Feature

The 2011 BMW 1-Series M

What the critics say about BMW's $46,135 new coupe

The New York Times
BMW’s vaunted M division is known for overachieving performance cars, and this “brawnier version” of its compact 1 Series is a “brilliant addition” to the line. Answering BMW purists’ demands for a bimmer like the lighter, simpler M3 of old, this limited-production coupe pairs a “spartan interior” with a nimbleness “buffed to a high-budget gloss.”

The Wall Street Journal
Only BMW fundamentalists would argue that this “bratty little barrel-racer” isn’t a return to form. Sure, the 1M hasn’t fully digested its aerodynamic tweaks and oversize tires, resulting in “one of the ugliest, most disturbingly wrong car designs in modern history.” But this car is “quick, playful, aggressive, and laugh-out-loud fun to drive.” The twin-turbo 3.0-liter engine is rated at 335 hp, and can briefly hit 369 in overboost mode. In corners, the 1M even exhibits “a measure of the free-gimbaling character of the early M’s.”

Automobile
The 1M is not a car for everyone. BMW is selling fewer than 1,000 in the U.S. before it begins rolling out an all-new 1-series. Some drivers who act now will be challenged by the 1M’s vivid steering and “ultra-sporty suspension tuning.” Still, we love this coupe, a car so good “it shrugs off flaws.” By our measure, it’s “a future classic.”

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