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Hi all,

I currently own a 2013 Infiniti G37S 7AT that I bought as my first car out of grad school. For the most part I really like the car but right from the get-go, the car left a lot to be desired in terms of performance. I feel that this car doesn't understand what I want it to do. It's hard to explain, but simply put it doesn't quite understand my driving style.

I didn't really get serious about a BMW until I drove my GF's 428i a few weeks ago. Not only did that car understand me much better as a driver, but I feel that it handles better than my G, and has a softer ride with quieter cabin; both are pluses. My GF's 428i is the sport model by the way. After that, I test drove an M235i and was even more impressed by the performance. The car totally speaks to me as an enthusiast. It's not totally perfect, but considering the price point of the M235i, I felt the car was too good to be true!

Needless to say, my Inf G37S is in danger of getting traded and I wanted to ask the community here a few questions and opinions regarding the 435i and M235i. The car I trade in for will be mostly a daily driver but I do auto-x and drag race at local strips on the weekends. I do intend on abusing the cars on sanctioned tracks every now and then. Additionally, I can only own one car at the moment, so picking up a 911 or corvette is really out of the question. Having said that, the following are my questions:

1.) Handling. The BMW website shows that the 435i is lower to the ground and has a wider wheelbase than the M235i. Is it possible that the 435i will handle better on the track than the M235i?

2.) After market tunes. One thing that makes me really jealous of the modern day turbo cars is that for about $500 you can add nearly 50 -100 HP and TQ more to the car. Start adding minor bolt-ons with the tune and we are talking about 100+ HP/TQ. This is something I'm definitely interested if I get a BMW but I am concerned about the reliability of the car post one of these ECU tunes. Can you guys speak to the reliability of the upgrades? Are problems something to be expected if I tune the car?

3.) Active Sound Management. A few reviews online such as R&T state that the engine noise you hear inside the cabin of an M235i is a fake per-recorded sound. I definitely do not like this. I understand this can be deactivated at the dealer. However, when I asked the salesman about it he said he was confident that the M235i doesn't have ASM; that only the M5 and M6 have it. However, I didn't have much confidence in this salesman because he also thought that the M235i had a twin turbo 3.5L I6 engine... Can anyone confirm if the M235i has ASM or not?

4.)Limited Slip Differential. I understand that the M235i and 435i don't come with true mechanical LSDs. Does BMW make an LSD I can order with the car?

5.) Image. Perhaps my biggest concern, and probably just paranoia, with the M235i is the public opinion of the car. I am afraid people might see the M235i as a wanna-be M car, an m-poser (get it lol?) if you will. I know that we shouldn't care what other people think of our cars, and there will always be BMW haters regardless, however I don't want to buy a car that will bring more hate than praise, even from other fellow BMW owners. Can anyone speak to this concern?

Sorry for the long post and thanks for the help!!
 

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If you're going to do, might as well go all the way.
ED, pick your new ride up in Munich, 800 or so miles on back roads (break -in), the jump on the Autobahn and head for the ring for a few laps. :bigpimp: (or until you max out your credit card)

Started to plan our next ED. (my M235)
 

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I went to test drive a 4 series with a buddy a few months ago and thought it was pretty nice. I test drove an M 235i a few days ago and I was drooling over it. Maybe it's the fact that I have been driving a Prius for the past month or two, but stepping into that car brought smiles to my face. I went back and drove a 428i and was not impressed. I also drove a 228i and thought that it was more fun. If the 4 series wasn't as big as it is, it would probably be my next car. However, while it is roomy, I feel that it is more of a cruiser than a sport coupe. If I were you, I would give the M 235i a good look.

About the active sound management thing, who cares? When driving the car, you will pretty much forget the fact that it is "fake." I heard the sound when I drove it and thought it was nice even though I knew that it wasn't live.

Also, if you care what people think about how the M 235i is a poser car, perhaps you should go with a 4 series. The point is, why should you care what others think? Just keep in mind that most of those "people" have been going to the dealer and test drive that very same car. A "poser" car or not, the M 235i is one hell of a machine.
 

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I have not driven the new 4 yet, nor the M235i. I know my e92 already feels too big and the driving position doesn't feel as good as the old 1. I would imagine the two cars to be pretty close in terms of how well they handle, but I think the 2 will feel more natural to hustle through a track.

