BMW 1-series review - more engaging than the competition - Interior and Tech

A wonderfully rear-drive premium compact hatchback

Evo rating
from £21,840
  • Adjustable rear-drive chassis, massive range of efficient and powerful engines
  • Rear space not great and most desirable models are costly

Interior and Tech

Along with the 2-series coupe and cabriolet, the 2018 model year 1-series has undergone an interior upgrade consisting of new trim options, blackout dials and the latest i-drive infotainment system. The dashboard itself has also been subtly reshaped.

One of the major bugbears of the rear-drive layout is that fact that it has resulted in a high transmission tunnel and a rear-set cabin, both of which conspire to make the life of the passenger in the back of the 1 Series a little bit uncomfortable. It's fine for short journeys, but knee room in particular is at a premium and please don't ask anyone to sit in the middle of the rear seat. The seat back can optionally be ordered as a split-fold design, increasing the barely average 360-litre boot up to 1200 litres of volume when there are no rear passengers.

Subscribe to evo magazine

evo is 21 and to celebrate, we're returning to 1998 prices! Subscribe now to SAVE 39% on the shop price and get evo for its original cover price of £3.00 an issue, plus get a FREE gift worth £25!

All versions of the 1 Series are fitted with a classy high-resolution 6.5-inch screen atop the dashboard and the latest generation of BMW's iDrive rotary controller close to hand on the centre console. The BMW Radio Professional system is standard, with CD player, DAB digital radio, an aux-in socket and Bluetooth.

Tech geeks should check out the £900 'Media package - BMW Professional' as it has a more enhanced navigation system and much more besides, including online services. There's also a high-end Harmon Kardon hi-fi system to tempt audiophiles.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Most Popular

Toyota GT 86

Toyota GT86 v Mazda MX-5 v Abarth 124 Spider – lightweight sports car shootout

Three affordable sports cars from Japan and, er, Japan battle it out on the Yorkshire Dales
14 Jan 2020

2020 Geneva motor show preview

Electrification will likely dominate proceedings, but Geneva will have plenty of performance metal to get excited about too
17 Jan 2020
Ford Focus RS

Ford Focus RS500 v Audi RS3 – new v used

One’s an eight-year-old Ford, the other a brand new Audi. But which of these five‑cylinder superhatches deserves your £45k?
18 Jan 2020
Hyundai i30 N hatchback

Hyundai i30 N versus Hyundai i30 TCR

Can Dickie Meaden beat Steve Sutcliffe in a straight(ish) race? We sent them to the Circuit Nuvolari with a pair of Hyundai i30 Ns to find out.
20 Sep 2019