BMW X3 xDrive M40i MHT 5dr Auto

  • Automatic
  • Petrol
  • 31 mpg
  • 5 door suv
  • 207 g/km CO2
  • 207 g/km CO2 emissions
  • 31 mpg Fuel efficiency
  • 4.9 secs 0 to 62 mph
  • 360 bhp Engine power

Ten Second Review

The BMW X3 M40i isn't a full M car but it's a full-on performance SUV. Sixty mph flashes by in under 5 seconds and on a twisting country road, that hot hatch rapidly receding in your rear view mirror get a bit of a shock. 360hp beneath the bonnet will do that for you. Here's the improved version, complete with 48v mild hybrid tech.

Background

Will BMW's famous M motorsport division ever make a full Motorsport model that's also an SUV? Some would say hopefully not. Over the years, it's got close with uber-versions of the X5 and X6, but has never quite been able to bring itself to engineer a proper M car crossover with a fully-fledged M engine. Instead, we have M-derivative BMW SUVs which at core aren't really proper M cars at all. That doesn't mean they can't be fast and desirable of course - and this car, the X3 M40i definitely is. It's in the range to take on quick class rivals like Maserati's Grecale, Porsche's Macan GTS and the Mercedes-AMG GLC 43. All of these are models we really like, so this one needs to bring it's A-game.

Driving Experience

We've seen this M40i model's 'B58'-series twin turbo straight six cylinder engine before in BMWs like the M240i and the 440i Gran Coupe and there's lots to like about it, particularly now that 48v mild hybrid tech is included for a bit of extra efficiency. Power output is a healthy 360hp, courtesy of single twin-scroll turbo and variable cam timing technology. And it's mated to xDrive 4WD and an 8-speed paddleshift auto transmission. The 62mph from rest sprint occupies just 4.9s en route to a top speed that has to be artificially limited to 155mph. You get all of this to the accompaniment of a crisp, muscular soundtrack that's emphasised if you select the provided 'Sport' mode. That opens a flap in the M Sport exhaust which gives you plenty of pops and crackles on the over-run as well as sharper throttle response and more eager kick down. Lowered M Sport suspension with adaptive damping firms up body roll. Plus M Performance-specific variable ratio steering sharpens corner turn-in, while beefier M Sport brakes enhance stopping power. The alternative M40d diesel variant uses a 3.0-litre six cylinder engine putting out 326hp and is also capable of the 62mph sprint in 4.9s.

Design and Build

In keeping with its segment rivals, the exterior looks here are uber-subtle. To the point where many would mistake this car for an ordinary X3 with M Sport trim. Informed loyalists of the Munich marque will of course know different, noticing the larger exhausts and the bespoke badging on the tailgate. Other smart touches include bespoke 20-inch M light alloy Double spoke M wheels finished in bicolour Orbit Grey. And a Cerium Grey with black finish for the kidney grille, plus bespoke calipers for the M Sport braking system and Cerium Grey mirror caps. Inside, apart from a smattering of extra M badges and anthracite headlining, the emphasis on subtlety continues, though you can lift the cabin with options like red leather upholstery. As usual on an X3, the dashtop features the brand's excellent Live Cockpit Professional 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen which offers crisp, sharp graphics and gesture control; plus you get a digital instrument cluster of the same size. There's plenty of headroom in the back and comfortable space for a couple of adults. Plus you get a decently shaped by 550-litre boot which can be extended to 1,600-litres by folding the 40:20:40-split rear bench.

Market and Model

You won't expect an X3 M40i to be inexpensive and it isn't. BMW wants just over £65,000 for this car; to give you some range perspective, the next conventionally-engined petrol powered model down, the X3 xDrive 20i M Sport, costs around £15,000 less. Even the plug-in X3 xDrive 30e variant can he had for under £57,000. The alternative M40d diesel costs around £500 less than the M40i. Still, at least standard equipment is generous, with bespoke 21-inch M light alloy Double spoke M wheels, through the spokes of which you glimpse the bespoke calipers of the M Sport braking system. Adaptive damping is standard, as are BMW Icon Adaptive LED headlights with a High Beam assistant. You get electric front seat adjustment with memory buttons, variable sports steering and a man-made Sensatec leather-stitched finished for the dashboard. That's in addition to the features that you'd get with normal M Sport trim that include the BMW Live Cockpit Professional infotainment package that gives you a 10.25-inch centre stack touchscreen. Plus roof rails, sports seats, a semi-digital instrument cluster and LED front fog lights.

