People aren’t happy with the New 1 Series, and for good reason

The once-unique and distinguishable 1 Series hatchback has now evolved into a much less interesting design that is less aggressive, less exciting and no longer features rear wheel drive. In short, the general consensus is not good.

To some, the changes in design may not seem very substantial, yet hordes of angry BMW enthusiasts can be found all over the internet in abundance. Have BMW taken a step in the wrong direction?

The strengths of the 1 Series lied in its unique traits. It didn’t blend in with other hot hatches, the design was distinctive and stood out, the car was RWD and it offered a unique package that couldn’t be found in other luxury hot hatches such as the Mercedes A-Class or Audi A3. Now, the new 1 Series follows the same path as its competitors. The shape of the car is now much more generic and it is now exclusively FWD, like the rest of its competitors are. It would seem that BMW has taken the 1 Series’ unique selling points and thrown them out of the window, which is a shame, to say the least.

The original 2004 1 Series hatchback may have looked a bit like a shoe, but at least it stood out. In 2011 when BMW released their second generation of 1 Series hatchbacks, the design hit the nail on the head and managed to stand out from the other hatchbacks and look stunning at the same time.

Now, this new reimagination of the 1 Series has made a few small changes here and there, but altogether these small things add up and have resulted in what commenters are calling “a mistake”.

Making fun of the new 1 Series

You don’t have to look far to find some rather amusing and mean comments about BMW’s freshly designed hatchback. Where do BMW get their ideas from? Perhaps they’ve taken inspiration from the pigs in Angry Birds. Perhaps they’ve copied their own 2 Series Active Tourer, or Ford’s new Focus, or Mercedes’ A-Class. It’s anyone’s guess at this point.

When looking at the rear of the car, it’s very easy to see similarities it has with the new Ford Focus. Whether that’s a testament to Ford’s design, or a criticism of BMW’s new design, the fact is that the 1 Series used to look like no other hatchback, and now it looks like many, including its own 2 Series Active Tourer.

The grilles are bigger and faker, the car’s shape has changed to become higher, less aggressive and more like a family car. The rear lights are looking gorgeous thanks to the new darker style that can also be found on the new 3 Series, however, that is one of the few redeeming qualities of the car.

The interior is also a fantastic upgrade and doesn’t just look flashier, techier and more modern, but there is also an increase in space thanks to the new FWD format. The car boot has also benefitted from extra space. The two screens will be running on the new BMW Operating System 7.0 which will have optional gesture control.

As we know, the rear wheel drive drivetrain will be sorely missed by enthusiasts, but at least the new 1 Series can still be enjoyed with a manual gearbox. For now…

BMW assures us that the new M135i feels just as dynamic and playful as it’s predecessor, the M140i which featured a bigger engine and RWD.

Even though we (and many others) think that this new 1 Series is a shell of its former self, if you still want one then you can order one right now and first customer deliveries will be made in September 2019.

Do you like the look of BMW’s new 1 Series, or think that they’ve let themselves down?

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One Response

  1. Vince Orchiston

    Just looks like a Hyundai or a Kia hatchback now unlike the blunt edged original which stood out more and looked more distinctive and original.
    What is it with car makers nowadays they all design cars that do nothing for you in the “Wow” department. Why is it only top end cars that have the “Wow” factor ? It’s only shaped metal after all ! So why can’t they just fashion that same metal into something similarly appealing on lower end cars .
    Never understood why lower end cars actually have to look like lower end cars.

    Reply

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