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BMW rethinks new 2011 1-series range

By Georg Kacher

Spy shots

13 March 2009 09:00

So what's this new model?

Instead of offering an additional bodystyle, BMW is actually contemplating to launch an aggressively priced low-spec 115i entry-level model - which brings back memories of the barren 315 and 1502.

Anything at the other end of the scale?

In addition to the hatchback(s), we are going to see three different 1-series notchbacks. The new coupé is due in early 2012, the Supersport (unveiled in our exclusive sketch, right) conceived by the M division has been predicted for late 2012, and the convertible is likely to appear just in time for the 2013 spring season. While BMW has confirmed that the Supersport gets round headlamps as an hommage to the legendary 2002 series, the other three-box models may feature radically different oblong LED headlamps.

The Supersport version will be positioned between the 135iS and the next M3. Since the M3 switches from the V8 to a straight six, the Supersport - which won´t be badged M1 - can only be powered by a high-revving twin-turbo four-cylinder. According to the Munich grapevine, the drivetrain wizards of the M division are preparing a direct-injection 2.0 or 2.2-litre unit which develops 300bhp and about 450Nm. A dual-clutch transmission can be taken for granted, and there is little doubt that reduced weight is also high up on the agenda.

What's the full engine line-up?

The engine line-up indicates that the next 1-series will likely move up the price and performance ladder:

Petrol

115i, 1.3-litre/105bhp
116i, 1.3-litre turbo/136bhp
118i, 1.3-litre turbo/177bhp
120i, 2.0-litre turbo/218bhp
130i, 3.0-litre six/272bhp
135iS, 3.0-litre twin-turbo six/326bhp

Diesel

118d, 2.0-litre/150 bhp
120d, 2.0-litre/184bhp
123d, 2.0-litre/211bhp

Also part of the package is phase two of Efficient Dynamics. New measures are said to include an integrated starter generator, a pre-heating circuit for the engine, differential and transmission oil, start-stop mated to automatic transmissions, on-demand water and oil pumps, a lithium-ion storage cell and a smaller starter battery.

>> Click 'Add your comment' below and let us know what you think of the new BMW 1-series. Is a 115i or Supersport a step too far for the BMW 1-series?