Mark Jones
Road Test Editor
2 minute read
13 Nov 2013
5:00 pm

BMW M135i up against the clock

Mark Jones

A few weeks ago I introduced our long-term BMW's M135i and said its giant killing reputation needed no introduction.

I know that to use the term giant killer is a bit of an overused cliché, but when your premium hatch packs 235 kW of power at 5800rpm and a full 450 Nm of torque all the way from 1300 to 4500 rpm, I think it is acceptable to do so.

The M135i is powered by a straight six-cylinder engine with M Performance TwinPower Turbo technology, which is known for its spontaneous performance and a level of efficiency that is remarkable in this class.

The technology package includes a TwinScroll turbocharger, direct High Precision Injection with central multi-hole injectors, VALVETRONIC variable valve control and Double VANOS variable camshaft timing. The exclusive power train for this compact M Performance car also features a customised cooling system, M performance control and engine sound tuning, plus a newly developed six-speed manual transmission with dry sump lubrication.




This saw the M135i sprint to 100 km/h in a very quick 5.17 seconds, while crossing the quartermile in 13.46 seconds at 172.26 km/h, and reaching the kilometre marker at 221.44 km/h – while going onto an electronically limited top speed of 249.86 km/h.

To put these test numbers into proper perspective, the M135i just loses out to the highly revered and 30 kW more powerful Mercedes-Benz A 45 AMG to 100 km/h by a fraction of a second.

This is thanks to the Merc’s all wheel drive and launch control system, but from there it earns its reputation and gets away from the best Mercedes has to offer in this segment.

Being a BMW also means that this is not done at the expense of excessive average fuel consumption. The claim for the average fuel consumption in the EU test cycle is 8.0 litres with carbon emissions level of 188 grams per kilometre.

I have not managed to achieve this figure on average. My log book is sitting at 10.29 litres per 100 kilometres for the 4 705 kilometres the car has been with me.

I think this is very good considering this car has been used enthusiastically, and has also done a few performance challenges at the BMW Car Club Gauteng track days. Perhaps a nice leisurely open road trip is needed to balance things out a little.

Join me next month as we also go through what makes this machine handle so well, and see if it could also bring home any car club silverware!