By Otsile Kadiege
A new entrant to the highly contested hot hatchback segment comes in the form of a BMW 1 Series dubbed the 128ti (Turismo Internazionale). Slotted underneath the more potent all-wheel drive M135i xDrive, the front-wheel drive BMW 128ti has its sight set on the popular Volkswagen Golf 8 GTI.
The 128ti comes standard with M Sport package including Shadowline trims, which consists of high gloss black single-frame kidney grille, mirror caps, door frames and darker headlight. To further differentiate the 128ti from the rest of the 1 Series range, BMW has fitted red accents on the front air inlets, (which can be deleted), exclusive bicolour 18-inch style 553 M light-alloy wheels, red painted callipers, red side skirts, “ti” decals, “ti” badging, red coated rear non-functional air curtains and split twin exhaust pipes surrounded with gloss black tips.
The red theme continues inside where red contrasting stitching on the door panels, steering wheel, airbag cover, dashboard, seats with vertical pattern design and “ti” stitched on the centre armrest.
Powering the 128ti is a 2.0-litre Twin Power Turbo 4-cylinder engine sourced from its bigger brother, the M135i xDrive. The South African version produces 180 kW and 380 Nm sent to the front wheels via an 8-speed Steptronic Sport transmission. Compared to the M135i, the 128ti is 80 kg lighter.
To ensure that the 128ti offers a sporty character, the front-wheel drive 128ti is fitted with a Torsen limited slip differential, model specific steering setup, M Sport suspension which lowers the 128ti by 10 mm, M sport brakes, firmer anti-roll bars and anti-roll bar mounts with high preload and Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tyres which are available at no extra cost.
BMW claims a 0-100 km/h sprint time of 6.3 seconds and will run out of steam at 243 km/h.
Pricing and availability
The 128ti’s is priced from R687,418.00, including 15% VAT and CO2 tax.
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