Straight from the Specialists
(Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters) When BMW sold Rover in 2000, the British car brand was working on Project R30. There were rumours that BMW would use badge engineering to introduce the R30 as its 1 Series but that wasn’t to be.
The R30 may have been an inspiration but the BMW 1 Series was designed from the ground up. When American Chris Chapman worked on the 1 Series, he was led by Chris Bangle – a designer known for his peculiar styling – which explains the eccentricities of its design.
The surface treatment was accentuated by conclave and convex flows but the 1-Series remained true to typical BMW proportions with its short front overhang and a long bonnet. Complex construction methods were used to achieve perfect weight distribution, to the extent of making the front suspension out of an alloy while the rear units are of steel.
The decision to go with run-flat tyres was crucial as it helped in locating the battery where the spare wheel would’ve been stored under the floor. I have a thing against run-flats but that’s because of driving conditions in India. The BMW 1-Series was praised for its sublime handling and taut chassis.
(The views expressed in this column are the author’s own and do not represent those of Reuters)
In 1947, when India won freedom from British rule, an enterprising young man in South Korea was realizing a dream that was to become a global phenomenon. Chung Ju-yung, founder of the Hyundai group, set up a construction company at 32 and two decades later, the Hyundai Motor Company was born.