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Spy Video: 2012 BMW 1 Series at Nurburgring

According to our sources, the official unveiling of the new BMW 1 Series Hatchback is just weeks away, but in the mean time, BMW engineers continue to test drive several prototypes across Germany.

Latest two test mules were spotted at the Nurburgring race track doing some hot laps before they retreat at the BMW Center near the Ring. The first model to come to market in 2012 is the three and five-door hatchback, followed a year later by the coupe and convertible variants.

The new generation 1 Series hatchback is built under the codename F20, and will feature a slightly longer wheelbase and wider track than the current model. The car is set to go head-to-head with the Audi A3, one of the market leaders in the entry-level premium segment.

F20 1 Series sports a lower character line that gives the car a more aerodynamic look. The design is considered to be an evolution of the current generation 1 Series, but with much more convex and concave shapes, 3D surfaces, a trend that evolves from recently unveiled BMWs.

As part of the new design language, BMW revamped the headlights, bumper and kidney grille design. For the first time, LED signals made their way onto the side mirrors, an interesting move by BMW and likely followed by future models. Inside, the steering wheel design and dashboard controls align with the current design language at BMW, including the new LCD screen that takes a similar stand as the one recently displayed in the new 6 Series Concept. The car will inherit some cues from the 5 Series, taking the sometimes criticized 1er interior to higher luxury levels.

The public debut will take place on home turf at the Frankfurt Auto Show in September.

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