Few cars in modern BMW history are as special as the BMW 1 Series M. Built because engineers wanted to make something special, not because bean-counters thought it’d be a wise financial decision, the BMW 1M has been an enthusiast’s car since its inception. Despite that, enthusiasts and purists panned it when it was first announced. Boy were they wrong.
The BMW 1M was criticized when the Bavarians first showed it off because of the fact that it had an engine from a Z4, some borrowed bits from the E92 M3 and it was *gasp* turbocharged. Back in 2011, when it was first released, turbocharging was still a new idea for BMW M and fans were not happy about its introduction. Yet, all of these years later, when turbos are a commonplace and cars have become more technological and advanced than ever before, the 1M has aged wonderfully.
Top Gear’s Chris Harris has a BMW 1M of his own and seems to be a huge fan. In fact, after a quick drive, the BMW 1M made him feel so special, he decided to write about it. In this new article from Top Gear, we get to see Harris reflect on his own 1 Series M and what makes it so special.
Harris’ BMW 1M isn’t stock. His actually makes almost 400 hp, thanks to a tune from Litchfield and an aftermarket exhaust. With those upgrades, he actually feels that the 1M might be the very best M car he’s ever driven. Considering Harris has driven essentially every single M car in history, as well as owned several, I’m inclined to believe him.
I can only imagine what a 400 hp 1M is like, with its six-speed manual, rear-wheel drive and proper M differential. Just the thought of it is getting me exciting, I can only imagine what it’s like to actually own such a thing.