The BMW 340i is still a rather new appearance on the market for the Bavarian brand. Being launched not long ago, people are still trying to figure out what it’s capable of and whether it’s worth the money, considering it doesn’t come cheap. Compared to the model it replaced, the 335i, it does bring a new engine, as well as some 20 HP extra along with more torque.
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And yet, how does it fare on the track, where straight up power figures don’t matter as much as agility? The guys from Motorsport Magazine decided to put it to the test and brought it down to the Magny-Cours test track. That’s where they pushed the 326 HP 3-liter straight six engine to the absolute limit and came up with a rather interesting lap time.
The BMW 340i xDrive model they tested came up faster the both the Audi S1 and the Ford Mustang GT, both cars that wouldn’t normally compete with the Bavarian sedan but that should be a bit faster on the track, considering their credentials. Furthermore, the BMW was just marginally slower than the once record holder for the fastest FWD car on the Nurburgring, the Renault Megane RS Trophy 275. To top everything off, the new top of the range 3er was just 0.28 seconds slower than the legendary BMW 1M Coupe.
That says a lot about the performance this car brings to the table. And to think that it isn’t even the fastest 3 Series you can get today… That title goes to the BMW 335d xDrive. Yes, a diesel is the fastest 3 Series you can get these days, but understandably so, considering it has a twin-turbo 3-liter engine under the hood making 313 HP and no less than 630 Nm (465 lb-ft) of torque. In a straight line, the diesel is faster than the petrol version by just 0.1 seconds to 100 km/h (62 mph).