Tom

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Tom

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The 218i at first sight looks like a teenage mutant ninja photoshop of a Bimmer orgy. There's something for everyone. Coupe rear, hot hatch front and Gran Turismo side.

People either love it or hate it. It's not a perfect 10 for sure but not that bad in reality. Quite okay looking if you would give it a chance, take a few days to see beauty in the beast. Especially in this Nardo Grey / Grigio Telesto looking paint, with the M Performance add ons.

2021 F44 BMW 218i Gran Coupe M Sport + M Performance parts

8.7 sec / 140ps / 220nm / 1.5L 3 cylinder turbo / 7 speed wet DCT / FWD / 213kmh / RM211,367 CKD









Power

The B38 1.5L 3 cylinder turbo is always on your side. It gives more than you think it should and is exceptionally responsive when matched with the wet 7 DCT.

While driving, some pre planning is required to get the most of the tiny B38 engine. Such as to pre-floor the throttle when overtaking or driving out a busy junction. It gets the 3 cylinder turbo pumping quicker.

Drive

Has qualities of a driver's car, like seriously. Ride feels firm, well tuned, positive, sporty. It is light on the feet, tip toes on the road, robust like an actual sports suspension. Has dynamics of a hot hatch, with a tail to cut the spice.

Steering is the highlight. Well weighted, sharp, precise, responsive and un-FWD-like if it makes any sense. Wheel is physically a bit thick girth wise but still the cherry on top of a brilliant compact 4 door sedan.

NVH wise, outside sound intrusion is noticeable, but it's not necessarily badly built. Could be the frameless doors letting some of the sound in. Mostly close proximity audible noise that are transferred. Highway wind noise is there but would consider it well contained. Still a worthy tradeoff for sexy frameless windows.

Also solid body, zero shake, no harshness, which is a given these days, so it's nice to see it applied in the more affordable 4 door BMs, it just ups the driving experience further, feels more well built knowing there's no twisting, squeaking or potential rattling. Not to mention only a rigid body can offer a consistent base for an ideal ride and handling.

Engine squirms like a pee on a cold night during start stop moments although the 3 cylinder quirk pretty much ends there.











Inside

Cockpit is better than you'd expect from a compact BM. Almost seem like bigger brother G20 3 on a budget yet still feels like a bonus in here. Black roofliner completes the sporty theme. Framless doors adds to the exclusivity.

There's nothing basic about the 218i, more importantly its got a brilliant M Sport steering, grips really nicely, more than enough tilt and telescopic range to pair a perfect seating with the very decent seats, both electric and lotsa adjustments as well. Zero gravity approved.

There are no shift paddles sadly, which would have spiced things up further especially being a DCT. The good news is it seems to do just fine without, coasts well in normal mode, knows when to shift in sports mode and generally quite intuitive. Shift knob has sequential mode if you want to diy.

Verdict

A brilliant starter BMW 4 door, sporty for real and fits most needs, only if you can accept the look.

Not known for power. But always brisk, agile, glides through the city like a champ, For driving enjoyment, the 218i tick the right boxes.

Overall a positive car to drive. Recommended as a sporty daily.

Nice price, made possible by CKD status, which poses good value. Also, commendable overall build quality from the Kulim BMW plant, virtually indistinguishable difference from it would

















 
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6UE5t

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6UE5t

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Nowhere near as ugly as the new M cars but still ugly nonetheless. BMW has reentered similar ugliness design phase like when it introduced those ugly 6 and 7 series in the mid 2000.

The rear like the G20 is quite nice looking but it will make the comparison with the new City even more rampant coz now it's also small size!
 
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Izso

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Izso

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I like it. But I'd wonder how the 1.5 works with that massive weight.

@Tom it's FWD? Sacrilegious!
 

Tom

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Tom

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I like it. But I'd wonder how the 1.5 works with that massive weight.

@Tom it's FWD? Sacrilegious!
to be honest, very well. it's nicely configured for city driving.
i'll try to get include some highway driving footage into the driving video

it's great as a FWD, virtually can't tell if front or rear driven mostly. unless driving in the wet like the ig video in the post
 

ixeo

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I like the color. But god awful ugly front. Personally, no reason to buy it if its not RWD. This time around you really are paying for the badge. 1.5L 3 cylinder lol, that's the X50's configuration as well. Thank god Malaysians aren't *that* stupid. The Mercedes 1.5L C200 flopped miserably in terms of sales, still lots of 2019 "new" cars around.

We have to vote with our money and feet, and tell them we ain't paying that much for just a badge.
 

Mitevo7

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Mitevo7

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Ever since the introduction of 316/318i F30, i lost faith in newer BMW, personally i won't pay premium for anything lesser than 4 cylinders.
 
