In an interview with Motoring Australia, Shawn Ticehurst, Head of Product and Market Planning for BMW Australia, hinted that the upcoming BMW 1 Series Sedan could be a Chinese-affair also. Ticehurts has likely spoken from the Australian market point of view since previous reports have speculated that the 1 Series sedan will come to the U.S. in 2017 as well. With the Mercedes-Benz CLA sales going strong in the States, the need for a competitor is more obvious than ever. While the 2 Series Coupe could play in the same field as the CLA, a 1 Series front-wheel drive sedan would be the better choice, thanks to its lower price point and versatility.
Like the competition, the new BMW model has been developed to support fwd and four-wheel drive. The BMW 1 Series Sedan is built internally under the name NES (New Entry-Level Sedan) and it makes use of the upcoming front-wheel drive architecture which will be used in many models by BMW, including the new 2 Series Active Tourer and second generation X1.
BMW aims to bring the 1 Series Sedan to the same proportions as the E46 3 Series, therefore filling a gap between the 1 Series Hatch and the F30 3 Series Sedan.
Under the hood, the 1 Series Sedan will carry either three- and four-cylinder inline direct-injection petrol and common-rail diesel units.
It is rumored that the U.S. market will get the 120i and 125i sedan models.