While the BMW 1 Series Sedan has already been introduced in China, the company has revealed it is no rush to launch the Audi A3 Sedan rival in other key markets, Autocar UK reports.

A source told the publication the 1 Series Sedan, a joint venture with Brilliance, will solely focus on the Chinese market, where small cars with sedan body styles remain popular. By contrast, European markets have a preference for small hatchbacks instead, something that is available with the current F20 1 Series.

“There are no immediate plans to sell the 1 Series saloon outside of China. The initial signs there are quite positive,” said the source. BMW is currently carrying out a feasibility study to ascertain the benefits of selling the 1 Series Sedan globally (outside China), although it is suggested that this will involve the next generation of the four-door model.

One of the reasons for BMW’s hold back is the impact the 1 Series Sedan may have on sales of the 3 Series. “We don’t want to get into a situation like that at Audi, where the smaller model has conquest sales from the larger model,” the source explained, suggesting that although the A3 Sedan has been a success, it has also stolen sales from the A4.

With Audi already offering a model to suit the segment, and with Mercedes-Benz set to introduce an upcoming A-Class Sedan, it certainly makes sense for the Bavarian carmaker to offer something similar soon or in the near future.

With the 1 Series Sedan being a front-wheel drive model, the next 1 Series hatchback is likely to follow suit, with talk of a 2019 debut. It is rumoured that by this time, BMW will begin offering the mechanically identical 1 Series Sedan to markets outside China. Should rear-wheel drive continue to be a necessity, a GranCoupe version of the next 2 Series could be another possibility.

GALLERY: BMW 1 Series Sedan