The info many of us have been waiting for is finally here. BMWNA has release details on the 2020 BMW M340i Sedan in both RWD and xDrive forms. As you already know, all new 3 series arrives early next year with a new generation of design, suspension, engine and technology. The range topping M340i takes the 3 Series where only M cars have gone before with 382 hp and 369 lb-ft. of torque and a 0-60 time of 4.2 seconds. Standard on the car is the new M Sport limited-slip differential which should bring some of that drifting magic that so many full M cars have.
In short this is the 3 Series that BMW enthusiasts will be most excited about. While there isn’t a manual to be found on the order sheet, there is an impressive amount of back to basics design and engineering that should make this the most engaging 3 Series in years.
The M340i Sedan will make its World Debut at LA Auto Show in November 2018 and will begin deliveries in the summer of 2019.
Official Release: Today, BMW proudly introduces the most powerful non-M 3 Series ever: the 2020 BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans. The new top of the range, seventh generation, M Performance 3 Series will make its world debut at the Los Angeles International Auto Show Nov. 30 – December 9 with the M340i xDrive model.
Over the past 40 years, no other BMW has embodied the concept of the Ultimate Driving Machine better than the BMW 3 Series. Modern design, exceptional handling, efficiency and innovative technology, all signature characteristics of a BMW, have been developed to the highest level ever through tireless engineering and testing. The new 2020 BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans represent not only the core of the BMW 3 Series range (of which over 15 million units have been sold worldwide) but also the heart and passion of the BMW brand.
When the first BMW 3 Series arrived on U.S. shores in 1976 as a successor to the iconic BMW 2002, it built upon the sport sedan foundation pioneered by that model and launched a new name: the BMW 3 Series that would become BMW’s most successful model – a status it retains to this day. Over the course of six model generations, the BMW 3 Series has ranked as the world’s biggest-selling premium car, led the way for high-performance powertrain and chassis technology and earned a reputation as a pioneer of technological innovations in its segment. The latest M Performance edition of the car sees BMW building on the sporting tradition of the 3 Series, whose exploits in motorsports have earned it many accolades. The seventh generation of the sports sedan moves the game on once again in terms of driving dynamics, not to mention premium quality and innovation, in its segment.
The first BMW M Performance 3 Series
The Summer of 2019 will see the arrival of the BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans. The new BMW M Performance models will showcase the full dynamic potential of the new BMW 3 Series. An updated six-cylinder inline gasoline engine, M Performance chassis tuning, optional xDrive intelligent all-wheel drive and the standard M Sport rear differential will deliver performance attributes that will satisfy and impress any driver.
The rear-wheel drive BMW M340i will offer the pure driving experience that 3 Series enthusiasts have enjoyed for the past 40 years. With reduced weight compared to its all-wheel drive sibling and enhanced steering feel compared to the outgoing models, the M340i Sedan will be the driver’s exhilarating driving companion. The BMW M340i xDrive Sedan adds the increased traction of all-wheel drive to improve the new model’s abilities in both dry and adverse road conditions.
The new version of the straight-six engine, developed for the BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans, produces 382 hp and peak torque of 369 lb-ft. A 0–60 mph time of 4.2 seconds (provisional figure) takes this new BMW M Performance model into territory previously inhabited by BMW M cars.
The 3.0 liter, six-cylinder, inline engine in the BMW M340i and BMW M340i xDrive Sedans features an aluminum crankcase and aluminum cylinder head. A new, single, Twin-scroll turbocharger with an integral, compact, steel exhaust manifold and impellers that weight approximately 25% less than those of preceding models, builds boost pressure more rapidly. Fuel is supplied by means of new High Precision Injection technology which allows injection pressures up to 350 bar. The current version of M TwinPower Turbo technology also features VALVETRONIC fully variable valve control and Double VANOS variable camshaft control.
Power and acceleration are accompanied by the characteristic sound of the six-cylinder, inline engine, which has gained additional presence thanks to the dual-pipe exhaust system. In SPORT and SPORT+ modes, which can be activated via the Driving Experience Control switch, the valve-controlled exhaust system generates a particularly distinctive sound.
8-speed Sport Steptronic transmission
The new 2020 BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans are equipped with the standard 8-speed Sport Steptronic transmission. The latest upgraded version of this quick-shifting sport automatic transmission features a new, optimized hydraulic control system and shorter gearing for improved response and acceleration. The 8-speed Sport Steptronic transmission’s Launch Control function optimizes traction during acceleration off the line more effectively than in previous versions and shift paddles on the steering wheel allow for manual gear selection.
