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2019+ BMW 3 AND 4-SERIES FORUMS (G2x Generation) General G20 Sedan / G22 Coupe / G26 Gran Coupe Discussions M340i compared to past generations of the M3

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      06-18-2019, 06:56 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by BigSky702 View Post
It means there's a snippet of DNA sharing.... and I'm cool with it

It is what it is.. enjoy whatever you're driving... and I'll do the same.
I had a 335 and it was a great car. I'd daily an M340 any day of the week. Not denying it's likely a fantastic car for what it is, but I would not deluded myself into thinking it's a mini M car.

It's more of a sportier 3 series which is perfectly fine. ///M changed to marketing and apparently they are even better at it than ///Motorsports.
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      06-18-2019, 07:02 AM   #24
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I had a 335 and it was a great car. I'd daily an M340 any day of the week. Not denying it's likely a fantastic car for what it is, but I would not deluded myself into thinking it's a mini M car.

It's more of a sportier 3 series which is perfectly fine. ///M changed to marketing and apparently they are even better at it than ///Motorsports.
Who said it's an /// M car?? And if someone wants to think that, so what? Who are you trying to convince otherwise??

I had an M4 , wanted a change, and will probably revisit ///M again along the lines of a G80 or F90.

Each line serves a purpose, doesn't necessarily make it "better"... as long as it fits your needs ... great!
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      06-18-2019, 08:23 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by paliknight View Post
Baby M and M-Lite implies it's a dumbed down M car the same way the original M2 was. Many people had a hard time considering the original M2 a real M car because of the engine and interior. Now people are arguing a beefed up 330i is an M car variation? Because it's might share 3 or 4 parts with the real G80 M3?
I am not sure I understood what point you were try to make here, but I rarely find it productive to pedantically debate the precise meaning of slang language such as "Baby M" and "M-Lite". It was clear from context to me what the OP meant with his use of those terms, and I didn't see a need to press him further on it.

BMW has a clear hierarchy for each vehicle, and the M2 obviously sits above the M240i in the exact same way that the M3 sits above the M340i. Exact content varies from product line to product line - you either find enough value in the upgrades to spring for the proper M model, or you don't and you choose the M Performance model or something else instead.

I didn't see any evidence of someone "arguing a beefed up 330i is an M car variation" so that part seems off base. That said, the M Sport package clearly leverages the "M" brand (and has been for decades), and cars with such a package obviously have their place in the hierarchy as well, sitting just below the M Performance vehicles.
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      06-18-2019, 08:30 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by paliknight View Post

You and others here have forgotten the meaning of M// thanks to BMW. Motorsport, as in racing. So M cars are, or should be at least, built for racing first and daily driving second. As opposed to base 3 series, yes including the M340i, which are all built for daily driving first and racing second (M340i only).

That's where, I think, you are wrong. M cars in stock form do not survive racing or constant track duty - everything will fail - brakes first, suspension second, gearbox third and eventually engine. They are built for daily driving first and track second.

I have had many M cars throughout the years and spend a lot of time on the track with those cars. Out of 20 years of experience - here are my thoughts –
M cars make great dual purpose cars (fun on the street and usable on the track) - but having said that - they do not quite excel in either. They definitely have compromises on the street (Uncomfortable, finicky, demanding to everyday use and maintenance) and at the end of the day are not perfect track weapons (too heavy, too luxurious, too complex and filled with compromises).
I'd even go as far as to say - M cars - are great dual purpose/track cars for people learning to drive. Beginner and intermediate groups on track do great with those cars.
When you start moving up to advanced groups and instructor - you see less and less of unmodified M cars. First - small modifications start - Brakes, Fluid, and Pads. The harder you drive the more you feel the weight - so the weight starts to come off - remove interior pieces, lighter seats. Improve Safety – next - harnesses, roll cages, fire extinguishers, plastic glass, no airbags.
Full Suspension upgrades come next - coil overs and camber plates. Next thing you know - the car is not street-able any more or it takes forever to convert it back.
So inevitably you end up with a truck towing a track prepared BMW or better - Mazda Miata - it is not an M car anymore - it is a dedicated track shell of a car
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      06-18-2019, 09:10 AM   #27
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"Compares best against" in what way?