There will be a LSD available as a port installed option through the performance parts catalog.

As for your biggest concern...that should be the least of your worries. Any real enthusiast can laud the merits of a car, rather than rag on the owner because of what BMWs marketing team decides to do. The car is mildly tuned by the M Performance division. How do you say that while making sure people know it isn't an M car? I don't know. I don't care. If it worries you so much, get the car ordered without badging.:dunno:
 

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For me it was a choice between the M4 and the M235i. Basically, I went for the M235i on the basis of size, cost and availability. The 4 series is too big for my tastes. I think I'd really like a 2M, and will probably go for one if and when it is released. It's also good that the M235i doesn't use RFTs.

I'm not worried about the image of the M235i. Not many 1-series in the US, and I doubt that the supermarket parking lot will be crowded with M235is. I do think it is overbadged, though, and might ask Munich to debadge mine.
 

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After seeing and driving an M235i in person i am sold! the thing that really surprised me was the room in the back seat.
 

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For thoese who tried the 228i how was it if looking for a fun daily driver, I am thinking of upgrading my e92 328i for one and while i can find a ton of review saying the M235i is awsome, i cant find much regarding the 228i (and i know it stats wise is apples to apples with my e36 M3)
 

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I was having the same dilemma this week and ended up going with the M235i.

After test driving both, the M235i really felt like a true sports car, whereas the 435i felt like a "Luxury Sport Coupe". Unfortunately, the dealer didn't have a 4 with the dynamic handling package, so the comparison really wasn't apples-to-apples. I'm sure a loaded 435i would drive just as well as the M235i.

In the end, for me, it just came down to price. If you've got a significant style/feel preference, desperately want AWD, or really need those extra few inches in the back seat, go with the 435. Otherwise, M235 is the way to go imo!
 

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For thoese who tried the 228i how was it if looking for a fun daily driver, I am thinking of upgrading my e92 328i for one and while i can find a ton of review saying the M235i is awsome, i cant find much regarding the 228i (and i know it stats wise is apples to apples with my e36 M3)
For every day driving the 228i is more than sufficient. It is actually pretty preppy and picks up speed well. I drove one without any handling options so it wasn't a fair comparison. In sport mode on the standard/base suspension it wasn't bad. I am sure with the sport or M sport suspension the car would handle much better.

I was having the same dilemma this week and ended up going with the M235i.

After test driving both, the M235i really felt like a true sports car, whereas the 435i felt like a "Luxury Sport Coupe". Unfortunately, the dealer didn't have a 4 with the dynamic handling package, so the comparison really wasn't apples-to-apples. I'm sure a loaded 435i would drive just as well as the M235i.

In the end, for me, it just came down to price. If you've got a significant style/feel preference, desperately want AWD, or really need those extra few inches in the back seat, go with the 435. Otherwise, M235 is the way to go imo!
I agree 100%. I drove a 4 series, then the 2, and then back to the 4. I hated the 4. It was just too big and IMO did not handle as well as the 2. I mean it is a very nice car but IMO it's more for cruising with occasional spirited driving moments. The 2 series, on the other hand, is the other way around. To me, the 2 is more of a sports car than the 4.
 

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Hi all,

, if the M235i has ASM or not?

5.) Image. Perhaps my biggest concern, and probably just paranoia, with the M235i is the public opinion of the car. I am afraid people might see the M235i as a wanna-be M car, an m-poser (get it lol?) if you will. I know that we shouldn't care what other people think of our cars, and there will always be BMW haters regardless, however I don't want to buy a car that will bring more hate than praise, even from other fellow BMW owners. Can anyone speak to this concern?
It is, just like the M-Sport, but who cares. Get it cause you like it.

http://www.bmwblog.com/2013/10/27/bmw-m235i-full-m-welcomed-addition/

Sent from BimmerApp mobile app
 

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Originally posted by Bond_James Bond
"For every day driving the 228i is more than sufficient. It is actually pretty preppy and picks up speed well. I drove one without any handling options so it wasn't a fair comparison. In sport mode on the standard/base suspension it wasn't bad. I am sure with the sport or M sport suspension the car would handle much better."

I agree. I test drove a base 228i and was surprised at how good it felt. Unlike the 3 series, you do not need a sport suspension to enjoy driving it. In fact it felt better than the 428i M Sport - better steering feel, more nimble and "playful" like BMWs of yore. It will make an excellent driver's car.