Intelligent connectivity enables the sport automatic transmission to adapt its shift strategy according to the route and driving situation. Working with the standard navigation system, the 8-speed Sport Steptronic transmission uses data from this system and from the optional Active Cruise Control system’s radar sensor. This makes it possible for the transmission to avoid unnecessary gear changes when negotiating a series of fast corners and, when approaching a vehicle ahead for example, to shift down early in order to use the engine braking to scrub off speed.
The Auto Start Stop function and the coasting function available in conjunction with the 8-speed Steptronic transmission in the new BMW 3 Series Sedans also use data supplied by the optional Navigation System Professional with data from the standard BMW Active Guard driving assistance systems’ front camera. In this way, inefficient engine shutdown – for example when stopping briefly at junctions or roundabouts – can be prevented. Movement of vehicles ahead is registered in order to determine the ideal moment for the Auto Start Stop function to stop and start the engine. The coasting function is now available when either ECO Pro or COMFORT mode is selected using the Driving Experience Control switch between 9 and 99 mph. The efficiency-enhancing decoupling of the powertrain only takes place in driving situations where performance and comfort are not compromised. If the driver suddenly lifts off the accelerator, the powertrain stays connected so that engine braking can be used to support deceleration. For the same reason, powertrain disconnection is also prevented when approaching a junction or a vehicle ahead.
BMW Intelligent xDrive
With fully variable power distribution between the front and rear axles, the intelligent all-wheel drive technology in the new BMW M340i xDrive Sedan ensures maximum traction, agility and vehicle stability. The rear-wheel bias of BMW xDrive supports the driving experience that driver’s expect from their BMW. The Driver Experience Control modes SPORT and SPORT+ help support more dynamic driving even further by transferring power to the rear wheels when the driver is steering into a corner for example.
Like the rear-wheel drive M340i, the BMW M340i xDrive Sedan is also equipped with a standard M Sport rear differential. The electronically controlled, fully variable rear-wheel locking functions contribute noticeably to not only increase traction, but also enhanced stability and agility of the vehicle.
M Performance Chassis Technology
When developing the body structure and chassis technology of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan, a number of clear priorities were set:
- Enhanced driving dynamics
- Agile handling characteristics
- High-precision steering
- Superior braking performance
The foundations for these attributes are provided by:
– Careful weight reduction
– A low center of gravity
– Near perfect 50:50 front/rear weight distribution
– Increased front and rear tracks, compared with the predecessor model
– Significantly increased camber values for the front wheels
– Substantial increase in the stiffness of the body structure and suspension mountings
– Overall body rigidity is up 25 percent, rising to as much as a 50 percent improvement in certain areas.
The increased rigidity of the body and suspension mountings enables the standard M Sport suspension to go about its work in the most efficient way possible, allowing for suspension spring rates to be increased by 20 percent over the previous-generation BMW 3 Series Sedan without loss of comfort.
In addition to these measures, new shock absorber technology has been developed for the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. Used for the first time in a BMW model, the lift-related dampers are part of the car’s standard chassis and make a major contribution to the unique balance of sportiness and comfort – unrivalled by any other manufacturer – which defines the character of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. The M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans’ handling and steering dynamics have been fine-tuned with a series of precisely matched chassis components. The functionally coordinated interplay of suspension, steering, tires, brake system and differential lock makes sport driving an effortlessly enjoyable experience.
Lightweight construction and increased rigidity deliver greater agility.
The rigorous testing and development of the new chassis design enhances the agility of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan in a number of ways. Many details of the proven double-joint spring strut front suspension and five-link rear suspension have been upgraded. Along with the sportier handling, the car’s ride comfort and acoustics have both been improved. Aluminum swivel bearings and control arms for the front axle and aluminum wheel mounts and a new generation of wheel bearings for the rear axle significantly reduce unsprung weight. The front axle – with its increased level of component rigidity, shear panels used to connect the axle to the body and its specially tuned kinematics – enhances both steering precision and cornering dynamics. Factors contributing to the high level of comfort provided by the sedan include a hydraulically damped torque strut bearing, which eliminates vibration and oscillation. At the rear axle, extremely rigid control arms and axle sub-frames along with the use of thrust arms for the body mounting ensure very precise wheel location.
Body weight reduced by as much as 121 lbs., drag coefficient as low as 0.26.
