Parkers overall rating: 5 out of 5 5.0

It's almost as quick as BMW M3, which tells you something about the performance. The twin turbo 3.0-litre six-cylinder engine has a power output of 337bhp and it has an eye-watering pulling power of 450Nm with another 50Nm of overboost. The acceleration will thrust you back into the seat: the zero to 62mph benchmark sprint will take no more than 4.9 seconds, just one tenth of a second slower than the M3.

The 1M has an electronically-limited top speed of 155mph and overtaking in this car is like taking candy from a baby – you have so much power right through the range that manoeuvres can be completed quickly, safely and with great ease. Press the ‘M’ button (located on the steering-wheel) and the car will have an even more responsive throttle. The 3.0-litre engine is mated to a six-speed short-shifting and direct manual gearbox.

The one complaint we can think of is that there is no option of a twin-clutch automatic ‘box with paddles, which would have made changes even quicker when going up and down the ‘box. The reason is that fitting such a gearbox is a false economy since the UK is only taking 450 1M models. A reasonable get-out clause, we think.

The 1M is one of the best handling cars on the road and because it uses a shortened M3 chassis, the instant acceleration is complimented by almost no body-roll when cornering. The one minus point is that the steering lacks a little feel, but it is fairly precise and direct. When cornering and excerting lots of pressure on the car you really wish that there was a little more feedback from the steering wheel.

The 1M has lots of grip: the wide tyres mean that a lot of rubber is always in contact with the road which means you feel stuck to the road even when you are turning in at speed. Traction feels almost endless in the dry unless you purposely flick the back end of the car out. The stability control can be turned down, but BMW has seen fit to retain a small amount of intervention to keep the total hooligans in check.

That said, you can have a lot of fun with this car on a race track.