Since the BMW 1-Series cars do not yet appear under "Reviews" I decided to write this guide to share my experience so far with my 2008 128i convertible that I purchased in December 2008. I have no complaints about my car and although I loved my previous vehicle (a 2006 Mercedes ML350), I don't miss it at all now that I have a 128i convertible!
The 1-Series has the exact same engine as the 3-Series and 5-Series in a more lightweight, compact body (128i: 3.0-liter, 230-hp straight-6 and 135i: twin turbo with 300-hp). If you are thinking about getting the 135i, be sure to get an insurance quote first...those twin turbos will definitely add a premium to your policy! Also as an FYI, there have been fuel pump issues reported on the 135i and not the 128i...but of course, if error codes are detected, they would be covered under the factory warranty.
NEGOTIATING THE DEAL
New car purchases in December of the same model year will typically get you the lowest price, as dealers do not want prior year's inventory and they also want to sell every car they can before the end of the year.
1. Build the exact car you want (exterior/interior colors and options) on the manufacturer's website and find out the MSRP for your car. Don't waste your time trying to figure out "dealer invoice" pricing, it's the bottom line that matters. The best deal I found was $39,579 which was 12% under MSRP ($44,975) plus $500 shipping from a SoCal dealer to a NorCal dealer. I also got 0.9% financing for 60 months, which was an end-of-the-year special offered by BMW Financial.
2. Test drive the car at the dealer you like the best and give them the first opportunity to make the sale...and tell them that. If they accept your offer, lucky you! If not, do a search for BMW dealers in your state and start e-mailing them the car and price you're looking for. There are lots of fish in the sea and one of them will bite!
3. Unfortunately, the 1-series do not come with floormats...but as a part of the deal, ask to buy your accessories at dealer cost. They'll say yes. Also, I recommend that you don't go for any of the extras they'll try to sell you in the Finance Department like the extended warranty or paint protection. JHMO.
OPTIONS AND ACCESSORIES
These are the options and accessories I have on my 128i convertible and after one year, I'm still very happy with everything I selected and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend them. Prices shown are MSRP.
1. 6-speed Steptronic transmission ($1325) - Automatic six-speed transmission with mode select, lock-up, electronic control, manual mode and shift lever on floor; Automatic drive indicator on dashboard; Sports Leather Steering Wheel with Paddle Shifters
2. Premium package ($3700) - Automatic operation rear view mirror; Garage door opener; Coming home device; Driver and passenger seat with lumbar adjustment; Driver and passenger door mirrors with automatic operation; Compass; Ambient light package; Telematics; Power Front Seats with Driver Memory; BMW Assist with Bluetooth; Boston Leather; Gray Poplar Wood Trim
3. Sport package ($1200) - Front and rear other tires; Sport alternate suspension; Sports driver and passenger seat; Increased top speed limiter
4. Cold weather package ($750) - Rear seat center armrest with ski bag; High pressure headlight cleaners; Heated Front Seats
5. On-Board Navigation System with Voice Recognition ($2100) - Navigational systems : information type: arrows and voice and knobs/touch buttons controls DVD; Voice activating system includes phone and includes navigation system
6. Comfort access package ($500) - Smart card / smart key automatic, includes central locking and includes ignition starter
7. Xenon HID headlights ($800) - Projector beam lens Bi-Xenon headlights; Headlight control active
8. iPod and USB adapter ($400) - Connection to ext.entertainment devices mp3 devices, wma devices, ipod and includes input USB connection
9. Factory floor mats - fits perfectly like it should!
10. Factory rubber mats (front only, I rarely have rear passengers) - a must have for the winter months.
11. Factory wind deflector - this is the BEST accessory for the convertible, a definite "Gotta Have It" for me!
12. USB flash drive - I store all my music on this and leave it plugged in, so there's no need to keep removing your iPod or risk theft by leaving it in the car. The flash drive is much cheaper to replace and less likely to be stolen!
In conclusion, I recommend doing an internet search for "1 addicts forum" (sorry, no non-eBay links are permitted here) if you have any questions about the BMW 1-Series that I didn't address above or if you're already an owner and would like to interact with other 1-Series owners.
If you found my review to be helpful, please let me know by clicking "yes" below! :)