Currently reading: Hot new BMW 1-series spied
First spy pictures of the hot new BMW 1-series; 350bhp, £38k and on-sale in 2011

These are the first spy pictures of the hot new BMW 1-series coupe, which Autocar understands will be good for 350bhp and reach UK showrooms in 2011.

BMW’s M division has been working on its entry-level model in a bid to attract younger buyers to BMW’s performance cars.

The heavily disguised 1-series’ identity is given away by its large alloys and large drilled brake discs. It’s also sporting a new spoiler and wider wheelarches at the front and rear.

See the hot BMW 1-series spy pictures

Power for the model will come from a twin-turbocharged six-cylinder engine producing 350bhp. More than outright power, though, it is torque that is likely to play a more significant role in defining the new car’s character.

No figures have been released, but with BMW’s standard turbocharged 3.0-litre six already producing an M3-equalling 295lb ft, the newly developed M version of this engine should be good for at least 310lb ft.

The basis for the new M-car is today’s 1-series coupé. Its driveline is likely to feature a standard six-speed dual-clutch gearbox and an electronically controlled M differential.

With a kerb weight of not much more than 1500kg, its straightline performance should be close to that of the 1580kg M3. A relatively short 3.15:1 final drive promises a 0-60mph time of around 5.5sec.

Fuel-saving measures such as brake energy regeneration and possibly a stop-start system should also ensure the new M1 is no thirstier than the 135i, which delivers 30.7mpg in six-speed manual guise.

Underneath, the layout of the 1-series coupé’s MacPherson strut (front) and multi-link (rear) suspension will remain the same. However, M division engineers have set about altering the suspension properties, with firmer spring and dampers, and a new set of bushes.

It will slot into the range beneath the M3 coupé, and should cost around £38,000, £8000 more than the 135i Coupé M Sport. That means it will compete directly with Audi’s forthcoming RS3.

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Mr£4worth 10 April 2010

Re: Hot new BMW 1-series spied

N0077666 wrote:

I'd buy it, just not with that swirly paint! Actually I'd prefer an Alpina 1 series with the B3 engine and their excellent automatic. Small enough to nip in and out of traffic, comfy enough to cruise, and powerful enough to embarress a 911!

We have a 135 coupe, the seats are comfy but the ride is way short of what you get in a 335 SE. Ours is an auto, we usually gets less than 25 mpg, although low thirties is possible on a run. An extra 50 bhp? It just doesn't need it. Ugly? We like ours, ours is silver but they look fantastic in Sedona Red or White. Agreed a 335 is prettier though.

Rob 7 9 April 2010

Re: Hot new BMW 1-series spied

I don't doubt it's great to drive, but to me at least, it doesn't look good, the proportions are all wrong. It looks like the kind of car that Noddy and Big Ears might drive around in.

JacobE 9 April 2010

Re: Hot new BMW 1-series spied

I cannot help but think I'd just as happily buy a used 135i, and spend 2-3k on a DMS engine upgrade, upgraded brakes and add the LSD, or more likely a used 335i coupe subjected to similar treatment, as it is infinitely prettier.