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10 best cars similar to the BMW 1 Series

March 15, 2022 by

The BMW 1 Series is a very well-built, comfortable and well-equipped hatchback that is also fun to drive and comes with a great range of engines.

However, it may not be the right car for everyone. With this in mind, hereare 10 alternatives to the BMW 1 Series.

Our pick of the top 10 BMW 1 Series alternatives are:

  1. Audi A3
  2. Mercedes A-Class
  3. Volkswagen Golf
  4. Mazda 3
  5. Ford Focus
  6. Peugeot 308
  7. Seat Ateca
  8. Skoda Octavia
  9. Citroen C4
  10. Nissan Leaf

Audi A3

  • Recommended trim: S Line
  • Recommended engine: 1.5-litre petrol
  • carwow price from: £24,648*
  • Wowscore: 8/10

If you’re looking for a premium hatch, you’ll probably be looking to go German. The Audi A3 is a great looking car both inside and out, and you get great standard equipment. It’s also spacious, with enough room for your passengers and their luggage.

The 1.5-litre petrol engine is a great all-rounder, it has 150hp and will return almost 50mpg. It’s smooth and quiet on the motorway and irons out bumps in the road well, however it won’t be quite as fun to drive as the 1 Series.

Mercedes A-Class

  • Recommended trim: AMG Line
  • Recommended engine: 2.0-litre diesel
  • carwow price from: £28,197*
  • Wowscore: 8/10

The Mercedes A-Class is the cheapest way to get a three-pointed star on the boot lid of your car, but that doesn’t mean it’s inferior to other models in the Mercedes range. It’s a classy looking car on the outside, with an interior to match.

The build quality may not be quite on par with the BMW, but the design is properly eye-catching with shiny trims and huge screens dominating the dash. It’s a comfortable car to travel in as well, with a smooth ride and great seats.

Volkswagen Golf

  • Recommended trim: R Line
  • Recommended engine: 1.5-litre petrol
  • carwow price from: £22,898*
  • Wowcore: 9/10

If you’ve got your sensible hat on, the Volkswagen Golf is the only car you ever really need. It’s practical, comfortable, well equipped and well priced. It’s available with a wide range of petrol, diesel and plug-in hybrid engines, as well as hot GTI and R versions.

It may not be as engaging to drive as the BMW 1 Series, but it’s a very easy car to live with thanks to a smooth ride and spacious interior. The infotainment isn’t as good as the BMW’s though.

Mazda 3

  • Recommended trim: SE-L
  • Recommended engine: 2.0-litre petrol
  • carwow price from: £21,455*
  • Wowscore: 8/10

Mazda knows how to make a fun car, just look at the MX-5. The good news is that this DNA also transfers well to practical Mazda 3 hatchback. It’s almost as engaging on a back road as the BMW, however it comes in a fair bit cheaper.

You won’t feel short-changed inside either, because the materials look and feel high quality and it’s packed with tech. Rear space is a bit tight though, and alternatives are more comfortable.

Ford Focus

  • Recommended trim: ST-Line
  • Recommended engine: 1.0-litre petrol
  • carwow price from: £20,898*
  • Wowscore: 9/10

The Ford Focus is another family hatchback that’s known for being both fun to drive and practical. It handles back roads very well, while also being comfortable for day-to-day driving.

Equipment is generous as well. All cars come with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, voice recognition and air conditioning.

Peugeot 308

  • Recommended trim: Allure
  • Recommended engine: 1.6-litre PHEV
  • carwow price from: £23,097*
  • Wowscore: 8/10

The Peugeot 308 is the car to go for if you think the BMW 1 Series’ interior is a bit dull. The cabin design is packed full of Parisian flair and the materials used look great.

The exterior is just as outlandish as the interior as well, so you’re certainly not going to lose it in a car park. To further sweeten the deal, it’s a comfy car to travel in.

Seat Ateca

  • Recommended trim: SE
  • Recommended engine: 1.5-litre petrol
  • carwow price from: £22,522*
  • Wowscore: 7/10

For the price of a BMW 1 Series hatchback you could have a practical family SUV in the form of the Seat Ateca. This gives you loads of space inside along with sharp styling.

It’s even pretty fun to drive, for an SUV that is, and it’s also comfortable and well equipped. If you really want performance, you can even go for the Cupra Ateca with its 300hp engine.

Skoda Octavia

  • Recommended trim: SE L
  • Recommended engine: 1.4-litre PHEV
  • carwow price from: £20,556*
  • Wowscore: 8/10

If it’s no-nonsense practicality you’re after, then look no further than the Skoda Octavia. It’s got a cavernous boot, loads of passenger space and all the equipment you could ever need.

It’s well built and comfortable as well, and there are plenty of engines to choose from. The plug-in hybrid will offer the best running costs, or you can go for the hot vRS model if performance is what you need.

Citroen C4

  • Recommended trim: Sense
  • Recommended engine: 1.2-litre petrol
  • carwow price from: £19,007*
  • Wowscore: 7/10

The Citroen C4 is one of the most comfortable cars on the market at its price point. It glides over bumps in town, on the motorway and on back roads, but the trade-off for this is that it’s not the most fun hatchback to drive.

You can forgive it for this though because the C4 is very well equipped and great value for money.

Nissan Leaf

  • Recommended trim: Acenta
  • Recommended battery: 39kWh
  • carwow price: £25,619*
  • Wowscore: 8/10

Have you considered switching to an electric car? For the price of a BMW 1 Series you could have a Nissan Leaf and enjoy all the benefits of EV ownership.

Not only is the Leaf comfortable and well equipped, but you also won’t have to worry about road tax or the rising cost of petrol and diesel either.

Buy your new car (and sell your old one) through carwow

Are you looking for a hassle-free way to change your car? Well then head over to carwow.

You can configure your ideal new car and get it for a great price through our network of trusted dealers. You can even have the car delivered to your door at a time to suit you.

Selling your car through carwow is just as simple. Just upload some photos, answer a few questions and our dealers will bid for your car, getting you the best price for it. The dealer can then pick your car up and transfer the money straight into your bank account.

*Prices correct at the time of writing