As with the individual chassis components, the weight of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan’s body construction has been reduced. The progress achieved through BMW efficient lightweight measures is rooted in an intelligent material mix including increased use of high-strength steels and aluminum. The body-in-white is 44 lbs. lighter than that of the outgoing model and the front spring struts and engine sub-frame of the BMW 3 Series Sedan are now made of aluminum. This reduces the weight of the body structure by some 16.5 lbs. compared with the predecessor model. A further weight saving of almost 33 lbs. is achieved through the use of aluminum for the hood and front fenders.
The optimization of its aerodynamic characteristics benefits not only the efficiency of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan, but also its performance. The drag coefficient (Cd) of the BMW 3 Series sedan has been reduced to a low 0.26, a reduction of .03 Cd over the previous BMW 3 Series. Factors responsible for the new segment-leading figures include the almost completely sealed underbody, aerodynamically optimized wheels, the use of Air Curtains at the front of the car and the latest generation of active air flap control, which extends across the BMW kidney grille and lower air intake.
Premier of lift-related dampers.
A newly developed suspension and damping system contributes to the balanced handling of the new BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans.
The introduction of lift-related damper control reduces body movement perceptibly smoothing out vibrations caused by bumpy road surfaces and dynamic cornering, which paves the way for sporty, authoritative handling. The system adds extra hydraulic damping at the front axle and a compression limiting system at the rear. It is continuously variable and adjusts the damper firmness progressively according to the changing spring travel. This prevents excessive body dive when driving over large bumps and so avoids uncomfortable, nervous damping response.
At the front axle, the first line of defense against body vibrations is an additional element within the inner sleeve of the damper. Only when greater loads are encountered does the entire damper become active. The rear dampers adapt continuously to the driving situation. Even when the vehicle is carrying heavier loads, they provide the ideal degree of hydraulic damping for the situation at hand. Lift-related damping is an active element of the suspension set-up and is designed specifically to optimize the balance between sportiness and comfort. The positive effect of progressive suspension adjustment can also be felt in less demanding circumstances; even small bumps can trigger damper lift, which makes a noticeable difference in enhancing passenger comfort.
Standard M Sport and optional Adaptive M suspensions
With kinematics and elastokinematics clearly tuned for dynamic driving, the M Sport suspension features more rigid bearings and additional body struts, firmer springs and anti-roll bars, and an even higher degree of wheel camber. The M Sport suspension now also applies to the all-wheel-drive M340i xDrive with the same 10 mm / 0.4 inch lowering in ride height as its rear-wheel drive sibling.
The optional Adaptive M suspension is the combination of M Sport suspension with electronically controlled dampers. Able to deliver damping force to each wheel separately via continuously adjustable valves, it is both the sportiest and most comfortable suspension variant available for the new BMW 3 Series Sedan. The latest version of this damping system operates with new valves and an optimized control algorithm, which now also enables load-dependent control of the damping forces. In addition, switching between the different modes using the Driving Experience Control now results in a much more perceptible variation in the damping characteristics.
In COMFORT mode, the electronically controlled dampers provide well-balanced long distance comfort, whereas in SPORT mode they encourage a much more dynamic driving style. As well as modifying the damper configuration, each setting also influences the steering, accelerator response and the shift dynamics of the Steptronic transmission. ADAPTIVE mode is now also available. With this setting selected, the car automatically adjusts its responses to the driving style and, depending on the equipment specified, to the route profile. The control system responds to accelerator and steering inputs and the position of the selector lever to make the powertrain and suspension characteristics sportier or more comfort-oriented. The map data supplied by the optional Navigation System Professional is also used to prepare the car for an upcoming junction or bend.
Standard Variable Sport steering: More direct, precise and agile
With its variable ratio, Variable Sport steering is able to adjust to changes steering angle, making it as adept at keeping the new BMW 3 Series Sedan effortlessly in a straight line as at maximizing cornering agility or turning and maneuvering comfort. In its latest form, the Variable Sport Steering is more direct in its responses, even when only a slight steering input is applied. Cornering is precise and responsive, while the wheel angles required for parking maneuvers are achieved with less steering wheel input required.
Standard M Sport brakes
High-performance lightweight brakes play a very important part in the characteristics of the new BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans. The front brake disks measure 348 mm / 13.7 inches with four-piston fixed calipers while the rear brake disks measure 345 mm / 13.6 inches in diameter with single-piston floating calipers.
