After the successful entry of some of the marvellous budget performance cars in India, like the Skoda Octavia VRS, BMW M340i, Mercedes-AMG A45S and so on, this segment has seen a boom in sales and lots of appreciation from customers and especially from us enthusiasts, one of the cars that have completely changed this segment is the BMW M340i, powered with a B58 3.0L straight-6 turbocharged petrol engine now gets a 48V mild-hybrid system, can accelerate from 0-100km in 4.4 seconds, which is the quickest car that is made in India, to brighten up this segment and the M-Performance line-up, BMW India is gonna drop the covers from another practical budget M-Performance car, the X3 M40i, obviously will be expensive than the M340i and will sit above the X3 30i, which makes it the most powerful version of the X3 in India, until the new X3 M arrives.
The X3 M40i is powered with the same B58 3.0L straight-6 turbocharged petrol engine with 48V mild-hybrid system as the M340i, pumping out 378hp @7000rpm and 500Nm of peak torque kicks in between 1620-4000rpm mated to an 8-speed ZF automatic transmission, 0-100km comes up in 4.8 seconds, which is 0.4 seconds slower than the M340i, but still a remarkable 0-100 time for a performance SUV that will fit your budget.
If we talk about the design, BMW has followed a similar design formula to the M340i, they kept the design of the X3 M40i like the standard X3 and made the performance do the rest of the talking, from the exterior it looks almost similar to the M-Sport version of a standard X3, you get all M-sport design cues, from the aggressive front bumper to new set of M-Sport alloys and an aggressive looking rear bumper, yeah you get the M-Sport ORVMs that you won’t get on the standard X3 with the M-Sport kit, and you get a loud M-Performance exhaust system with the X3 M40i, which you already know how good it sounds.
From the interior, you get a black M-sport theme with blue stitching and M-Sport colour stitching on the seatbelts and on the M-Sport steering wheel, a new 12.3” instrument panel and a new 12.3” i-drive infotainment system with wireless Android Auto and Apple Car Play, which looks a more dated set-up as compared to the new connected screen set-up in the M340i LCI, the good part is that the X3 M40i gets a traditional gear lever that makes so much sense than a small switch to shift the gears in the M340i LCI.
When you want to fully unleash the X3 M40i, you need a good set of brakes and some modern day safety features that keep you and your surround safe, so BMW offers upgraded M-Sport brakes for better stopping power, it is also loaded with some safety tech like blind spot monitoring, lane keep assist, auto emergency braking with pedestrian protection, auto-dimming IRVMs, and so on.
Being an SUV the rivals of the X3 M40i will be some of the standard luxury SUVs that lie in the same price bracket, but currently, there is only one main rival of the X3 M40i in India, the Mercedes-AMG GLC 43 Coupe, which has the same number of cylinders as the X3 M40i but generates 6 more horses and 20Nm more than the X3 M40i, but does 0-100km 0.1 seconds slower in 4.9 seconds than the X3 M40i.