Standard EquipmentTechnical SpecificationOptional ExtrasIndependent Review

Driver Convenience

  • 'Lights On' warning buzzer
  • BMW emergency call
  • BMW Online services
  • BMW teleservices
  • Engine start/stop button
  • Oil level indicator
  • On board computer
  • On board diagnostics
  • Outside temperature display
  • Service interval indicator
  • Speed limiter
  • Variable sport steering

Entertainment

  • Auxiliary point for auxiliary devices
  • BMW professional radio with CD player
  • DAB Digital radio

Exterior Features

  • Auto dimming rear view mirror
  • Body colour bumpers
  • Body colour door handles
  • Brake force display
  • Chrome kidney grille with black vertical slats
  • Dark chrome plated exhaust tailpipes
  • Electric front windows + one touch + anti-pinch
  • Electrically adjustable door mirrors
  • Ferric grey mirror caps
  • Follow me home headlights
  • Green tinted heat insulating glass
  • Heated door mirrors
  • Heated windscreen washer jets
  • M aerodynamic bodystyling
  • Rain sensor including auto headlights activation
  • Rear wash/wipe

Interior Features

  • 12V power socket in centre console
  • 12V power socket in passenger footwell
  • 2 grab handles
  • 60/40 split rear seats
  • Anthracite Velour floor mats
  • Dakota leather upholstery
  • Door armrests
  • Driver/passenger sunvisors with ticket holders
  • Folding rear seat head rests
  • Front folding/sliding centre armrest with storage
  • Front head restraints
  • Front sports seats with electric side bolster adjustment
  • Front/rear courtesy lights with soft on/off dimming
  • Glovebox
  • Individual anthracite headlining
  • Isofix rear child seat preparation
  • Leather gear knob and handbrake grip
  • Load restraint lashing eyes
  • M sports leather steering wheel
  • Multifunction steering wheel with audio controls
  • Reach + rake adjustable steering column
  • Storage compartments in doors
  • Welcome lighting

Packs

  • Interior comfort pack - 1 Series

Safety

  • ABS/EBD
  • Automatic Stability Control (ASC)
  • CBC - (Cornering brake control)
  • Child locks on rear doors
  • Crash sensor
  • Driver/Passenger airbags (Impact dependent)
  • Drivers knee airbag
  • DSC+
  • Dynamic brake control
  • Dynamic Traction Control - DTC
  • Front passenger airbag deactivation
  • Front side airbags
  • Hill start assist
  • ITS head airbags for front/rear
  • M Sport braking system
  • Pyrotechnically pre-tensioned front seatbelts
  • Seat belt force limiter
  • Three 3 point rear seatbelts
  • Tyre pressure monitor
  • Warning triangle and first aid kit

Security

  • Automatic drive away locking facility
  • Electronic immobiliser
  • Remote central locking
  • Thatcham Cat.1 alarm

Technical

  • Drive Performance Control
  • Sports function on gearbox with steering wheel mounted gearshift paddles

Wheels

  • 18" light alloy wheels - M Double spoke style 436M

Emissions

CO2 (g/km)

163

HC+NOx

Particles

Standard Euro Emissions

EURO 6

Engine and Drive Train

Camshaft

DOHC

Catalytic Convertor

1

CC

2998

Compression Ratio

11.0:1

Cylinder Layout

IN-LINE

Cylinders

6

Cylinders - Bore (mm)

82

Cylinders - Stroke (mm)

94.6

Engine Code

B58B30M0

Engine Layout

NORTH SOUTH

Fuel Delivery

TWIN TURBO

Gears

8 SPEED

Number of Valves

24

Transmission

SEMI-AUTO

Fuel Consumption

EC Combined (mpg)

39.8

EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies

1

EC Extra Urban (mpg)

48.7

EC Urban (mpg)

30.1

General

Badge Engine CC

3

Badge Power

340

Based On ID

Coin Description

i

Coin Series

M140 [Nav]

Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07

37E

Man Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years

6

Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years

3

NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %

NCAP Child Occupant Protection %

NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09

NCAP Pedestrian Protection %

NCAP Safety Assist %

Safety Concerns?

1

Service Interval Frequency - Months

24

Service Interval Mileage

30000

Special Edition

1

Special Order

1

Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage

0

Standard manufacturers warranty - Years

3

Timing Belt Interval Frequency - Months

Timing Belt Interval Mileage

Vehicle Homologation Class

M1

Performance

0 to 62 mph (secs)

4.6

Engine Power - BHP

340

Engine Power - KW

250

Engine Power - RPM

5500

Engine Torque - LBS.FT

369

Engine Torque - MKG

51

Engine Torque - NM

500

Engine Torque - RPM

1520

Top Speed

155

Tyres

Alloys?

1

Space Saver?

