BMW's UKL platform has critics dreading an onslaught of front-wheel drive models, but the company insists it won't be all that bad.

BMW's product manager for front-wheel drive vehicles told Automotive News, "In the '90s we broke with tradition when we began selling SUVs along with our sedans. Customers realized they could get the driving dynamics BMW is renowned for from an SUV. We will see the same transition happening with front-wheel drive."

Frank Niederlaender's sentiments were echoed by BMW sales and marketing chief Ian Robertson who revealed he sees great potential in front-wheel drive vehicles. According to Robertson "One of the big advantages of UKL is that we are able to launch a lot of products almost simultaneously because we are doing the engineering at once."

In the next eight to ten years, BMW expects to offer up to 12 different models that are based on the UKL platform. We already know about a couple of them - including the BMW 1-Series GT and MINI Cooper / Cooper five-door - but Klaus Draeger, BMW's head of purchasing, hinted the company could launch a front-wheel hatchback, a larger hatchback and a small SUV.

Gallery: BMW UKL platform to underpin up to 12 models - report

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