Authors Note: I’m riffing thoughts about my brief drive below pretty much verbatim, so if it doesn’t make grammatical sense, sorry! It’s just a lot to take in when you’ve been daily’ing a 2004 Camry for over 4 years, and very rarely get the opportunity to drive something more “enthusiast” centred.

As I get closer and closer to graduating school (currently working on an engineering co-op), the itch is increasing to get something more fun. My Camry has been a fantastic first car for me over the past 4 years, and I will always love it dearly. However, as great as it is at it’s intended purpose of trouble free Point-A-to-Point-B’ing, like on my hellish commute (I love Toronto’s traffic so much, let me tell you), I know its limitations at being a sporty, fun set of wheels to just enjoy driving.

I’ve been looking at E92 335i’s for the past few months (as well as BRZ’s and any other sporty vehicle you can name), so I was very excited when I got the chance to drive an E90 (with the 6-speed). It was everything I could of imagined and more (even with my brief drive), especially coming from a V6 Camry.

I haven’t driven stick in a little while so it took me some time to get back into the groove of things again. Not to mention the last time I drove a stick it was a 4-cyl ranger with 31’s and a 4 inch lift... So I was pretty jerky off the cuff. The basics of manual is easy, but to truly master it does take daily-driving one. I really need to get a manual, man...

Anyways, I don’t have many comments considering my brief time behind the wheel (for now), so first impressions: holy crap, are these things fast. As I got more comfortable with the transmission and started to wind the car out a little bit, there’s so much torque from down low, and pulls right to redline without breaking a sweat. Steering was weighty and tight as a drum (especially compared to the super-boosted Camry steering). It rides stiffer than what I’m used to, however, every bump is well dampened, and the car itself is very quiet and comfortable. Oh, and it sounded fantastic.

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Not much else to say, except that I hope to get some more time behind the wheel of one (and test drive my other prospects) to really experience first hand what a fun, sporty car is all about.

I’ve had my free sample. Now I want the whole damm plate of pie...