The 2012 BMW 1 Series is revealed
The most obvious change to the 2012 BMW 1 Series is the fact that it is a 5-door model, where the current 1 Series is offered only as a coupe and convertible. The 2012 1 Series shares a platform with the current 3 Series, with dimensions a fair deal larger than the current 1 Series models and other exterior upgrades really make the 2012 1 Series look absolutely nothing like the current lineup with the exception of the name.
The new front end of the 2012 BMW 1 Series is friendlier, with large rounded headlights and a new overall shape of the front fascia providing quite a different look from the aggressive nose of the current 1 Series. The hood features a new design that bulges through the middle as it meets the steeper windshield. Of course, the sidelines of the 2012 1 Series are completely different from 2011 models as the new model takes the form of a 5-door wagon and out back, the tail lights have been redesigned and spread further to the sides – allowing for more loading room through the rear hatch.
While we can expect more details as we get closer to the formal debut of the 2012 BMW 1 Series, the German automaker has offered information on 5 of the engines that will be packed under the hood of this curvy new 5-door and for the first time ever, a BMW model is powered strictly by 4-cylinder engines. Helping all of these new engines achieve the best possible fuel economy are features like start-stop technology and regenerative braking.
The 2012 BMW 1 Series will be two gasoline engines at launch, both measuring 1.6L and utilizing BMW’s TwinPower Turbocharging technology with the version in the new 116i offering 136 horsepower while the 118i packs 170hp. There are also three TwinPower Turbo diesel engines slated for production all measuring 2.0L and offering 116, 143 or 184 horsepower depending on the trimline chosen – but there is no indication as to whether or not the US market will benefit from any of these diesel engines. In the past, BMW has kept the majority of their oil-burners in Europe where the consumer market is far more interested but with BMW’s commercial push for their new diesel technology, we could see more BMW diesels in the US in the coming years. Each of these five initial engines can be mated to a 6-speed manual transmission or BMW’s first ever 8-speed automatic transmission which was developed with help from the folks at ZF.
Inside, the 2012 BMW 1 Series is expected to continue the tradition of high end luxury with all of the modern amenities that you would expect in a new BMW. However, thanks to the increase in size, the 2012 1 Series will offer gobs more passenger and cargo room than the current 1 Series but in comparing the current coupe and convertible to the upcoming 5-door models – we are really comparing apples and oranges.
While BMW is quick to show off the 2012 BMW 1 Series 5-door, there is absolutely no mention of a coupe or convertible for the next 1 Series – perhaps lending credence to the rumors that the current 1 Series coupe and convertible are destined to become the next BMW 2 Series (click here for more on that)? It was not clear whether or not BMW intended to show off the new 1 Series 5-door so far in advance of the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show but with the images of this new model leaking onto the internet – BMW was quick to put a stop to the rumors by introducing a full spread of information. Now, will we see a 2012 BMW 1 Series coupe and convertible sporting these new front end features and enlarged dimensions or will the 1 Series as we currently know it become the new BMW 2 Series? At this point, we can only speculate but with the news of the M2 trademark acquired by BMW and the introducing of this new, larger 1 Series we could soon see a shift in the BMW product family.
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