BMW 1 Series (2015)BMW has revealed a facelifted 1 Series range that boasts big changes both at the front and the rear to address criticism of the current car’s awkward looks. 

The new 2015 1 Series line-up, due here in March, also gets new three-cylinder and four-cylinder engines, plus tweaked interior design incorporating BMW’s latest ConnectedDrive infotainment technology.

It’s the revised front end that’s the most welcome aspect. The ugly headlights of the current 1 Series are replaced by sharper, flatter units, between which a new kidney grille and larger air intakes sit. Bumpers are new too, with bigger and more shapely air intakes.

BMW 1 Series (2015)

Rear lights also now sport the ‘L’ design of BMW’s saloons, completing the transformation; the rear lights are LED units and, for the first time, LED headlights are now available.

Inside, all 1 Series receive the iDrive infotainment system as standard, complete with 6.5-inch freestanding display, while climate control, Professional radio and rain sensor are all now standard too, and interior quality is upped with more chrome trim and gloss black surfaces.

BMW 1 Series (2015)

Engine choices include a 1.5-litre three-cylinder turbo for the first time; the new 116i uses the engine from the MINI Cooper to produce 109hp and 133lb ft of torque. It will do 0-62mph in 10.9 seconds and average over 56mpg.

The new 1.5-litre three-cylinder 116d EfficientDynamics restores BMW’s diesel eco leadership, with combined economy of 83.1mpg and CO2 emissions of just 89g/km. It’s the most fuel-efficient conventional-engine BMW on sale.

Other engines are now taken from BMW’s new engine family, including a total of five new diesel motors that are smoother and sweeter than before.

If economy is less of a concern, the M135i’s six-cylinder turbo received a 5hp boost to 326hp; in xDrive guise, it reaches 62mph from rest in just 4.7 seconds. It’s offered as a six-speed manual or eight-speed Steptronic automatic; the auto now has shift profiling linked to the sat nav system for predictive gearchanges.

BMW will launch the new 1 Series in UK dealers on March 28; prices start from £20,245 for the 118i SE three-door.

BMW 1 Series (2015)