It will absolutely bury the original model E30 M3 in acceleration since it has about twice as much power and weighs somewhat less than twice as much. It may very be able to handle more Gs through a corner than some M3 generations too, but it certainly won't feel as nimble or be able to change direction as fast as the E30 could.

The reason why "many see the M340i as a 'baby M' or 'M-lite'" is because that really is what it is. It exists to play second fiddle to the full M models in the lineup, providing a gateway to the M brand at a more accessible price point while tempting the enthusiast to aspire to M-proper purchase the next time around.

Progress is a great thing. Some of today's run of the mill econoboxes can embarrass a V8 powered "performance cars" from fifty years ago. It's great that the automobile is continually evolving to become a better, safer, quicker mode of transportation. But there is still room for nostalgia, and I'm sure we can all praise the state of the art while at the same time appreciating the great cars of the past.
I would say that a G20 330i will be as fast or faster than an E36 or E46 M3. People today are performance spoiled. 20 years ago a 6 second car has considered to be very fast and anything 5 secs and below was super car territory.
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      06-18-2019, 10:38 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by 530iDriver View Post
I would say that a G20 330i will be as fast or faster than an E36 or E46 M3. People today are performance spoiled. 20 years ago a 6 second car has considered to be very fast and anything 5 secs and below was super car territory.
I believe the new 330i XDrive has a 0-60 of 5.2 seconds which is not too shabby.
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      06-18-2019, 10:50 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 530iDriver View Post
I would say that a G20 330i will be as fast or faster than an E36 or E46 M3. People today are performance spoiled. 20 years ago a 6 second car has considered to be very fast and anything 5 secs and below was super car territory.
I believe the new 330i XDrive has a 0-60 of 5.2 seconds which is not too shabby.
The E46 M3 did 0-60 in 4.5 secs. The E36 M3 before it did the same run in 5.2 secs.

20+ years later a "base" new 3-Series runs circles around an E36 M3 and accomplishes this with a 2 liter turbo. And it is not that far off from the E46 M3.

Today's M340i is as fast 0-60 as the V8 equipped E90 M3 was from just a decade ago. These were 0-60 cars in the 4.1 sec range.

I believe the horsepower wars of the last 25 years have done both good and bad. There was a time when a regular BMW automobile was not the fastest or most powerful but offered the most balance of the bunch. And yes the vast majority of non-M vintage Bimmers were slow cars by today's standards.
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      06-18-2019, 11:36 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by paliknight View Post
Baby M and M-Lite implies it's a dumbed down M car the same way the original M2 was. Many people had a hard time considering the original M2 a real M car because of the engine and interior. Now people are arguing a beefed up 330i is an M car variation? Because it's might share 3 or 4 parts with the real G80 M3?
I am not sure I understood what point you were try to make here, but I rarely find it productive to pedantically debate the precise meaning of slang language such as "Baby M" and "M-Lite". It was clear from context to me what the OP meant with his use of those terms, and I didn't see a need to press him further on it.

BMW has a clear hierarchy for each vehicle, and the M2 obviously sits above the M240i in the exact same way that the M3 sits above the M340i. Exact content varies from product line to product line - you either find enough value in the upgrades to spring for the proper M model, or you don't and you choose the M Performance model or something else instead.

I didn't see any evidence of someone "arguing a beefed up 330i is an M car variation" so that part seems off base. That said, the M Sport package clearly leverages the "M" brand (and has been for decades), and cars with such a package obviously have their place in the hierarchy as well, sitting just below the M Performance vehicles.
I completely agree with this statement of yours. I should have said, it could imply, because there is a good number of forum members that think the G20 M340 is an actual M car, which would mean it's a car designed and developed by the M division.

At the end of the day people will think what they want and that's fine, it's a free world, mostly. My current 3CS is a lease I'm transferring soon then I'm switching to Porsche (only stating this to indicate my unbiased opinion). All BMW cars are great in my opinion for their specific purpose.
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      06-18-2019, 11:40 AM   #31
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That's why I said should be. Maybe they never were, or maybe they aren't anymore. You'd know better than me.

