MotorTrend test drives the successor of the BMW 1M (or at least until the M2 comes out), the BMW M235i. The BMW M235i Coupe is the latest member of the BMW M Performance Automobile family and the first of its kind sold in the United States with a base price of $43,100.
Under the hood, the M235i uses the N55 six-cylinder inline powerplant with M Performance TwinPower Turbo technology which generates maximum output of 240 kW/326 hp and accelerates the BMW M235i Coupe from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 5.0 seconds (official figure).
But let’s have a look at the review by MotorTrend and see what performance they recorded aboard the M235i. Here is also our own test drive of the BMW M235i.
Someone in my neighborhood has a 1 Series M. It’s hard to miss, with its wide fenders and quad exhaust pipes. It’s orange, too, as if to further point out that there are just 739 like it in the U.S. and you don’t have one. Whenever I see a 1 Series M, I think of this car’s owner with no shortage of jealousy. Or, at least, I used to, because now there’s the BMW M235i.
“Initially” is the key word, because the more I drove the M235i, the more it reminded me of that orange 1M, and the more the jealousy started to disappear. Consider the performance data. The 1M was a party-sized M3, putting down the same numbers as its V-8 big brother. But despite the M235i’s perceived shortcomings, it’s right on the pace of those two. At 4.4 seconds to 60 mph and 13.0 seconds to the quarter mile (fastest run performed without launch control), the M235i is just 0.2 second behind the 1M. Braking performance is improved too, with a best stop of 103 feet from 60 mph (better by 2 feet). Most interesting, the M235i’s 0.97 g skidpad average and 24.9-second figure-eight lap time is off the 1M’s pace by just 0.01 average g and 0.1 second, respectively. The M235i could be faster, too. Our test car didn’t have that optional locking diff, and, as a result, had difficulty on corner exit in the figure eight.