The M Sport brakes provide excellent braking performance and intuitive feel, whether negotiating city streets or driving around a circuit on a track day. Combining an extremely sporty set-up – with short pedal travel and a distinct pressure point – with outstanding thermal resistance, they provide lasting and effective stopping power. The M Sport brakes achieve this with a more direct ratio as well as a different hydraulic configuration. The brake calipers are painted blue and display the M logo.
The functions provided by the Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) system include not only anti-lock braking (ABS) and Dynamic Traction Control (DTC), but also a variety of stabilizing functions and the Start-Off Assistant. The standard Performance Control heightens the agility of the BMW M340i xDrive Sedan by distributing more power to the rear wheels as the situation requires. In order to optimize directional stability during heavy braking on surfaces with differing levels of grip for the right-hand and left-hand wheels, a steering impulse is applied to help the driver correct the car’s line. The functioning of the electromechanical parking brake is integrated into the rear brake calipers by means of the DSC system.
M Sport differential optimizes traction, agility, stability and cornering dynamics.
The standard M Sport differential in the BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans is an electronically controlled, fully variable locking rear differential helps that appreciably enhances traction and cornering. The active differential lock also has a positive effect on directional stability and agility.
Using the DSC system to precisely limit rotational speed equalization between the inside and outside rear wheel when cornering optimizes the transfer of power to the road in all driving situations. The electro-mechanical locking effect allows as much as 1,106 lb-ft of torque to be redirected from the faster-turning wheel to the slower-turning one. This means understeer can be countered effectively under quick cornering. Here, the engine’s power, which cannot be transferred to the road by the unloaded wheel on the inside of a turn, is deliberately shifted to the wheel on the outside of the turn rather than applying the brakes to neutralize its effect. This draws the car into the bend and allows the new BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans to accelerate out of the bend with grip and speed.
The effect of the M Sport differential is quickly noticeable in a series of fast bends. The distribution of power to each individual wheel prevents the tendency to oversteer in situations involving multiple changes of direction and load. Here, the transfer of more power to whichever wheel is on the inside of the bend enables the driver to stick to the chosen course with stability and confidence. Similarly, when the driver changes lanes and brakes at the same time, directional stability is optimized through the transfer of power between the right and left rear wheels.
Exterior design: an expression of sporting prowess.
The exterior design of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan uses a combination of precisely drawn lines and strikingly contoured surfaces to create a modern interpretation of the sporting aesthetic. Its new design language provides a clear showcase for the athletic character of the car. The new M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans are 2.9 inches longer than their predecessors, 0.6 inches wider and 0.5 inches taller. These dimensions lend the latest-generation models dynamically stretched proportions and muscular statures. The cars’ 1.6 inch longer wheelbase and increased track widths of +1.7 inches front and +0.8 inches rear, meanwhile, have a direct and positive influence on its poise and agility.
In keeping with the sporting theme, the front end of the BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans cuts a wide, low-slung and aggressive figure. The large BMW kidney grill mesh inserts are framed by a single surround and split up by wide bars that link to the headlight units. A technically sophisticated and visually smaller interpretation of the customary BMW twin headlights gives them a road-focused stare. Their familiar two-way split is emphasized by an eye-catching notch in the front bumper that rises up into the headlight contour. Full-LED headlights with extended features and U-shaped daytime driving lights are standard. The optional Adaptive LED headlights with BMW Laserlight stand apart with their hexagonal daytime driving light rings and blue, L-shaped elements in the inner and outer light sources.
The hood is shaped by four contour lines flowing towards the BMW kidney grill. At its leading edge, it sits flush with the upper edge of the headlights and kidney grill. Below it, the front bumper has large surfacing and a modern look. Exterior mirror caps, air intake elements, BMW kidney grill surrounds, trapezoidal tailpipe trim and model lettering are all finished in Cerium Grey metallic.
The car’s hood, long wheelbase, short overhangs and elegantly flowing roofline accentuate its sporting profile when viewed from the side. A pair of character lines, which rise up to the rear of the car at door-handle level, strengthen the visual impact made by the forward-surging body. A contour line near the side skirts guides the eye to the sculpted rear wheel arches.
Another feature treated to a striking new look is the Hofmeister kink – the familiar counter-swing at the trailing edge of the side window graphic. A BMW hallmark, this element of the window frame is now integrated into the C-pillar, giving the rear doors a “freestanding” glass edge. The new design language majors on clear forms and precise lines, and this approach is also visible in the transition of the flanks into the car’s rear end. Surface contours flow stylistically into the rear bumper from the side skirts and extend in an upward movement via the rear lights to the spoiler lip on the trunk lid. Horizontal lines and the slim, stylishly darkened light units housing L-shaped LED taillights give the rear a wide and athletic stance.