What I simply meant was ///Motorsport designed and developed vehicles should be designed for the track more than the street. Keyword is= should be.
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      06-18-2019, 02:05 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
I am not sure I understood what point you were try to make here, but I rarely find it productive to pedantically debate the precise meaning of slang language such as "Baby M" and "M-Lite". It was clear from context to me what the OP meant with his use of those terms, and I didn't see a need to press him further on it.
Thanks! My whole purpose of this thread wasn't to debate whether the M340 is a true M or not (I recognize that it's not and that it's not designed for the track) or to split hairs about terminology or branding, but simply to understand which M3 it would compare best against in a general performance sense. Thankfully you understood me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 530iDriver View Post
I would say that a G20 330i will be as fast or faster than an E36 or E46 M3. People today are performance spoiled. 20 years ago a 6 second car has considered to be very fast and anything 5 secs and below was super car territory.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 530iDriver View Post
The E46 M3 did 0-60 in 4.5 secs. The E36 M3 before it did the same run in 5.2 secs.

20+ years later a "base" new 3-Series runs circles around an E36 M3 and accomplishes this with a 2 liter turbo. And it is not that far off from the E46 M3.

Today's M340i is as fast 0-60 as the V8 equipped E90 M3 was from just a decade ago. These were 0-60 cars in the 4.1 sec range.

I believe the horsepower wars of the last 25 years have done both good and bad. There was a time when a regular BMW automobile was not the fastest or most powerful but offered the most balance of the bunch. And yes the vast majority of non-M vintage Bimmers were slow cars by today's standards.
Thanks 530iDriver. These are exactly the types of tidbits of info I was trying to understand. With the improvements in technology I'm sure that the M340 performs better overall than some M3s of the past, and if that's the case then I was curious to which it measures up best to.
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      06-18-2019, 02:58 PM   #33
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The new M340i matches the performance of the late V8 E90 M3 and definitely faster than M3s that preceded it.

However the question open to debate is the G20 M340i as engaging and "visceral" as the normally aspirated E90 M3? Remember the current F80 M3 was the first ever turbocharged M3 (Or was that the E30 M3?). The F80 signaled the transition away from the old school M3 mantra... Turbos, electric power steering, routed engine sounds, etc.
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      06-18-2019, 06:17 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 530iDriver View Post
The new M340i matches the performance of the late V8 E90 M3 and definitely faster than M3s that preceded it.

However the question open to debate is the G20 M340i as engaging and "visceral" as the normally aspirated E90 M3? Remember the current F80 M3 was the first ever turbocharged M3 (Or was that the E30 M3?). The F80 signaled the transition away from the old school M3 mantra... Turbos, electric power steering, routed engine sounds, etc.
From my two M340i test drives and years with an E9x, no certainly the visceral experience is not the same. The M340i manages to have about the same performance but makes it easier to achieve, especially in xDrive form. The DCT in the m3, while quirky and jerky (sometimes) is still magic when you downshift that V8. The 8AT is zero drama with slightly slower downshifts. The M340i has a tighter front end for turn in but the rear end reigns supreme on the E9x, especially with NA throttle control. The new car is just simpler to drive and more comfortable while the E9x M3 is a sometimes overly responsive animal. Take your pick because they both can drive you to work with the same relative speed and handling.
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      06-18-2019, 11:21 PM   #35
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We're all well aware that m-cars are sprinkled with the ///Magic dust. We know that the ///Magic elevates it to more than a mere bmw. It's not just a means of stylish transport. It can elevate one as much as it can accelerate. In an m-car, one doesn't merely drive, but the fiber of one's very being becomes driven. Driver and machine become fused, nervous system branching into chassis, hands and arms contiguous with the steering column, brain communicating with idrive in real time, suspension adapting to moods and whims, moods and whims adapting to the ///Magic. Human and machine becoming something more than the some of their parts. The synergy of flesh with stardust realized on the track or perhaps a twisty back road on the way to utopia.

