Fanatics fearful of a BMW management focused on front-wheel-drive models may soon be able to breathe easy.
It has been widely reported that a new front-wheel-drive design has been locked in for the third-generation 1 Series, sharing the UKL platform that underpins the MINI Cooper.
But, new comments this week from BMW engineering executive Klaus Froehlich reveal that the company has yet to decide on the question of where the new 1 Series will send its power.
Speaking with US magazine Motor Trend, Froehlich said that the company is considering whether the current model’s rear-wheel-drive design has played a crucial role in ‘conquest’ sales - the art of winning buyers away from other brands and building a loyal customer base.
"If rear drive, we would lose advantages of luggage space. But if one sort of customer wants space, he can get the 2 Series Active Tourer,” he told the magazine.
“The 1 Series is about conquest sales, so it has to be a true BMW.”
This suggests the next 1 Series could retain the rear-wheel-drive layout that has made the hatch a singularly exciting car for those that enjoy tying practicality together with an obsession for rear-wheel-drive motoring.
Froehlich said that the company will make its decision by the end of the year.
Watch for more to surface in the months ahead.
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