You’ll have no complaints up front in the 1 Series; there’s plenty of head and leg room for the driver and passenger, and the interior is nice and wide, too. There are decent-sized door bins and a generous cubby hole under the central armrest. Add the tray at the front of the centre console and there’s a good amount of storage.
This is one of the most notable improvements in the third generation 1 Series. The space on offer now rivals its premium competitors, although all of these look a tad stingy in the rear compared to the palatial Skoda Octavia. Six-footers will feel their heads just brushing the rooflining, but anyone shorter should be comfortable even on long journeys, and there’s a good amount of leg and knee room, plus a useful amount of space under the driver’s seat for your feet.
Unlike the previous 1 Series, which had a three-door bodyshell option, this model is only available with five doors, so access to those rear seats is nice and simple, too.
Seat folding and flexibility
While the 1 Series is missing practical tricks like a front passenger that folds flat, and sliding and reclining rear seats, it does at least have the option of 40/20/40 split-folding rear seats, complete with a ski hatch. That’s more than the A-Class can muster: it can only offer the usual 60/40 split-folding rear seats.
At 380 litres, the 1 Series boot is now bigger than those of the A-Class or Audi A3, and matches the VW Golf. It’s a good, boxy shape, with only a small load lip at the entry. Plus, as an option, the boot floor can be folded back to reveal a spacious underfloor compartment. The floor can be propped up when folded back and it’ll stay there, freeing up both hands to load stuff into the compartment. You can also have an electric tailgate.