BMW X3 M & X4 M revealed, with Competition variants

February 13, 2019

Looking to buy a high performance medium-size premium SUV? BMW has just unveiled the all-new X3 M and X4 M. These aren’t halfway jobs by M Performance or M Sport. These are the real deal, from M division, sitting above the X3 M40i and X4 M40i.

Firstly, the powertrain. BMW is offering two versions for both the X3 M and X4 M. In standard form power comes from a “newly-developed” 3.0-litre twin-turbo inline six that generates 353kW and 600Nm. Sent through an eight-speed automatic transmission with M xDrive all-wheel drive, both run from 0-100km/h in a claimed 4.2 seconds.

If that isn’t enough, you can go for the X3 M Competition or X4 M Competition. These feature a tweaked version of the same twin-turbo inline six, with output bumped up to an impressive 375kW. Across that 0-100km/h sprint the clock stops in a claimed 4.1 seconds.

Digging deeper into the powertrain, BMW M says these models receive the xDrive all-wheel drive system from the new M5. The system offers a rear-axle bias torque delivery. Although there is no rear-wheel drive mode like in the M5, there are two AWD modes to choose from. There’s also an Active M differential at the rear.

Helping with handling is a completely overhauled suspension setup, with adaptive dampers, increased reinforcement for the chassis, and an M-specific steering setup that includes M Servotronic and variable ratio. There’s also bespoke M compound brakes that sit within 20-inch alloy wheels.

As for the design, the performance SUVs feature the usual M garnishes for the body, including a bespoke aero kit with re-sculpted front and rear bumper bars, bigger intakes in the front, and the traditional quad-outlet exhausts at the back.

Stepping up to the X3 M Competition and X4 M Competition sees high-gloss black applied to various parts, such as the front grilles, side mirrors, and the rear spoiler. There’s also a set of unique 21-inch alloy wheels, and an M Sport exhaust system.

Buyers will also be able to option for an M Carbon exterior package, which adds a carbon fibre front spoiler, rear diffuser, side mirrors, and other highlights. There’s also a carbon fibre rear spoiler.

The two models will go on sale later this year, with the M Carbon pack available from August. Australian timing hasn’t been confirmed, but in the second half of the year seems a good bet.

Brett is the editor and founder of PerformanceDrive. He's obsessed with driving, having played with Matchbox cars until he was tall enough to drive a real one. After initially working as a mechanic, Brett earned a degree in journalism and entered media as an editorial assistant at Top Gear Australia magazine. He then worked at CarAdvice.com.au. His dream is to live next door to the Nurburgring in Germany.