The UKL platform has allowed BMW to present its first front wheel drive models ever. The first one was the 2 Series Active Tourer, a minivan. In other words, a market segment in which BMW did not compete before and which allowed for some audacity. But what about traditional segments, such as sedans? If the Concept Compact Sedan ever makes it into production, and it most certainly will, we’ll have the chance to see what happens. And odds are pretty promising.
First of all, BMW is aware most buyers have no idea if their cars are front, rear or all wheel drive. The enlightened few that do know tend to be very sure about which car they want to buy. Therefore, you can perfectly offer a front wheel drive sedan to people willing to buy their first BMW with little chance of disappointing them. Second, the main competitors of the car, the Mercedes-Benz CLA and the Audi A3 Sedan, are front wheel drive machines. Third, rear wheel drive cars lose a lot of room due to the transmission tunnel. And room is key to the success of vehicles in this segment. Last, but not least, UKL cars have proven to be dinamically interesting.
BMW has not released any technical details on the car. It only states that the car has a generous rear compartment (something of fundamental importance for the Chinese market, since many luxury car owners do not drive them, hiring chauffeurs for the task), head-up display, a 8.8-inch central screen for the infotainment system, a panoramic roof and that its seats use Nappa. Nothing about the engines, which should be the same ones used by Mini, or dimensions. Since the UKL2, the one that is used by the Mini Clubman and the 2 Series Active Tourer, has a 2.67 m wheelbase, we can expect the future 1 Series sedan to have the same measure, as well as the three-cylinder 1.5 turbo petrol engine and the four-cylinder 2.0 turbo petrol engine on more expensive versions. Check the images of the concept with a clean background.