Review: BMW 1 Series (2019)

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BMW 1 Series now front wheel drive and better for it. Initially from £24,430 for 118i. DCT auto with lower power engines shifts smoothly and pleasantly.

Very long and complicated list of equipment and options can easily bump price of M135i past £40,000.

BMW 1 Series (2019): At A Glance

  • Insurance Group 16

The 2020 BMW 1 Series shares a platform with the X1, X2 and MINI Countryman - meaning, for the first time ever, standard models are now front-wheel drive. This brings it in line with rivals, and offers more space inside - especially in the rear seats and boot, which now offers 380 litres of luggage space.

It's powered by a mix of three- and four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines, with the range starting with a 140PS 1.5-litre three-cylinder petrol badged the 118i.

The potent M135i xDrive features all wheel-drive and a 2.0-litre 306PS four-cylinder petrol - making it a rival to the likes of the Mercedes-AMG A35 and VW Golf R. It will reach 62mph in 4.8 seconds while top speed is limited to 155mph.

Inside, the new 1 Series features lots of tech as seen in the bigger 3 Series. All but the entry-level models get a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster in place of conventional dials, while a 10.25-inch display in the centre of the dashboard can also be specced.

Apple CarPlay is standard for the first year, but will cost you a subscription afterwards - while Android Auto isn't available.

An Alexa-like personal assistant responds to 'Hey BMW' commands, while a digital key lets owners unlock their car using their phone if the Comfort Access option is specified.

Buyers can select from SE, Sport and M Sport trims as well as the range-topping M135i xDrive, each with their own individual style - such as high-gloss black highlights on Sport models and Dakota leather with contrast stitching on the M Sport.

Prices start at £24,430 for the 118i, while the M135i xDrive is available from £36,430. The diesel range is made up of the 116d (£25,480), 118d (£26,640) and the 120d xDrive Sport (£32,470).

BMW 1 Series 2019 Road Test

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What does a BMW 1 Series (2019) cost?

List Price from £24,435
Buy new from £20,644
Contract hire from £222.56 per month

BMW 1 Series (2019): What's It Like Inside?

Length 4319 mm
Width 2081 mm
Height 1434 mm
Wheelbase 2670 mm

Full specifications



Child seats that fit a BMW 1 Series (2019)

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What have we been asked about the BMW 1 Series (2019)?

Every day we're asked hundreds of questions from car buyers and owners through Ask Honest John. Our team of experts, including the nation's favourite motoring agony uncle - Honest John himself - answer queries and conudrums ranging from what car to buy to how to care for it as an owner. If you could do with a spot of friendly advice before buying you're next car, get in touch and we'll do what we can to help.

Ask HJ

Should I use a float charger?

I've just heard about battery float chargers, is this another way of saying trickle chargers? I'm looking to buy one for my dad, who owns a BMW 1 Series and have heard that CTEK are the best? Any help would be really appreciated.
Float chargers will automatically turn on and off as it detects the battery level dropping or reaching full capacity. These are best if you're planning on leaving the car plugged in for a long time without checking on it. Trickle chargers require checking and turning off when the battery is fully charged. We rate CTEK chargers highly.
Answered by Andrew Brady
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