There is a common thought among car enthusiasts that sometimes the cheaper entry-level version of a sports car is the better version. That’s not always the case, of course, but with some cars – like the BMW 2 Series – it can be. The reason for this is that the lighter and smaller motor up front allows for more precise steering, a tighter front end and a more playful feel, while providing all the power one needs to have fun. However, when you really get into the economy versions, like the BMW 220i, does that philosophy still apply?
In this new video from Joe Achilles, we see what the entry-level BMW 220i – albeit a fairly optioned one – looks like to drive and whether it’s actually a small-batch sports car. budget. Joe has driven just about every version of the Series 2 to this point, so he knows how to drive them. The BMW M240i top-dog, with its stellar B58 engine, is undoubtedly the most exciting version. But he admits that the lower versions have their charms too.
The BMW 220i is the weakest petrol version of the 2 Series. It uses the same 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine as the 230i – BMW’s B48 engine – but it’s detuned to produce 184 horsepower and 220 lbs. -ft (300 Nm) of torque. It gets the same eight-speed automatic as its only option, and Joe’s test car was rear-wheel-drive. On paper, this is the most basic 2-Series you’ll get, but that gives it the potential for simple driving pleasure.
Is the BMW 220i a real economical sports car? It seems like it probably is, considering it still moves just as well as the rest of the 2 Series range. However, given that the BMW 230i has the same engine, which means its front is just as light as the 220i, but a little more power, it’s probably the budget choice for enthusiasts.