If you’re still in love with the idea of owning a rear-wheel drive hatch you should probably hurry up as they are about to get a drastic makeover when the 2019 BMW 1 Series hits the streets. A few years back, BMW decided it’s time to drop the crowd-favorite RWD layout and give in to the demands of those looking for more practicality. Therefore, the upcoming 1er will be built atop the UKL platform and the video below proves it.
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The move was expected and it’s no longer a surprise for anyone. Using the UKL platform means that BMW will be able to offer considerably more space for the hatch than before without increasing exterior dimensions too much. Mounting the engine transversely instead of longitudinally will bring more space up front while losing the rear diff and the transmission tunnel will increase the room in the back as well.
The car in the footage below seems to be the next-gen M135i model. It will be using a drastically upgraded version of the B48 2-liter 4-cylinder engine under the hood, making 300 HP, just enough to take on the likes of the Audi S3. At the same time, the xDrive all-wheel drive system will be offered for those looking for more traction, while gearbox choices will be reduced to an Aising sourced 8-speed automatic or, hopefully, a manual 6-speed. The latter remains to be confirmed as an option.
Judging by the footage below, the car spotted out testing does seem to be the high-performance top dog especially due to the twin tailpipes at the back but other than that, there’s little to let us know exactly what’s happening under the hood. Previous spy shots also showed that the new 1er will get a drastically improved interior, with a new digital instrument cluster as well as a redesigned dash.