One observation in back to back drives in the the 3/4 series is that the 28i cars feel more agile than the 35i cars (The weight difference between the engines is very noticeable on the front end). While the 28i engine is a brilliant design - responsive, powerful, torquey and smooth - the 35i is smoother still and a has big a edge in sound. The power difference for me is not important because the 28i has more than enough power and is just magical when paired with the 8 speed auto. In the end choosing one over the other depends on what is important to you.
 

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For thoese who tried the 228i how was it if looking for a fun daily driver, I am thinking of upgrading my e92 328i for one and while i can find a ton of review saying the M235i is awsome, i cant find much regarding the 228i (and i know it stats wise is apples to apples with my e36 M3)
I bought the 228 because I wanted something fun, good looking, and capable of some OK fuel economy. I came from a slightly modded STI that I did some track time with. The 228 is a better car 95% of the time. And, the 5% of the time that it is not it is still fun. On a road trip the 228 did a great job on a famously fun road (North Cascades Highway). I think that the 4 series is too big and not really all that much fun, albeit a beautiful car.
 

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Originally posted by Bond_James Bond
"For every day driving the 228i is more than sufficient. It is actually pretty preppy and picks up speed well. I drove one without any handling options so it wasn't a fair comparison. In sport mode on the standard/base suspension it wasn't bad. I am sure with the sport or M sport suspension the car would handle much better."

I agree. I test drove a base 228i and was surprised at how good it felt. Unlike the 3 series, you do not need a sport suspension to enjoy driving it. In fact it felt better than the 428i M Sport - better steering feel, more nimble and "playful" like BMWs of yore. It will make an excellent driver's car.

One observation in back to back drives in the the 3/4 series is that the 28i cars feel more agile than the 35i cars (The weight difference between the engines is very noticeable on the front end). While the 28i engine is a brilliant design - responsive, powerful, torquey and smooth - the 35i is smoother still and a has big a edge in sound. The power difference for me is not important because the 28i has more than enough power and is just magical when paired with the 8 speed auto. In the end choosing one over the other depends on what is important to you.
You recap my thoughts on this better than I did. I had my mind totally made up about going with the M235 when I was looking in May. I test drove both that and the 228 back to back. I only drove the 228 originally just to see dimensions, features, etc. as the M235 was not easy to find on a lot. Of course when I finally did drive both, I loved the power and handling of the M235, but I was surprised so much by the power of the 228 and as you stated it's lighter more nimble feel. My goal was a faster car and better gas mileage. The M235 gets pretty good mileage in relation to its performance, in fact, I can't think of a car with a better ratio. In the end the 228 was just as fun, and when I optioned both exactly the way I wanted, the M235 was $7k more. I didn't mind paying the difference, but I think I'll pocket that for now and see what happens with BMW over the next few years as they (like most carmakers) are always making sometimes subtle, sometimes major advancements, so the 228 suits me just fine right now. To the OP, although your decision has surely been made by now. I found the 4 series to just feel a little heavy.
 

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Hi all,

I currently own a 2013 Infiniti G37S 7AT that I bought as my first car out of grad school. For the most part I really like the car but right from the get-go, the car left a lot to be desired in terms of performance. I feel that this car doesn't understand what I want it to do. It's hard to explain, but simply put it doesn't quite understand my driving style.
I think there's a pretty good chance that the M235i will understand you. It has a mood (mode) switch. Select what you want and it will respond accordingly. :D
 

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I went from a G37 to an 3 series, which is not the same as the 4 series but it is pretty close. The G37 was a lot more fun but it does lack refinement, it is a loud, high-reving machine. In my opinion (and those of most car magazines), the 4 is a more mature, luxurious and refined car/ride compared to previous generations and definitely against the G37. If that is what you are looking for, then a 4 makes sense but since you want to go to the track, it would make more sense to either get a 235 or keep the G37.
 

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I drove a 228i M Sport (at the BMW autoX) and 435i M Sport (test drive) - I wasn't impressed by the 435, even the engine was way too quiet in Sport+ mode.

The 228i impressed me so much I think I'd buy that over the M235i, now that you can get just about everything the M235i has with the Track Package. The 2.0L turbo is sweet, the car feels nimble the way 4 cylinders do and sixes don't, and the much better mileage is a plus.
 
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