We realize that the m340i, m240i and whatever else can't offer the true ///M experience. They are pretty good cars in their own right though. They won't change your life, or who you are, but they are a comfortable, practical, and fun way to get around on a daily basis. That's all.
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      06-19-2019, 12:06 AM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuller View Post
We're all well aware that m-cars are sprinkled with the ///Magic dust. We know that the ///Magic elevates it to more than a mere bmw. It's not just a means of stylish transport. It can elevate one as much as it can accelerate. In an m-car, one doesn't merely drive, but the fiber of one's very being becomes driven. Driver and machine become fused, nervous system branching into chassis, hands and arms contiguous with the steering column, brain communicating with idrive in real time, suspension adapting to moods and whims, moods and whims adapting to the ///Magic. Human and machine becoming something more than the some of their parts. The synergy of flesh with stardust realized on the track or perhaps a twisty back road on the way to utopia.

We realize that the m340i, m240i and whatever else can't offer the true ///M experience. They are pretty good cars in their own right though. They won't change your life, or who you are, but they are a comfortable, practical, and fun way to get around on a daily basis. That's all.


That ///Magic must only be present at the limit, because the M4 was fatiguing as hell during daily city driving... ( 3 years ). Don't get me wrong, it's a fun car, but has it fair share of warts!

Wanna make your M340 visceral, down pipe and tune or just buy a full ///M.

Want life changing? Get a Bugatti.
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      06-19-2019, 06:59 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigSky702 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuller View Post
We're all well aware that m-cars are sprinkled with the ///Magic dust. We know that the ///Magic elevates it to more than a mere bmw. It's not just a means of stylish transport. It can elevate one as much as it can accelerate. In an m-car, one doesn't merely drive, but the fiber of one's very being becomes driven. Driver and machine become fused, nervous system branching into chassis, hands and arms contiguous with the steering column, brain communicating with idrive in real time, suspension adapting to moods and whims, moods and whims adapting to the ///Magic. Human and machine becoming something more than the some of their parts. The synergy of flesh with stardust realized on the track or perhaps a twisty back road on the way to utopia.

We realize that the m340i, m240i and whatever else can't offer the true ///M experience. They are pretty good cars in their own right though. They won't change your life, or who you are, but they are a comfortable, practical, and fun way to get around on a daily basis. That's all.


That ///Magic must only be present at the limit, because the M4 was fatiguing as hell during daily city driving... ( 3 years ). Don't get me wrong, it's a fun car, but has it fair share of warts!

Wanna make your M340 visceral, down pipe and tune or just buy a full ///M.

Want life changing? Get a Bugatti.
Are you saying that the m4 is....gulp....imperfect?! This can't be the case. An m3/4 is the standard by which automotive perfection is measured. The warts you allude to must be manifestations of your own, brought to light by ///M.
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      06-19-2019, 11:26 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigSky702 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuller View Post
We're all well aware that m-cars are sprinkled with the ///Magic dust. We know that the ///Magic elevates it to more than a mere bmw. It's not just a means of stylish transport. It can elevate one as much as it can accelerate. In an m-car, one doesn't merely drive, but the fiber of one's very being becomes driven. Driver and machine become fused, nervous system branching into chassis, hands and arms contiguous with the steering column, brain communicating with idrive in real time, suspension adapting to moods and whims, moods and whims adapting to the ///Magic. Human and machine becoming something more than the some of their parts. The synergy of flesh with stardust realized on the track or perhaps a twisty back road on the way to utopia.

We realize that the m340i, m240i and whatever else can't offer the true ///M experience. They are pretty good cars in their own right though. They won't change your life, or who you are, but they are a comfortable, practical, and fun way to get around on a daily basis. That's all.


That ///Magic must only be present at the limit, because the M4 was fatiguing as hell during daily city driving... ( 3 years ). Don't get me wrong, it's a fun car, but has it fair share of warts!

Wanna make your M340 visceral, down pipe and tune or just buy a full ///M.

Want life changing? Get a Bugatti.
Damn BigSky702! Your ///M experience makes me think I'm being left out somehow. Lol! I remember when people said similar things about the E46 and E9X ///M's. Up until my '17 ///M4, I daily drove all of my previous 6MT ///M's [with a minimum one hour commute one way; up to 2 hours with traffic], and never thought they were fatiguing, etc.....and I drive on SoCal streets. I put 35,000 miles on my '15 ///M4 in just a little over a year before trading up for my Individual order. Thankfully I have a beater 2003 Mercedes C230 with 333,000 miles to drive daily that keeps the miles off of my ///M4 (..which has less than 13,000 miles after nearly 3 years).
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      06-19-2019, 11:43 AM   #39
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Lets apply some mathematics

M=AMG
M340i = AMG C43
AMG C43 = AMG

Therefore, M340i = M.

