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      04-26-2011, 11:56 AM   #1
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Autocar 1M review online

Autocar review online.

http://www.autocar.co.uk/CarReviews/...ies-M-/256701/


What is it?

Although the M Coupé is based on the recently facelifted 135i Coupé, much has changed in the transformation to M-car – not least the chassis, which is largely taken from the bigger, more expensive M3. And more than anyone else, the likeable German’s reputation is riding on how well it is perceived.


What’s it like?

It’s one of the best-looking M-cars in some time. Much effort has gone into modifying the 1-series coupé’s steel body to accommodate its upgraded chassis and give the M Coupé a much more muscular appearance than the 135i. In the metal, it looks bulldog tough.

On light throttle loads it is extremely tractable and can pull taller gears at moderate speeds. It’s a big departure from the peaky delivery of past M-cars and will give the M Coupé a wider appeal than has previously been the case with BMW’s more extreme performance models. Just don’t expect the sort of heavenly throttle response you get in an M3.

Peak power is put at 335bhp, developed at a low (by M-car standards) 5900rpm. It is sufficient to provide the 1495kg M Coupé with 224bhp per tonne; that’s 38bhp per tonne shy of the 1580kg M3 coupé.

What moulds the new M-car’s solid levels of performance more than anything, though, is its torque – 332lb ft of it from 1500-4500rpm. That compares with 295lb ft at 3900rpm for its long-established normally aspirated V8 sibling.

Sending drive to the rear wheels is a conventional six-speed manual gearbox – the one and only choice offered. Operating in combination with an electronic M differential, the ’box has a typical BMW feel, with a long-winded clutch action and relatively long (if precise) throws.

To really succeed, however, the M Coupé also needs to deliver on the handling front. Initial impressions are overwhelmingly positive. Even on tricky sections of blacktop, the M Coupé is deceptively fast, possessing the sort of grip to carry big speeds through corners with true authority. And it achieves this while providing the sort of feedback you won’t find in any rival, RS3 included.

The steering is old-school heavy in its weighting and extremely direct. In combination with the altered front suspension geometry – which includes increased camber, altered offset and a greater number of aluminium components – it turns in far more eagerly than the 135i Coupé, and as lateral forces build it continues to track faithfully, allowing you to correct your line with small adjustments.

The M Coupé feels more firmly planted than the 135i, but it’s not overly fidgety. In fact, there’s a surprising amount of composure built into the suspension, most notably under compression, where it manages to soak up all but the worst bumps with authority.

And no caveats about the brakes. The M Coupé uses the same 360mm front and 350mm rear ventilated and cross-drilled steel stoppers as the M3. They’re monstrously powerful, hauling it up from big speeds with real conviction. They’re mated to a pedal with proper feel and a decent amount of travel.


Should I buy one?

The longer you spend at the wheel of the M Coupé, the more you come to appreciate its overall ability. Its focus is perhaps a little broader than we’ve come to expect from BMW M, but when it arrives in the UK next month it’ll be just as keenly sought after. It’s not a junior M3, as many suggested it would be. No, it has its own distinct character and, in real-world terms, is a good deal faster than its more expensive sibling.
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      04-26-2011, 12:04 PM   #2
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That's pretty resoundingly positive I'd say...
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      04-26-2011, 12:07 PM   #3
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It is odd reading the reviews containing their ideas of the potential interest in the 1M. Generally, the reviews are published before the public becomes aware of a new vehicle. In the case of the 1M, they are arriving after public awareness and, in some cases, after the cars availability.
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      04-26-2011, 12:43 PM   #4
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...in real-world terms, is a good deal faster than its more expensive sibling.
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      04-26-2011, 12:53 PM   #5
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Wow a great review. Anyone wanting to buy one in the UK having read this may have missed the boat?? Good for second hand values down the road. Can't wait till they do a full test!! Also the EVO review should be very positive.
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      04-26-2011, 01:52 PM   #6
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Nice review. But one thing they got wrong. The 1m has a mechanical rear diff, not an electronic one.

In comparison to Auto, Motor und Sport they loved the grip on the street -> "...where it manages to soak up all but the worst bumps with authority"
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      04-26-2011, 01:56 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrRoboto View Post
...in real-world terms, is a good deal faster than its more expensive sibling.
This line seemed to suggest blistering midrange acceleration. SHould be fun to drive, but I don't buy it. Having driven a 335is with the same engine, it certainly isn't "a good deal faster than its more expensive sibling". Shaving a couple of hundred pounds will make the 1M faster than the 335is, but I doubt the above line.

