BMW M135i (2012) spy video at Nurburgring

Published: 10 April 2012

We’ve snapped some spy video footage of the new BMW M135i on test in Germany ahead of its launch in late 2012. It’s a good chance to see and hear BMW’s newest hot hatch in action, with its turbocharged 3.0-litre straight six deploying some 300bhp.

This is the roadgoing iteration of the Concept M135i shown at the 2012 Geneva motor show. That ‘Concept’ tag in the name is important – in BMWspeak it signifies that the show star in question will translate to production unscathed.

So expect the £30,000 hot hatch to slot in halfway between a 135i and the limited-edition 1-series M Coupe. In many ways, it’s similar to the positioning of 1979’s M535i – not quite a full-blown M division car, but much more than an M Sport trim level.

It’s all part of BMW’s move to expand the M badge’s appeal. And hoover up some sales which have been lost to Audi’s S range; by launching S and RS models above S-Line, Ingolstadt has stolen a march on homeland rivals BMW and Mercedes.