The Golden Steering Wheel awards 2019: two wins for BMW.

Munich. The winners of the Golden Steering Wheel
awards have traditionally been decided on the basis of a readers’ poll
and expert opinion – and German motoring magazine Auto Bild and Sunday
newspaper Bild am Sonntag stuck to this proven formula to select this
year’s outstanding new automotive arrivals. Two of the sought-after
trophies were claimed by BMW, with the new BMW 1 Series picking up the
Golden Steering Wheel 2019 in the Compact Cars category and the new
BMW 8 Series crowned the year’s most beautiful car. The awards were
presented yesterday at a gala event in Berlin, where Oliver Zipse,
Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG, accepted the two Golden
Steering Wheels for the BMW 1 Series and 8 Series.

The Golden Steering Wheel awards have been running since 1976 and are
considered among Europe’s most prestigious car industry accolades. A
total of 58 new models were nominated across seven categories this
year. First, the three most popular models in each category were
chosen in a readers’ poll. And these then came under the critical eye
of a panel of 15 highly qualified judges, including legendary racing
drivers Walter Röhrl and Hans-Joachim Stuck. All of the finalists were
closely scrutinised by the experts at the Lausitzring proving grounds
near Dresden. The readers of Auto Bild and Bild am Sonntag were also
asked to choose the most beautiful new car of the year from the 58 candidates.

Test drives in the new BMW 1 Series gave the judges the chance to
explore its fresh take on the brand’s renowned driving pleasure. The
third generation of the premium compact model is the first to employ
BMW’s advanced front-wheel-drive architecture – and it delivers an
exhilarating blend of class-leading agility and dynamism. Credit here
goes to the flawless interplay of cutting-edge chassis systems and
innovative technologies, plus the integration of all key driving
dynamics components and control systems. An important factor is the
ARB (near-actuator wheel slip limitation) technology familiar from the
BMW i models, which is now making its debut in a combustion-engined
vehicle. This system significantly improves traction when pulling
away, cornering or driving in the wet by allowing wheel slip to be
controlled much more sensitively and swiftly.

The new BMW 1 Series also scored highly for its significantly
increased interior space, its sophisticated driver assistance systems
and the latest control/operation and connectivity innovations. Key new
features include the standard Active Guard Plus system featuring Speed
Limit Info, lane departure warning, collision and pedestrian warning
with city braking function, the BMW Head-Up Display (available as an
option for the first time) and the likewise optional voice-controlled
BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant.

Irresistible visual appeal and a new design language earned BMW its
second Golden Steering Wheel in this year’s contest. Auto Bild and
Bild am Sonntag readers voted the new BMW 8 Series the year’s most
beautiful car from the field of new models nominated for the award.
The new luxury sports car’s exterior design is dominated by boldly
sculpted surfaces and crisp lines that provide an authentic showcase
for the car’s rich dynamic character. These styling cues are among the
fruits of an extensively updated design language, which focuses on
clarity, modernity and emotional engagement and gives each of the
three body variants in the new BMW 8 Series range its own unique aura.

With its stretched silhouette, slim window graphic and roofline –
with distinctive “double-bubble” contouring – flowing elegantly into
the rear, the BMW 8 Series Coupe combines sportiness and luxury in its
most alluring form. Meanwhile, the new BMW 8 Series Convertible with
classical soft-top roof captures the imagination with its elegance and
exclusiveness. Finally, there is the distinctive, dashing presence of
the new BMW 8 Series Gran Coupe, whose two extra doors and increased
rear space bring the experience of sports performance to four
full-size seats.