Into the crankandpiston bear trap recently wandered the new BMW 335i, and very quickly we realized there was only one thing we could do: salivate over the striking red finish for a few minutes before taking a half-day at the office and putting some serious mileage on the clock.
Make no mistake, given the formidable reputation the 3 Series has garnered during its near 40-year life cycle (the BMW PR boys and girls were quick to mention that the model is the internationally bestselling premium vehicle), BMW can scarcely afford any issues with their new sixth generation model.
Such an occasion therefore warranted a deserving location, and so – with resident crankandpiston photographer Moe on-board – I ventured into downtown Dubai for a scout. And a hoon.
Aesthetically at least, the Beemer is off to a good start. A sleeker, more angled bonnet – plus re-designed front air intakes, an ‘air cushion’ built into the front bumper to improve air flow over the front wheels, and elongated front headlights – give the new sixth generation model a more aggressive look than its predecessor. You’d perhaps stop short of calling the new look ‘pretty’, nor is the new façade ‘muscular’ with the bonnet grooves a little too subtle for that. But the 335i is certainly a handsome piece of kit. There’s a similar story at the back too, where a minimalist approach to taillight and bumper design are unlikely to get the blood pumping. Saying that, the 19” Star spoke alloys really make up for that.
Step inside and it’s business as usual. Take a second to smile at the matching red stitching on the steering wheel and upholstery before enjoying the high quality sweeping dash and black leather seats. Belt up and you’ll find an uncluttered centre console and a cocooned driving position offering copious amounts of head and legroom, front and back. My rankle concerning both buttons and i-drive controls remains, and so cleverly concealed were some of the controls that using them at all proved a challenge (“how the hell do I put the electric sun blind down?” was repeated a few times before I eventually found the correct switch). So far though, the Beemer’s taken some solid brownie points here.