The new convertible features a multi-layer, highly insulated, electro-hydraulically folding fabric roof which opens and closes within 22 seconds at speeds up to 40km/h - on par with the acclaimed 3 Series Convertible.
The soft top is available in either black or beige, or with a new anthracite finish complete with a silver effect - this is where fine metallic fibres are woven into the cloth to give the material a high quality shimmering iridescent look.
It also features BMW’s pioneering Sun Reflective Technology upholstery first seen on the M6 Convertible, which greatly reduces the sun’s heating effect on seat facings by reflecting the sun’s ultra-violet rays.
“The new BMW 1 Series convertible is an exciting driver’s car, ideally aimed at Australian customers who love that wind in the hair feeling,” said Guenther Seemann, Managing Director of BMW Group Australia.
Two new body colours have also been introduced with the convertible - Kashmir Silver and Sedona Red metallic.
Despite the petite proportions, the BMW 1 Series convertible also boasts 240-litres of luggage capacity with the roof down, adding another 40-litres when the roof is up - more than enough for two golf bags.
“This exciting new car also brings convertible BMW motoring to a new segment of the car market. We are sure that the new 1 Series convertible will be a success in Australia from the moment it arrives. Mr Seemann continued
In Europe, the Convertible will be offered with five engines, ranging from the 105 kW four cylinder 118i, through the 125 kW 120i and the 160 kW six-cylinder 125i, to the range-topping 225 kW Twin Turbo International Engine of the Year in the 135i Convertible. A fuel efficient 130 kW four-cylinder turbo diesel with a particulate filter s also available.
The standard transmission is a six-speed manual with a six-speed Steptronic automatic available as an option which in true BMW style sends power to the rear-wheels.
Safety features accommodating the convertible include a specific roll-over protection feature with pop-up roll-over bars fitted behind the rear head rests. This is joined by the typical BMW air bags, seat belt pretensioners and belt force limiters are joined by crash optimised front seat backs and head rests.
BMW Australia will announce local specification, pricing and engine options closer to launch in 2008.