Interior design: a classy route to sporting flair.
The brand’s new design language brings a clear arrangement of surfaces to the interior of the new BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans. This new language accentuates the increased spaciousness of the cabin and, together with the cockpit’s focus on the driver, enhances their focus on the road ahead. The instrument panel has a modern, light look, and its horizontal lines, high-quality electroplated trim strips and contours extending into the doors lend themselves to a feeling of width and elegance. The coordinated design of the door trim, instrument panel and center console create an all-round feeling of space and a sporting aura. With their dynamic lines and clasp-style door openers, the front and rear door trim panels create a neatly coherent impression. The newly designed instrument cluster and Control Display form a large surfaced screen grouping, while the controls not included in these units are clustered into clearly structured function panels. In the center of the instrument panel, the displays and buttons for the air conditioning and the central air vents form a sharply designed unit, while the light functions are operated from a panel of buttons next to the steering wheel. The start/stop button for the engine is now positioned in the center console, where the gearshift lever is joined by the iDrive Controller and the buttons for the Driving Experience Control and electromechanical parking brake.
Interior and equipment: Refined premium ambiance and innovative options.
The cabins of the new 2020 BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans are designed to offer a modern space with a focus on driving enjoyment. The driver, the front passenger and those travelling in the three rear seats will appreciate the extra space over the predecessor, not just on long distance journeys but in everyday driving. Higher quality materials, precise build quality and numerous meticulously crafted details set the tone for the refined premium character of the four-door sedan.
The standard sport seats provide excellent lateral support and have an even greater range of adjustment. Premium Vernasca leather seats with contrast stitching and piping are available as an option. The Anthracite BMW Individual roof liner, the M leather steering wheel with shift paddles and interior trim strips in Aluminum Tetragon provide a performance oriented ambiance.
Shoulder room in the front of the cabin has increased while passengers in the rear benefit from more legroom, and all occupants now enjoy more headroom than in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan’s predecessor. Seating comfort in the rear has been improved significantly, and long journeys are now a more comfortable experience for the passenger in the middle of the three rear seats.
Getting in and out of the car is now easier for the rear passengers in the new car, as the modified roof edge and side skirt contouring has increased the height of the door aperture, while the distance between the front and rear seats has been extended by 0.4 inches. The rear compartment can accommodate a row of three child seats, two of which can be locked into place using ISOFIX anchor points. This is now an easier process, as the bars in question are positioned further to either side.
Optimized all-round visibility, standard glass roof with far larger surface area.
The slender A-pillar trim, the new location of the Control Display and the rearview mirror’s ultra-slim frame all serve to optimize the view through the windscreen at the same time as adding to the interior’s more spacious feel. The view to the rear has also been significantly improved. Customers will be greeted by the larger glass area from the standard sunroof, which can be better enjoyed by rear seat passengers.
The new BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans’ trunk capacity has been increased from 15.8 to 17.0 cubic feet, and its new partitioning into primary luggage compartment and separate storage compartments has created an additional 1.3 cubic feet of space. The standard Storage package adds features such as extra storage areas, partition nets on both sides of the trunk, bag hooks, and a 12V socket. The standard 40:20:40 split-folding rear backrest makes it easy to transport particularly large and bulky items. With the standard the Comfort Access, the car will automatically unlock when the keyfob is detected in its immediate vicinity and lock again when it moves out of range. This feature’s functionality includes hands-free opening and closing of the trunk lid.
Ambient lighting: an atmospheric interior mood
The standard lighting for the cabin of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan is composed entirely of LEDs. This includes the reading and interior lights in the front and rear, as well as the lighting for the glove compartment, the storage compartment under the center armrest, the footwells, the mirrors in the sun visors and the boot, plus the courtesy lights in the doors. The optional Ambient Lighting results in atmospherically rich illumination of the cabin, which can also be adjusted as desired. The additional indirect lighting of the contour lines running along the instrument panel and the door paneling uses precisely positioned LED fiber-optic light guides to create a dynamic, exclusive mood. A total of six light colors and eleven combinations of brightness, light distribution and color scheme for all light sources in the interior can be selected from the iDrive menu.
