder 1 and 3 Series models can specify a BMW Performance carbon fibre air intake system. This system offers improved air flow and additional engine air supply. It also delivers a particularly sporting induction note for those who appreciate the unique sound of a BMW straight-six. Customers can also opt for the BMW Performance sports exhaust system that enhances gas flow from the engine to improve efficiency. It, too, is designed to improve the acoustic experience without compromising comfort on long-distance journeys.
A BMW Performance sports braking package for enhanced stopping power can be specified. Featuring 17-inch cross-drilled and vented brake discs on the front axle as well as motorsport-derived six-piston fixed callipers, finished in BMW Performance yellow, the package sharpens braking response as well as cutting braking distances.
Those drivers wanting to enhance the agility of their cars will select BMW Performance suspension. Delivering even better handling and driving dynamics than the ‘standard’ car, the BMW Performance suspension package comprises recalibrated shock absorbers and coil springs. It also lowers the ride height of the car by 10mm to reduce the centre of gravity, thus delivering even more nimble handling. Cars equipped with BMW Performance suspension can be identified by their yellow coil springs. A BMW Performance carbon fibre front suspension strut brace that adds torsional rigidity to the front of the car can also be selected.
Finally, a unique BMW Performance alloy wheel is available. The double-spoke lightweight alloy wheel is available measuring 18- or 19-inches, dependent on the model.
Exterior body styling is the most obvious visual definition of the BMW Performance range. Offering a unique package of aerodynamically-enhanced styling components for 1 Series models, the kit comprises a new front spoiler with fully integrated black high-gloss kidney grille surround as well as sculpted and contoured side sills.
Model-specific exterior carbon fibre accessories are also available. BMW 1 Series owners can opt for carbon fibre exterior door mirrors. Alternatively, 1 and 3 Series drivers can select the new BMW Performance carbon fibre rear spoiler or carbon rear diffuser to enhance the appearance of the car as well as the aerodynamics.
Sporting, lightweight interior components
The BMW Performance philosophy reaches into the interior of the car too. Using motorsport technologies and design, BMW Performance sports seats are offered. With bucket seat contours and black Alcantara covering, these sports seats offer the highest levels of lateral support. To ensure continued driver and passenger safety, the car’s side airbags are incorporated into the seat. The seats are available on all 1 and 3 Series models except Convertible cars.
The BMW Performance short-shift gear lever will appeal to those drivers who appreciate a particularly dynamic driving experience. The short shift gear lever shortens the gear lever travel by 25 per cent to deliver the fastest possible manual gear change.
Taking its steer from the world of motorsport, the BMW Performance multi-function sports steering wheel provides information directly into the driver’s line of sight. Thanks to a small LED display in the upper section of the wheel, the driver is kept abreast of information such as oil and coolant temperature, lateral and forward acceleration rates and ideal gear shift points. The multi-function buttons on the steering wheel enable the driver to scroll through the available information.
Finally, to complement the motorsport-derived interior equipment, owners can specify BMW Performance carbon fibre interior components. Weight-saving carbon fibre components for the dashboard, front and rear door panels and centre console are available. Customers can also specify foot pedals and a footrest made from lightweight aluminium.