The 2023 BMW 1 Series facelift is set to see styling tweaks and hybrid engine added to the lineup.
The BMW 1 Series is being prepared for its mid-life facelift, and the new car has been spotted in disguise and on the back of a truck by our spy photographers ahead of introduction in 2023.
The main features of the new 1 Series are heavily covered, which could hint that BMW is planning more than a subtle update for the car. Following BMW’s recent design direction, it’s possible the 1 Series will receive a front end reprofile with a bigger grille and more aggressive looking air intakes. These new updates would see the 1 Series take on an appearance in line with that of the second generation 2 Series Active Tourer.
The current BMW 1 Series moved to a front-wheel-drive platform with four-wheel-drive on the high-performance M135i model for this generation – a move which shortened the bonnet and improved interior space. The X1 SUV, which shares the same platform as the 1 Series and 2 Series Active Tourer, also made the change to front wheel drive and has just had a facelift that added a plug-in hybrid engine.
Given that the 2 Series Active Tourer also has mild-hybrid technology and two plug-in hybrid options along with additional driver-assistance features, it’s certainly possible that the 1 Series facelift will feature some form of hybrid technology for the first time. The 1 Series range could expand to include a plug-in hybrid engine option based on the 10kWh battery supported setup in the X1. This would deliver at least 50km of electric-only range.
These hybrid options would complement a number of three and four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines in the new 1 Series engine range. While the platform has the capability to go fully electric it’s unlikely that a 1 Series BEV will arrive just yet. The M135i model will continue over as a performance flagship, while BMW also introduced a second high-performance variant for this generation 1 Series in 2020, in the form of the front-wheel-drive 128ti.
Inside, the third generation 1 Series has already seen improvements to the tech included as standard, with a 10.25-inch infotainment screen with navigation and a fully digital gauge cluster. This will obviously remain, with minor updates to BMW’s intuitive iDrive system added.