There are indeed a lot of cars to choose from these days. Each manufacturer is vying for your (or your parents) hard earned cash. BMW is a very strong contender for you. Considering they manufactured aircraft engines for the Luftwaffe and then one of the first jet engines, they have a long history of making quality components. A particular engine model for aircraft in the First World War was the BMW Illa, whose inline six liquid cooled engine performed well at high altitudes, further proves this fact. Aircraft aside, their cars are generally loved by the people who drive them. This article assumes you already want a BMW but are just looking to narrow the selection a bit. First off, here’s how they are classed:
- BMW series 1 to 7 are separated by how affordable each car is when brand new, as well as the ‘luxury’ of each model.
- BMW X series cars typically have four wheel drive as standard. The engines are tailored for efficiency.
- BMW M series cars are the sports models. A heavy price tag is the price of absolute performance and power.
- BMW Hybrid cars are, unsurprisingly, the hybrid versions of their production cars.
With that out of the way, it’s worth considering the barebones requirements before you look at one to buy. A car that costs £80,000 will be a brilliant performance car but if you just want to take your kids to school in it, not only will you look like you’re overcompensating, it’s also wildly impractical. Similarly, a £14,000 car would be poorly suited to all terrain driving. Have a good think about your needs before you consider your wants. Remember, your choice will also affect your insurance premiums. Visit MyCarNeedsA.com if you want to compare quotes for servicing any car near you.
Now, here’s a quick look at some of the preferred models of BMWs, either second hand or new (not in any particular order).
Whilst you may think an electric car as being an odd choice for a first car or indeed any purchase, there are incredible benefits to owning one beyond it being a BMW version.
First, you can qualify for a grant to cover 25% of the cost of a new one. Hard to find a grant like that nowadays.
Next are the obvious green bonuses. Though you could only reach 100-200 miles on a fully charged battery, you have barely any carbon footprint to worry about.
Also you would automatically qualify for a zero rated car tax. No car tax!
Even Top Gear rated the I3 with a well-deserved 9/10 in their reviews. By all accounts, it’s a pleasure to drive even if it means normal driving conventions don’t apply with it.
If you have a bit too much cash you want to get rid of, an M135 is rated as an excellent powerhouse without having to spend more than £31,500. Described as a hybrid between BMWs ‘normal’ and ‘performance’ cars, it performs better than you would expect. With rapid acceleration (0-60mph in 4.6 seconds) and all around comfort in mind (leather upholstery as standard), an M135 would be an absolute pleasure to drive for any purpose. Some people even say they don’t mind being stuck in traffic in one (as much as they normally would). Top Gears reviewers rate it at 9/10, just like the I3. If you have seen the show even once then you know that the reviews are quite thorough. One overlooked notion towards buying a car is how it ‘feels’ to drive.
BMW 1 Series
It might seem strange to cast a wide net by recommending anything out of the 1 series. But each model in this category is designed to by an ideal starting point (‘baby beemer’ is the proper term).
With more choices that range from £17,775 to £24,230, you can pick something affordable but very comfortable to drive and keep. The 1 series cars sport more lightweight frames, saving your precious petrol as well as three separate driving modes to support what you want. Comfort, Sport and Eco will alter the engine and stability control to suit any particular mode you want, offering more flexibility. Top Gear rates the entire one series at a healthy 7/10. Remember that to increase that review score, a much larger amount of money has to be spent.
You have three useful choices to consider here. Remember though that every car needs servicing and MOTs to keep it road worthy. A genuine BMW service can be expensive as genuine parts and genuine mechanics often mean you pay for the name on top of the service. A look at a good car comparison site can certainly help though.