Way to time things horribly, Mercedes. Seriously, what gives? According to a report about Mercedes sources at a dealer meeting in Miami, the A-Class hatch has been rumored to be coming ‘Stateside and it couldn’t have happened at a worse time for North American BMW enthusiasts. While it’s good news that the A-Class hatch could be making its way across the Atlantic, as the more cool hatchbacks available to the market, the better, it just had to happen after BMW essentially killed off the rear-wheel drive 1 Series hatch.
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Since its inception, American BMW enthusiasts have been begging the Bavarians to bring over the 1 Series hatch from Europe. While the 1 Series coupe we got was a great car and one with a large enthusiast following, we always wanted the hatchback just as much. It combined all of the fun. dynamics and performance of the 1 Series coupe, except it had the practicality of a hatchback and came in a five-door variant. Plus, it had the distinction of being the only rear-wheel drive hatchback on the market. Now, BMW has replaced it with a front-wheel drive sedan and hatch and it’s for China only. Grr.
BMW did have good reason for not bringing the 1er hatch over here, though. Hatchbacks aren’t exactly rockstars in America and the only hot-selling hatch is the Volkswagen Golf. So BMW was rightly hesitant. Even Audi and Mercedes-Benz were cautious about their small hatchbacks, with Audi only selling the A3 hatch here for one short generation and it only came in one variant with two engine options. However, if Mercedes-Benz will be bringing the A-Class hatchback, it could have pushed BMW to do the same with its small hatch. BMW enthusiasts would have been so happy, they’d be praising Mercedes for once.
The good news is that, if Mercedes-Benz does indeed sell the A-Class here, BMW could eventually bring a hatchback here as well. Though, it would likely be front-wheel drive, it would still be a sporty little BMW hatch and we’ll probably take what we can get.