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M135I LONG TERM TEST
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Hi, first time proper post so a quick intro is required.
I'm Ben, mid thirties, wife and two yr old living in deepest darkest Norfolk. Have spent too much time buying cars in the past and have owned over 20 to date. Highlights are an AX GT, 16v golf, 200 sx, 328 sport, e36 and e46 M3, WRX impreza, both shape S3's and most recently the family wagon 535d sport.

Onto the new car update, no long termers in the mags yet so thought it might be useful for some of the people looking at the new M135i to let you know what it's like to live with. Spec wise I went for mineral grey with the 8 speed auto, HK audio and adaptive dampers. I always knew the grey would be the stealth choice but in hindsight I probably would have gone for the silver or black as the wheels need a different colour to stand out. Other than that I may well have gone for the DAB and left out the dampers. No sat nav as the USB interface works brilliantly with the iPhone for both music and the maps app, the voice direction interrupts the stereo when needed and saves a couple of grand.
The option I really had concerns over when ordering was the auto box, this being the first performance car I would own without a stick. So far I'm a fan, it's silky smooth in everyday mode although it kicks down when overtaking quite viciously.The manual mode overcomes this problem and allows you to go through the rev range rather than shifting down to 6000 revs!! It holds the gears in sport mode too so quick B road driving is a bit like a playstation game. I think I would probably be quicker with a manual when flat out but for the balance of use the auto gets it.
The engine is now getting a workout when the roads allow. It's viciously quick through the first four gears and will light up the traction control easily in these conditions. It's very easy to get to silly speeds and it makes a lovely noise that reminds me a bit of the impreza whoosh when swapping cogs. I think my previous S3 would have been quicker point to point at this time of year because the super stickys on the BM struggle for grip in the damp and you end up backing of through the bends for fear of a moment. Can't wait for spring to test the handling a bit more. One thing for sure it's as quick as anything else I have owned in a straight line. Try and stay out of the Eco pro mode though as it makes anything other than motorway driving dull as dishwater.
Boring bits, I am averaging 32 mpg although just got back from the in laws in Surrey with a record 39 mpg!! That's better than the 535d achieved. Only fault so far has been a squeaky seat that was fixed quickly with no fuss. Another plus point here is my BMW dealer is head and shoulders better than the Audi and VW options both for a deal and the aftercare.
All in all I'm pleased I went for this over the other options I had considered and I would definitely recommend it too anyone considering any of the current hot hatch or small saloon options. Best of all the missus won't drive it as it scares her shitless :)

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Cheers Ben

Good write up and sounds like a cracking motor but it is so ugly! :?

Nice write up!

ShockDiamonds, this should make your mind up!

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Out of step with the forum.

Cheers.

I left out the looks, it is a paper bag job ;)

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Cheers Ben

That economy is really rather good. Any idea what the economy is like driving into town only?

You obviously don't consider the 535d a performance car, since that's auto only ;)

Nice write up, any more pictures? :lol:

It seems like great value for the performance and package. I know it's not a fair comparison but for 30-35k ish, I would rather scratch my 1M Coupe itch.

Glad your enjoying it, Can't wait to pick mine up in March. Harry named it as his pick for lowest depreciating car in this months Evo. 8)

Holley said...

Glad your enjoying it, Can't wait to pick mine up in March. Harry named it as his pick for lowest depreciating car in this months Evo. 8)

4 month wait?

Sod the looks I thinks it's a brilliant car. As for the auto not being as quick as a stick I'd have to say you are wrong unless you are a pro racing driver.
Nice write up this a definatly a future car for myself with the auto box

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For sure

Nice 'fast fleet' report there, good to hear you're enjoying it. Sounds like a very impressive car 8)

Dr.(tbc) Alex said...

Holley said...

Glad your enjoying it, Can't wait to pick mine up in March. Harry named it as his pick for lowest depreciating car in this months Evo. 8)

4 month wait?

I know, bar stewards

Nice report and very impressive MPG figures! 8)

nice to hear it is as good to own as the reviews suggest. As others say, just a pity about the looks

Very nice write up.

Ben - Do you think I would get 32mpg on my commute? 80 dual carriageway for a few miles, 50mph country roads, then 30mph villages with the occasional delay for school buses and waste collection etc followed by 50mph dual carriageway. All over about 20 miles. After years of around 20mpg economy I'm probably heading too far in the other direction and shooting for 45mpg or thereabouts. Wondering whether a 125d M Sport would be a better option for me, maybe with the adaptive system optioned in place of the M Sport suspension.

Edit - some pics would be good please if you would be so kind ;)

Updated December 31, 2012 at 10:07 AM

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BMW Car Magazine

Alan said...

As others say, just a pity about the looks

:roll:

The looks don't matter. It's a new car, so he's more of an enthusiast than almost all of us and his neighbours are probably envious.

;)

Shockdiamonds - I only do a ten mile hike to work now post move recently but it's a mix of B road and slow A road as we crawl along at 50. You have to use the Eco pro mode to get over 30mpg as without it will be 28-30. Given the price of petrol this is better than the 535d I had been driving. In the run up to buying it I did run a 120d sport for two days and to be totally unevo it would do nearly 50 mpg no problem and get you to the place you want to go as quickly if its dual carriageway. When you want to let loose its not the car for me though.

Jobbo - I don't consider any diesel a performance car, just the work of the devil ( it was a good motor though)

I'll post some more pics, be warned they will be dirty!

Edit- I would have loved the 1M but you cannot beat the finance deals and real world costs of this motor. £400 a year for insurance £200 tax +30mpg and 0-60 in the fours!!!

Updated December 31, 2012 at 11:13 AM

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Cheers Ben

I personally don't get what all the fuss is about regarding the looks they look ok to me.

Cheers

Steve

_Steveo_ said...

I personally don't get what all the fuss is about regarding the looks they look ok to me.

Cheers

Steve

You drive an ugly Porsche.

Ah but at least I do drive a Porsche :D

Cheers

Steve

_Steveo_ said...

Ah but at least I do drive a Porsche :D

Cheers

Steve

:lol:

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