By Drew Johnson
Friday, Apr 20th, 2012 @ 4:58 pm
 
One of the cars on the BMW stand at this year's Geneva Show was the Concept M135i, a performance version of the second-generation 1-Series three-door hatchback with M division upgrades to its suspension, brakes and turbocharged inline-six.

In an interview with BMW Blog, BMW M CEO Dr. Friedrich Nitschke revealed that the M135i will eventually make its way off the show stand and onto the roads of America, though the hatchback bodystyle will only be offered in Europe.

While it was originally thought that the M135i would arrive stateside as a coupe or convertible (the two bodystyles confirmed for the U.S. 1-Series), a new statement from BMW suggests that car will actually be offered as a sedan.

"The BMW M135i is to be added to the BMW 1 Series as a new high-performance, top-of-the-range compact sedan," BMW said in a statement.

While it's possible the word "sedan" is simply a translation mistake, we doubt the world's largest luxury automaker would make such a gaffe. In all likelihood the M135i sedan will stand as the U.S.' performance version of the 1-Series as neither the three- or five-door models will be sold on these shores.

Whatever the body style, BMW has confirmed that European sales of the M135i, which will boast the company's xDrive all-wheel drive system, will begin in July 2012. Look for the M135i to launch in America at some point in 2013.

Concept M135i Details
The Concept M135i features unique styling and performance improvements from BMW M performance division. The concept sports one of the M division's typical front end designs, giving the car a slightly more aggressive look than its standard counterpart. Large air inlets add the car's sporty looks, but also function to feed air to the Concept M135i's six-cylinder engine.

Out back, BMW designers focused on giving the Concept M135i a wider appearance, achieved through the use of a remodeled rear apron finished in Dark Shadow metallic. The rear apron also incorporates a double tailpipe finished in dark chrome.

Side mirrors capped in Ferric Grey, side window surrounds in BMW Individual High Gloss Shadow Line and a unique set of 18-inch alloy wheels round out the Concept M135i exterior design.

BMW is keeping the exact details of Concept M135i's engine a secret, but the German automaker does say the car uses a six-cylinder engine featuring M Performance Twin Power Turbo technology, good enough for "output of more than 300 horsepower." In order to keep that power in check, the Concept M135i is equipped with an uprated suspension and M sports braking system.

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