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Car reviews - BMW - 1 Series - 120i 5-dr hatch

Overview

BMW launches a small rear-drive hatch into a world of front-drive small cars

BMW logo11 Feb 2005

By MARTON PETTENDY

WITH the profusion of unexpected styling bumps and creases, the long bonnet and the almost too-big wheels, the new 1 Series is unmistakably a BMW. And that’s important, because while the 1 Series looks unlike any other small hatchback, there are dissimilarities in the way it drives, and swallows passengers and luggage, as well. The front-engine, rear-drive configuration relegates space efficiency second to handling balance in the list of important design criteria. The 120i’s 2.0-litre, 110kW engine does a brave job, although even this version of the 1 Series is far from being a hot hatch. Rather, it’s a distinctive, compact conveyance for two people, and occasionally four, who need to be on friendly terms and are not inclined to carry a lot of paraphernalia. The BMW badge is an entrée to genuine driving pleasure.
Model release date: 1 November 2004 to 1 February 2007

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