Superb front seats; M3-matching performance and handling; surprisingly comfortable and easy to drive; M3 undercutting price.


A few cheap interior bits; limited production numbers; not the prettiest sport coupe.


Inspired by the original 1988 M3, the 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe offers racecar performance wrapped in a practical 1 Series sized vehicle, which is capable of daily use. It earns its M badge thanks to surprising livability and astonishing performance. The M Coupe is an intriguing alternative to more common sports cars and performance coupes. Unique appearance: you can detect the racing genes of the 1 Series M Coupe with your eyes alone, is fully dedicated to high performance on the ideal line, offers powerful exterior design and with an interior to bring you the experience of a motor sports atmosphere every day.

From the mighty air inlets on low front apron, through the strongly contoured side sections with their M wing mirrors, the typical M side air vents and powerfully flared wing extensions, through to the respect commanding dual tailpipes and spoiler lip on either side, the 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe demonstrates dynamic presence from every angle. The high performance automobile’s charisma also determines the atmosphere of the cockpit. Exclusivity which you can feel and see everywhere; in the M entry sills and the M footrest, on first contact with M Sport seats and in the stylish black leather upholstery with its sporty contrasting stitching. On first catching sight of usual M styling of instrument panel or on first reaching earnestly for the M gear knob.

Shaped by the absolute desire for maximum performance, the athletic appearance of the 2011 BMW 1 Series Coupe. The M wing mirrors, the spoiler lip and distinctive front and rear aprons speak the unmistakable language of perfection in design and a maximum in aerodynamic optimization. With its mighty air inlets in usual M design, the front apron of BMW 1 Series Coupe guarantees the supply of cooling air for the M TwinPower Turbo powerplant. 2 additional vertical air inlets in the outer part of the front apron called air curtains enhance the airflow around the wheel housing by drastically reducing turbulence. Even the M wing mirrors above the characteristic side air vents with integrated blinker and M badging not only look good, they offer the best possible view to the rear while presenting minimum drag. Also born in the wind tunnel: the spoiler lip – an additional cut-off that reduces lift at high speeds.

You see and sense it straight away: strength comes from breadth. Whether on a straight at full acceleration or cornering with sporting ambitions– the wide track width of the 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe fuses razor sharp steering characteristics and maximum agility with high precision stability. A 1541mm track width on both axles gives the M Coupe a plus of 40 mm at the rear and 60 mm at the front unlike the BMW 135i. The new high performance chassis, the optimum axle load distribution of almost 50:50 and a low centre of gravity result in a highly dynamic driving experience. Typically M: the respect commanding visual impression of the wide track is further underlined by the 19-inch light-alloy wheels in their M-specific Y-spoke design including mixed tires.

Design and dimensions of standard light alloy 19-inch wheels in M specific Y-spoke styling spell out the unique sporting character. The 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe’s top athlete that appears in 3 exterior paint finishes: Black Sapphire, Alpine White and Valencia Orange. Exceptional performance numbers make the Coupe into a genuinely outstanding phenomenon. One unique notable feature: the impressive M light alloy wheels in M specific Y-spoke styling with 19 inch mixed tires. Rear: 10J x 19 with 265/35 ZR 19 tires and Front: 9J x 19 with 245/35 ZR 19 tires.

The letter M now comes to the class of 2011 BMW 1 Series Coupe for symbolizing the highly dynamic driving properties and exceptional power delivery of a high performance sportscar. In the BMW 1 Series M, the high performance car’s technology is fused with the lightness and agility of a compact model for creating a complete new dimension of sports style driving pleasure. With this two-door model, the automaker is now realizing for the 1st time in this vehicle segment its concept of racing oriented performance attributes in a vehicle designed and engineered for everyday commuting.

The 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe’s front end design imposingly reflects its exceptional performance abilities, while the powerfully shaped front apron forms a homogeneous surface dominated in the lower section by 3 big format air intakes. So as to optimize the aerodynamic properties, so-called air curtains are used in serial production vehicle. The escaping air stream covers the side of front wheels like a curtain, thus reducing aerodynamically unfavorable turbulence around the wheel arches. The M Coupe comes equipped with standard bi-xenon headlamps.  Along with twin circular headlamps characteristic of the brand are truncated in the upper section by LED fed positioning lamp.

If you are still on the fence, though, here is the story. The automaker took its standard 135i coupe and gave it an M performance division treatment. Hard core BMW aficionados will likely bemoan that these updates break with M tradition, as the 2011 BMW 1 Series Coupe shares its turbocharged 3.0 liter powerplant with the plebeian BMW 335is and much of its underlying hardware with M3. The steering is surprisingly light in effort and beautifully direct, enabling you to grip the wheel with your fingers and feel every texture of the road. With its massive torque and short wheelbase, you can also steer with the seat of your pants. Powering the tail end out can be great hooligan fun, but the 1 M can also bite back hard should you start playing above your league. Granted, it isn’t the prettiest car on the road and its cockpit isn’t the most upscale or spacious. But unlike other dedicated sportscars including Porsche Cayman and Chevrolet Corvette, it does give you the option of transporting 4 passengers semi-comfortably. Probably with some irony, BMW’s own M3 coupe solves these issues – it’s roomier, nicer and prettier inside.

