But with 626bhp and a ridiculous top speed of 190mph, did it really need to be?
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The Top Gear car review: BMW M135i
On the inside
Layout, finish and space
The three-door 1-Series is identical to the five-door inside (the M135i comes as either), save for trickier access to the rear. It’s been usefully improved for 2015 with nicer detailing and better finish, but the Audi A3 still aces it for quality and ambience. MPA additions are discreet – you sense BMW hasn’t quite worked out how to make the MPA range distinct yet – but fundamentals such as bolstered seats are spot-on. The blue stitching and dash trim detailing is quite cute too, and we like the pleated seat trim pattern - but why, BMW, are your sports steering wheels always so thick?
Note, it’s not as roomy as a front-drive hatch. It’s better than it was, but you’ll need a Golf R to get a genuine family-friendly fast hatch. The boot is only average, too.