BMW has pulled the covers off its (G20) M340i xDrive. The most powerful variant of the next-generation BMW 3 Series range (until the BMW M3 comes along) will celebrate its world premiere at the upcoming 2018 Los Angeles Motor Show.
Slated for launch in Europe in July 2019, the M340i xDrive will pack a raft high-performance technology, namely a newly-developed turbocharged inline-six petrol engine, a rear-biased AWD system, and an M Sport differential.
The 3.0-litre engine features BMW’s (Valvetronic) variable valve control and (Double Vanos) variable camshaft control and is fed by a twin-scroll turbocharger. The powerplant produces 374 hp and maximum torque of 500 Nm, a sizeable gain of 48 hp and 50 Nm over the previous generation unit.
The BMW M340i xDrive comes as standard with an 8-speed automatic transmission, which in its latest generation features an optimised hydraulic control system for faster gearshifts. Shorter ratios for the lower gears and the addition of a Launch Control function helps the M340i xDrive to a 0 to 100 km/h time of 4.4 seconds – half a second faster than the previous generation (F30) BMW 340i.
Power is sent to all four-wheels through BMW’s xDrive all-wheel drive system equipped as standard with the M Sport differential. The xDrive system is designed to become increasingly rear-biased when the driver shifts to the ‘Sport’ and ‘Sport+’ drive modes.
In terms of the suspension – the M340i receives M Sport suspension, which lowers the overall ride height a further 10 mm, and comprises ‘M specific’ absorber kinematics and the new lift-related damper control function. The suspension geometry has also been tweaked for a wider track and better wheel camber angles over the regular variants.
The M340i is fitted as standard with an M Sport brake system which features a four-piston fixed calliper at the front and a single piston floating calliper at the rear. 18-inch M light alloys feature as standard, additionally, a suite of optional 19-inch wheels are also available.
In terms of aesthetics – the M340i features a redesigned front bumper, side sills and rear bumper for better aerodynamics, and the unique mesh style front grille inlays, along with mirror caps, air intake struts tailpipe trims, and the model lettering are all finished in Cerium Grey metallic.
On the inside - M-specific upholstery in a Sensatec/Alcantara trim compliments the anthracite BMW Individual roof liner, the M leather-clad steering, and aluminium Tetragon shift paddles. Additionally, the digital instrument cluster bears the lettering “M340i”.