Whenever a new M Performance car debuts, there will always be comparisons between it and its full-on M Division sibling. Reason being is that the M Performance version is usually quite a bit more comfortable, less compromised in daily use, and cheaper. So there will always be questions as to whether or not the M-lite is better than the full-calorie M car. In this case, the question comes from Rory Reid, and AutoTrader UK, who wonders if the BMW M240i is better than the actual M2.
Reid’s argument isn’t an uncommon one. The BMW M240i, thanks to its brilliant B58 engine, is every bit as fast as the M2, or even faster. Its all-wheel drive grip means it’s more consistent off the line and that it’s faster in wet weather situations. Its softer suspension and lighter steering are easier to use and its cabin is quieter. So, as a daily driver, it’s easy to argue that the M240i is better. However, that’s only true if you want something softer.
If you want a sports car, something to thrill you and put a smile on your face, the M240i simply can’t hang with the M2. Now, if you’re talking the first-gen M2, with the N55 engine and just 365 horsepower, maybe I can see an argument for the M240i in a straight line, but the latter still fails to thrill in the corners. The BMW M2 is sharper, has better steering, is more agile, and—more importantly—more fun. If you’re talking about the M2 Competition, forget about it. It’s lightyears ahead of the M240i, in terms of fun.
However, if you’re looking for a daily driver, the BMW M240i does offer a ton of value. It’s just as fast as even the M2 Competition, it’s more usable everyday, and its xDrive all-wheel drive system will keep it safer in bad weather. But is it a better driver’s car than the M2? Absolutely not.