Cost of Ownership

Let's get to the WLTP efficiency figures. Those of the M40i are quoted on the combined cycle at between 29.7 and 32.1mpg, with CO2 emissions quoted between 204 and 221g/km. Thanks to the 48v mild hybrid tech now incorporated into the engine, these figures are a small but significant improvement on those of the pre-facelift version of this model. Insurance is group 40E. If the efficiency figures bother you, you'd be better off looking at the alternative M40d diesel. For that black pump-fuelled model, the official combined cycle fuel figures are between 38.7 and 42.8mpg. And the CO2 readings are between 171 and 190g/km. What else? Well as usual with a BMW, there's a condition-based service indicator on the dash to advise you when your car needs a garage visit. You can check all of this using menus in the 'iDrive' centre-dash display and the car will give you four weeks' notice of when a check-up is needed so you have plenty of time to book it. Less familiar to some buyers will be the clever 'TeleServices' feature that comes as part of the BMW 'ConnectedDrive' services you can access through the iDrive infotainment system. Via this, before each service appointment is due, your X3 can automatically put in a 'TeleServices' call to your nominated BMW service centre, complete with detailed information on vehicle condition. You'll then get a call to arrange a service appointment, something you'll already have budgeted for if, at the point of original purchase, you opted for one of the two fixed cost 'Service Inclusive' or 'Service Inclusive Plus' packages which cover you for five years or 50,000 miles.

Summary

My neighbour has an X3 M40i and by all accounts is very happy with it. I'm sure you would be if you chose one. A car this big and tall as always going to slightly struggle in transmitting over 350hp to the tarmac, but this Munich model makes a decent fist of it. It also has the advantage of being the only model in its class available with a choice of petrol and diesel powertrains - and we'd suggest that for many customers of this model, the alternative M40d black pump-fuelled variant might be a better choice. The M40i though, feels a more bespoke-engineered special product. Even if it's not a proper M car, it's certainly a proper performance SUV.

