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For The 116i offers strong and smooth acceleration throughout the rev range. Sports suspension meakes the BMW's handling even sharper.

Against Company car drivers will be better off with a diesel version, while a VW Golf is cheaper, more practical and more refined. The ride is a little firmer than we'd like, too.

BMW 1 Series Hatchback

What Car? says

4 out of 5 stars

A good choice of engine for private buyers, but we reckon most will be better off sticking with SE trim.

What Car? readers say


Key facts

8.5 secs
Top speed
130 mph
Average mpg
Tank range
See all running costs

View the whole BMW 1 Series Hatchback range


More expensive

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The full BMW 1 Series review

Buyer's notes

Target Price team says:

All of the engines we’ve driven in the BMW 1 Series so far are impressive, with a good blend of performance and efficiency.

Which one you should choose depends largely on whether you’re a private buyer or a company car driver. The sub-120g/km CO2 emissions of the 118d qualify it for low Benefit in Kind (BIK) tax rates, but the star of the show for low running costs is the 99g/km 116d Efficient Dynamics model. Meanwhile, the lower list price of the 116i makes it the sensible choice for private buyers who don’t do a silly amount of miles.

Entry-level ES trim is probably best avoided, but SE models come with Bluetooth and BMW’s iDrive infotainment system – but not sat-nav, which is a pricey option on all models. M Sport trims make the 1 Series look and feel a bit sportier. We wouldn’t bother with Sport and Urban models because they’re a bit too expensive.

Reader test team says:

BMW 1 Series Hatchback 116i ES 5dr

I have new 14 plate 1 series 120d Xdrive M Sport. Its a great car and the intelligent 4WD is superb, switching drive from F40,R60 at normal driving to…

keith baldwin

4 out of 5 stars

BMW 1 Series Hatchback 118i M Sport 5dr

Had my 118i for 8 months and still gets me up and out for a drive! The best thing is when the car is in sports mode and a country lane beckons. The…

Richard Cole

4 out of 5 stars

BMW 1 Series Hatchback 116i ES 5dr

I made the mistake of thinking that if you spend £25K on a new BMW it might be fitted with such basic equipment as satellite navigation. Wrong! If you…

Richard Broughton

1 out of 5 stars

BMW 1 Series Hatchback 120d Sport 3dr

It is hard to choose a new car as there are so many brilliant ones to choose from. So all things being equal you may as well buy the one that is best…

Gerald Taylor

5 out of 5 stars
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