That is to say--if AMG C43 is a real AMG then M340i is a real M.

Math doesn't lie.
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      06-19-2019, 11:57 AM   #40
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The thread isn't really about M vs. M Performance nor whether a product in the latter family is a "real M".
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      06-19-2019, 01:13 PM   #41
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Quote:
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The E46 M3 did 0-60 in 4.5 secs. The E36 M3 before it did the same run in 5.2 secs.

20+ years later a "base" new 3-Series runs circles around an E36 M3 and accomplishes this with a 2 liter turbo. And it is not that far off from the E46 M3
Not a chance. The B46 is a great engine, and off the line it will be about the same or maybe better from 0-60 as the E36 M3 but that's about where the similarities end.

Once the car is rolling at speed, the B46 loses steam compared the S52 in the E36 M3 which just keeps pulling. Throw the 330i in to sport or sport+ and the shifter into sport mode go up a hill and floor it. It doesn't pull as hard as the E36 M3.

I'm willing to bet a skilled driver can get the E36 M3 around a twisty road course quicker than a 330i M-Sport due to the lower weight and more communicative steering its easy to get the E36 very close to its limit without exceeding it, and you don't have to scrub as much speed as you do in the G20. The G20 doesn't do a great job communicating what's happening at the limit causing the driver to lose confidence even if the car technically can handle more.

Guaranteed that the M340 though would destroy the E36 M3. Regardless of which one handles better/is more agile, the G20 M340 has more than enough power to ham fist your way through any situation and outgun the E36 M3.

I'm very impressed by the G20 and I think a 330i M-Sport exceeds the performance of the E36 M3 in some ways but not all. Thats very impressive for a base level car. But the two cars do this in very different ways and the sensations between an E36 M3 and a 330i M-Sport are vastly different. The 330 is numb, the E36 gives you tons of steering feedback, auditory feedback, throttle/brake pedal feedback, and chassis feedback through the seat...g20, basically nothing
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      06-19-2019, 03:16 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigSky702 View Post


That ///Magic must only be present at the limit, because the M4 was fatiguing as hell during daily city driving... ( 3 years ). Don't get me wrong, it's a fun car, but has it fair share of warts!

Wanna make your M340 visceral, down pipe and tune or just buy a full ///M.

Want life changing? Get a Bugatti.
As someone strongly considering an M4 in the next couple of years, what did you see as its warts? Tight suspension? Twitchy throttle? I'd be using it as a daily driver and my 2018 S5 does fine with that, so I'm curious what I'd be getting into by going up a step or more (depending on your perspective).
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      06-19-2019, 06:07 PM   #43
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I think the argument is more about trickle down technology. Meaning the second highest tier 3 series on the new platform (M340) is more comparable to the highest tier 3 series car of the F platform. I personally believe they are are NOT equal, but I don't think anyone is arguing an M340 will be equivalent to the G80 M3. But the M340 does rival the F80 on paper, I think it comes up short, but not as short as it will to the G80.

It's like bicycle components. Thai years 105s, are better than 3 year old Ultegras.

My opinion is the m340 will check MANY boxes, and it will fulfill many of the boxes of current F80 drivers, but it's still not fully on par driving wise. But it is a compelling vehicle. Albeit, I think the F30/f80 looks better. But I'm sure that will change with time
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      06-20-2019, 09:42 AM   #44
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The M340 is very nice for what it is, but it is nowhere near M car territory and like others have said, BMW has no intentions of it being so.

M cars are about more than just 0-60, it's about the driving experience and how the car just feels "special". It's hard to explain really, but the M340 just doesn't have that "it" factor, so I won't even attempt to compare it to any M car past or present.

And just to clarify, I have test driven the M340 and thought it was great and would definitely pick it over an S4 or C43. But I would never consider it over an F8x or even a lightly used E9x.
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