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Blog / Car Reviews / BMW 1 Series Size & Dimensions Guide

Written by : Steven Shields

Published on:: 25/09/2017

BMW 1 Series Size & Dimensions Guide

If you’re looking at buying a BMW 1 Series, you may be wondering about certain dimensions of the popular premium hatchback, like the boot size or whether it will fit in your garage? This guide covers dimensions of both the first (2004-2011) and second generation (2011-) 1 Series, including width, length and interior dimensions.

Exterior Dimensions

Unlike the rivalling Audi A3, the 1 Series has the same exterior dimensions regardless whether you go for 3 or 5 doors. The first generation 1 Series measures 4239mm front to back, just a negligible 1mm longer than the equivalent A3, whilst the second generation is 90mm longer at 4329mm. It is worth noting that the latest incarnation of the 1 Series is the longest compared to its Audi and Mercedes-Benz counterparts.

From mirror to mirror, the first generation 1 Series is 1934mm wide, whilst the second generation is 50mm wider at 1984mm. The height will vary depending on the suspension fitted on the second generation; typically 1440mm, unless you’re buying an M Sport model or the M135i, which is lower by 10mm.

Read more: What is BMW M Sport?

BMW 1 Series External Dimensions


1st Generation

2nd Generation




Width (not including mirrors)










Interior Dimensions

Inside the 1 Series, you can expect to find similar headroom to its rivals, though there is no compromise in the rear regardless of how many doors you go for, unlike the A3. The first generation offers 966mm in the front and 969mm in the rear, whilst the second generation offers 1018mm in the front and 972mm in the rear.

In terms of shoulder-room (horizontal space in the cabin), the 1 Series offers 1423mm in the front and 1414mm in the rear (1398mm for 3-door), and the second generation offers 1400mm in the front and 1417mm in the rear.

BMW 1 Series Interior Dimensions


1st Generation

2nd Generation

Headroom (front/rear)



Shoulder room (front/rear)



Boot Space

When the rear seats are up, the boot space in the second generation 1 Series is 360 litres, which is 20 litres less than the 5-door A3 and 5 litres less than the 3-door version, but is significantly greater than the Mercedes-Benz A-Class, which has only 341 litres. It’s the same difference when the seats are down, with the 1 Series capacity increasing to 1200 litres. Access to the boot is low and wide, so will make loading a lot easier. In the first generation model, the boot capacity is 330 litres when seats are up, whilst the seats being down bumps this up to 1150 litres.

BMW 1 Series Boot Space


1st Generation

2nd Generation

Seats Up

330 litres

360 litres

Seats Down

1150 litres

1200 litres

Turning Circle

Despite being rear-wheel drive, you would expect the 1 Series to have a low turning circle. However, at just short of 11 metres, the Audi A3 can outmanoeuvre the 1 Series with a turning circle of just 10 metres.

BMW 1 Series Turning Circle

1st Generation

2nd Generation

10.7 metres

10.9 metres


Fuel tank capacity

On the first generation 1 Series, the diesel variants have a 2 litre larger fuel tank, at 53 litres, than the petrol versions, whilst in the second generation, the fuel tank is 52 litres across the board. The most efficient model is the 116d EfficientDynamics, which achieved a combined 74.3 mpg in testing conditions so, in theory, you’d have a fuel range of nearly 850 miles on one tank of fuel. Expect less than half from the performance models, the M135i or M140i, but we’re sure the extra power will make up for it!

BMW 1 Series Fuel Tank Capacity

1st Generation

2nd Generation

51 litres (Petrol) / 53 litres (Diesel)

52 litres



In theory, a lighter car will require less effort from the engine to move it, resulting in greater fuel economy. The 1 Series’ weight is average for its class, but the weight increases as you go up the range, with larger engines and more on-board equipment. In the first generation, there is typically a 10kg difference between the 3-door and 5-door versions, whilst in the second generation, there is, at most, a 5kg difference.

BMW 1 Series Weights


1st Generation

2nd Generation

Lightest Model

118i 3-door (1320kg)

118i 3-door (1375kg)

Heaviest Model

123d 5-door (1495kg)

M135i (1505kg)


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