BMW M135i to get 320bhp and 332lb ft from its six-cylinder powerplant
7 March 2012

BMW is set to crown its second-generation 1-series line-up with this exciting new 300bhp plus six-cylinder powered BMW M135i model, which has been unveiled at the Geneva motor show.

The Audi RS3 rivaling hatchback, planned for UK sale before the end of 2012, forms part of BMW’s new M Performance line-up, joining the recently revealed M550d xDrive saloon and touring, X5 M50d and X6 M50d.

It is also the first three-door version of BMW’s second-generation 1-series that is set to be sold with the same range of four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines as its more practical five-door sibling from mid-year.

Although not a fully-fledged M-car, the M135i draws heavily on the year-old M135i Coupe, sharing its engine and gearbox among other go-fast components.

Full details are yet to be revealed, but BMW insiders hint the new hatchback’s twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder engine, the M54S as it is known internally, kicks out in the region of 320bhp, together with 332lb ft of torque.

Unlike the rear-wheel-drive only M135i Coupe, though, Autocar can reveal that BMW plans to offer the new M135i hatchback with both standard rear-wheel drive and optional four-wheel drive. But like other non SUV xDrive models sold by BMW, the upcoming M135i xDrive is likely to come in left-hand drive form only, ruling out UK sales of the four-wheel drive version.

With a rumoured 1500kg kerb weight and power-to-weight ratio described as being better than 220bhp/tonne in rear-wheel drive guise, Munich’s new hyper hatch is expected to deliver performance comparable to the M135i Coupe – 0-62mph acceleration in 4.9sec, 0-124mph in 17.3sec and a limited 155mph top speed.

Allied to the upgraded driveline is a heavily reworked suspension with wider tracks, lower ride height and larger 18-inch wheels than standard 1-series models. BMW describes the handling as offering “a noticeable improvement in overall agility and more precise characteristics”. The brakes have also been upgraded, with 360mm rotors appearing up front and 350mm units at the rear.

As previewed by the concept at Geneva, the M135i will receive a distinctive body kit to differentiate it from other less powerful three door 1-series hatchback models. Included is a deeper front bumper boasting typical M division styling cues, LED imbued headlamps, unique mirror housings, wider sills under the doors and a substantial rear bumper featuring a black lower section and twin tail pipes.

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Comments
57

24 February 2012

It looks sad that it's so ugly.....doesn't matter how well this thing drives they are absolutely horrible to look at, seen one on the road yesterday - I hope the guy was given it as a company car because if he chose that of his own free will then god only knows what his Mrs looks like!

24 February 2012

That picture, other than the lights, looks vaguely (very vaguely ) like an Alfa 147 Ducati Corsa!

Still pig awful though.

24 February 2012

These are so dam ugly, i know the previous 1 series wasnt a looker but it was better than this.

Im sure this will be alot better to drive than say an Audi RS3, and it will no doubt sell

24 February 2012

[quote rodenal]It looks sad that it's so ugly[/quote]

Have you seen the M-sport versions? From the pics I've seen they get a much better nose treatment than the standard car. Hope the (non-concept) M135i gets this treatment too.

And please BMW, bring out a 4wd 5 door option.


24 February 2012

The concept of a hughely-powerful petrol hatch seems...slightly old-fashioned. I think this is the right car for the wrong time.

24 February 2012

[quote Johnny English]And please BMW, bring out a 4wd 5 door option[/quote]

I think the RS3 is the closest you'll get!


24 February 2012

Looks good. As i see more and more on the roads, their 'challenging' looks get easier on the eye...

Interesting in the article no mention was made at all of the 1M, only the upgraded tweaks for the standard 135i...I guess this means that the new 1M will have even more performance. However, where this will all fit in is becoming confusing. If the new M3/4 F30 is going to be a turbo 6 cylinder, just how bespoke will it be when the 1 series will have an M135, then a 1M, then they'll probably be an M335i, before finally reaching the M3/4...blimey, i'm confused.

24 February 2012

[quote bomb]

[quote Johnny English]And please BMW, bring out a 4wd 5 door option[/quote]

I think the RS3 is the closest you'll get!

[/quote]

I spend most of my time in Continental Europe, so I'll take a lhd car if needed. But not an Audi (though the A1 Quattro did briefly tempt me - until I saw the price).


24 February 2012

This car looks awful - downright ugly. As much as I admire BMW's engineering, I will never buy a car that looks ugly. Go back to the drawing boards, BMW, and design something that looks appealing. Please! E

24 February 2012

Stuff the looks, this is my sort of car.

If they've engineered some of the magic of the 1M in to this then it should be a fantastic car!

 

 

It's all about the twisties........

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