The hosts quickly built a two-goal advantageas Arjen Robben and Mario Mandzukic found the target inside 20 minutes, but Gladbach responded before the break as Dante turned into his own net.
Bayern made sure of an opening-day victory in bizarre circumstances after the interval, as Alvaro Domiguez managed to concede two penalties in as many minutes.
Thomas Muller missed the first spot kick but David Alaba slammed home the second a minute later, ensuring that Bayern secured all three points.
Relive a frenetic 3-1 win for the reigning champions with Sports Mole's minute-by-minute commentary below.
7.03pmHello Bundesliga fans and welcome back! After a summer of pre-season friendlies and transfer speculation competitive action is finally back on the continent, with the German season beginning tonight in Munich. It is perhaps apt that Pep Guardiola is straight under the microscope this evening, as defending champions Bayern kick things off against Borussia Monchengladbach.
7.05pmGuardiola will be under instant pressure to deliver this evening, particularly after their underwhelming 4-2 defeat against Borussia Dortmund in the German Super Cup last month. Tonight's opponents Gladbach have been something of a bogey team for Bayern in recent seasons, winning just one of their last four meetings in the Bundesliga.
7.07pmBayern have added to their embarrassment of riches in midfield during the close season, with Mario Gotze and Thiago Alcantara added to their star-studded squad. Gotze is unavailable tonight through injury, but Thiago is in contention for a Bundesliga debut after impressing during pre-season in a withdrawn playmaker role.
7.10pmGladbach have also strengthened during the close season, with coach Lucien Favre under pressure to challenge for a European spot this time round. Max Kruse and Raffael are both exciting attacking additions and will help take the burden off Dutch striker Luuk de Jong to get goals for the visitors.
7.13pmBREAKING TEAM NEWS! I have just received word of a slightly surprising starting XI named by Bayern boss Guardiola for tonight's match. Thiago misses out on a Bundesliga debut, while Mario Mandzukic returns in attack despite a bit-part role during pre-season. A full look at both starting lineups will follow in just a few moments.
7.21pmAfter experimenting throughout pre-season Guardiola has opted for a 4-1-4-1 formation in his opening Bundesliga fixture. Mandzukic will be supported by Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben, in roles familiar to Bayern's all-conquering side from last season.
7.24pmPerhaps surprisingly Thiago has missed on a starting role this evening, with Bayern opting for a all-German midfield trio of Thomas Muller, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Toni Kroos. Muller has been pushed further forward during pre-season, but must now revert to a deeper, more familiar attacking midfield position.
7.26pmFor Gladbach new strike duo Kruse and Raffael both start in attack, with influential playmaker Juan Arango also passed fit to play. The visitors are set up to play on the counter in a 4-5-1 formation, with Arango and Kruse given licence to get forward in wide areas.
7.28pmPREDICTION! As we await the two teams it will come as little surprise that I expect Guardiola's reign to begin with a victory tonight. Bayern just look too strong in attack for the visitors, who I do expect to look threatening on the counter. I'll go for Mandzukic to justify his selection by scoring in a 2-0 home win.
7.31pmWe are slightly late getting underway at the Allianz Arena as what looks like an opening ceremony featuring local youngsters continues to drag on. The badges of all 18 Bundesliga clubs are now on the field, with this ceremony produced to celebrate the 50th anniversary of top-flight football in Germany.
7.34pmAt long last the two teams make their way out in Munich, after three months of waiting just a few more minutes won't hurt I guess. Just to confirm as this delay continues that Thiago is also missing from the Bayern bench, with Javi Martinez among the substitutes.
7.37pmI've just received word that Thiago's absence is due to a high temperature, as both sides stand through a slightly surprising chorus of the German national anthem.
7.40pmA packed Allianz Arena is in full voice tonight in a warm Bavaria, creating quite at an atmposhere. Gladbach have opted for a pre-match huddle and will need team spirit in abundance to leave Southern Germany with a positive result. Here we go then, with Gladbach getting the Bundesliga underway in an all-white changed strip, shooting from right to left.