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ixeo

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Ever since the introduction of 316/318i F30, i lost faith in newer BMW, personally i won't pay premium for anything lesser than 4 cylinders.
318i is 3 cylinders. Joke. The B48 4 cylinder engine is rough, idles like crap, but is powerful lol. still a god awful unrefined engine.

That being said the first F30 I drove was a 316i. The only saving grace is the transmission and chassis dynamic. If anything, that transmission really compensate for the lack of power on the 316i engine, even when going up Genting. It still lack power, but it's not that apparent thanks to the gearing.

This Fake M W? No legendary 6 cylinder engine, no legendary rear wheel drive, no amazing 8 speed ZF transmission. Other than the badge, what's BMW about it? lol.
 

leinnz

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it's about reducing fossil fuel and moving towards more energy efficient engines or maybe electric cars
 
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alcyon

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. It still lack power, but it's not that apparent thanks to the gearing.
These modern 7,8 spd auto trans are deifinitely a very big plus. Heck it would help a lot of older cars with 4 spd autos to achieve better overall performance, just by having these gearboxes.
 
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ixeo

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ixeo

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it's about reducing fossil fuel and moving towards more energy efficient engines or maybe electric cars
I don't see how *this* car helps towards that goal. PHEV yes.

These modern 7,8 spd auto trans are deifinitely a very big plus. Heck it would help a lot of older cars with 4 spd autos to achoieve better overall performance, just by having these gearboxes.
You have got to go test drive a BMW with a 8 speed ZF. I keep raving about this gearbox because I've seen the opposite of it (CVT in a Proton Inspira, Honda HRV). The only reason I would want a manual over it, is engagement -- when I am driving for the fun of driving, not because I am commuting or have places to go.

The 6 speed skyactiv, 8 speed Aisin and the DSGs can't touch that box.
 

Mitevo7

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Mitevo7

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318i is 3 cylinders. Joke. The B48 4 cylinder engine is rough, idles like crap, but is powerful lol. still a god awful unrefined engine.

That being said the first F30 I drove was a 316i. The only saving grace is the transmission and chassis dynamic. If anything, that transmission really compensate for the lack of power on the 316i engine, even when going up Genting. It still lack power, but it's not that apparent thanks to the gearing.

This Fake M W? No legendary 6 cylinder engine, no legendary rear wheel drive, no amazing 8 speed ZF transmission. Other than the badge, what's BMW about it? lol.
The 4 cylinder B48 idles rough ? Thats new for me, i didn't feel though when i last drove one.

The 8 speed ZF is really something, i wish they mate this trans with any BMW 6cyl engine and can rev high. Say N52 with 8 speed ZF ? That's a dream match !
 

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The 8 speed ZF is really something, i wish they mate this trans with any BMW 6cyl engine and can rev high. Say N52 with 8 speed ZF ? That's a dream match !
Can be done. Money come I find you the guy who can do it.
 

Tom

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Tom

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318i is 3 cylinders. Joke. The B48 4 cylinder engine is rough, idles like crap, but is powerful lol. still a god awful unrefined engine.

That being said the first F30 I drove was a 316i. The only saving grace is the transmission and chassis dynamic. If anything, that transmission really compensate for the lack of power on the 316i engine, even when going up Genting. It still lack power, but it's not that apparent thanks to the gearing.

This Fake M W? No legendary 6 cylinder engine, no legendary rear wheel drive, no amazing 8 speed ZF transmission. Other than the badge, what's BMW about it? lol.
depends which gen B48, G20 new 3 feels good, they even put it on the G12 740Le which was indescribably sweet.
it's like Moore's law, the cars just get better with evolution,

if you like driving the F30 316i then you'll grow to adore the 218i.
 

ixeo

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The 4 cylinder B48 idles rough ? Thats new for me, i didn't feel though when i last drove one.

The 8 speed ZF is really something, i wish they mate this trans with any BMW 6cyl engine and can rev high. Say N52 with 8 speed ZF ? That's a dream match !
Yes it idles rough. You don't feel it in the drivers seat. Open the window, or stand next to the engine bay.

depends which gen B48, G20 new 3 feels good, they even put it on the G12 740Le which was indescribably sweet.
it's like Moore's law, the cars just get better with evolution,

if you like driving the F30 316i then you'll grow to adore the 218i.
Only have experience with my own B48 inside the F30.

I have to admit, given the advancement in technology, FWD can perform on par if not better than its RWD and AWD siblings at the ring. Not surprising if BMW can tweak and do electronic wizardry on a FWD platform to perform just as well as a RWD.

but I still won’t buy one.
 

Mitevo7

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Mitevo7

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Yes it idles rough. You don't feel it in the drivers seat. Open the window, or stand next to the engine bay.
Oh now you mention it, from outside the F30 with B48 does seem to idle a little loud, even my Ford 1.6 Ecoboost idles quieter.