The BMW 328i was the best performer in the recent 40 mph offset crash tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). In the test of five mid-sized luxury sedans, the 328i was the only car to be deemed a "best pick."

Explaining the awarding of its "best pick" designation on the 328i, the IIHS noted that "during the frontal offset crash test, the occupant compartment held its shape well, without much intrusion into the compartment, and measures taken from the driver dummy indicated low likelihood of injury."

The IIHS frontal offset crash test into a deformable barrier is especially demanding of vehicle structure. Only the driver side of the front of a vehicle hits the barrier, so a relatively small area of the front-end structure must manage the crash energy. This means intrusion into the occupant compartment is more likely to occur than in a full-width test. "At BMW we place a very high priority on passenger safety," noted Tom Purves, Chairman of BMW (US) Holding Corp., "so we are very gratified to see our engineers' efforts pay off so well in tests like these."

The BMW 328i benefits from BMW's comprehensive Safety F.I.R.S.T. (Fully- Integrated Road Safety Technology) initiative and includes standard features such as "smart" dual-threshold and dual-stage front airbags, front door side airbags and BMW's Head Protection System, an automotive first. Front seat belts include automatic pretensioners and force limiters. Side impact intrusion is further minimized by BMW's innovative Interlocking door anchoring system. Also standard is a feature that has been on BMW's since the 1980's- the crash sensor-which upon impact will immediately unlock the doors and turn on the hazard flashers and interior lights.

BMW IN AMERICA

BMW entered the U.S. market in 1975. Since then, the company has grown to include marketing, sales and financial service organizations in the United States; a South Carolina manufacturing operation; a design firm in California; a technology office in Palo Alto and various other operations throughout the country. BMW is represented in the U.S. through a network of more than 340 car, 300 Sports Activity Vehicle and 160 motorcycle retailers. BMW US Holding Corp., the Group's headquarters for North, Central and South America, is located in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey.

Information about BMW products is available to consumers via the World Wide Web on the BMW homepage. The address is: www.bmwusa.com.