2013 BMW 1 Series Preview

Jeff Youngs | May 28, 2013
  • 128i, 135i, and new 135is trim levels
  • Coupe and convertible body styles
  • EPA-estimated to achieve up to 28 mpg on the highway
  • BMW's entry-level model
  • Rear-wheel drive (RWD)
  • Free scheduled maintenance for 4 years/50,000 miles
  • 4-passenger seating


In 2008, BMW expanded its lineup with the addition of an all-new 1 Series model. Slotting in below the iconic 3 Series, the 1 Series continues to be offered in coupe and convertible body styles equipped with a choice of powerful engines.

The 2013 BMW 1 Series arrives with few changes, though one is particularly significant. A 135is trim level debuts, delivering greater performance than the 135i but not quite as much as the late 1 Series M, which has ceased production.

After several years on the market, the 1 Series is expected to be replaced by a new 2 Series model due to arrive for the 2015 model year.

Exterior Features

BMW has equipped the exterior of the 2013 128i Coupe with 17-inch alloy wheels, heated power-adjustable outside mirrors, chrome trim and exhaust tips, heated windshield washer nozzles, rain-sensing wipers, and automatic headlights. The 128i Convertible replaces the Coupe's roof with a power-operated soft top that includes a heated rear glass window.

Moving up one level in the 1 Series, the 2013 135i Convertible sports 18-inch alloy wheels wrapped in run-flat performance tires, auto-leveling adaptive HID headlights with washers, lower body kit, and black chrome exhaust tips. The 135i also adds these features, as well as a power tilt/slide moonroof.

At the top of the lineup are the new 2013 BMW 135is Coupe and Convertible models, distinguished by unique 18-inch alloy wheels and exterior trim.

Interior Features

In base 128i form, the 2013 BMW 1 Series Coupe offers front bucket seats with 8-way adjustment for the driver and 6-way adjustment for the passenger, leatherette upholstery, push-button start, dual-zone climate control, and a leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel with integrated audio controls. Bluetooth connectivity is also included, along with a sound system that features HD Radio, auxiliary input jack, and a USB port. The Convertible adds a rear-seat pass-through.

Buyers who select the 135i Coupe or Convertible avail themselves to a variety of upgrades, such as power front seats with 8-way adjustment, memory settings for two drivers, and wood trim. From there, BMW goes a bit further upscale but outfitting the 2013 135is Coupe and Convertible with aluminum trim, M sport steering wheel, and front bucket seats with adjustable thigh support.

Optional Features

A total of five factory options are available for the 2013 BMW 1 Series, one of which is a Cold Weather package that upgrades 128i and 135i models with heated front seats, heated steering wheel, and headlight washers (standard on 135i). HID headlights are also offered for the 128i.

Next is a Premium package that, depending on which trim level and body style is selected, equips the 2013 1 Series with leather upholstery, blue contrast stitching, auto-dimming rearview mirrors, satellite radio service, power front seats, and the power tilt/slide moonroof. A Technology package, offered on all 1 Series models, boasts a navigation system linked to BMW's iDrive central-control system, BMW smartphone apps, and a BMW Assist Safety Plan with services such as emergency response, stolen-vehicle tracking, and roadside assistance.

Last is an M Sport package, available on 128i and 135i models and offering many of the 135is's standard features. Among them are a sport-tuned suspension and lower body kit (standard on 135i), upsized alloy wheels with run-flat performance tires, front sport seats, and the M sport steering wheel.

Under the Hood

For the 2013 128i Coupe and Convertible, BMW has elected to utilize a 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder engine that generates 230 horsepower and 200 lb.-ft. of torque. Output is directed to the rear wheels via a standard 6-speed manual transmission or a 6-speed automatic with a manual mode.

The mid-level 135i also features a 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder engine, but, with the aid of direct injection and a twin-scroll turbocharger, delivers 300 horsepower and 300 lb.-ft. of torque. Again, a 6-speed gearbox is standard, though buyers can instead opt for a 7-speed automated manual dual-clutch transmission with paddle shifters.

That same turbocharged 6-cylinder engine is at work under the hoods of 2013 BMW 135is Coupe and Convertible models. In an effort to squeeze out a bit more performance, engineers added a sport-tuned exhaust, which helps create 320 horsepower and 317 lb.-ft. of torque. Transmission choices are shared with the 135i. A sport-tuned suspension complements the 135i and 135is's powertrains.

Fuel Economy

EPA fuel-economy estimates for the 2013 BMW 1 Series are:

  • 128i Coupe and Convertible with 6-speed manual transmission: 19/28/22 mpg (city/highway/combined)
  • 128i Coupe with 6-speed automatic transmission: 18/28/22 mpg
  • 135i/135is Coupe with 6-speed manual transmission: 20/28/23 mpg*
  • 135i/135is Coupe with 7-speed automatic transmission: 18/25/21 mpg*
  • 128i Convertible with 6-speed automatic transmission: 18/27/21 mpg
  • 135i/135is Convertible with 6-speed manual transmission: 19/28/22 mpg*
  • 135i/135is Convertible with 7-speed automatic transmission: 18/25/20 mpg*

*BMW claims the 135i and new 135is models share identical fuel-economy estimates.


The 2013 BMW 1 Series' standard safety components include traction control, adaptive brake lights, and 4-wheel anti-lock ventilated disc brakes featuring brake drying, brake stand-by, dynamic brake control, and brake-fade compensation systems. Coupe models are also equipped with 6 air bags, while Convertibles utilize rear roll bars and more expansive front-side air bags.

As this preview is written, neither the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) nor the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has rated the crashworthiness of the 2013 BMW 1 Series.
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