This is our favourite small BMW. The firm’s new range demarcation promised a better-defined compact coupé with which to capture the enthusiast’s imagination, and that is what has been delivered. The procurement of Autocar’s favour, then, is utterly by design.

This is an easier car to like than BMW’s other badge-engineered coupé, the 4 Series. The 2 Series’s ingratiating verve better captures the spirit of the 3 Series, and although clearly somewhat less practical, its large boot means that it should serve most buyers as a two-seater just as well.

The Volkswagen Scirocco remains by far the best of the front-wheel-drive contenders

For those less devoted to the brand, the 2 Series is equally compelling. It’s more rewarding than either the Audi TT or Peugeot RCZ and is more functional than both. And now there is a full blooded version to take the fight to the Audi TT RS too.

Even for buyers resolutely camped in the premium three-door hatchback market, it ought to make food for thought.

Our mounting conviction that our lives could be made to fit the 2 Series is evidence enough of its canny positioning and overall quality.