"Love this car! In is extremely fun to drive. The only thing missing is a 6-speed manual. The paddle shifters and steptronic are very cool and responsive; I'm old school and I should have chosen the the 6-speed manual. That was my choice and wish I could trade the steptronic for a manual. My nickname for this car is the "angry go-kart". It has attitude and has no problem getting you where you want to go very fast."
"Designed with the iconic 2002 in mind, the BMW 1 Series is a premium compact sports coupe that appeals to a very particular audience: the BMW enthusiast. Its styling is polarizing. It's wildly unpractical (on paper). And it may not be all that much cheaper than a comparably-equipped 3 Series. But that's okay. A 135i is more fun to drive than just about any other BMW model on the market in recent years. With 300 hp and 300 lbs of torque on tap, the 135i delivers a steady surge of power that's addicting. A tighter wheelbase translates into a more visceral experience than its bigger brother. Coupled with the beefy steering wheel and DCT automatic with paddel-shifters, this car is every bit as good as the 335is (and possibly faster). There are imperfections. The interior wood trim is actually cheap plastic. Adult passengers look ridiculous in the back seats. And it's pricy if compared directly to a 3 Series. But if you want reliable thrills, it's hard to beat the 135i."
"I spend a lot of time in my car, so getting something that was fun and comfortable was important to me. This one hits on all cylinders. It's an amazing car--responsive, fun to drive, looks good, and incredibly comfortable. I feel very safe in it as well. I couldn't be happier with my choice."
"Was in the market for something small and comfortable. First priority: FUN TO DRIVE. This is it. Seriously, the most fun a real person (as opposed to an auto racer) could have in a car! It feels like you are driving on silk, but not like a Lincoln or a Cadillac, where you could forget you're even in a car. This is a serious driving experience! Love it, love the attention it gets! I saw one one day and it stopped me in my tracks! I found a 2009 with only 6K miles, and it was priced WAYYYYY under blue book value. Now is the time to buy -- these cars are priced to sell."
"This car is great if you're looking for something small, sporty and zippy, but with a touch of luxury too. It doesn't have a ton of space for luggage or large people, and it definitely isn't going to make a good family car. On the other hand, if you're single and want to feel the wind blowing and sun shining down on you while in a stylish ride - this is the car for you!"
"I recently purchased a 2010 135i convertible with the M sport Package. I have to admit I am extremely impressed with the performance. Although the car exhibits slight understeer; this is the best handling BMW I have ever owned. The 6 speed has relatively short throws, but has crisp engagement. One note of interest is that this BMW is easy to shift into second gear. All previous BMWs (5) I have owned "buck" in second gear without any way to operate the shift smoothly in that gear. Acceleration is also excellent, but it does have a little hesitation off the line until the turbos kick-in.
The front sport seats are comfortable and offer excellent lateral support. Little room in the back expect for kids under 10 years of age. The trunk is decent sized and can hold one meidum sized suitcase or 2 duffel bags.
I have the standard stereo and the sound is outstanding with tight, deep base. No reason to pay for the upgraded system.
The price is a little high (I paid 48K) for an "entry level" car, but the performance makes up for it."
"I've had my 128I convertible for 2 months now and its a fun car to drive. It has great pickup and handles curves great. The back seat is better than some of the cars that we looked at but it is tight. The only problem that I have had with the car is the top. It was warped in the back when we got it so they ordered a new top and replaced it. Now the inside lining is coming apart and they had to order a new liner but it is back ordered for an unknown amount of time. The tires either don't keep their pressure very well or the sensors are too sensative because I have had to put air in the tires twice so far. Other than that I have had no problems with the car."
"This is one of my favorite cars that I have ever owned. It is incredibly fun to drive, very quick, nimble, handles very well. Its been reliable in the two and a half years I have owned it, no repairs necessary.
The downsides are for the most part obvious: its little, so it cant carry more than one tall passenger comfortably, nor can it store a whole lot. The suspension is also a bit stiff. But people interested in this vehicle should already know and expect this. This is a small sports car with a touch of luxury, not a luxury car with a touch of sport."
"This is a fun, fast, comfortable, good handling, not quite luxury sports coupe. I love driving it and it also gets great mileage. I usually get close to 30 driving 70 on highway trips. I like that it's small. The 3 series is too big for what I wanted. But it does hold enough for me to go on a long camping trip. Only problem so far after 15k miles is that rear deck tail light came loose. Replaced with an upgraded part under waranty. The basic BMW inline 6 has been around forever and I expect it to be completely reliable."
