BMW M240i xDrive

BMW M240i Coupe, 2022, side
BMW M240i Coupe, 2022, front
BMW M240i Coupe, 2022, rear
BMW M240i Coupe, 2022, interior
BMW M240i Coupe, 2022, rear seats
BMW M240i Coupe, 2022, boot

IT'S the most asked question of a motoring hack - what's the best car you've driven?

Usually, the said writer will struggle to name a single car and explain that there are several seriously good motors, depending on your individual needs.

But having spent some time in the company of the recently introduced BMW M240i, we're tempted to dispense with the filibuster and give it the unequivitable thumbs up.

Such is the all-round excellence of the two-door coupe which will keep pace with many supercars despite carrying a price tag of below £50,000.

Let's start with the engine. In these times of electrification, three-cylinder units and scaled down power plants, the M240i's three litre, turbocharged straight six stands out like a wolf among sheep. And its barn-storming acceleration continues that metaphor.

It will surge to 62mph in a fraction more than four seconds putting it in the Porsche 911/McLaren territory - cars that cost two or three times as much.

And with four-wheel-drive it has no trouble in feeding that power on to the Tarmac in undramatic, lethally efficient fashion.

Meanwhile the ride is calm and composed but stiff enough to resist body roll and the steering is beefy and precise though it does lacks the sensitivity of say a Porsche or an F-Type Jag. Throttle response is immediate and furious if all 374 horsepower are allowed free rein.

The accompanying sound is a satisfying snarl which is amplified if ‘sport' or ‘sport plus' is selected on the central panel. The twin clutch automatic gearbox changes are super fast. Quicker than anyone can manage manually.

The Two Series Coupe is a smaller cousin to the Four Series, yet can still carry four, although those in the rear will have to be fairly flexible getting in and exiting. Those up front are well catered for with ample space and a beautifully crafted facia, supportive black leather sports seating with blue stitching complete with electric adjustment.

For such a short four-seat body the boot is really generously sized and can absorb nearly 400litres of luggage, making the M240i a genuine grand tourer. Rear seat flip down to accommodate longer loads.

Obviously, with copious power it's unlikely to be hugely economical. Nevertheless CO2 of 186g/km indicate it may not be as thirsty as many fear. We easily attained 28-30mpg and on one long run reached an average of 32mpg. Show it some twisty bends and make full use of the excellent paddle gear change and consumption increases by up to 10mpg.

Styling tends to be a personal view, but we felt the M240i works better from some angles rather than others. From the front it looks squat and purposeful with gently flared wheel arches and a bulging bonnet, but profile and from the rear it tends to appear a tad awkward and not quite so well balanced as the graceful 4 Series coupe.

Colour plays an important role here, and the model we borrowed was in thundernight, a sort of dark purplish blue. Maybe a lighter shade would be more becoming.

Plenty of standard kit on the M240i including air con, sat nav, alarm system and memory seats, but the loan car also came with technology pack of which head-up display was a very useful feature especially as a means to keep a close eye on the speed!

FAST FACTS

BMW M240i xDrive

Price: £44,590

Mechanical: 3.0-litre, 6 cyl, 374bhp petrol engine driving 4 wheels via automatic gearbox

Max Speed: 155mph

0-62mph: 4.1sec

Combined MPG: 34.4

Insurance Group: 37

C02 emissions: 186g/km

Bik rating: 37%

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