2015 BMW M235i: Feels Like a Luxury Car Should
by Ronald Montoya, Senior Consumer Advice Editor on November 2, 2015
I used to think there was a clearly defined hierarchy in the automotive world. Everyday passenger cars had small four-cylinder engines and luxury cars had V6s or V8s. Most Acura, BMW, Lexus, or Mercedes I encountered had a larger engine. I'd eventually learn that this wasn't always the case, but a small part of that perceived "natural order" sort of stayed with me.
This is why I love driving our 2015 BMW M235i so much. It feels like a luxury car should drive. The throttle is responsive, the engine pulls with authority and the stop-start system is not intrusive. Having 320 horsepower and 330 pound-feet of torque doesn't hurt, but I'd feel the same even if it had the old 200-horsepower, inline-six, from the last generation 128i.
Now that I've had a chance to experience other luxury cars, I'm starting to see how four-cylinder engines are a viable alternative. The four-cylinder turbos in current Audis and BMWs are excellent engines and I'd have no problem driving them on a daily basis.
Still, all things being equal, I'd probably opt for the larger engine.
What do you think? Do you prefer a luxury car to have a larger engine?
Ronald Montoya, Senior Consumer Advice Editor