2022 BMW M240i xDrive is the fastest 2-Series until the new M2 comes.
In a market where everything gets bigger, taller and unfortunately more boring, it gets to a point where car enthusiasts have to spend 6 figure dollar amount to have something fun and well-built. Although I would not call M240i particularly cheap vehicle, it represents the M3 spirit more than current 3-Series offerings for a reasonable price tag.
It’s not just about pure speed and horsepower figures. BMW M240i proves that you don’t need to have 700 horsepower monster to have fun, instead all you need is short wheelbase nimble chassis with a great drivetrain that can make you smile, like the good old days where an M3 was only making around 340 horsepower.
In a world where 3-series eventually became a 5-Series of two decades ago, in terms of overall dimensions, it’s not hard to say M240i gets bigger compared to the previous generation. It’s a subjective matter, but I personally think it’s not looking as good as the previous generation.
BMW decided to keep the traditional BMW looks when redesigning the new 2-Series. For instance, there is no enormous kidney grille that they used in 4-Series. 2-Series’ kidneys look proportional, and they have active vents where it closes for better aerodynamics.
Sharp body lines can also be seen from the side profile, and having M body line means you also get sporty bumper in the front, M specific side mirrors, and blue M brake calipers for extra stopping power. The black rims that come with the M240i are not standard, but it can be bought with black accent package.
The rear end is where it has the most controversial design. The sharp body lines continue in the rear end, but the taillights are located so outwards and far from each other it makes the rear end look like it belongs to another car. It has dual exhaust tips that are fully functional and gave it a sportier look.
In the interior, that’s where you get traditional BMW treatment. Unlike the previous generation where it felt more like a cheap or entry level model, this exactly feels like a 3-Series interior, so that means fit & finish is excellent.
If you look backwards, this is where you start to see the M240i xDrive is significantly smaller than the 3-Series, and this is where you should decide if you need rear seats on a regular basis. For the front seats, you really don’t feel cramped even for a large adult.
Although rear seat legroom and headroom is quite limited, for smaller adults or children it’d be a nice place to spend some time. Unlike the 3-Series, this is a 4-seater car and you are not allowed to sit in the middle.
I was not expecting to see 3rd zone climate control, and USB-C charging ports for the rear passengers. I don’t really think it was necessary for 2-Series, but it’s definitely a nice-to-have. If you don’t carry a lot of passengers, rear seats can be folded down for additional cargo space.
2022 BMW M240i xDrive offers 13.8 cubic feet (390L) of total cargo space behind the rear seats, but if you need more than 390L of cargo space, you can simply fold down the rear seats and use rear passenger area as a cargo space.
Engine and Drivetrain
Updated 2-Series only come with one engine and transmission option so far, meaning that this is what you get. 2022 BMW M240i xDrive comes with BMW’s well-known 3.0L inline 6-cylinder twin turbo engine that produces 382 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque.
What makes this engine special is the character of it, it pretty much offers flat torque curve from the low RPMs all the way up to redline. Despite having forced induction, it still sounds great, and it can also be a great daily driver as it offers seamless driving experience.
8-Speed torque converted automatic transmission is the biggest contributor for the seamless driving experience, and I love the tuning of the transmission as it can be extremely smooth in Comfort mode, but it can shift as fast as a dual clutch transmission in Sport Plus mode. M240i only comes with xDrive AWD system.
Driving Impressions and Features
What’s impressive about the 2022 M240i xDrive is how livable it can be as a daily driver, and that’s something you don’t find with a proper M car. In Comfort mode, it just feels like a regular 2-Series, but things can change quite a bit when you switch to the Sport Plus mode, as it tightens the suspension and drivetrain.
The drivetrain has been my favorite for a very long time, and having xDrive for Canadian weather is a great addition. It makes the car feel more sure footed, but of course it is not going to be as tail happy as previous generation M2. Although it is a RWD biased AWD system with the help of M Sport differential, it still sends quite a bit of power to the front wheels.
When you send quite a bit of power to the front wheels for optimal traction, that’s where you get understeering. With correct throttle inputs, you can transfer it to oversteering, but you always have to give input to the steering wheel unlike a rear wheel drive sports car.
This is where you feel the difference when you push the limits of the M240i, versus other M cars that can be switched to rear wheel drive only mode. M240i does not come with that option, so you are always stuck with AWD, and I think BMW wanted to leave something for the new M2.
What makes the M240i xDrive special compared to bigger M cars is that shorter wheelbase makes the car feel very agile, so much that it feels more nimble than M3 or M4. Brakes give you a lot of confidence and feedback, but where it lacks is the steering feeling that you don’t get a lot of feedback from it.
Aside from not being able to switch to rear-wheel-drive mode, M240i xDrive does not come with M driving modes in the steering wheel, or in the center console, which means you won’t be able to adjust driving settings as precisely as a proper M car, that’s where you have to wait the upcoming M2.
Like many other modern BMWs, feature list is too long to go through, so I’ll just mention the ones that I was expecting to see, but not available. The first one came to mind is the adaptive cruise control. For the price range, not having adaptive cruise control is just not acceptable, let alone lane centering feature.
Infotainment system is the latest BMW software that works quite smooth with no input lag. Wireless Apple CarPlay is a great addition if you like smartphone integration, and Harman Kardon sound system sounds exceptionally well especially in a small interior space like the M240i.
Pricing and the Verdict
Unless you absolutely need more rear legroom and headroom space, 2022 BMW M240i xDrive is one of my favorite modern BMWs as it combines modern features and great performance with traditional BMW driving dynamics that we used to feel in older M models.
In a market where cars get bigger and bulkier, BMW M240i is one of the few premium performance oriented coupes available without a 6 figure price tag. 2022 BMW M240i xDrive starts at $56,950 CAD and with all the extras, our tester was priced at $68,595.
For more details – please visit www.bmw.ca