- The 2-Series is new for 2014, replacing the 1-Series
- 320-hp, turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine
- Eight-speed automatic or six-speed manual transmission
Debuting as a brand new model, the 2014 BMW M235 is one of two models that BMW introduces to replace the outgoing 1-Series, but thankfully it keeps the same winning formula of small car, big engine.
BMW is expanding its model lineup at such an alarming rate, they’re going to run out of digits soon. The 228i and M235i replace the 128i/135i for the new model year and become the smallest pair of vehicles in BMW’s gasoline lineup, the electric i3 excepted. Enthusiasts shared a fondness for the defunct 1-Series; they were fun to drive, small, tight-handling, rear-wheel drive cars. Though the 2-Series is slightly larger overall, 2.8-inches longer to be specific, it seems to retain the same philosophy, but without the same awkward styling. The M235 looks closer to the popular 3-Series, with smoother lines and less of the abruptly tall cockpit that the 1-Series suffered from. 18-inch light-alloy M branded wheels come standard, with 19-inch alloys optional.
Under the hood, the M235 features a 322-hp, twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder that makes 332 pounds-feet of torque. There are two transmission options, an eight-speed automatic is standard with a six-speed manual available at no extra cost. In addition to its larger engine, the M235 also features a few other mechanical upgrades versus the 228, including an M Sport braking system, M adaptive suspension, and a sport tuned exhaust.
Inside, the M235’s added length gives it a bit more legroom than its predecessor but there’s still not much. You can fit people in the backseat for shorter trips, but for anything vaguely resembling a road trip, I’d feel a twinge of guilt. The interior offers plenty when it comes to comfort and technology, with 10-way powered front sport seats, HD radio, Bluetooth connectivity (but not audio streaming), iDrive with a 6.5-inch color display, USB port, push-button start, and dual-zone automatic climate control. Leather upholstery, navigation with a larger 8.8-inch screen, and heated front seats are optional.
Safety features include all-wheel disc antilock brakes, six airbags, automatic collision notification, and an electronic stability system with traction control. A rearview camera is optional, as is adaptive cruise control, and a parking assistant.