As is the convention with BMW models as they near the end of their lifespan they receive a facelift, referred to by the catchy acronym LCI which of course stands for Life Cycle Impulse. Well you knew that didn’t you?

We’ve already seen many of these facelift changes close-up in the 1 Series M Coupe that we reviewed last week, so can speak with some insight on what stands out the most. As with the 1 M Coupe the rest of the 1 Series Coupe/Convertible range receives BMW’s innovative Air Curtain that counters turbulence near the front wheel arches and so reduces the aerodynamic resistance of the tyres. New exterior design accents have been incorporated into the headlight and tail light clusters, eliminating that bug-eyed look of the outgoing 1 Series and presenting a more grown-up look.

In the interior, new switches and controls have also upped the quality and classiness of the new 1 Series together with fitment of the new iDrive controller and the Professional Multi-Media package’s larger 8.8″ screen.

The 1 Series receives the latest direct injection BMW engines which in the 135i means the newest single, twin-scroll turbocharger and BMW’s revolutionary Valvetronic throttle-less intake technology. The 135i can also be equipped with BMW’s 7-speed Double Clutch Transmission (DCT), as featured on the BMW Z4 Roadster.

The rear differential on the 1 Series comes from a new generation of final drives optimised for smoothness and fuel efficiency. Featuring double-helical ball bearings for the first time, the differential runs at an even lower operating temperature reached more quickly than before thanks to the reduction of fluid required in the differential. Electronic rear brake management is always used to simulate a differential lock for stronger acceleration in turns and low-traction conditions.

There are a host of further small but meaningful changes including LeMans Blue Metallic exterior paint available exclusively when the M Sport Package is ordered, BMW ConnectedDrive Innovations to BMW Assist with Bluetooth and the iPod/USB Adapter, and a new interior trim option.

You can dig into all the details by visiting BMWBlog and whilst we’ve already received 2011 pricing for the 1 Series Sports Hatch, we’ve yet to receive these for the Coupe and Convertible, so we’ll update you on any changes once we receive them.

Photo gallery