Cons: "I miss a manual....but I cannot match shift speed!"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"This car does it all in a small package. Chose it after having driven 5-series for 150k miles and test driving 3-series. It's not much smaller than a 3 and it gets up and goes much faster. Feels rock solid. And it is comfortable, surprisingly so for its size.
And no problems whatsoever after having the fuel pump issue serviced the one time. So impressed my wife leased a convertible!"
"This car is amazing, a feat of engineering and work or art. The car drives like a dream with plenty of power and terrific handling. The interior is simple, elegant and intelligently designed. There's nothing negative I can say about this car. I love it."
Pros: "Wickedly fast, great handling, quality, quality, quality."
Cons: "Initial outlay"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"It never ceases to amaze me that everytime I get into a BMW, no matter what the model, I'm consistently blown away by the quality and sheer driving satisfaction that these autos deliver, and the 135i is no exception.
I've actually owned two previous BMWs, including a 335i with the venerable N54 twin turbo 3.0 liter, the same engine that is in the 135.
I know its been said many times before but lets just get it out first and foremost - this engine is one of the best engines ever made. Ever. Period. 300hp. 300 ft lbs of stump pulling torque right from about 1500 rpm. In both the 335 and 135, 0-60 comes up in under five seconds and yet, as I've found, the N54 is capable of upwards of 30 mpg during sedate highway cruising.
To drive any Beemer with this engine in it is to realize just how good a powerplant can be, with the only black mark among the accolades being the high pressure fuel pump issues that some unfortunate owners have experienced.
For me personally, the 335 I had and now this 135 have been THE most reliable cars I have ever owned, and I've owned a few.
As far as the handling and general driving experience of the 135, it is without doubt a continuation of a long line of superbly performing automobiles. This thing is quick and it is agile.
I find that, like the 335, there is some mild understeer when pushed to the limits, in fact, I would say slightly more than the the three series, suprising I thought, given the shorter wheelbase on the 1. Combine the near 50/50 weight distribution with the rear wheel drive though and a little feather on the throttle is enough to make it dance through the bends without fuss. Braking is superior with confidence to spare if things get out of hand.
I think the turn in and cornering are still in a different dimension altogether than most vehicles on the road and, unless you are thrashing it around the track, this car will more than meet your needs for spirited driving. Keep in mind that this car was quicker through the cones than a Porsche Cayman as tested by the British TV show Fifth Gear. There is no shortage of handling prowess here.
The chassis is extremely rigid, one car test described it as feeling as the it was carved from stone rather than stamped out of sheet metal and I would have to agree. There is that wonderful tautness that exemplifies BMW in the 135 while at the same time being subtle in ride quality, making it sublimely pleasurable as a daily driver.
I would say it rides as smoothly as my 3 series sedans did, suprising again, given the shorter wheelbase.
Lookwise, styling is always so subjective, but it seems the 135 is a love it or hate it kind of thing. I was originally looking for another 335 when the 135 caught my eye in the absolutely stunning Montego Blue. At first I didnt know quite what to make of it, but the more I walked around it, the more I liked it. After owning the 3's I was, in a way, appreciating something different and I began to think that the 1 was rather unique.
The 1 is definately more bulbous and curvy than most of the other Beemers, and the closest analogy I could come up with was that it was somewhere between a z series and a 3.
The slightly muscular, squat and rounded look makes me think roadster, more akin to the styling ques on a dodge viper or a mazda rx7 with a long front and a short tail, than a contemporary euro coupe.
The interior is typical BMW. Quality look and feel, straight to the point, ergonomically efficient.
This car came with the M Sport Package which includes a few M badges and styling cues but more importantly, larger M style wheels, an M steering wheel and some nicely bolstered sport seats. I think this package is a must if you are going for maximum sportiness. Also equipped with manual transmission which I find firm without being notchy. Clutch is suprisingly light given the power it has to deal with.
All in all a good value? Considering that this car is only a tenth of a second slower 0-60 than than M3 which is almost twice the cost, I'd say it's an awesome choice for a premium compact luxo sport. Drive it. You'll like it."
Cons: "Passenger cup holder, costly tires, rear leg room"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Cannot ask for a better vehicle given performance comfort and balance given the cost. Would recommend changing from the Bridgestone potenza run-flats as soon as possible. Pirelli makes a run flat that lasts much longer. Would certainly recommend."
"I have had my 135i convertible for 20months and it is one fun ride. But the trade-off, is at least once a month it is in the shop for something! At 1500 miles it stopped DEAD in the middle of a 4 lane highway; the dreaded HPPFP issue, it was replaced and that ISSUE is resolved.
