Though a replacement is due in the coming year, the 2013 BMW 1 Series is still one of our favorite entry-level luxury sports cars on the market today. Even the demise of the highly-regarded 1-Series M Coupe hasn’t dampened our enthusiasm, since BMW has followed up with a sharper-edged 135is model meant to (temporarily) fill the void.
While last year’s 1-Series M came in Coupe form only, the 2013 135is can be ordered in Coupe or Convertible form, as can the other 128i and 135i models in the lineup. Under the hood of the 135is is a more potent version of BMW’s turbocharged in-line six, now rated at 320 horsepower and aided by a sport-tuned stability control system, a sport suspension and 18-inch wheels.
Other 1-Series models share similar styling, regardless of whether a 128i or 135i badge adorns their trunk lids. We like the car’s well-proportioned exterior styling, which somehow manages to be distinctive yet familiar to the rest of the BMW lineup at the same...