I don't see why the 1M has to be measured against the M3 all the time. It's a fantastic car. Isn't that enough? Has BMW become so bereft of competitors that all we are left with is comparison with other BMW models?
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      04-26-2011, 02:02 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ns2000x View Post

I don't see why the 1M has to be measured against the M3 all the time. It's a fantastic car. Isn't that enough? Has BMW become so bereft of competitors that all we are left with is comparison with other BMW models?
I've been saying that since 2008 when the 135 was compared to the 335 and almost nothing else. It's just the way it is...
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      04-26-2011, 02:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ns2000x View Post
I don't see why the 1M has to be measured against the M3 all the time. It's a fantastic car. Isn't that enough? Has BMW become so bereft of competitors that all we are left with is comparison with other BMW models?
The M3 is the standard not only of BMW M cars but in the entire performance automobile market. To not be compared to the M3 is to avoid stepping on either cars toes. The 1M is going to not only be compared often to the e92 M3, but also the e46 M3, e30 M3, and hell why not the e36 M3 too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ns2000x View Post
Has BMW become so bereft of competitors that all we are left with is comparison with other BMW models?
No, but most people reading a 1M review are fully aware of the M3 and its performance - so why not compare to something people can relate to?
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      04-26-2011, 02:05 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ns2000x View Post
This line seemed to suggest blistering midrange acceleration. SHould be fun to drive, but I don't buy it. Having driven a 335is with the same engine, it certainly isn't "a good deal faster than its more expensive sibling".
You do realize it's not a direct 335is transplant engine don't you? There was internal work done to the 1M engine.
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      04-26-2011, 02:14 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuned1 View Post
You do realize it's not a direct 335is transplant engine don't you? There was internal work done to the 1M engine.
Tuned1 -

Although this has been suggested by various "sources" from time to time, I don't believe any hard details or authoritative confirmation has ever been provided.

I, for one, believe the motor is the same as one in the 335is and the Z4sDrive35is and the difference in ecu tuning is very minor.

BTW, this is no way dampens my enthusiasm for the car!

Neil
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      04-26-2011, 02:14 PM   #12
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Garage List
How sure of that are you? RealOEM lists identical part numbers for the short engine. 11 002 155 828
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      04-26-2011, 02:18 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red135 View Post
It is odd reading the reviews containing their ideas of the potential interest in the 1M. Generally, the reviews are published before the public becomes aware of a new vehicle. In the case of the 1M, they are arriving after public awareness and, in some cases, after the cars availability.
I feel the same way. The marketing machine keeps pushing a car that is virtually sold out in most countries.

I just wish they manufactured this one the same as the rest of the line up so, you know, we could negotiate the price, get decent lease rates and... actually own one!
/rant
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      04-26-2011, 02:29 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuned1 View Post
You do realize it's not a direct 335is transplant engine don't you? There was internal work done to the 1M engine.
+1. But, it is closest to the Z4is.
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      04-26-2011, 02:30 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Bread View Post
How sure of that are you? RealOEM lists identical part numbers for the short engine. 11 002 155 828
I don't know about him, but I am 100%.
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      04-26-2011, 02:42 PM   #16
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BMW want this car to appeal to a younger market and they are aware that the quoted outputs should not undermine the M3 but also ensure the m1 gets a good insurance group so that premiums are reasonable. On the other hand as we have seen the top speed limiter appears soft and track performance is strong. So I think we can assume the m1 has a few tweaks that BMW wouldn't admit to in public. let's see one on a dyno.
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      04-26-2011, 02:59 PM   #17
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Since I drive a Z4 35is, was wondering the same thing, is it the same engine, and if not what are the differences in the 1M
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      04-26-2011, 03:12 PM   #18
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"No, it has its own distinct character and, in real-world terms, is a good deal faster than its more expensive sibling." I don't understand this comment. Faster? Top speed? I am not following... Somebody elaborate?
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      04-26-2011, 03:34 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pauldramos View Post
"No, it has its own distinct character and, in real-world terms, is a good deal faster than its more expensive sibling." I don't understand this comment. Faster? Top speed? I am not following... Somebody elaborate?
I think what they imply is that in real-world situations the M3 will not be able to fully flex its muscles and take advantage of the rev-range which tends to even the playing field with the 1M - and in their opinion make the 1M faster.

If I read that right, I am skeptical and they seem to be finding fault with one of the greatest positives of the M3 - seemingly endless, motorcycle-like revs
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      04-26-2011, 03:44 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pyrat View Post
I think what they imply is that in real-world situations the M3 will not be able to fully flex its muscles and take advantage of the rev-range which tends to even the playing field with the 1M - and in their opinion make the 1M faster.

If I read that right, I am skeptical and they seem to be finding fault with one of the greatest positives of the M3 - seemingly endless, motorcycle-like revs
OK, so they are not saying in actuality the 1m is faster - TOP SPEED - but one can actually utilize this cars power more fully, whereas with the M3 there is a lot of unutilized power in daily driving?

I actually sent an email to the editor requesting an explanation because it is a confusing sentence. I really don't like vagueness.
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      04-26-2011, 04:02 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pauldramos View Post
OK, so they are not saying in actuality the 1m is faster - TOP SPEED - but one can actually utilize this cars power more fully, whereas with the M3 there is a lot of unutilized power in daily driving?

I actually sent an email to the editor requesting an explanation because it is a confusing sentence. I really don't like vagueness.
haha, respect. Please send or post the response when you get it.
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      04-26-2011, 04:02 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pauldramos View Post
OK, so they are not saying in actuality the 1m is faster - TOP SPEED - but one can actually utilize this cars power more fully, whereas with the M3 there is a lot of unutilized power in daily driving?

I actually sent an email to the editor requesting an explanation because it is a confusing sentence. I really don't like vagueness.
Seems pretty standard UK criteria to me - whereas US mags are obsessed with numbers, Autocar, CAR, EVO et al are more concerned with day-to-day, point-to-point speed; the combination of handling and usable grunt.

The statement should read: "in day-to-day driving in the real-world, the 1M will probably be faster than the M3 point-to-point."
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