New BMW M135i xDrive aims to take on the Mercedes-AMG A 35 4MATIC


BMW is going front-wheel drive with their next-generation BMW 1 Series, making the F20/F21 1 Series the last of its kind. While fans are mooting the dismissal of a rear-wheel drive hatchback, the German automaker has its eyes on the competition, especially with the new BMW M135i xDrive.

The new 1 Series will ride on the all-new FAAR (Frontantriebsarchitektur in German) platform designed for front-wheel- and all-wheel-drive models. The new architecture that builds upon the UKL platform’s agile handling with improved packaging.

BMW claims that rear legroom has increased by a massive 33 mm while rear headroom has grown by 19 mm. Boot space is also now up 20 litres to 380 litres, besting the A-Klasse’s boot by 10 litres.

At launch, the M135i xDrive will sit at the top of the 1 Series range, packing a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol making 306 hp. With the xDrive all-wheel-drive system on board, it seems that the M135i is looking to give the new Mercedes-AMG A 35 4MATIC hatch a good run for its money.

Head of Driving Dynamics at BMW Group, Peter Langen said: “Our customers will directly feel the fast and precise responsiveness that provides for an optimised driving experience. The BMW 1 Series will be a genuine BMW with an individual character.”

The engineers have employed the help of trick electronic systems to give the 1 Series a more direct handling response with ARB technology (actuator contiguous wheel slip limitation) – which in layman terms, a very clever traction control system – BMW Performance Control (torque vectoring) and additional “boomerang strut” on the rear axles.


IMAGE GALLERY

BMW M135i xDrive Testing in France


Adrian Chia

Adrian Chia

He believes that the perfect remedy to Monday blues is a mixture of 4 wheels, clear roads and a pinch of twisty tarmac. A hot hatch is the icing on the cake.
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