According to reports, the Bavarian car manufacturer BMW is preparing an entry level model FWD to rival Mercedes-Benz A-class and Audi A2. The new batch of front-wheel-drive hatchbacks will be released in the next few years. The first one, positions just beneath the 1-series, is slated to debut in 2013.
Because this particular model is designed to compete with Audi A2 and Mercedes-Benz A-class, it will be given a body-style which is very similar to the said models. That said, it’s expected to be a high-roof, five-door and five seater hatchback with a mounted gearbox and engine. This design should allow for more cabin space and a shorter bonnet.
BMW is also offering a sportier variant, slated to be a different model all together, which will rival the A1. According to reports from Autocar, the company will also be offering a 1-series front wheel drive without phasing out its rear-wheel drive variant.
Earlier reports said that the BMW entry level FWD will be sharing its architecture with the MINI. A total of 1 million front-wheel-drives badged with BMW and MINI will be produced by 2015. According to the car maker, they’re not at all worried that the shared architecture will “cannibalize” the MINI. According to them, both lines have very separate and clear images. The BMW and the MINI will still appeal to different markets.
As proof that the move will be successful, BMW referred to Volkswagen and Audi. Both groups have been pretty successful establishing their own brands despite the shared features.