Beach buggies: The 2022 BMW 230i is a lively driving car, without the drama
by Craig Hymovitz
BMW’s 2 Series is positioned more as an entry-level BMW than a premium BMW. But it still manages to impress in just about every way, as it enters its second generation in 2022.
Our Melbourne Red Metallic 230i tester came with the M-sport package, which added some nice visual and performance cues to the coupe’s already muscular appearance.
At the front is the traditional two-kidney grille, although it is much more modest than on other models. The lower ride height, wider stance, longer platform and wider shoulders add to its athletic presentation.
The M-sport package adds extra punch with 19-inch double-spoke wheels, gloss black, Shadowline trim and M badging, including oversized red brake calipers.
Our tester’s modern interior was Canberra Beige and featured the latest tech and ergonomic trimmings.
We liked the larger cabin and overall interior styling of our test subject, and we particularly liked the digital instrument cluster, head-up display, and BMW’s infotainment center, which included a 10-inch touchscreen. .3 inches available.
Other features included available Wi-Fi, Apple CarPlay, an upgraded 464-watt 14-speaker Harmon Kardon sound system, and a $2,650 Premium package, which got us heated seats and steering wheel, as well as a a multitude of LED lights.
BMW adds a front and rear HPS airbag system, collision and blind-spot warnings, front and rear cameras and 4-wheel ventilated ABS with those bright red calipers.
The real joy of the 230i, however, is the silky smooth power plant and the feel behind the wheel.
The BMW’s 2.0-liter twin-turbo 4-cylinder engine is rated at 255 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque, routed through an aggressive 8-speed automatic transmission. The little coupe’s power delivery is urgent and balanced without feeling overly tame.
As we walked down Hermosa Avenue we really didn’t get a chance to open it up much, but on another less traveled stretch of sidewalk in the south bay we were able to deliver a 0-60 mph time of 5.4 seconds. Not quite as fast as its more powerful m240i stablemate which consumes the same speed in 3.6 seconds thanks in part to its bigger and sleeker 382 horsepower inline-6.
Power delivery is evenly distributed, paired with rear-wheel drive, reinforced M-sport suspension and dynamic handling package. The result is an energetic and lively driver’s car with the poise to go fast, or not, without any drama.
We really enjoyed the valid driving character and urgency offered by the 230i, especially with the M-sport package, and can’t wait to compare it to the M version.
Our tester’s price, before options, was $36,350. and after was $45,575. Emergencies