3 minBayern are quick to gain possession and find Ribery in a dangerous wide right position. His cross looks dangerous but is cleared quickly, with Arango helping Gladbach launch a swift counter at the other end. Both teams want to play this match at a high tempo if they early exchanges are anything to go by.
6 minGladbach win an early corner kick as Raffael's curling free kick is knocked away by Alaba. Kruse goes out to take and delivers a teasing cross towards the penalty area. Bayern clear the lines as far as young winger Herrmann, who scoops a wayward cross over Neuer's goal from the follow up.
9 minThe visitors have just survived a very nervous moment inside their own penalty area. Muller came close to controlling a Lahm cross from around 12 yards, with the ball taking a sharp bounce before spilling into the path of Jantschke. His timely interception scrambled clear to safety, with Bayern quickly building sustained possession inside the opposition half through Kroos.
11 minGuardiola is quick to give Dante angry words of wisdom after his long diagonal pass trickled through to the Gladbach goalkeeper, who gratefully receives under no pressure. At the other end the visitors attempt to build a break through Herrmann, who is flagged offside after making a dart into the penalty area.
13 minThis outrageously attacking Bayern side is definitely leaving Gladbach with opportunities to counter as Kramer's deflected drive goes behind for a corner kick. Favre's side are unable to profit though as Jantschke is penalised for pushing when the ball is cleared upfield.
16 minA sublime, measured finish from Robben has ended Gladbach's resistance less than 15 minutes into the match. The Dutchman timed his run into the penalty area perfectly to meet a chip into a central position from Ribery, catching the Gladbach defence static. Robben spotted goalkeeper Ter Stegen off his line and took full advantage, chipping a deft flick into the bottom corner with precision. What a start for the champions!
19 minGladbach suddenly find themselves with a mountain to climb as Bayern quickly double their advantage through Mandzukic. The visitors were caught napping from a Robben free kick as Ribery raced into the penalty area. Ter Stegen was equal to his effort but could only parry back towards Mandzukic, who finished nearly into the corner to put Bayern firmly in control.
21 minIn the space of a minute we could have quite easily seen goals at both ends of this ridiculously open encounter. First Gladbach spurned by far their best opening of the match as Raffael failed to find the target from a tight angle. Bayern were quick to break and create a chance of their own at the other end, which Mandzukic headed wide under pressure from Stranzl. This frenetic start looks likely to be a sign of things to come under Guardiola at the Allianz Arena.
24 minXhaka was just very lucky to escape without a caution after launching into a high tackle on Schweinsteiger, but luckily for the Gladbach midfielder the referee deems a warning to be punishment enough. When play resumes Bayern are soon back in their stride, as Ribery beats two players inside the penalty area. His cross looks destined to find Robben's late run, but Ter Stegen reads the danger and intercepts.
27 minGladbach mix things up with a direct approach, forcing Neuer to boot into touch as Arango's speculative long pass is dealt with swiftly. Kruse and Daems then combine down the left wing, but the former Freiburg striker cannot control inside the penalty area and the chance soon disappears.
29 minLahm gets a warm applause from the home crowd as he surges forward, but a chipped cross towards the far post fails to read Mandzukic's delayed run into the six-yard box.
32 minSAVE!Manuel Neuer has just produced a world-class stop to maintain Bayern's two-goal advantage. Gladbach striker Kruse looked destined to find the net as he quickly latched onto a flick header from Raffael, but his low drive from close range stayed central enough for Neuer to palm clear with a strong hand.
35 minGladbach are give more room for encouragement as Kruse, Arango and Raffael exchange passes in the final third, but Neuer is off his line quickly to stop Jantschke beating Ribery to a cross at the far post. Ribery is then involved in a more positive move at the other end, with his fierce drive from distance flying just over the crossbar.
38 minMuller and Kroos help Bayern settle on the ball, before Ribery spots a pacy overlap from Alaba on the left-hand side. Eventually the ball breaks clear to Lahm, but he expects Kroos to take control and Xhaka is able to intercept before either player can collect.
