Friday, January 22, 2010

BMW 335 Coupe with M Sports.

As much as I am enamoured of the the M3 coupe in Jerez Black, the price is the only set back. I cannot fault the drive of the car at all. However for a little more than half of it's price, there's this baby, the 335 Coupe with M Sports. It's such a beauty (although it lacks the hump in the front that makes the M3 sexy), it drives and handles fantastically, giving enough pleasure to the most fanatic driver.

Read Jeremy Clarkson's review of its handling and performance below and join me in my little fantasy of owning one of these.

In a word, superb. The BMW 3 Series is renowned for its handling capabilities, and the Coupe does not disappoint.

The steering feels satisfyingly heavy, and chatters away through its thick rim constantly, thanks to its mechanical rather than electric assistance. The chassis offers up monumental grip, and when you want to play, the DSC and DTC traction control systems allow a good degree of oversteer before reigning in the balance and restoring traction.

Turn them off and the 335i is magnificent fun on track. A heavy right foot will break traction easily but it never feels out of control, and a quick steering correction will see you powersliding like a pro.

And it’s just as happy snaking through town over dodgy surfaces as it is sweeping through fast B roads thanks to its near perfect 50:50 weight distribution.

The M Sport suspension does a fantastic job of keeping the rear wheels firmly planted and the front wheels wonderfully fluid. And you won't even realise you're on BMW's infamous ride-hardening run-flat tyres...

As much pulling power as the V8-powered M3 and acceleration figures to give owners of E46 BMW M3s something to chew on make this 335i an astonishingly rapid motor.

Two small turbochargers strapped to the straight-six engine provide 295lb/ft of pulling power and a whopping 306bhp, available from as little as 2,000rpm, which means you can venture into licence losing territory before the engine has even woken up.

But – hold the revs over 4,500rpm and the 3-litre engine responds with a classic BMW metallic bark and violent acceleration.

Any gear and any revs – just floor the happy pedal and the 335i shoots off with neck-snapping force.

The 0-62mph dash is dispatched in just 5.4 seconds and the 335i will comfortably hit its 155mph top speed without breaking a sweat.

And don't forget, this engine won the International Engine of the Year Award.

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