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BMW 1 Sequence evaluation (2020): Tantalising tech

You are looking on the all-new BMW 1 Sequence, the third-generation to take this automotive into a brand new decade and past. To start with sight you almost certainly knew there used to be one thing just a little other about this chap in comparison to the droves of BMWs you may have observed at the roads; ah sure, it is the new-and-enhanced kidney grille, which pops from the entrance with extra vigour than any 1 Sequence ahead of it.

However that isn’t all. The 1 Sequence is now greater than ahead of, bringing other dynamics and an altogether extra circle of relatives really feel. Plus with lots of tech – which, admittedly is non-compulsory, so get in a position to open your pockets – this BMW feels anything else however entry-level.

All-new design

The newest era BMW is all about bringing that kidney grille to the fore. Within the 1 Sequence that is treated with a defter contact then a few of BMW’s greater cars – the X7 takes it to ‘beaver enamel’ proportions – to offer it a particular edge. Some will love its modernity, others will marvel why it is grow to be this type of point of interest. We fairly find it irresistible on this layout at the 1 Sequence.


We may not get too into the nitty gritty of what is modified within the 2020 1 Sequence over its predecessor. However as the auto takes the similar platform because the Mini Clubman, it is now front-wheel pressure (now not rear-wheel like its predecessors), plus it has got moderately other proportions, making it a smidgen wider and longer than ahead of. That small quantity of area approach just a little further knee room for all possible passengers, with out the auto seeping into overblown proportions.

The M Recreation trim that you just see is the top-tier type within the pack, bringing just a little further taste, together with a host of built-in choices (that will in a different way be added extras in non-M fashions), similar to electrical folding mirrors, prolonged internal lights, park lend a hand, cruise management with energetic braking, LED headlights, and the 8.8-inch Are living Cockpit Plus drivers’ virtual show. That is why the beginning value, at £27,230, is £3,000 greater than the entry-level SE type.

The M Recreation does upload some extras you’ll’t to find in other places, basically Sports activities seats, which now not simplest glance higher, however are hugging and at ease. There is electrical adjustment (by way of the Convenience Pack 2, £1,500) to get that highest place conveniently, too. And the M guidance wheel will get added heating (additionally a part of that Convenience Pack) to stay your fingertips heat towards that leather-based, regardless of the climate.


As a 5-door, there is abundant room on board for 4 adults. It isn’t abundantly roomy within the again, however the more room in comparison to older fashions will make a distinction for the ones with longer legs. Drop the seats and there is a heap of room – we transported a full-size street motorcycle, wheels on, with out hassle. Color us inspired.

Stacks of tech

There are lots of, many extra choices containers to tick but even so. A lot of them we would counsel are a good suggestion, too, similar to the 2 Era Packs (£1,500 a work, totalling £3,000) which upload a 10.25-inch dash-positioned show, amongst many different options.


Open the door to the 1 Sequence 118i – as soon as you have got over the projected-onto-the-floor ‘BMW’ emblem from the motive force’s aspect (no, in point of fact) – and it is this sweeping array of tech that in point of fact lures you in. No longer simplest is it a at ease position to be, it is like a mini command centre for all of your telephony, navigation and leisure wishes.

We have now lengthy been inspired with BMW’s dial management, placed to the centre tunnel, making gentle paintings of enter with rotation, four-way nudge management, or even trace-based enter (so you’ll successfully write letters on height of the pad with out taking a look, for instance). It is a way more intuitive setup than, say, the mouse-like controller present in Lexus, or the very touch-control centered Audi setup. BMW moves a smart stability of buttons, controller and displays; it feels excellent and appears excellent too.

That primary 10.25-inch show is not too tall, so it isn’t distracting, and contours in large part a success satnav with are living visitors updates. It proved its value repeatedly on our drives, saving us some 20-30 mins from time to time, but at others the it appears transparent directions at the 8.8-inch Are living Cockpit Plus show have been, neatly, simply simple incorrect (keep in the correct 3 lanes, in spite of obviously desiring the left-most, being one standout second – however the machine then temporarily loaded with the up to date direction).


That Are living Cockpit Plus show seems nice, however it has got much less customisation choices than you can to find in, say, an Audi setup. No longer that you wish to have to cycle thru 1,000,000 other choices, however having the ability to segregate extra choices – say, satnav and song – can be a pleasant addition.

How does it pressure?

We will say it up entrance: that the 1 Sequence is now front-wheel pressure is not going to make a jot of distinction to maximum drivers. There are sufficient traction management methods on board to stay you within the instantly and slim, plus you are now not purchasing a 1 Sequence to move carreering round corners sideways – you are purchasing one to get from A to B in convenience and elegance.


The pressure has sufficient pull even from the entry-level 118i type, however that is no pepped-up sporty quantity – do not call to mind it like an Audi RS3 (which it’s worthwhile to purchase for approximately the similar, roughly) – with a 0-62mph time of 8.Five seconds. That may now not learn particularly neatly, but if you wish to have that further little kick to overhaul it is no drawback.

Dual carriageway cruising is at ease and sedate, even though the street noise does build up whilst you begin to push past that vital 70mph velocity restrict. It isn’t deafening in any respect, even though, plus with the Harman/Kardon soundsystem on this type you have got nice audio treats within the cabin – which can also be set to sit down dynamically for a extra surrounding sensation.

Of the entire positives, it is in truth the guide gearbox that we discover to be a smidgen clunky in its supply. It is company and assertive, that is evidently, as is the suspension, which in Recreation mode in point of fact feels the ones carpark velocity bumps. Particular person setup may be imaginable, settling on from Convenience and Eco choices by way of the click of a button to the central tunnel.


There are different little quirks to the pressure, too, similar to thekey fobb, which gives keyless access when inside 2.5m of the car – no wish to press any buttons unnecessarily – which we discovered unnerving to start with (did we lock it? no? sure? perhaps?) however were given used to after operating the auto thru a number of hundred miles over a protracted weekend.


The 2020 1 Sequence establishes itself as a small-yet-roomy, at ease and tasty entry-level BMW. Even supposing, in M Recreation trim, it is anything else however ‘access’ by way of any measure: the end, convenience and elegance lift this automotive past.

The brand new design is greater than ahead of, which brings with it practicality, whilst the front-wheel pressure shift will make little-to-no distinction for many drivers, who will admire the additional area anyway.

Then again, the ones non-compulsory extras will upload up rapid, so whilst the tech is tantalising, it places this type in the similar ballpark because the Mini Clubman (which it stocks a platform with), and if you wish to have one thing just a little smaller and sportier then a variety of VW and Audi choices are to be had, from Golfing GTi to Audi RS3 should you would fairly.

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