In addition, the Dynamic interior light function emits pulsating light signals during specific vehicle system functions. These signals appear on the inner trim of an open door when the engine is running and on the instrument panel in response to an incoming phone call. Another of the optional ambient lighting’s functions is the Welcome Light Carpet, which illuminates the approach to the doors when they are unlocked using the central locking or a door is opened.
Adaptive LED headlights with BMW Laserlight.
In standard specification, the task of illuminating the road ahead falls to full-LED headlights with extended features that use LED units not just for low beam and high beam, but also for the daytime driving lights, direction indicators and dynamic cornering light functions.
For even better visibility when driving at night, customers can opt for the Adaptive LED headlights with BMW Laserlight, which offer variable illumination of the road ahead. Blue, L-shaped accents inside the signature twin headlights reveal the presence of this highly sophisticated lighting technology.
Innovative technology is employed for cleaning the windshield too. The wiper arms with integral spray nozzles specially developed for the new BMW 3 Series Sedan allow the washer fluid to be distributed in a very even manner, ensuring it does not impair the view through the windscreen at whatever speed the car is travelling.
Optimized acoustics: climate control, A-pillars, windscreen and doors
The new BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans comes standard with a rain sensor, automatic headlights, a hands-free phone system and three-zone automatic climate control with independent control of the temperature and ventilation settings for the driver, front passenger and rear passengers. The acoustic properties of both systems have been improved. The air ducts and outlets have been redesigned and pressure losses reduced, leading to a perceptible decrease in flow noise when the ventilation, heating or air conditioning are operating.
Body improvements to divert air flow further boost acoustic comfort, while the structural foam used to fill the A-pillars lessens the amount of wind noise that reaches the interior. Acoustic glass for the windscreen is part of standard specification for the new BMW 3 Series Sedan.
Audio and sound
The BMW Live Cockpit infotainment system with the standard hi-fi audio features ten speakers and an amplifier with 205 watts of output. Those looking to bring the ultimate in audio quality to the new BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans, can select the optional Harman Kardon surround sound system, which upgrades the system to 16 speakers and a digital nine-channel amplifier generating output of 464 watts.
Driver Assistance Systems
The new BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans takes the exciting driving experience to new heights. But it also assumes a pioneering role when it comes to assistance systems designed to ease the driver’s workload in monotonous driving conditions – such as traffic jams – and lends a helping hand in awkward maneuvering situations. The new model generation offers a far wider choice of standard and optionally available systems which enhance specific aspects of comfort and safety. This array of advanced driver assistance systems takes the new BMW 3 Series Sedans further along the road to automated driving than any of its rivals.
Camera images and the data gathered by radar and ultrasonic sensors are used to monitor the vehicle’s surrounding area and either alert the driver to hazards or minimize the risk of an accident by means of corrective braking and steering. The optional Active Cruise Control with Stop and Go braking function helps to make life easier on long-distance journeys by automatically accelerating or slowing down the car to maintain the desired speed set by the driver. The set speed can be imported directly from the optional traffic sign recognition system’s display. The Active Cruise Control system with Stop & Go function goes even further to help the driver by not just maintaining the chosen cruising speed but also keeping a safe distance from vehicles travelling ahead. The system is operational in a speed range from 0 – 130 mph and is able to brake the vehicle to a standstill, if necessary. The maximum length of time that can pass before the car starts off again automatically has been extended to 30 seconds. In order to determine the ideal moment to pull away, the system’s sensors now register not only the vehicle immediately ahead, but the one in front of that as well.
The new BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans comes standard with the Active Guard, Frontal Collision waring with City Collision Mitigation and Lane Departure Warning, the latest version of which also alerts the driver when a cyclist is detected. Depending on the situation, the system can bring the vehicle to a halt to either avoid a collision or minimize its consequences. The optional Driving Assistant includes Blind Spot Detection systems, which operate from 44 – 130 mph and from 12 mph to the car’s top speed respectively, and help the driver to guide the car back onto the correct path with a steering input. The Driving Assistant’s remaining functions also include Rear Collision Protection and Cross-Traffic Alert, thereby reducing the risk of a collision when reversing into roads that are obstructed from the driver’s view. To help it keep an eye on what’s happening behind the car, Cross-Traffic Alert is able to employ both the radar sensors in the rear bumper and the rear view camera.
