New sub-compact model will be BMW's first front wheel-drive car. The 0-series will go up against competing premium brand models like the Audi A1 and the Mercedes A-Class.

This tidbit of information comes to us care of Car Magazine's print edition, which has reported on online.

BMW will be building a competitor to the Audi A1 and the Mercedes A-Class. The so-called '0-Series', apparently referred to internally as the UKL1 (Untere Kompactklasse, or sub-compact) over at BMW, will be based on the third-generation MINI platform and, hence, be BMW's first front-wheel drive model.

What's striking about this news is that BMW has always been a strict rear-wheel drive automaker, a trademark that distinguishes it from its fellow premium brand competitors. BMW will be going back on a promise never to make a front-drive model. The sub-compact range is scheduled for a market release in 2013.

According to the report, the UKL1/0-series will be offered as both a 3-door and 5-door hatch, with a two-seat roadster variant also in the works. BMW will also develop a couple of brand new 3 and 4-cylinder engines to power the new range.

The 0-series will likely be built at the same plant in Oxford in the U.K. where MINI models are assembled.

Now, does calling it the 0-Series make sense or does it just seem ridiculous? Hard to say.



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