BMW Plans More Platform Sharing Between Brands

BMW plans to to further consolidate its platforms and engines to cut costs as part of its “Strategy Number One.”

Development director Herbert Diess said that for now, the BMW Active Tourer will be the company’s only front-wheel drive vehicle. It uses the same platform as MINI’s new Cooper and Cooper S and will eventually go on to underpin many more models for that brand and a smaller line for BMW. Last  December, BMW board member Ian Robertson said the UKL1 platform would underpin 11 models.

Diess said in an interview with Automotive News that European sales of the 7 Series and 5 Series are declining and that the company recognizes the need for smaller premium vehicles.It would be very difficult for BMW to meet that demand by offering something like the Active Tourer with one of its rear-wheel drive platforms, he said.

One of the next models expected on UKL1 is the new front-wheel drive 1 Series. The platform can accommodate vehicles that are up to 181 inches long (4.6 meters), which leaves room for something roughly the size of the 2014 3 Series.

Front-drivers aren’t the only part of the company’s consolidation strategy. It will also consolidate its rear-wheel drive strategy by combining two platforms into one flexible architecture. The company is also planning a new modular engine family that will offer a 1.5-liter three-cylinder engine, a 2.0-liter four-cylinder and a 3.0-liter six.

GALLERY: BMW Concept Active Tourer Outdoor


[Source: Automotive News]

Discuss this story at our BMW forum.