BMW 1-Series: What's THAT All About?

Justin Berkowitz
by Justin Berkowitz

The BMW 1-Series enthusiast site,, has over 13k posts dissecting BMW's upcoming compact coupe and convertible. That's some serious devotion for enthusiasts "addicted" to a car they haven't driven or even seen in person. To recap, the 1-Series coupe heading stateside is mechanically closely related to the 3-Series, but a bit cheaper (how much cheaper remains to be seen) and a bit smaller. It'll come with the 3-Series' engine lineup, offering a 3.0-liter six with 230 horses and the sublime twin turbo I6 with more than 300 ponies. Magazines have heralded the 1-Series as the second coming of the legendary 2002, but considering its porky 3600+ lb curb weight, this ain't no compact sportster. Oh, and from the photos, it's sorta ugly. Yes, it's got all the up-to-the-second BMW styling, but it's a stubby looking little car. And the back seat is useless. So why all the rabid anticipation? Is it because it's going to be a slightly more affordable 3-Series? (If you can call a $35,000 car affordable.) Or is it because motoring enthusiasts lust for the good old days of quick, small, light cars that don't so much exist anymore? Your thoughts?

Justin Berkowitz
Justin Berkowitz

Immensely bored law student. I've also got 3 dogs.

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  • Justin Berkowitz Justin Berkowitz on Oct 26, 2007

    @Pch101: It's both. BMW has a microsite going for the 1-Series @ If you click on "Pure BMW" they have the 2002 and the 1-Series side by side. Not saying the 1 is the new 2002 of course (that's for you to assume on your own). Just to say look, every BMW has the same DNA>

  • Landcrusher Landcrusher on Oct 27, 2007

    I can tell you that there are buyers who are not worried about the size of the car, only the size of the space around the front seats. 2+2's have done well here for a long time. Now, I have not sat in one of these, but if it is similiar to the mid 90's 3series in driver comfort, the rest of the size may not matter. Still, I want a lightweight hatch version, and I don't want to pay extra for the carbon fiber special edition. If it's over 3,000 pounds, it might as well be a convertible cruiser.

  • 26theone 26theone on Oct 28, 2007

    How many 4 seater RWD sports cars are under 30K? Try to make a list and you will find this is not a crowded segment. The 1 series will sell very well after test drives. Maybe there are some front drivers that can handle larger engines but I sure havent driven any. The torque steer, inside wheel spinning in corners is beyond annoying. I have owned Acuras and Hondas and have no desire to own another fwd car. There is a reason most all Infiniti, Lexus, BMW, Porche, Mercedes use RWD platforms. Even when GM gets serious about its cars (Vette, CTS, G8) it uses RWD platforms.

  • Sk8inkid Sk8inkid on Oct 28, 2007

    26theone, I'll take the Benz CL still. Haha, screw 30K. But under 30K and not me...well it'll be interesting to see if you can REALLY pick up a 1-series for under 30K. I have my doubts about being able to go to the lot and order one for under 30K (and 29,500 is doesn't count btw haha).