DETROIT -- BMW Group will launch a media blitz to promote its redesigned 3 series due in stores next month.
The media campaign will have a strong TV element, but BMW will put more emphasis on digital advertising than before, Ian Robertson, head of global sales and marketing for BMW, said at the Detroit auto show today.
“The 3 series is the most important vehicle in terms of volume for BMW,” Robertson says. “We’re likely to do a balancing act between TV and digital.”
Robertson said BMW has a heavy Facebook following. BMW’s tagline will remain, “The ultimate driving machine,” and the advertising messaging will emphasize performance, design and sustainability, he said.
M5 getting 6-speed manual
BMW confirmed today that it will offer a 6-speed manual transmission on the North American version of the upcoming 2013 BMW M5 due in dealerships later this summer.
The 6-speed manual will be offered as a no-cost alternative to the standard 7-speed M-Double Clutch Transmission. The manual gearbox was a popular choice for U.S. customers of the previous generation M5.
The redesigned 3 series, making its North American debut in Detroit today, was engineered to improve BMW’s corporate fuel economy while still offering plenty of power and performance.
The car was first introduced to the media in October in Munich.
The redesigned series is 93 mm longer than the current car with a 50 mm longer wheelbase. The interior load capacity rose by 20 liters to 480 liters.
The 2012 328i sedan will start at $35,795, up $320 from the model it replaces, and the 335i will go up $370 to $43,295, the automaker said. Both prices include an $895 destination charge.
Some of the fuel-efficiency measures include a lighter curb weight, improved automatic transmission, start-stop and regenerative braking.
The 328i sedan will have a new 2.0-liter twin-turbo four-cylinder engine, and the 335i will continue to feature BMW's twin-turbo 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder powerplant. Both engines are gasoline -- a diesel will be added later.
For the first time, the 3 series will be offered in three trim and equipment levels: sport, luxury and modern.
The 328i’s new standard four-cylinder engine will make 240 hp. It’s the same engine available on the BMW 5 Series and Z4. This engine makes 10 more hp compared with the outgoing I-6. BMW says the 328i goes from 0-60 in 5.7 seconds with a top speed of 130 mph.
The 335i twin-turbocharged now makes 300 hp.
BMW is adding the ActiveHybrid 3 model, a gasoline-electric hybrid that uses the same drivetrain as the 5-series hybrid.
BMW has said it expects to achieve a near-37 mpg figure in combined European fuel consumption testing, adjusted to U.S. measurements.