First-ever front-wheel drive 1 Series hatch will likely offend purists, but will offer a more competitive interior package than the current car.
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The third-generation BMW 1 Series hatch has been teased in a series of posts on social media.

The image above gives us our first official, undisguised look at the new hatch’s headlight design, as well as the shape of half its kidney grille and bonnet. Another photo, below, shows off the car’s customisable digital instrumentation cluster.

The photos posted overnight confirmed the authenticity of an earlier leak, which fully revealed the car's headlight, grille, tail-light and tailgate designs.

Given the aggressive design of the front bumper and the blacked out grille, the car partially revealed overnight is either wearing an M Sport kit or is the M135i xDrive performance variant.

The M135i xDrive will have a 225kW turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine paired with all-wheel drive.

The new 1 Series hatch shifts from the current car’s rear-wheel drive platform to a front-drive architecture shared with X1, X2 and Mini range.

This will see the hatch offered exclusively with turbocharged three- and four-cylinder engines.

While some will mourn the absence of a six-cylinder engine, more are likely to be swayed by the new 1 Series' more spacious interior, which the company says has 33mm more rear legroom, an extra 19mm of rear seat headroom, and a larger 380L boot.

Harald Kruger, BMW's CEO, says the first European deliveries of the new 1 Series will take place towards the end of 2019.