A small BMW, a high output engine and a mechanical limited slip differential. It’s a perfect equation in our minds and Chris Harris seems to agree.

>Here’s how the automotive media actually works – on an extremely superficial and unimportant level. I asked BMW if I could run an M235i for a few months, it said “yes”. I then added it might be fun to take a look at the M Performance options, especially the optional locking differential. It said “Sounds like a plan”. I then added that none of the cosmetic stuff interested me, in fact it would probably actively annoy me, but BMW Germany still sent a lovely chap over to adhere the most dreadful stickers to the sides of the car. I duly said they were foul; BMW wasn’t happy. I suppose I should just tear them off, but I watched dear Toby apply them with such love that I haven’t the heart.

>Funny old world.

>But I really can forgive the stickers, because this is one hell of a machine. It will do battle with the new Golf R on video soon (yes, we’re coming back!) but in isolation it’s everything I could want in a small rear-wheel drive coupe. BMW is still considered the master of naturally aspirated high-performance six-cylinder motors, but it has seamlessly transferred its skills to turbocharging. Yes, it’s not a full M-car, but for response, outright shove and music, this blown-six makes a compelling case for being one of the best engines on sale.

Read the full report at Pistonheads.