/> ED I T O R S C H O I C E IN N O V A T IO N A W A R D
X

BMW 135is: The fastest 1-series (pictures)

BMW gives its 1 Series the "s" treatment, raising the engine output, tightening the suspension, and giving it an excellent exhaust note.

Wayne_Cunningham.jpg
Wayne Cunningham
35805088_SS20.jpg
1 of 12 Wayne Cunningham/CNET
BMW's 1 Series sits at the bottom of the model lineup, but it can be one of the best cars for the driving purist. For the new 135is model, BMW upgraded the engine software, giving it higher output, and made other performance modifications.
35805088_SS01_1.jpg
2 of 12 Josh Miller/CNET
The 135is is a small coupe, with only two doors but seating for four.
35805088_SS02_1.jpg
3 of 12 Josh Miller/CNET
The engine consistently wins awards. It is based on a 3-liter inline six-cylinder block, and uses direct injection and variable valve timing for fuel delivery. A twin-scroll turbocharger helps boost output.
35805088_SS03.jpg
4 of 12 Josh Miller/CNET
BMW made a questionable move in forgoing a limited-slip differential in favor of a rear-wheel braking program. However, the 135is handles excellently, so it does not seem there is any real loss.
35805088_SS05.jpg
5 of 12 Josh Miller/CNET
Despite the car's small size, the trunk seems big enough for a few suitcases, or a body.
35805088_SS06.jpg
6 of 12 Josh Miller/CNET
Sport seats are comfortable and well-bolstered. And, maybe against the purist sports car ethic, they are power-adjustable.
35805088_SS07.jpg
7 of 12 Josh Miller/CNET
The rear seats are not exactly spacious, but can serve for shorter trips.
35805088_SS08.jpg
8 of 12 Josh Miller/CNET
It doesn't feel like BMW tightened up the steering response for the 135is, but there is an Active Steering option available, which changes the steering ratio depending on driving conditions.
35805088_SS16_1.jpg
9 of 12 Josh Miller/CNET
The radio display serves to show phone and audio information on its minimal screen.
35805088_SS17.jpg
10 of 12 Josh Miller/CNET
The standard phone system integrates the contact list, showing it on the radio display.
35805088_SS12.jpg
11 of 12 Josh Miller/CNET
BMW includes a USB port standard, for plugging in thumbdrives and iOS devices.
35805088_SS13.jpg
12 of 12 Josh Miller/CNET
Underneath the current track label can be seen the various music library categories. BMW makes it possible to browse music on this small screen, but it is not an optimal solution.

More Galleries

The best Nintendo Switch games to play in 2021

More Galleries

The best Nintendo Switch games to play in 2021

40 Photos
Movies coming in 2021 and 2022 from Netflix, Marvel, HBO and more

More Galleries

Movies coming in 2021 and 2022 from Netflix, Marvel, HBO and more

67 Photos
2022 GMC Sierra puts on its fancy pants

More Galleries

2022 GMC Sierra puts on its fancy pants

20 Photos
Meet the new 2022 Honda Civic Si sedan

More Galleries

Meet the new 2022 Honda Civic Si sedan

25 Photos
2021 best new TV shows to watch, stream, obsess about

More Galleries

2021 best new TV shows to watch, stream, obsess about

63 Photos
The 51 best VR games

More Galleries

The 51 best VR games

53 Photos
2022 Kia Sportage is a seriously stylish SUV

More Galleries

2022 Kia Sportage is a seriously stylish SUV

7 Photos