Driving Assistant Professional: the ultimate in comfort and safety
The optional Driving Assistant Professional offers the full complement of assistance systems for comfortable and safe motoring. Underpinning it all is a trifocal camera co-developed with Mobileye, working in conjunction with a front facing radar. This complete package makes its systems available in an exceptionally wide range of situations. In addition to all the components of the Driving Assistant and the Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go function, it also includes the Steering and Lane Keeping Assistant, which takes its cues from road markings and vehicles driving ahead and works together with the driver to help keep the vehicle in the detected lane. A dedicated button on the steering wheel’s left-hand spoke ensures the systems are easy to operate. Pushing it once activates both the Active Cruise Control and the Steering and Lane Keeping Assistant.
The Driving Assistant Professional also features the Lane Keeping Assistant with Active Side Collision Avoidance. As well as emitting visual warning signals and causing the steering wheel to vibrate, active side collision avoidance also uses a steering input to help avoid collisions. Rounding off the Driving Assistant Professional’s extensive list of functions are the Evasion Assistance, which now also reacts to pedestrians and Cross-Traffic Alert.
The Extended Traffic Jam Assistant is designed to help the driver during the most tedious driving environment, stop and go traffic. Designed to operate on limited access highways at speeds up to 37 mph, this system integrates Lane Keeping Assistant, Active Cruise Control with Stop and Go and a driver attention monitoring camera that replaces the need to touch the steering wheel every 30-50 seconds as long as the driver’s attention is clearly on the road ahead.
BMW Head-Up Display: Larger projection area and optimized graphics
The optional BMW Head-Up Display, part of the available Premium Package, helps the driver to enjoy focused and extremely safe driving in the new BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans. It projects driving-related information directly into the driver’s field of vision on the windshield, where it can be assimilated without the need to divert their eyes from the road. The latest generation of the system boasts a projection area 70% larger than in the outgoing BMW 3 Series Sedan, plus enhanced graphics and additional display readings. The information projected by the BMW Head-Up Display includes the car’s speed, speed limits and overtaking restrictions, Check Control messages, status indicators and warnings from the assistance systems, detailed route guidance and turn instructions, and telephone and entertainment lists.
Another feature activated in conjunction with the BMW Head-Up Display is distance warning, which is part of the Active Cruise Control system’s set of functions and flashes up a graphic icon to alert the driver when they get closer to the vehicle in front than the pre-set minimum distance.
Parking Assistance Package Plus with Back-Up Assistant: maneuvering with ease
Drivers of the new BMW 3 Series Sedan are also able to rely on the comprehensive support of innovative assistance systems when parking and maneuvering. The standard Park Distance Control (PDC) with sensors at both the front and rear provides visual and acoustic signals to prevent collisions with obstacles located to the side or rear of the vehicle. The optional Parking Assistance Package goes further with Automatic Parking, which automatically selects either parallel or perpendicular spaces along to the road, and maneuvering into them. The latest version of the system takes care of steering the car, accelerating, braking and automatic transmission shifting. What’s more, Automatic Parking can now also be used to automatically maneuver out of parallel parking spaces. Here, the driver first specifies the direction in which the parking space is to be excited by switching on the turn signal for the appropriate side. The system then guides the vehicle – using reversing and steering inputs – into a position from which the driver can leave the parking space with the steering turned to the same angle.
Another of the Parking Assistant’s features is the innovative Back-Up Assistant, which helps the driver to exit parking spots or maneuver when space is limited. This system is the only one of its kind in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan’s segment. Back-Up Assistant offers the highly convenient option of automated reversing in confined spaces or situations where the driver does not have a clear view, such as narrow parking garages or entrances to courtyards. To do this, the system stores the steering movements for any section the car has just driven forward along at no more than 22 mph. The system is then able to reverse the vehicle for distances of up to 50 yards by steering it along exactly the same line it has just taken when moving forward, while all the driver has to do is operate the accelerator and brake pedals and monitor the area around the car. The Back-Up Assistant can back the car up at a maximum 5.5 mph.
The rear view camera and the functions included with the optional Parking Assistant Package provide drivers with an excellent overview of the situation when parking or exiting parking spaces. The Park View, Panorama View and Remote 3D Top View features are used to create a 360° image of the vehicle and its surroundings – from different perspectives – in the Control Display. Meanwhile, the Remote 3D View function gives drivers the ability to call up a three-dimensional live image of their vehicle and its immediate vicinity on their smartphone.
Displays and iDrive: Premier for the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant
Making its debut in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan in 2019 is the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant, an intelligent, digital character that responds to the prompt “Hey BMW”. The BMW Group is set to revolutionize driving pleasure with the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant and, in so doing, enter a new era in which drivers will increasingly be able to operate their car and access its functions and information simply by speaking. The range of functions and skills available will be constantly expanded as part of regular updates.
