BMW has announced that its new 335is coupe and convertible models will only be available only in North America. The company has slotted the 335is just below the high-performance M3.
The 2011 335is has 20hp more than the 335i “ 320hp in all, and features sporty upgrades for the interior as well as a new exterior.
The added features will raise the price of the 335is to $50,525 for the coupe and $59,075 for the convertible model. Still, the price is around $7,000 lower than the M3, which has a V-8, 414hp engine. The M3 and the 335is only have about 40% of their components in common with other 3-series models. The prices for all include shipping costs.
Joe Wierda is the 3-series and X3 product manager for BMW North America. He says BMW will make the 335is available in the U.S. and Canada because buyers there demand a sportier car. He also reports that some 335i owners had taken their cars to tuners to boost the horsepower.
Wierda says, We knew there was a market for it. Now this is a business BMW can keep, and the car also maintains its warranty.
The front and rear lights on the 335is are new, and the hood has been redesigned along with new sport front and rear fascias and side skirts. The car also has a black BMW kidney grille rather than chrome.
Optional sport trim packages are already available for 3-series models and can add up to $3,000 to the price. Wierda said that around 70% of 335i buyers purchase these packages.
He also says that BMW expects 335i customers will upgrade to the 335is rather than the M3. The M is a different character. It has product substance geared more toward the hard-core performance buyer with more visual upgrades.
The convertible 335is will go on sale in April, and the coupe will be in dealer showrooms in June. Both have the 3.0-liter, inline six-cylinder, twin-turbo engine offered in the 335i model.
In the United States, the 3-series is BMW’s best seller. Last year, the automaker sold 90,960 3-Series cars in the U.S., and Wierda says that around 40% of them were 335i models.
Prices for the 2011 3-series coupe or convertible will not be raised. The 335i starts at $43,525, and the convertible model is priced at $53,075. The 328i coupe costs $37,075, and the convertible is $45,875. All prices include shipping.
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