By Team Lenspeed
A hefty car would not make the cut at Lenspeed. But…
We’re penning down our initial driving impressions when the question of mass came into play – something that the team at Lenspeed is extremely particular about.
Weighing in at a snip over 1,600kg, the 220i Cabriolet is a considerable 165kg heavier than the coupe. But it doesn’t end here. In fact, some wheel time reveals that engineers managed to hide some of its heft and play on the strengths of its chassis engineering to furnish a rewarding driving experience. It’s not a car you would want to go full pelt right from the get-go, but in all honesty, this wasn’t engineered to provide urgent shoves like more focused BMWs. Rather than flogging it hard through the corners, the 220i Convertible prefers to be left wafting at a considerate pace that will not leave you weak in the knees when green changes to amber at the traffic junction.
It’s interesting to notice that despite featuring an identical engine and output beneath the hood (184bhp, 270Nm), the 220i Coupe and Cabriolet deliver differing driving experiences. Performance in the convertible is supplied in a linear fashion, unlike in the coupe that feels a tad more intense and urgent over the same amount of pedal modulation. While the coupe enjoys mid corner carving thanks to a chassis that is more rigid and yet possess sufficient leeway to attain a consistent flow over tarmac undulations, it would be best to leave the convertible cruising on the freeway while enjoying a top down experience. And that’s precisely what we prefer to savour in this car. Our test route involved a mixture of tight navigations and open roads, but we reckon that the best “combination” of light traffic on the freeway with the top down sends out a proper message that this car is meant for relaxed cruising rather than gung-ho tarmac scrubbing.
Is this a car Lenspeed should watch out for? Not quite. But we reckon this would be one of the most dynamically-sorted cabriolets you can buy in the market today. And we respect BMW for that.