Parkers overall rating: 5 out of 5 5.0

From the instant you sit in the cabin there’s an upmarket feel, plus the sporty emphasis coming from the M badging. The soft plastics and the black leather with the orange stitching work really well. The effect gives the driver a sporty feel without being over the top – it’s a nice balance. The ‘M’ button on the steering wheel gives a hint of what the car can achieve when switched on.

It’s an accomplished cabin with subtle hints that you are driving an ‘M’ car. All-round visibility is very good making parking easy and the standard fitment of Park Distance Control makes reverse parking a cinch.

This car is a perfectly capable cruiser but if you decide it's time to have some fun you will be greeted by glorious pops and crackles from the six-cylinder engine when you up- and down-shift. For enthusiasts the sound is pure gold, but it's not so loud that it becomes irritating. Road, wind and tyre noise don’t intrude into the cabin too much but because the exhaust note is a joy to behold BMW has been very careful not to rein it in too much.

Up front the seats are well bolstered and have great side supports holding you firmly in place when cornering. The rear has an ample amount of room even for those over six feet tall. Entering and exiting the rear seats is a little tricky but chances are it'll be rare that there'll be more than two people in this car for any length of time. The ride is compliant and not overly stiff but remember to turn the 'M' button off to get maximum comfort through towns or urban areas.