In an effort to appeal to more mainstream buyers, BMW has recently been downplaying the “Ultimate Driving Machine” marketing which historically attracted sports car enthusiasts. But there are a plenty of BMW models left which still offer a thrilling experience at every turn — and one of those vehicles is the all-new third-generation BMW X3.
The 2018 BMW X3 offers a spirited drive no matter which trim level you select. And since there’s no such thing as “too sporty,” BMW also offers one of the most compelling X3 models that’s ever existed, that’s the one we’ll be discussing here. Meet the 2018 BMW X3 M40i, a 355-horsepower crossover that we’ve come to love and admire for its performance.
2018 BMW X3 M40i Exterior
Like other BMW models that carry an “M” badge but aren’t actually full-blown M cars, the 2018 BMW X3 M40i also looks like a sleeper. The only difference you’ll notice between other X3 models and the X3 M40i is the slight appearance enhancements that come courtesy of the M Sport Package. The 2018 BMW X3 M40i features an M Aerodynamic kit that adds on a front apron with larger air intakes, side skirt trim, and a diffusor-style rear apron, shadowline exterior trim, black chrome exhaust tips, cerium gray accent finishers, and standard 19-inch M Double-Spoke wheels (M Double-Spoke 20-inch wheels are optional).
The 2018 BMW X3 M40i sits on a wheelbase that measures 112.8-inches with an overall length of 186.1-inches. The width stretches 74.7-inches while the height stands at a total of 66-inches.
Overall, when you place the 2018 BMW X3 M40i next to opponents like the Audi SQ5 or the Mercedes-AMG GLC43, the X3 has a more aggressive look, while remaining stylish and appealing.
2018 BMW X3 M40i Interior
While the interior of the 2018 BMW X3 M40i isn’t too far off from other X3 models, there are some M model specifics including an M sports steering wheel, M-badging on the seats, M design pedals and floor mats.
Standard tech features on the 2018 BMW X3 M40i include a HiFi 12-speaker sound system, an iDrive 6.0 system with a 10.25-inch touchscreen display, USB audio connection, Bluetooth audio streaming and hands-free calling, tri-zone climate control, and much more. Optionally, you can add on the BMW Gesture Control technology, heated front and rear seats, heated steering, navigation, wireless charging, an upgraded Harmon Kardon sound system, Apple CarPlay, and an awesome 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster that houses all the important information right in front of the driver.
The cabin is quite roomy with a total of 40.3-inches of legroom for front row passengers and 36.4-inches for second-row passengers. Cargo capacity comes in at 28.7 cubic feet with the seats in user position and 62.7 cubic feet with the seats laid flat.
When compared to the interior of its rivals, the cabin of the 2018 BMW X3 M40i hits a perfect balance of comfort, indulgence, and sport. With its use of high-quality elements and the smell of the BMW leather, it’s an exceptional place to be.
2018 BMW X3 M40i Performance
Now let’s get down to the performance of the 2018 BMW X3 M40i. Power comes from a 3.0-liter TwinPower Turbo inline six-cylinder engine that produces 355 horsepower with a peak torque of 369 lb-ft. The engine is mated to an eight-speed Steptronic automatic transmission that helps with a 0 to 60 mph time of 4.6 seconds with a top speed of 155 mph. That makes the 2018 BMW X3 M40i quicker than the Mercedes-AMG GLC43 that goes to 60 mph in 4.8 seconds and the Audi SQ5 that goes to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds.
Buyers who want extra performance can add on the Adaptive M Suspension option which lowers the chassis by 0.4-inches and electronically adjusts the dampers. It allows for better agility and precise handling. The Driving Dynamics Control system allows drivers to pick between four driving modes including ECO PRO, COMFORT, SPORT, and SPORT+.
Fuel economy wise, the 2018 BMW X3 M40i gets an EPA-rated 20/27 mpg* (city/highway).
2018 BMW X3 M40i Safety
Standard safety features on the 2018 BMW X3 M40i include a rear view camera, front and rear park distance control, tire pressure monitor, and more. Optionally, you can add on a range of driver assist technologies including a surround-view 3D camera, parking assist plus, active park distance control, adaptive cruise control, and more.
2018 BMW X3 M40i Overall
If you’re looking for a luxury sport crossover, the 2018 BMW X3 M40i is unquestionably the best it gets. It’s quicker than its competitors and is also competitively priced. Prices for the new BMW X3 M40i start at $54,500**. Visit your local AutoNation-affiliated BMW dealer and take the 2018 BMW X3 M40i for a spin today.
*Based on EPA mileage ratings. Your mileage will vary depending specific vehicle trim, how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions, and other factors.
**MSRP excluding tax, license, registration, destination charge and options. Dealer prices may vary.