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In-depth reviews

BMW 1 Series hatchback - Reliability & safety

Can the BMW 1 Series be the model to turn around poor owner satisfaction?

Carbuyer Rating

4.2 out of 5

Owners Rating

5.0 out of 5

Read owner reviews
Reliability & safety Rating

4.0 out of 5

BMW came 16th out of 29 manufacturers overall in our 2022 Driver Power survey, ahead of Audi (22nd) and Mercedes (23rd) but behind Lexus (12th). Safety is much more impressive and BMW's typically score top marks in crash tests.

BMW 1 Series reliability

According to our Driver Power satisfaction survey, you loved its engines and interior build quality, but were less positive about running costs including servicing bills and steep insurance. A higher-than-average 20.4% of you reported a fault within the first year of ownership. Hopefully, the all-new underpinnings of the 1 Series will usher in a new era for reliability, but only time will tell. In the unlikely event an issue should arise, the BMW comes with two years of free breakdown cover.

Safety

The 1 Series was awarded the maximum five-star safety rating by Euro NCAP in 2019. It performed well in the adult and child occupant protection categories, as well as for pedestrian safety and active safety features. For comparison, the very high-scoring Mazda3 scored 98% for adult protection, versus 83% for the 1 Series, and 81% rating for vulnerable road users, compared with 76% for the 1 Series.

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There are some new features, including a head-up display that can keep your eyes on the road ahead more of the time. Auto emergency braking is standard, with the ability to spot pedestrians and vehicles, along with lane-departure warnings. Optional systems include rear collision and cross-traffic warnings and lane-keeping assistance.

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Andy is Carbuyer's managing editor, with more than a decade of experience helping consumers find their perfect car. He has an MA in automotive journalism and has tested hundreds of vehicles.

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