BMW M140i five-door-01

BMW is set to launch M Performance models of the BMW 1 Series and 2 Series in July 2016. The M140i will come in three- and five-door variant, while the M240i will be offered in coupe and convertible forms. The models (with new name designations) will effectively replace the outgoing M135i and M235i.

Both the M140i and M240i will be offered with a new TwinPower turbo 3.0 litre six-cylinder engine which produces 340 hp at 5,500 rpm and 500 Nm between 1,500 and 4,500 rpm (326 hp/450 Nm in the M135i and M235i). The new unit has an aluminium crankcase and cylinder head, and near-source acoustic shielding.

A latest-generation Valvetronic variable-valve control and an updated Double-Vanos variable camshaft are also present. Elsewhere, an electric wastage control and close-coupled arrangement of the catalytic converter help reduce emissions. An on-demand coolant pump, map-controlled oil pump, electric power steering, auto start stop function and brake energy regeneration are all available to help enhance fuel efficiency as well.

A six-speed manual gearbox with auto throttle blipping function comes as standard. Said gearbox helps provide fast downshifts and is capable of multiple downshifts at once. Meanwhile, a new version of the eight-speed Steptronic Sport auto transmission can be opted for instead (standard for xDrive-equipped models).

The eight-speed unit features a wider gear spread, which provides added efficiency. Apart from that, the Launch Control function is said to deliver traction optimised acceleration off the line and a predictive shift strategy. Here, the transmission management works together with the car’s navigation system to analyse driving situation and route profiles to determine the ideal moments for gear change.

As for the century sprint, both the M140i variants achieve this in 4.8 seconds with the six-speed manual gearbox and 4.6 seconds with the eight-speed unit – a total of 0.3 seconds faster than their predecessors. Compared to the outgoing models, fuel efficiency is claimed to have improved by three to five percent.

The M240i coupe goes from 0-100 km/h in 4.8 seconds with the manual, 4.4 seconds with the automatic and 4.4 seconds in all-wheel drive guise. The convertible completes the century sprint in 4.9 seconds with the six-speed manual, 4.7 seconds with the eight-speeder and 4.6 seconds with xDrive. The coupe is claimed to be more four to seven percent more efficient and the convertible two to six percent better.

Standard specifications for the performance models include M sport suspension (lowered by 10 mm), M Sport braking system, variable sports steering with Servotronic function, 18-inch M light-alloy, double-spoke wheels, a model-specific M aerodynamic package and side mirror caps in ferric grey metallic. Inside, it gets cloth/Alcantara sports seats with blue contrast stitching, M leather steering wheel and an M driver’s footrest.