Despite an aggressive EV agenda, BMW’s sole hot hatchback sticks around for another generation with gasoline power. Now called the BMW M135 xDrive, the Audi S3 Sportback and AMG A45 rival is based on the new BMW 1 Series (F70). The M Performance model has gone through substantial changes even though it has an evolutionary exterior design.

New Front And Rear-End Design

The styling may say it’s a Life Cycle Impulse version of the outgoing F40, but the German luxury marque calls it a true next-gen car. Now with a quad exhaust setup like the X1 M35i and X2 M35i, the M135 looks aggressive. It gets a redesigned front grille with horizontal bars flanking a large radar sensor. The “world’s most powerful letter” adorns one of the kidneys, and there are sporty M mirrors as well. 18-inch wheels are standard.

M Technology Package

BMW spruces up the M135 with an optional M Technology Package featuring M Compound brakes. These come with 385-mm front and 330-mm rear discs, hugged by gray calipers with an M logo. The upgraded brakes are combined with 19-inch forged wheels you can have with performance tires or even track rubber. For your money’s worth, the car gets more dark accents (M Shadow Line). Inside, there are M sport seats with built-in headrests and an illuminated badge, inherited from the X1 M35i and X2 M35i.

Power: 296 hp to 312 hp

Since we mentioned the spicy compact crossovers, the M135 uses the same B48 engine available in two different outputs.  Where emissions regulations are stricter, such as in the European Union, the turbocharged 2.0-liter mill is detuned. You’ll have to make do with 296 hp (221 kW) on the Old Continent whereas in other regions, BMW dials the four-cylinder unit to 312 hp. Torque stays the same regardless of the market, at 400 Nm (295 lb-ft). That’s actually a significant 50 Nm (37 lb-ft) less than what the old model had.

We’ll remind you the previous-generation car offered 302 hp (225 kW), so its replacement is both weaker and stronger depending on the region. Another significant change is the switch from an eight-speed, torque-converter automatic to a seven-speed, dual-clutch gearbox. BMW quotes a 0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) in 4.9 seconds, which makes it 0.1s slower than before.

The new M135 gets all-wheel drive and a front mechanical differential lock as standard equipment, along with stiffer anti-roll bars. Those four exhaust tips we mentioned earlier have a 90-mm diameter and they’re visible only on the M Performance model. The lesser variants have the exhaust tip tucked away underneath the rear apron.

56,200 Euros in Germany

BMW will have the M135i available together with the regular 1er models from October. In Germany, the 2025 BMW M135 will start at 56,200 euros. As before, it’s not coming to America where the next best thing will be the new M235 xDrive Gran Coupe. We should see the performance sedan later this year.

Source: BMW

BMW M135 Exterior

BMW M135 Interior