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What was it about the 2014 BMW 228i that made this woman smile?

We will give you a hint. There was a lot of tire screeching, smoke from the brakes, and a bit of sideways sliding involved.

The woman in the photo is smiling because she just did three hot laps in a brand-new 2014 BMW 228i on an autocross course. We watched her clipping apexes, trail-brake into and through corners, and screeching the Pirellis all over the course. She did this all for free, just like you can if you act fast.

Driving the 2014 BMW 228i
BMW is currently offering free rides in their newest compact sports coupe, the 2014 228i, and even the diesel version of this hot car, which you won’t yet find for sale. These are not street test-drives, although BMW will also let you loose on the street if you prefer. Rather, this is a race-course set up in a giant football stadium parking lot. Experts are on hand, but after one lap in which they show you the course, then one in which they take you around quickly, you get to hammer their pricey sports coupes.

Track Time in the BMW 228i
Each driver gets three hot laps after a once-around to get you used to the course. Rather than tell you to slow down, the instructors will most likely offer shouted instruction on how to go faster. My particular habit is to brake too late. Do that and even in the car’s sportiest drive mode the stability and traction control comes in and won’t let you accelerate out of the corner at full power. After one lap I was improving, and by the third lap I had it. You too can have this experience. There is no charge.

Every attendee we spoke to and saw drive had a blast. Expect to spend about 30 minutes browsing new models at your leisure, and then spending 10 minutes in a tent getting safety and driving instructions. All in we spent about 3 hours at the event and found it to be an excellent afternoon of driving fun.

The event is currently in Foxboro Mass. To sign up please go to this website. For a complete listing of upcoming locations please view our prior story.

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Main story image by John Goreham