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The New BMW 1 Series Now Features an M1 Badge

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BMW has introduced a new 1 Series with front-wheel drive and transversally mounted engines, including a three-cylinder option and the top-of-the-line M135 model. The rear badge of the M135 has been updated, with the “M” and “1” remaining the same size but the “3” and “5” now smaller. This change may give the impression of a connection to the iconic M1 supercar, although it is not related. The M135 also features quad exhausts and the M signature mirror design, previously only seen on true M models. This updated rear badging design has also been used on other BMW models, like the M760e, to create a more cohesive branding strategy.

In terms of design, BMW doesn’t have a consistent approach to its rear badges. While the M135 features the updated badge design, other models like the 2025 M440i still use the old format. Electric models like the i5 M60 and iX M60 emphasize the M branding as well. With the wide range of M Performance and M models BMW offers, it can be challenging to create a universal badge design. However, the goal seems to be narrowing the visual gap between M Lite and full M models, as evidenced by the updated badge on the M135. Despite the confusion, BMW’s strategy seems focused on enhancing the appeal of their performance-oriented vehicles.

Interestingly, the M division of BMW includes sales figures for both M Lite and full M models, blurring the lines between the two categories. The i4 M50 was the best-selling BMW M vehicle in 2022 and 2023, showcasing the success of these performance-oriented electric models. Additionally, the M3 Sedan was the most popular full M model last year. By combining sales figures, BMW is able to highlight the popularity of their M Performance lineup alongside their traditional M models. This approach reflects the brand’s commitment to offering a diverse range of performance vehicles to appeal to a wide range of customers.

Overall, BMW’s decision to update the rear badge design on the M135 demonstrates a shift towards a more consistent branding strategy across their performance-oriented lineup. The inclusion of M branding on non-M models like the M440i and electric vehicles like the i5 M60 further reinforces the brand’s commitment to showcasing the performance capabilities of their vehicles. While the design of rear badges may seem like a minor detail, it plays a crucial role in communicating the identity and performance potential of a vehicle. As BMW continues to expand its range of M Performance and M models, a clear and consistent badge design will help reinforce the brand’s reputation for high-performance vehicles.

In conclusion, BMW’s decision to update the rear badge design on the M135 reflects a broader strategy to enhance the visual appeal and performance identity of their vehicles. By including M branding on a wider range of models and creating a more cohesive badge design, BMW aims to bridge the gap between M Lite and full M models. This approach not only highlights the performance capabilities of their vehicles but also underscores the brand’s commitment to offering a diverse lineup of high-performance cars. As BMW continues to evolve and expand its range of M Performance and M models, a clear and consistent badge design will be essential in communicating the brand’s performance heritage and attracting enthusiasts to their vehicles.

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