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      06-09-2011, 12:28 PM   #40
ptack
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Couldn't open the OP attachment, but I believe this is a different Top Gear (almost) review. It's from Richard Hammond's blog.
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New BMW 1 Series M Coupe - one seriously great car
31/05/2011
ABOUT 20 seconds into Pulp Fiction I knew I was going to like it.
As soon as you see Samuel L Jackson on the screen you know youíre in for some gratuitous violence, machine guns and creative profanity.
As soon as Pride and Prejudice started and I saw the period costumes I knew that a chase involving American muscle cars was unlikely to happen, so I lost interest immediately.
It is the same with cars. The really great cars tell you within 15ft that they are going to give you a seriously good time Ė and it takes only the same distance to work out the serious duffers.
It happened last week with the new BMW 1-Series M Coupe. Barely had I got out of the drive when a large grin appeared on my face.
Of course, we had a fairly good idea that this car was going to be rather good. First, BMW hasnít made many mingers (5-Series GT and the X6M excepted). Second, it would take serious bungling to make a small coupe powered by a 340bhp engine boring to drive.
There have been no mistakes made with the M Coupe. Itís fantastic.
Youíve seen the pictures but wait until you see it on the road. The wider wheelarches look massive as they stretch over the 19in alloy wheels.
From the back the car looks seriously aggressive, with four tail pipes and squat Ďready to pounceí looks.
The front and rear tracks are wider, too, yet the whole car is only 1,932mm wide (including the mirrors). When youíre in the M Coupe it feels small, compact and manageable. Which is why, point-to-point, it will easily match the more powerful and expensive M3.
I reckon itíd be quicker by a noticeable margin.
HARDCORE
BMW has aimed at its hardcore fans with this car. Itís only available with a proper manual gearbox with no smart-Alec double clutches and Ďtronic this and that.
Last year I had a quick go in an original, 1980s four-cylinder M3 at Top Gearís test track. Not particularly fast by modern standards, but massive fun to drive. People who liked that M3, and the E36 model that followed, will love this car.
Itís packed with driver aids but you can turn them all off and operate without a safety net.
Not a problem for a decent driver on dry roads, but if you switch everything off in the rain you might want to have a Scandinavian surname or be called Lewis or Jenson.
The engine is a straight six of 2,979cc, with 340bhp at 5,900rpm and 450Nm of torque between 1,500 and 4,500rpm.
The engine has a pair of turbochargers and some clever electronics will give you an extra 50Nm of torque in Ďoverboostí mode.
Modern engines tend not to suffer from turbo-lag and this one doesnít, but you do get an extra big kick up the backside at about 2,000rpm.
UNCORKED
This is a seriously fast car. The top speed is limited to 155mph (I bet it would go over 170mph uncorked) and does 0-62mph in 4.9sec.
But cars with even double the power wouldnít see it for tyre smoke because itís so well suited to our roads.
The ride is excellent at high speeds so you arenít worried youíll be bounced into a field.
Thereís much to report about the interior of the 1-Series M Coupe, too.
There are a few M badges here but no special seats or brightly-coloured seatbelts. Neither is it full of gadgets.
Itís a straightforward car for people who want raw performance.
Thereís even a lot of space inside. Almost as much as in the M3. Which leads us to the question of whether you need an M3 when for a lot less you can have the even more fun M Coupe. Iíd have the smaller car.
BMW is only building 450 right-hand drive M Coupes and a large number of them are already spoken for.
If your nameís not on that list, you could be missing out on a seriously great car.
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