BMW has just given the 1 Series Hatchback the ole nip/tuck treatment and, to these eyes, has dramatically improved it. The previous 1 Series Hatchback to me looked a bit frumpy and just never seemed right. Not that it was ugly, just not particularly good looking either.
This new one, however, has got some charm to it. It’s definitely more handsome and can be one of the better looking hatches out there. The headlights now look far crisper and less ungainly, as do the grills, and the taillights also look more sorted and more in keeping with the BMW DNA.
My only problem with the new 1er is that it won’t be coming to the US. This has always bewildered and upset me. The 1 Series is a great little car, revered by every journalist across the pond. It’s also the most affordable way to get an Ultimate Driving Machine. But for now, only every single market aside from the US will get it. It isn’t fair.
I can’t really see too many reasons why BMW won’t bring it over here. Base model BMWs sell faster than free Justin Bieber tickets in a middle-school girl’s locker room, so you’d imagine the 1 Series would be no different. The 1 Series would have a cult following of zany folk who love its different shapes and quirks. Also, because it’s so small, if BMW were to use only their 2.0 liter gas and diesel engines and maybe the 1.5 liter, it would not only bring the average cost of their lineup down but would bring the fuel consumption average down as well.
I can understand not bringing some diesels over here, because those diesel engines don’t meet our emissions regulations. But BMW has plenty of other engines that will fit and work just fine over here. The only reason I can think of that would turn BMW off from bringing the 1 Series stateside, is the competition, or lack thereof. There isn’t another rear-wheel drive, premium hatchback on sale in the US.
Off the top of my head, I don’t know any in Europe either, but Europeans are smart and like hatchbacks so they’ll still buy it. Here, the only hatchbacks for sale are cheap, economical Japanese ones, like the Mazda 3 and the Toyota Yaris, the VW Golf or the more expensive MINI Cooper. All are front-wheel drive and, aside from the GTI and MINI Cooper, are all pretty boring, economy cars. People would be turned off by the idea of a BMW hatchback, because to most American consumers hatchbacks are associated with lower-class vehicles. It’s the exact same reason why Mercedes created a special CLA Class instead of just bringing us the brilliant A-Class.
BMW is smarter than I am, they have a perfectly good reason why the 1 Series isn’t here in the States .I just wish it weren’t so. The 1 Series is an awesome little car, one that younger folk, like myself, could be able to afford without selling a kidney and still have the Ultimate Driving Experience.
Maybe I’ll move to Germany.