41 minRibery looks simply unplayable this evening as he steps inside to glide past two defenders, before finding Robben with a clever lobbed pass into the penalty area. The Dutchman takes a touch and gets ready to let fly from close range, but is stopped abruptly by a superb covering challenge from Dominguez.
43 minOut of nothing Gladbach have just been handed a lifeline by a comedy of errors in the Bayern defence. Dante and Neuer had time to deal with a cross from Arango, but a breakdown in communications sees the Brazilian nudge past his goalkeeper at the near post. An inexplicable error from the centre-back, who might just have turned this match into a genuine contest.
44 minSHOT! Ter Stegen was just at his best to keep Gladbach within touching distance, with two magnificent stops inside a minute. First the keeper turned a long-range drive from Kroos over the crossbar, before getting a strong right hand on Mandzukic's header from the resulting corner kick. It's all happening at the Allianz Arena, with Kramer booked just before that incident for a cynical foul on Ribery.
8.29pmWell that a quite fantastic start to the Bundesliga season for neutrals, with Bayern and Gladabch playing a fierce 45 minutes at breakneck speed. The hosts were probably good value for a two-goal advantage but some slack defending has brought Gladback back into contention just before the interval.
8.32pmRibery and Robben have slipped right back into their world-beating form on show last season so far tonight, with the Frenchman in particular oozing class in a more fluid role. Despite their free-flowing approach Bayern have been caught wanting on more than one occasion in defence, which should give Guardiola cause for concern during his half-time teamtalk.
8.35pmI suspect that tonight's starting XI is just about the most attacking Bayern have played in the modern era. Guardiola has even dispensed with a holding midfielder as Javi Martinez has to settle for a place on the bench. Kroos and Muller have both looked sharp but perhaps Schweinsteiger has just struggled to cover enough ground to compensate for their attacking tendencies.
8.38pmBENCH WATCH! Both sides have attacking options on the bench so I expect more goals when play resumes. Bayern could call on Xherdan Shaqiri or Claudio Pizarro in the second half, while Gladbach will almost certainly introduce Dutch striker Luuk de Jong if they need a goal during the latter stages.
8.41pmWe are just moments away from resuming at the Allianz Arena, with both sides just pausing for breath after an intense first period. Bayern definitely need to tighten up defensively but should still have enough quality to hold off a spirited Gladbach fightback in the second half.
47 minBoth sides have resisted the temptation to make changes as Bayern get the second half underway. The home side are quick to establish possession from deep as Dante aims a long diagonal pass to Mandzukic, who in turn chests down for Lahm.
50 minCHANCE! Gladbach have just together a sweeping counter and are unlucky not to be level. Arango waited for a late overlap from Daems and timed his pass perfectly to the full-back. The Belgian then smashed a cross towards Kruse, but his snapshot deflected back off teammate Raffael before it could test Neuer.
53 minKruse just overhits a through ball aimed towards Herrmann, who had timed a diagonal run behind Boateng and Dante to perfection. The visitors definitely look capable of making this match a genuine contest in the closing stages, as Ter Stegen stoops low to catch a drive towards goal from Robben.
55 minAlaba's speculative drive from range is deflected wide, winning Bayern their third corner of the match. Robben's delivery from the corner lacks place and is cleared upfield, with Stanzl able to smash away once more to stop Ribery causing havoc on the follow up.
57 minYELLOW CARD! Stranzl launches into a late, cynical challenge on Ribery around 30 yards from goal, giving the referee no choice but to award a caution. Three Bayern players all want to take what looks a like a set piece from the training ground, but Muller is unable to collect an attempted switch from Schweinsteiger.
60 minKruse continues his duel with Neuer as he aims a powerful drive towards goal from 20 yards, with the goalkeeper reading his intentions to parry clear with a double-handed save. Bayern then counter at the other end as Muller tees up Kruse for a volley, which is blocked away by Xhaka. More open play at both ends as the game starts to become stretched.
