BMW offers two models of the 1-Series in the United States: the naturally aspirated 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder 128i, and the turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six 135i. The 128i's 230-horsepower rating is ample for most, though the speed fiend will find the punchy new twin-scroll, single-turbo engine of the 135i a welcome companion.
The new 135i engine, which does away with the twin turbos of the previous model, delivers performance that's functionally indistinguishable either on the street or the track, yet is slightly lighter and less expensive. Acceleration to 60 mph takes just 5.3 seconds when equipped with the twin-clutch DCT.
Handling and steering are nimble and quick, feeling like a real sports coupe in any situation. Slight body roll, high grip levels, and quick direction changes are all part of the package, even in the case of the 128i, but particularly so for the 135i with the M Sport package.
Braking, stability, and control are all excellent as well, with the dynamic processing of yaw and slide working with the ABS system to help keep the 1-Series on the intended path.