Peter Anderson | Jul 19, 2012

BMW's entry-level 1 Series hatch could soon evolve into a sedan, according to reports out of Europe this week.

A report in Britain's Autocar magazine back in May suggested that BMW has confirmed development of a sedan variant. This week, industry site Automotive News reports that a 2015 launch is on the cards.

While the earlier report describes four- and six-cylinder engines with rear- and all-wheel-drive versions available, Auto News says that only a rear-wheel-drive layout has been confirmed.

An all-electric model, based on the last-generation 1 Series ActiveE project and separate from BMW's new i range, is reportedly also planned.

If BMW is indeed considering a sedan version of the new 1 Series, it's no surprise.

The current 1 is similar in size to the original 1975 3 Series, which itself has grown to dwarf the E28 5 Series - leaving a noticeable gap at the bottom of the range.

Adding credence to talk of a 1 Series Sedan is the fact that BMW's main competitors, Audi and Mercedes, are pluggin that same gap with the upcoming A3 sedan and CLA models.

The 1 Series range has grown since its arrival just over six years ago, with three- and five-door hatches, a coupe and a cabriolet filling out the range. (The latter two are expected to debut the so-called 2 Series range in the coming year.)

Reports of a 1 Series GT model have run out of steam, and that might be because a sedan plan has taken hold.

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