63 minOFF THE POST! Bayern go within inches of restoring their two-goal advantage as Kroos sees a controlled strike come back off the post. Gladbach then quickly race up the other end and create and isolate Dante with a counter, but once again Kruse sees his strike come back off one of his own players. There has to be more goals in this game, but at which end will they come?
66 minGladbach get a welcome rest as Alaba skews a cross well over the crossbar, much to Guardiola's visible annoyance on the touchline. When play resumes Bayern quickly attack down the left once more as Ribery swaps passes with Kroos, but Jantschke eventually slides in to force the hosts to settle for a throw-in.
68 minPENALTY TO BAYERN! After fierce Bayern protests the hosts have been awarded a penalty. Domiguez definitely handled after Muller appeared to miscontrol inside the area, and despite Gladbach's appeals to the linesman Ter Stegen will face a spot kick in just a few moments.
69 minWhat drama here at the Allianz Arena. Muller's spot kick is palmed clear by a superb stop from Muller, but due to encroachment Bayern get the chance to retake. The visitors are absolutely furious and it looks like Alaba will take over penalty duties.
73 minIt actually looks like Dominguez was penalised for handball for the second time in as many minutes, that is just utterly ridiculous. The Spanish defender rushed to clear and handled again, with the referee quickly told to award another spot kick by his linesman. A rush of blood to the head from Gladbach's central defender means they now have an absolute mountain to climb.
75 minSUBSTITUTION: Favre attempts to inject life into a shellshocked Gladbach by making two changes. Hrgota and Younes have replaced Herrmann and Arango, bringing fresh legs to both flanks. Meanwhile Bayern also decide to make a swap in mifdield, with Kirchoff replacing Schweinsteiger as his 300th Bundesliga appearance comes to a close.
77 minGladbach continue to press as Kruse has a powerful shot blocked by a strong challenge from Dante. At the other Robben appears to have found space on the far side but is harshly flagged for offside, ending a promising Bayern break abruptly.
80 minSUBSTITUTION: Guardiola shuffles his pack as Rafinha comes on to replace Muller. The Brazilian will come on at right-back for Bayern, with captain Lahm moved into central midfield as Guardiola's pre-season experiment now continues in a competitive match.
83 minThe visitors launch a break down the left through substitute Younes, who weaves into the penalty area but fails to pick out a teammate with his final pass. At the other end Kroos lines up another piledriver from range, but is stopped in his tracks by an important challenge from Xhaka.
86 minYELLOW CARD! Mandzukic has just picked up a needless booking after barging into the back of Stranzl. There looked to be a touch of retaliation in that challenge, as the defender was sandwiched between the forward and substitute Kirchoff.
88 minSUBSTITUTION: A final change for Bayern to shore things up in central midfield, as Martinez replaces Kroos. Gladbach boss Favre has also opted for a final throw of the dice, with De Jong introduced in attack.
90 minRobben wants a late penalty after going down under a challenge from Daems, but the defender made no contact in a sliding tackle. With Bayern awarded two penalties for handball in under a minute earlier, against the same player, a third spot kick would have taken some nerve from the referee in the closing stages.
90 min+2Martinez comes close to making an impact as we enter stoppage time, with his volley at the far post blocked behind by a last-ditch clearance from Jantschke.
9.33pmSo Guardiola's maiden Bundesliga campaign gets underway with a 3-1 win, which barely tells the story of a magnificent game full of incident at both ends. The decisive incident came midway through the second half, when Bayern dispatched their second penalty inside a minute as Dominguez managed to handle twice in quick succession. A crazy way to get the 53rd Bundesliga campaign off to a memorable start.
9.36pmBayern looked breathtaking going forward primarily thanks to Robben and Ribery, who must surely be in contention when the Ballon d'Or is awarded later this month. Plenty for Guardiola to ponder in defence though, with regular errors keeping Gladbach competitive throughout a hard-fought opening fixture.
9.39pmWell that just about does it for Sports Mole's first live text commentary of the 2012-13 Bundesliga season. Thanks for joining us and be sure to check in this weekend as the remaining 16 sides in the German top-flight get their campaigns underway. Goodnight!