Unveiled alongside the Concept Active Tourer at the Paris Motor Show, the xDrive 120d and M135i will soon go on sale in Europe to appeal to drivers who want all-weather security allied with BMW's trademark dynamics.
Despite being an xDrive model the 120d retains the rear-drive bias that BMW is known for, with 60 per cent of the power sent rearwards under normal driving conditions, and even more when you are driving 'enthusiastically'. Should the Dynamic Stability Control detect slippage, however, it will shuffle power around to the wheels that need it most, ensuring that, even in the extreme conditions we tested it under, the xDrive 1 Series never puts a foot wrong.
Other than the four-wheel drive system the 120d xDrive is as you would expect a BMW 120d to be, so it has a six-speed manual transmission, the 'Driving Experience Control' switch that allows the driver to toggle between ECO PRO and Sport+ (and everything in between), space for five occupants (if you must) and an efficient diesel engine that can return 60mpg on the combined cycle and, despite the addition of xDrive, emissions of just 123g/km.
And it's not as if the 120d is an eco-model either. The 2.0-litre TwinPower diesel engine packs 181bhp and 380Nm of torque, enabling it to complete the 0-62mph dash in 7.2 seconds - a tenth of a second quicker than the two-wheel drive model.
Around the tight, technical Innsbruck roads the 1 Series again showed us why it has become such a popular premium hatch; it is agile and responds well to steering input on quick B-roads, especially when you engage Sport or Sport+ modes, yet it can also soak up the motorway miles.
The 120d xDrive has yet to be officially confirmed for the UK market but sources suggest it will and that it will carry a £1,500 premium over the equivalent rear-drive 1 Series.