BMW is starting to literally take the wraps off its next-generation 1 Series as the compact hatchback is inching closer to its world reveal. Courtesy of new images published on Facebook, we get up close and personal with a near-production prototype carrying most of the final bits and pieces. Although it’s still heavily camouflaged, it’s easy to notice we’re not dealing with the hotter M135i since it doesn’t have those aggressive bumpers and the special kidney grille with a pattern similar to the Z4 roadster.
The headlights and taillights are mostly exposed and represent a significant departure from the outgoing (and rather aging) 1 Series, lending the premium hatch a high-tech look as you’d come to expect from a truly all-new car. The car appears to be visibly larger than its predecessor and likely comes with a longer wheelbase for extra legroom inside the cabin.
One of the images also allows us to hop inside the 1er and have a look at its fully digital instrument cluster. Much like the next-gen Volkswagen Golf we spotted recently, BMW’s entry-level car will ditch the analogue dials to make room for a display, but it remains to be seen whether the digital setup will be standard across the range or it will be reserved to the higher-spec cars.
There’s nothing particularly special about the screen since it’s a spitting image of what you’ll find in other recent BMWs, including the aforementioned Z4. BMW slapped on a fabric cover on the dashboard to conceal the rest of the design, but thanks to recent spy shots, the cat is pretty much out of the bag.
In a separate teaser, this time released by BMW France, we catch a glimpse of another 1 Series (pictured above). It’s actually the M135i judging by the satin mirror caps and the grille pattern we mentioned before. This will be the range topper as the Bavarians have shot down the possibility of a fully fledged M model.
With the teasers piling up, a full reveal must be right around the corner. Customer deliveries will commence in Europe before the end of the year, according to a statement made by BMW chairman Harald Krüger during the 99th Annual General Meeting.