The following report is brought to you via several sources – some of them public and some of them not. The most influential however, Herr26, is an avid commenter on MF and BF and is a well known insider at BMW.

What ‘s in a name? Look above and you can probably make out that the new BMW Compactive Sport Tourer will be small and wagon like. But what isn ‘t obvious (at least initially) is that this will be one of the first front wheel drive BMW ‘s ever offered by the company. Yes CST (alternatively known as the Compact Activity Tourer) is the infamous FWD BMW that either will help guarantee the BMW ‘s future financial success or destroy the brand.

But let ‘s put the contentious debate aside for a moment and take a closer look at the the car and the ideas behind it.

First it ‘s worth pointing out (as we have many times) that BMW of North America has no plans on importing any of the upcoming front wheel drive BMW ‘s to the US market. So while the CST indeed in the hit market in 2014, don ‘t look for anything like it in the US any time in the foreseeable future.

BMW ‘s strategy with the new front wheel drive platform is to leverage it ‘s front wheel drive MINI production and create compelling city products for the BMW brand. This platform (know as the UKL) is a modular architecture that will underpin a series of new Premium city models both to wear MINI and for the first time BMW badges.

In fact almost all front wheel drive BMW products will have MINI equivalents. So where BMW will have the CST, MINI will have the Traveller (not the final name). The differences will be down to style and software.

Based on sources the image above is very close to what we ‘ll be seeing with the CST. The look will be BMW but with a more raked look. The car ‘s distinctive family headlight shape which continues that “arrow shape at the inner edges , giving a more sportier and pronounced appearance. BMW will offer “Premium luxury ” with an LED option. In the 6er for example this changes the inner shape of the lights and will do the same for the Compactive Sport Tourer.

One aspect evident in the spy photographs the squared off the rear of the car where it is more rounded and dynamic over the rear section. This allows the glasshouse to extend upwards and become more “kicked-up ” giving a more sportier profile without a huge expanse of glass. The “hoffmeister ” kick is promonent at each side of the glasshouse (some things are truly sacred apparently) although not as dynamic as the rendering above.

Under the camouflage we see on the current prototypes there are three-dimensional “bloodline ” from the F20 allowing the car to illustrate some mass. A diagonal character line runs from the rear, allowing expanded wheel arches both front and rear. A more delicate surface treatment stretches along the lower flanks of the car.

The rear continues the typical BMW L-Shape character, similar in form to the BMW X1.

The interior uses similar form and function as the 1er but the advantages are clearer in the rear, where with the removal of the transmission tunnel. The CST has an advantage on rear passenger space in both head and legroom.

The BMW Compactive Sport Tourer is designed to be the more sportier offering of the new twins and will share not only the N20 family of engines but also the Three-cylinder N37 in its entry level offerings. The BMW Compactive Sport Tourer will be one of five BMW FWD models and one part of the 10 planned new MINI ‘s from the shared platform strategy.

The BMW FWD UKL Family in General.

– BMW 1er CITY compact
– BMW 1er Compactive Sport Tourer (CST)
– BMW 1er Family Activity Sport Tourer (FAST)
– BMW 1er Gran Turismo
– BMW 1er Roadster