BMWs acquire a digital personality
The BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant learns routines and habits, and is subsequently able to apply them in the appropriate context. It helps the driver, learns their preferences and is familiar with their favored settings – e.g. for the seat heating or the places they drive to frequently using the navigation system (“Take me home”). It is familiar with the vehicle’s functions and is able to operate them as required. Saying “Hey BMW, I’m cold” will prompt the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant to adjust the temperature inside the car accordingly. The assistant will benefit from technical upgrades and be able to learn more and more preferences and favored settings. The assistant takes further strides forward with every command given, every question asked and every setting selected.
A constant on-board companion: the digital BMW expert
The arrival of the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant ensures there is always a genuine BMW professional on board. It is able to explain all sorts of different functions (“How does the High Beam Assistant work?”), provide current status information (“Is the oil level okay?”) and help answer questions (“What warning messages do I have?”). It knows the driver’s favorite settings, and can even activate a combination of them to enhance well-being. For instance, “Hey BMW, I feel tired” triggers a vitality program that adjusts the lighting mood, music and temperature, among other things, in order to make the driver feel more awake.
The perfect driver assistant
The Intelligent Personal Assistant is, in short, the ideal co-driver and comes in particularly useful during everyday driving (“Hey BMW, what is the closest gas station on my route”). To make navigation particularly easy, drivers can give him access to their calendar and contacts, which will enable him to find parking spaces at the destination, provide information on traffic jams along the route and remind the driver when they need to set off. It also learns destinations the customer drives to frequently.
BMW Digital Key: turning the smartphone into a car key
The BMW Digital Key employs Near Field Communication (NFC) technology to allow the new BMW 3 Series Sedan to be locked and unlocked from a compatible smartphone, removing the need for a conventional car key. Holding the smartphone up to the door handle opens the car. Once inside, the engine can be started as soon as the phone has been placed in the wireless charging or smartphone tray. Accessible via the BMW Connected app, the Digital Key offers unrivalled flexibility. The BMW Digital Key is compatible for all NFC-capable Samsung Galaxy smartphones running Android 8.0 and above. Compatibility is limited to select carriers.
Connected Navigation with new digital services
“Connected Navigation” encompasses a number of digital services that are designed to turn seamless and contextual route planning both inside and outside the BMW into a more sophisticated experience. Drivers of the new BMW M340i and M340i xDrive Sedans will be able to send destinations from various apps straight to their car’s navigation system. The most important destinations will be stored in BMW Connected and synchronized with the car, so that the key addresses can be accessed from any device at any time. One particularly helpful new feature is the Parking Finder, which proposes various parking options to the driver before the destination is reached. This service includes providing information on parking garages as well as on street parking spaces with a particularly good chance of being available near the destination. The existing On-Street Parking Information and ParkNow services have been intelligently incorporated into the new assistant’s scope of functions.
BMW iDrive display and control: The right information at the right time
The newly designed instrument cluster/Control Display screen grouping and extended functionality take intuitive operation to the next level in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan, while helping drivers to concentrate even more effectively on the road ahead.
The standard BMW Live Cockpit Professional upgrades the interface with a 12.3-inch high-resolution digital instrument cluster display and a 10.25-inch digital touch screen Control Display featuring the all-new iDrive 7 Operating System. This equipment package also features the Connected Navigation system, a hard drive-based multimedia system with 20 GB of memory, Touch Controller, one USB-A and one USB-C port for data transfer, Apple CarPlay and WiFi interface.
The latest generation of BMW iDrive, boasting fully digital displays, is closely geared to the driver’s personal needs – with the aim of maximizing their attention levels. The system’s clear presentation and structuring are designed to provide drivers with the right information at the right time, aided further by the customizable and personalized displays. The redesigned information display in the middle of the instrument cluster now leaves enough room for an excerpt from the navigation map, for instance. In the main menu on the Control Display, the driver is able to configure up to ten pages, each showing two to four pads (tiles) with live content.
The intuitive multimodal interaction between driver and vehicle has undergone further improvement. The Control Display graphics adapt depending on the operating method, the voice control system (based on natural language understanding) is better than ever before and the optional BMW gesture control now works with two extra gestures, bringing the total to seven. Depending on the situation, the driver can operate the various functions using the familiar iDrive Controller, the steering wheel controls, touch control, voice control or gesture control.