By on May 15, 2012

Even though the BMW 1 Series M Coupe is gone forever, performance-minded 1-Series customers must  have a high-end performance model, even if a lot of them don’t even know if the car is front-drive or rear-drive.

With a 320 horsepower 3.0L twin-turbo six making 317 lb-ft or torque (versus 300/300 for the regular car), the 135is can be had with either a 6-speed stick or a 7-speed dual clutch gearbox. A coupe will cost you $44,195 while a ragtop will run $44,895.  Whether the extra 20 horsepower, 17 lb-ft and cosmetic tweaks justifies the price premium ($1,895 for the coupe, $795 for the convertible) is up to the buyer.

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33 Comments on “BMW 135is, Because We Can’t Have The 1M Anymore...”


  • avatar
    Lynchenstein

    Well, is it FWD or RWD?

    You never address this in your article.

    Some “truth”… bah! :-)

  • avatar
    Tosh

    If there were a 1-series diesel hatch offered in the US, I would be interested. And this is my main problem with ALL the Euro makers: Just offer the US the SAME products that you sell in Europe!

    • 0 avatar
      svenmeier

      …and they’d never sell in America.

      Americans are convinced they need a 6-liter V8 in an economy car whereas the average European is happily speeding along in a 120-hp car and somewhere in Germany a Passat TDI is flashing a Porsche 911 from behind telling him to move over…

    • 0 avatar

      Recently in Germany.
      The typical BMW IS a 1 series 5 door diesel hatch, sometimes a small gas engine. The Big Car is a 3. I’ve always found it interesting that a 3 is considered a full size family car “over there” but here is considered a bit tight for four. You don’t see 5 often, and 7 is for heads of state. There are no X3, and very, very few X5. That 1 series does NOT have xenons, nav, or any fancy gadgets. It is still about 25k Euro though.

      In short, everything you see here doesn’t sell much there, and what they buy, you can’t get here. It’s like a parallel universe. I went to a BMW Center in Bodensee, and they had two gas cars out of sixty. One was a 335i with all bells and whistles, and one was a used e46 wagon. Even the 5 GT had a turbodiesel. I’d seen better BMW cars at the parking lot of a soccer game for my kids. Every car on that lot in Bodensee had a turbodiesel, big, small, sporty or boring.

      Much like the MB E class taxi, BMW won’t admit here to the 1 series workhorse car. I didn’t see ANY two door 1 series in Germany, and ZERO 135i or 128i cars of any type. Even the 3 series were 100 % diesels, and the only gas 3 I saw were those two on the lot-from Berlin to Bavaria, nada.

      BMW has marketed the Mini to the niche that would buy the 1 series five door in the USA.

      I wanted an Opel Insignia turbodiesel wagon, if we are discussing unobtainable.

      Don’t whine though. The vast majority of Americans drive a better vehicle than the vast majority of euros, once you filter out the enthusiast cars. Joe Sixpack has a better driveway than Joachim Pilsner, and pays less for it, between VAT taxes, Gas prices, and motor oil. Really.

  • avatar
    vanpressburg

    Is this BMW 1 Series old small version (still selling in North America) or new BMW 1 Series bigger and much better version BMW sells in Europe?

    • 0 avatar
      JasonH

      It’s the old one. The new 1-Series coupe and convertible will supposedly be called the 2-Series. North America will probably not get the new 1-Series hatchbacks.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    The BMW 1-series.

    When you think a 3-series is too expensive to buy and you’re too dumb to ask.

  • avatar
    vanpressburg

    The new bigger BMW 1 Series BMW sells in Europe seems to be better driver car than new BMW 3 Series.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      The old 1-series is a better driver’s car than the old 3-series. Smaller, lighter, same engines. As long as you don’t actually need to fit people in the back, or need more than 2 doors, it was certainly the keen driver’s choice.

      The IS package seems like a pretty good deal, it is cheaper than the M-sport package, which was just suspension and appearance stuff, no hp bump.

  • avatar
    carguy

    Without the M suspension bits, this takes the already dubious value equation of the 135 and kicks it up another notch. The power gains are already available on other N55 engines so most of the money is for trim, wheels and a bone jarring suspension on the mandatory run flats.

    If you really want a 135 then get the standard model, ditch the run flat tires and get an after market tune.

  • avatar
    mnm4ever

    I guess I missed where the 1M has been dropped? That sucks, that was only BMW I was even remotely interested in!

    Then again, I wasn’t going to buy one anyways, so I can’t really complain that they didnt keep it around.

    • 0 avatar
      redliner

      It wasn’t dropped exactly. It was a limited production car from the start. One of those “We are building 2000 of them and when they’r gone, they’r gone” cars.

      Basically, it was a last hurrah for the old (the current USA) 1 series.

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        The 1M had to be killed. It simply made the bloated M3 look bad and was more in the spirit of the original M3. It might be a tick slower than the precious M3, but how many 1M buyers ever drive at 10/10ths anyways? Without a limited run, it would’ve out sold the M3 too.

    • 0 avatar
      mnm4ever

      Yea, I seem to recall hearing they were limited production. I guess years of cynicism has led me to ignore things like that.

  • avatar
    seanx37

    I have never actually seen a 1 series. Here in Metro Detroit, there are many imports that I have never seen.

  • avatar
    Robert Schwartz

    Fat. Ugly. Expensive.

    What’s not to like?

  • avatar
    CliffG

    Because it is smaller. Oh, no one buys 1′s in America anyway, just try to find one that isn’t white, silver, or black. But, for 2012, if you want a straight six, you get to buy a 1.

  • avatar
    CJinSD

    Does the 128i still come with a naturally aspirated inline 6? If it does, that makes it the least undesirable car in BMW’s current model line.

  • avatar
    FJ60LandCruiser

    I thought the Z series M coupe was the coolest car BMW made, so I’d totally buy the Euro 3 door 1 series as a spiritual successor to that weird car.

    But it will never be sold here. So I won’t.

    I spend most of college driving a 5 series wagon, which I also would love for BMW to resurrect here, but they won’t. BTW, that wonderful car, which was the coolest shade of blue, died when my then girlfriend borrowed it for the weekend and drove 500 miles after a radiator hose emptied all of the coolant.

  • avatar
    hgrunt

    My take on it is that BMW basically built as many, or slightly less, than they thought they could sell.

    It’d be interesting to see what the differences between the 135is and the 1M are.

  • avatar
    Bimmer

    I’ve seen more E34 ///M540i (only 32 were made for Canada, I’ve seen 4) than 1///M (only one).


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