  • Electric boot lid
  • Stop/start system
  • BMW professional radio/CD/MP3
  • DAB tuner
  • Black finish on B pillars
  • BMW individual high gloss shadow line with extended content
  • Body colour door handles
  • Body colour roof mouldings
  • Body coloured bumpers
  • Exhaust tailpipes - dual, round, split left and right with chrome finisher
  • Front and rear bumper system with replaceable deformation elements
  • High gloss black shadow line roof rails
  • High gloss shadowline exterior trim in decorative moulding side frame/recess cover/guide rail/B, C pillars/mirror frame and triangle with mirror base
  • Kidney frame and struts painted in high gloss black
  • Lightweight engineering
  • M aerodynamic bodystyling
  • M Sport entry door sill strips
  • Model designation
  • Rear side wing doors
  • Rear wing door
  • Shark fin antenna
  • Side exterior M designation badges
  • Visible VIN plate
  • 12V power point in luggage area
  • 12V power socket in front centre console
  • 2 x USB Type C ports for charging and data transmission (front centre console) and 2 x USB Type C ports for charging (rear centre console)
  • 4 lashing points to secure luggage
  • Anthracite headlining
  • Foldable storage floor with compartment
  • Four grab handles integrated in roof lining
  • Front and rear bottle holders integrated into door trim storage compartments
  • Front and rear side armrests integrated into door trim
  • Front centre armrest with storage compartment
  • Leather gear knob
  • Lockable glove compartment
  • Luggage area underfloor compartment
  • M sport leather steering wheel
  • Multifunction steering wheel
  • Parcel shelf removeable and storable under boot floor
  • Reach and rake adjustable steering column
  • Rear centre armrest with 2 cupholders
  • Removable / retractable luggage cover
  • Storage compartment in rear centre console and front/rear door trims
  • Toolkit located in luggage compartment
  • Two front cupholders with removable oddments tray/lid
  • Vernasca leather upholstery
  • Connected pro pack - X3
  • Active protection
  • Battery safety cut-off
  • BMW emergency call
  • Child locks on rear doors
  • Crash Sensor - activation of central locking release, hazard warning light and interior lighting
  • Deactivation of fuel pump in the event of a crash
  • Driver and front passenger front and side airbags with passenger deactivation and ITS front and rear head airbags
  • Driver and front passenger knee airbag
  • M sport seatbelt
  • Seatbelt security check for front seats
  • Side impact protection
  • Three point seatbelts to all seats with front and outer rear pyrotechnic belt tensioners and seat belt force limiters
  • Two tone horn
  • Tyre pressure sensor
  • Warning triangle and first aid kit
  • Central locking switch for all doors, fuel filler cap and luggage compartment
  • Electronic engine immobiliser
  • Locking wheel nuts
  • Remote control including two integrated key - one button for open/close all lockable content, windows and separate button for open luggage compartment
  • Remote control Thatcham category 1 alarm
  • Start/stop button with Comfort Go keyless engine start and auto Start/stop deactivation button
  • HC+NOx: N
  • Particles: N
  • Standard Euro Emissions: EURO 6
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb: 207
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - TEH: 210
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - TEL: 206
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Extra High: 207
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - High: 178
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Low: 286
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Medium: 200
  • Camshaft: DOHC
  • Catalytic Convertor: True
  • CC: 2998
  • Compression Ratio: 10.2:1
  • Cylinder Layout: IN-LINE
  • Cylinders: 6
  • Cylinders - Bore (mm): 82
  • Cylinders - Stroke (mm): 94.6
  • Engine Code: B58B30O1
  • Engine Layout: NORTH SOUTH
  • Fuel Delivery: TURBO DIRECT INJECTION
  • Gears: 8 SPEED
  • Number of Valves: 24
  • Transmission: SEMI-AUTO
  • EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies: False
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb: 9.1
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - TEH: 9.2
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - TEL: 9.1
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High: 9.1
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High: 7.8
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low: 12.6
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium: 8.8
  • WLTP - MPG - Comb: 31
  • WLTP - MPG - Comb - TEH: 30.7
  • WLTP - MPG - Comb - TEL: 31
  • WLTP - MPG - Extra High: 31
  • WLTP - MPG - High: 36.2
  • WLTP - MPG - Low: 22.4
  • WLTP - MPG - Medium: 32.1
  • Alternative Fuel Qualifying: True
  • Badge Engine CC: 3.0
  • Badge Power: 360
  • Based On ID: N
  • Coin Description: I MHT
  • Coin Series: N
  • Generation Mark: 3
  • Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07: 41E
  • Man Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years: 6
  • Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years: 3
  • NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %: N
  • NCAP Child Occupant Protection %: N
  • NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09: N
  • NCAP Pedestrian Protection %: N
  • NCAP Safety Assist %: N
  • Safety Concerns: False
  • Service Interval Frequency - Months: 24
  • Service Interval Mileage: 18000
  • Special Edition: False
  • Special Order: False
  • Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage: 999999
  • Standard manufacturers warranty - Years: 3
  • Vehicle Homologation Class: M1
  • 0 to 62 mph (secs): 4.9
  • Engine Power - BHP: 360
  • Engine Power - KW: 265
  • Engine Power - PS: True
  • Engine Power - RPM: 5200
  • Engine Torque - LBS.FT: 369
  • Engine Torque - MKG: 51
  • Engine Torque - NM: 500
  • Engine Torque - RPM: 1900
  • Top Speed: 155
  • Emissions Test Cycle: WLTP
  • RDE Certification Level: RDE 2
  • Alloys: True
  • Space Saver: False
  • Tyre Size Front: 245/40 R21
  • Tyre Size Rear: 275/35 R21
  • Tyre Size Spare: RUN FLAT TYRES
  • Wheel Style: M DOUBLE SPOKE
  • Wheel Type: 21" ALLOY
  • Height: 1676
  • Height (including roof rails): N
  • Length: 4713
  • Wheelbase: 2864
  • Width: 1897
  • Width (including mirrors): 2138
  • Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres): 65
  • Gross Vehicle Weight: 2485
  • Luggage Capacity (Seats Down): 1600
  • Luggage Capacity (Seats Up): 550
  • Max. Loading Weight: 575
  • Max. Roof Load: 100
  • Max. Towing Weight - Braked: 2000
  • Max. Towing Weight - Unbraked: 750
  • Minimum Kerbweight: 1910
  • No. of Seats: 5
  • Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb: 12