For The only rear-drive hatch in the class scores with a strong combination of performance, economy and emissions. The BMW 1 Series handles well and rides comfortably, too.

Against The steering is overly quick and light, which can make the 1 Series feel nervous at speed. The pedals are offset to the right and entry-level models don’t get Bluetooth.

BMW 1 Series Hatchback
44 5stars

The BMW 1 Series is one of the best small family cars you can buy because it’s hugely desirable, good to drive and surprisingly cheap to run.

What Car? readers say

3.823529

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The full BMW 1 Series review


There are 36 BMW 1 Series versions available

Hatchback 118i SE 3dr £20,245
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 118i SE 5dr £20,775
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 116d SE 3dr £21,180 TBA
Hatchback 118i Sport 3dr £21,245
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 116d SE 5dr £21,710 TBA
Hatchback 118i Sport 5dr £21,775
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 116d ED Plus 3dr £22,030 TBA
Hatchback 116d Sport 3dr £22,180 TBA
Hatchback 118d SE 3dr £22,325
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 116d ED Plus 5dr £22,560 TBA
Hatchback 116d Sport 5dr £22,710 TBA
Hatchback 118d SE 5dr £22,855
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 118i M Sport 3dr £23,075
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 120i Sport 3dr £23,295
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 118d Sport 3dr £23,325
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 118i M Sport 5dr £23,605
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 120i Sport 5dr £23,825
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 118d Sport 5dr £23,855
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 116d M Sport 3dr £23,880 TBA
Hatchback 116d M Sport 5dr £24,410 TBA
Hatchback 120d Sport 3dr £24,775
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 120i M Sport 3dr £24,995
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 118d M Sport 3dr £25,025
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 120d Sport 5dr £25,305
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 120i M Sport 5dr £25,525
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 118d M Sport 5dr £25,555
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 125i M Sport 3dr £26,375
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 120d M Sport 3dr £26,475
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 125i M Sport 5dr £26,905
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 120d M Sport 5dr £27,005
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 120d xDrive Sport 5dr £28,355
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 125d M Sport 3dr £29,800
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 120d xDrive M Sport 5dr £30,055
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback 125d M Sport 5dr £30,330
What Car? says:4 stars out of 5
Hatchback M135i 3dr £31,200
What Car? says:5 stars out of 5
Hatchback M135i 5dr £31,730
What Car? says:5 stars out of 5

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 125d M Sport 5dr

Ive now had the 125d manual for 6 weeks. Have to say its a bit of a disappointment, acceleration is very poor (even taken it back to bmw and they say…

Andrew Loffman

1 out of 5 stars

BMW 1 Series Hatchback 116i Sport 5dr

I bought my 1 series over 8 months ago from my local BMW dealer as a used car on a 2013 '62' plate. From the moment I drove it, I fell in love with…

Hasan Altaf

4 out of 5 stars

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
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BMW 1 Series Hatchback

Read the definitive BMW 1 Series Hatchback review from the expert What Car? team. Check specs, prices and compare with similar cars.

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