The convertible top had to be replaced at 8K, the lining came apart at 10K. When I took it in the shop the tech said " this is the third car this week with that". The brakes were replaced at 11K, the tire sensors are constantly are problem. The lighter is constantly blowing fuses, thus my air compressor will not work to feed those air losing tires. ECT, ECT, ECT...
I love to drive this car, BUT at 3 years 363 days it will be traded in for another car...because when that warranty is up I am not going to be paying to service these constant issues."
"This is an awesome Driving vehicle!! There is no doubt BMW has a record of superb handling and refined elegance. I've owned a Z4 prior to this & love the way the 1 Series handles over it.
Reliability has been an issue for these cars though. BMW has had extensive problems with the fuel pump on these & the Programing logic for the fuel. The pump has been replaced 2 Times already on an almost 2yr old car. (that Suks)
The OEM tires BMW has choosen for this vehicle also have a really bad track record. Look there review up seperatly. "Bridgestone Runflats" They only make one so you shouldn't have a problem finding reviews that all say they Suk too.
Overall I love the Car. Like I said it is a great ride but I can see it being a cash cow in regards to Maintenance and failed part over the years. While the warrenty is still good on it I will definetly keep it.. But I'm not making any promises once I have to pay to get it fixed!!! BMW need to refine this vehicle and fix the little problems they are experiencing as well as get a better tire for them. I've been thru a set already with less than 12000 miles on the car and tires at $300 plus each. It's not cheap... But if you can't afford it, don't buy BMW..."
"This car is awesome. I have wanted a sports car but with a little more room ever since the auto industry started pushing "sport sedans" that really weren't sporty. This one is! It is a thrill to drive at any speed. One reason is that you can cruise along at a safe speed and just listen to a highly pleasing exhaust note. The premium sound is very nice with the i pod interface but I listen to the engine more than I do music. As far as performance, you don't need any more, unless you race, and then you don' need this car."
"I bought my car in 2009 for $29000. I was curious about the value and it is still in the $20's! The drive is amazing. It feels like the vehicle hugs the road! This is my second BMW but my first new one. The BMW cust. service is outstanding. I go in and I am treated like family, not a dysfunctional family! My car never gives me any issues. I have taken it from California to South Carolina with no worries."
Cons: "Stock tires are not ideal but that is easy to fix."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"This has been the perfect car for me. Small, highly reliable, very fun and fast enough.
My 128i Coupe M Sport 5sp manual is better in almost every way to the Boxster I previously owned. It is more reliable (no repairs, in 2.5 yrs) it feels safer in traffic, it is far more comfortable, it has a much nicer stereo and nav system, rides better and was far far less expensive (a nice bonus). The only places where my Boxster held an edge were at the limit handling and steering precision. I'd rate the 128i a 9/10 on these dimensions and the Boxster a 10/10 but overall I'd rate the 128i a 9.5/10 and the Boxster a 7/10.
I plan to buy this car at the end of this year when the lease has ended. There is nothing else on the market <$45k that interests me and certainly nothing for the $20k lease end purchase option price."
"I picked up the 135i couple through european delivery. The experience was awesome, highly recommended. Driving on the autobahn is a religious experience. Back in LA the car has proven comfortable in congestion, but it almost feels like a waste to have this car stuck in traffic. On the open road the power kicks in at 1k and doesn't let up. The handling and brakes provide the confidence to really utilize the awesome 300 horses this engine puts out. I like the styling and the detailed engineering all around that makes this car a great daily driver.
Although I think the positives of this car greatly outweigh the negatives there are some issues. The power window controls are way too far toward the driver on the arm rest to access easily (maybe its my long arms). The air vent by the doors don't swivel far enough toward the center of the car to make them useful as they just mostly blow air against the door and armrest. The passenger side view mirror tilts down in reverse to provide the driver better vision of a curb while parking, but it only works sometimes. And the final thing is beware of understeer if you want to take this car to the track. The car handles great during regular driving, but I've read in reviews and heard from others that understeer comes out when pressed hard at the track. It can be mitigated with a suspension upgrade.
Overall, great car. After owning it for 14 months I still look forward to getting in and driving it."
Cons: "None ...don't get a chance to drive it enough"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I bought this car in 10/12 and wasn't able to drive it right away....work and all...but after I was able to take it on a 2.5 hour drive. I was blown away.. .this is truly a Driver's Car...the car performs outstanding....put the top down and the exhaust sounds great. I would have given the car a 10 reliability but there was software update on the DCT which took a while to get iron out between BMW and the dealership. Once that was resolved the car performed even better. This car is a KEEPER for me."