Pardon the shitty photo, but I’m not giving up a good parking space. I’ll get better ones later.
Pardon the shitty photo, but I’m not giving up a good parking space. I’ll get better ones later.
Photo: Patrick George
CountersteerYour true stories of good and bad things that happen in cars.

Generally speaking, I like most of the stuff BMW is putting out these days. The new Toyota Supra is excellent, the 8 Series is a delight and even that little 2 Series Gran Coupe proved to be a nice surprise when I drove it in prototype form. But if you can’t get your bread and butter right, what’s the point of everything else? I’m about to see if the new 3 Series is any good.


This is a BMW M340i xDrive. Until the new M3 drops, it’s the top 3 Series you can buy. It has 382 HP and 369 lb-ft of torque from a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six, and as you figured out from the name, it has all-wheel drive, although a rear-drive version is available as well.

Illustration for article titled What Do You Want To Know About The 2020 BMW M340i?

BMW seems acutely aware that the hardcore faithful weren’t too thrilled with its last 3 Series, the F30. The people from that brand swear up and down that this one is better—lighter, more powerful and with a retuned suspension.

But it also lost the manual transmission entirely, and is now wider, longer and taller. So you be the judge. Or more accurately, I will, because that is ostensibly my job.

Things I like so far:

  • The latest turbo inline-six is damned quick.
  • The eight-speed ZF automatic is, as usual, excellent.
  • It’s got a great interior, and BMW’s current iDrive tech suite is among the best out there currently.
  • It seems to be a really comfortable size for daily-driving.

Things I don’t like as much:

  • Sorry to be that guy, but I miss the manual. That was probably the thing I liked most about the last car.
  • Is it really a return to form the way BMW says? I’m definitely not convinced yet.
  • Comfortable as it is, I fear the 3 Series has gotten too big. Or we all just need to accept that the car we knew and loved has been effectively replaced by the 2 Series Coupe. Maybe that’s not the worst thing in the world.

This one’s pretty loaded and priced at $69,570. Got questions? Ask away.

Editor-in-Chief at Jalopnik. 2002 Toyota 4Runner.

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