Variants, Body Types and Features

The 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe offers comfortable seating capacity for 4 passengers and is offered in a single trim level. Standard features include high performance tires, 19-inch alloy wheels, heated mirrors and windshield washer jets, automatic and adaptive xenon headlights, automatic wipers, cruise control, 10-way manual sport seats with power adjustable bolsters, automatic dual-zone climate control, leather upholstery, a tilt and telescoping M sport steering wheel, a premium sound system with auxiliary audio jack, HD radio and a CD player and Alcantara faux suede interior trim.

The Premium package gets eight-way power front seats with driver memory functions, manual thigh adjuster and power adjustable lumbar support, auto dimming mirrors, Bluetooth, an iPod/USB audio interface (the latter two items are available separately) and interior ambience lighting. The Convenience package includes keyless ignition and entry, rear parking sensors, the iDrive electronics interface and a navigation system. Standalone options include advanced iPhone connectivity, heated front seats, a Harman Kardon 10-speaker premium surround sound stereo system and satellite radio.

What’s Beneath the Hood of 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe?

Motivation for the 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe comes from an inline six-cylinder twin turbocharged 3.0 liter engine, which is good for pulsating 335 horsepower with 332 pound feet of torque. The temporary overboost function enable for 369 pound feet of torque at full throttle. The engine is mated to standard 6-speed manual transmission that sends power to the rear wheels. In performance testing, it accelerated from 0 to 60 miles per hour in the time range of 4.6 seconds and offered the fuel economy of 26 mpg highway and 19 mpg in combined driving.

Safety & Reliability

Standard safety features on 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe include antilock brakes, stability and traction control, side curtain airbags and front side airbags. In brake testing, the 1 M came to a stop in an excellent 106 feet from 60 miles per hour.

Special Features and Cockpit Design

The M-specific interior designed and engineered exclusively for the 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe is developed for facilitating sporty, focused driving. High quality, dark Alcantara with orange contrast stitching covers the door pulls, door panels, dash panel, gearshift and handbrake lever boots and instrument cluster binnacle. The driver’s attention is focused on M-specific instrument cluster with classic M red pointers, white backlighting and gray dials. The M entry sills and M driver footrest round off the distinctive interior and starts up, the red needles of the speedometer and rev counter alongside the white instrument lighting indicate what awaits you: pure M driving dynamics – systematically designed on journeys beyond the commonplace.

The M badging in the rev counter stands for sheer driving pleasure – right up to the limit. To make sure you can enjoy this sight to the full even in adverse lighting conditions, the classic twin circular instrument gauges are protected from interfering sunlight by an Alcantara covered hood. The orange contrasting stitching of the hood, which is continued on the Alcantara and leather surfaces throughout the interior, sets exclusive sporting accents in the BMW 1 Series Coupe. The M Sport seats. Custom-made for high-adrenalin cornering and expeditions to explore the limits of physics. They reliably counter the forces of lateral acceleration with distinctly contoured side supports and an adjustable backrest.

Increased performance through ergonomics: the precise fit of the M Sport seats in the 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe offer the best possible body support even for hairpin bends taken in an ambitiously sporting style. The elegant Boston leather in black with contrasting orange stitching and the discreet M embossing on the front headrests add especially stylish shapes to functions designed for sport.

Driving Impressions

One moment, the 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe is a tire-smoking monster with explosive power build-up, endless power and beefy torque. Its straight 6-cylinder engine with M TwinTurbo technology shows its strengths to the full in all ranges of revs. In the M TwinPower Turbo the engineers at BMW M GmbH have consistently implemented the philosophy of “Less is more”: specifically reducing weight on the dual-mass flywheel produces a more spontaneous throttle response and the engine achieves high revs more quickly. Driver and driving pleasures both benefit from an even sharper response.

Maximum levels of dynamics and agility and complete control even under the most extreme driving conditions; that was the aim in development. And it is precisely what the sophisticated construction of the M high-performance chassis with large track width produces in the BMW 1 Series Coupe. Technology that has demonstrated its prowess on the racetrack can now display its superiority in the 2011 BMW 1 Series M Coupe as well. For this chassis gives drivers what they want: lightness of handling, steering precision fit for the racetrack and direct feedback from the road for an even more intense driving experience. Intelligent lightweight construction guarantees high torsion resistance with reduced weight. The entire chassis setup of the BMW 1 Series M Coupe has been perfectly tuned – in tough practical trials on the Nurburgring. The result is outstanding driving dynamics which remain fully and safely under control even during sudden evasive maneuvers or ambitious braking and shifting down before cornering. Overall, it has all the performance, features and style, a driver could want in a compact package.