Inside Line straps the BMW 1 Series M to a dyno – Click above to watch video after the jump

It's no secret that manufacturers sometimes underrate horsepower and torque figures for certain high performance models. This practice has been going on since the muscle car wars, and we don't see it stopping anytime soon. Inside Line wanted to find out what the 2011 BMW 1 Series M is putting down for power, so rather than rely on the manufacturer's information, the IL crew took a trip to the local dyno.

In case you'd forgotten, the 1 Series M is rated at 335 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque under normal operation, but an "overboost" function increases turbo pressure allowing the engine to make 369 pound-feet of torque for brief periods.

What happened when Inside Line hooked the 1M up to a rolling road? Let's just say BMW is keeping the underrated power game alive. Click past the jump to watch the clip and see what we mean.


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 24 Comments
      DGthe3
      • 3 Years Ago
      Yet another IL dyno test and yet another 'under rated engine'. If it only happened once or twice, I'd believe them. But since it happens to pretty much every car they ever test, I'm thinking it has more to do with their dyno.
      _M7_
      • 3 Years Ago
      to the last M I had respect was the M3 CSL ....now on are just luxury sport cars, Also I had respect for M Power NA engines
        John Simon
        • 3 Years Ago
        @_M7_
        The CSL is an incredibly limited edition not available in the us and well over $100,000 new. It's pointless to talk about it.
          Brummie
          • 3 Years Ago
          @John Simon
          My mate has had a UK model from new, complete with the cardboard floor in the boot/trunk. Great fun to drive despite the rock hard suspension, you guys really missed out. It feels special because there is a human touch to the car, like every effort has been made to reduce weight and it feels a tuned uncompromised drivers car. Of the original batch apparently no two CSL's have the same power output,. Straight Line speed seems a bit irrelevant in this car, its the way it tackles the corners both going into one , during and after that make it such fun. Lots of cars handle well but the CSL 'talks' to you when you drive it and very few cars do that, a lot feel a little anesthesia's.
          Evan McMiller
          • 3 Years Ago
          @John Simon
          No, its not. It's the most recent example of a true M car, and the last that we'll likely ever see. Now that they are all going to be turbo'd standard engines with just the boost turned up, and now that every model BMW makes is massively overweight, we might not ever see the real M cars ever again. It's sad but true. No doubt the new cars handle well, and will be devastatingly fast, they will be great that way. They are just so big and heavy, and turbo engines do not have the same sound or feel that NA engines do. This all takes away from the driving experience. It's just not even close to the same.
      omegaslast
      • 3 Years Ago
      DEAR GOD stop reporting inside line dyno numbers, do you realize that they get inflated numbers for every single car they test? its because they dont know what the hell theyre doing.
        Mike
        • 3 Years Ago
        @omegaslast
        Yup, lets see 2011 Challeger, 2010 GT500, the list goes on and on. Every car I see on this site on that dyno is inflated.
        Evan McMiller
        • 3 Years Ago
        @omegaslast
        These numbers would explain much better why it's only a few tenths behind an M3 around several tracks. 335 hp just would not do that, especially when it doesn't way a ton less. 380 hp, yeah that's more believable.
          Christian Grenier
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Evan McMiller
          You should know that 335 hp doesn't make all the difference, that 335 hp has to move a car that is 300 pounds lighter than the M3 and the 1m coupe can turn out about 75 more lb/ft of torque than the m3 which makes a huge difference.
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      ayhtida
      • 3 Years Ago
      How is it underrated if their findings match BMW's ratings? I confused.
        LifeLongCarGuy
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ayhtida
        That is because manufacturers usually measure HP at the crank (bhp), not at the wheel (whp). It looks like BMW published the whp as opposed to the bhp. Still impressive.
        quiks1013
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ayhtida
        The rating is not at the wheel like the dyno, but out of the engine. There is always some loss in power between, so if the rating from the dyno is close or equal to the stated rating, that means the engine is putting out much more than its rating to overcome the loss.
        Soichiro
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ayhtida
        Chassis dynos (like the one IL uses) measure power delivered to the ground. manufacturers use engine dynos that measure power at the flywheel. In almost every case, IL matches (or comes close to matching) the manufacturers numbers. Since there is an efficiency loss (usually somewhere between 10-20%) between power at the flywheel and power at the wheels (due to the drive-train) in the case of these sorts of results it's commonly said that the manufacturers numbers are underrated.
        Mark Bono
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ayhtida
        Dyno's test power at the wheels. BMW( and other manufactures) gets their power ratings directly from the engine. There is a certain percentage of power loss going from the engine to the wheels. If BMW's rating are 100% true, we should see less power at the wheels.
        Danny Telles
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ayhtida
        Because BMW's (like all car manufacturers) HP rating is for the engine, not the amount of power that makes it to the wheels, which is what the dyno measures. Typically you can expect about a 15% loss of power between the wheels and engine, so measuring 335 HP at the wheels suggests that the car's engine actually makes 15% more power than that, which would be closer to 400 HP.
      motorforum
      • 3 Years Ago
      Was that an M-car? All I could hear was wooshing and all I could see was the 135i engine cover and seats with M-logos on. Half-arsed or what.
      tributetodrive
      • 3 Years Ago
      i feel like i have heard this before from Edmunds, maybe if they dyno on 3 independent "mustang" dynos I will believe them about the rating but there is little consistency, maybe this dyno reads high for all the cars it tests. For now i will stick with believing the numbers put down on the test track and by SAE engineers more then this, not trying to damper anyone's enthusiasm but people need to know about a test before interpreting it.
      Rock36
      • 3 Years Ago
      I always find it funny that every time insideline does a dyno on a car, it is almost always "underrated"?
      Dick Trickle
      • 3 Years Ago
      I seem to remember the '94 era Mustang 5.0, and the early Mazda RX8's were putting out less than advertised hp, which caused both manufacturers some problems. I think Mazda even offered to buy back the RX8s from unhappy customers. This could all just be a case of lesson learned, always lowball it to avoid any lawsuit issues.
        You guy
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Dick Trickle
        trade "lawsuit" with "insurance" and I think you might have something.
      Ak74
      • 3 Years Ago
      380 hp Not bad.
        john
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Ak74
        yeah thats probably about what it makes at the crank if its pushing 331 at the wheel
      Ty35
      • 3 Years Ago
      Why not buy a 135i and flash the ECU? http://cobbtuning.com/products/?id=5832 ...and no, I don't work for Cobb.
    • Load More Comments