1

Tyre Size Front

225/40 R18

Tyre Size Rear

245/35 R18

Tyre Size Spare

TYRE REPAIR KIT

Wheel Style

M DOUBLE SPOKE STYLE 436M

Wheel Type

18" ALLOY

Vehicle Dimensions

Height

1411

Height (including roof rails)

Length

4324

Wheelbase

2690

Width

1765

Width (including mirrors)

1984

Weight and Capacities

Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres)

52

Gross Vehicle Weight

2035

Luggage Capacity (Seats Down)

1200

Luggage Capacity (Seats Up)

360

Max. Loading Weight

565

Max. Roof Load

75

Minimum Kerbweight

1470

No. of Seats

5

Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb

10.9

On The Road

Driver Convenience

Entertainment

Exterior Features

Interior Features

Packs

Paintwork

Security

Technical

Trim

Wheels

Summary

Make no mistake, this is a mightily impressive car. You'll need to look past the unprepossessing styling and concentrate on the BMW M140i's sheer capability. It can turn its hand to almost anything. It's crushingly fast, offers the keen driver real options at the wheel, yet can trundle up a motorway while showing better than 45mpg on the computer. It'll run four kids to school in perfect safety and has a boot big enough for a week's shopping on the way back. Yes, you can easily buy a more extrovert performance machine for this sort of money but the M140i is the sort of car you'll feel extremely smug about driving just because it's so much smarter than anything for remotely comparable money. I never thought I'd get so enthusiastic about a BMW 1 Series, but this is a very special vehicle. You owe it to yourself to have a try.

Background

Certain car manufacturers make rods for their own backs. Jaguar will never be able to build a car that's regarded with the same reverence as the E Type. Likewise Audi will never eclipse the Quattro. And BMW? Well in BMW's back story, there's this thing called the E30 M3. It's the spectre that gets raised every time the Munich company builds a smallish performance car. And they're never quite as good. But times change and we have to accept that due to all manner of legislation and indeed customer expectations, cars just aren't going to look or feel like that iconic M3 of the Eighties. But let's think about that car for a minute. When it first appeared, it had 192bhp, got to 62mph in 6.9 seconds and ran out of puff at 146mph. Yes it was a tactile and effervescent thing with a great chassis but these days it would be dusted off by a middle rank hot hatch. If you want to cut it these days as a premier league performance car, you need more. The BMW M140i is a case in point.

Driving Experience

As Toyota has demonstrated with its GT86, the modest power, back to basics option is one that has met with critical acclaim. There is, however, a good deal of fun in sending so much power to your rear wheels. The amount in question has slightly risen in this revised model from 322 to 340bhp. The improved 3.0-litre turbocharged six-cylinder engine is still one heck of a motor and offers near supercar acceleration figures. In fact, it'll rocket to 62mph in just 4.8 seconds in the manual version (4.6s in the auto model) and keep going to an electronically limited 155mph. Those are the same stats as you'd get with BMW's identically-engined M240i Coupe model - but this car looks so much more discreet. Of course we could discuss for ages whether a car that makes going fast this easy is a more satisfying choice than a vehicle that's slower but which makes you work for the performance, but let's just say that different people like different things from their hot hatches and coupes. Besides, this BMW can be surprisingly flexible. Press the Sport button and you immediately notice the steering weight up and the throttle response sharpen. Press the button once more and you'll find Sport+, which partially disengages the stability control and offers an even spikier throttle pedal. Suddenly the M140i will feel as if it has teeth.

Design and Build

As before, there's a choice of either three or five-door bodystyles. Looks-wise, things are much as before, which means a remarkably subtle appearance for any kind of M-car. If you saw the BMW M badge and expected pumped-up wheel arches and a front air intake that looks as if it would ingest children, think again. This is a different take on the BMW Motorsport theme. Rather than being positioned as a fully-fledged M model, think of the M140i as a halfway house. It's got plenty of M-specific go but not all the dressing that comes with it. It gets a set of side skirts with subtle creases and modest air vents in the front spoiler. Ferric grey mirrors and chromed exhaust pipes complete the look. Mind you, don't think that just because it's an M140i and not an M1 that it's in any way half-baked. The steering and suspension have been thoroughly fettled, with a different rack and unique front geometry, while the springs and dampers have all been beefed up. Plus there are meatier brakes and model-specific alloy wheels and tyres, differently sized front to rear. It's a root and branch job. Inside it's not actually all that different from humbler 1 Series models. Which means that there have been a few upgrades of late, bringing things like chrome and gloss black detailing around the centre console. Like the rest of the improved second generation I series range, this top variant enjoys improved build quality, with more substantial plastics used throughout. BMW's much-improved iDrive system features and features a high definition 6.5 inch flat screen. The shark-nosed exterior styling takes a bit of getting used to, but most would agree that the profile looks clean, while the rear end is muscular with tidy detailing.

Market and Model

You might feel that around £32,000 is quite a bit to shell out on a hot hatch, but we reckon this BMW is still one of the biggest performance bargains in recent times. It's got the poise and performance to make mincemeat of an Audi RS3 on a circuit and it's almost as quick in a straight line as the latest Porsche 911. A Porsche Cayman suddenly looks quite an indulgence when this sort of capability is available at this price. It's not as if this car is all engine and no finish either. You get a Nevada leather interior, with sports seats up font and three seat belts in the back, Bluetooth, both AUX-in and USB as well as a stereo that can play MP3s from CD, a multifunction steering wheel with a speed limiter mode, air conditioning, door sill finishers with 'M140i' designation, a short-shift gear lever and a whole host of safety kit, including DSC+ stability control, xenon headlights, a tyre pressure warning system and dynamic brake lights. An eight-speed automatic gearbox is also offered as an option. Technology upgrades have brought adaptive LED headlights and cruise control to the options list, plus a GPS-guided eight-speed automatic gearbox. BMW Connect is standard and comes with emergency assist. There's also the option of adding apps for live traffic reports, music streaming and a concierge service.

Cost of Ownership

You're probably aware that BMW can perform some sort of magic trick when it comes to the economy and emissions of its performance cars. The M140i is no exception. Time was when you'd have needed extremely deep pockets to run a petrol-engined car with 340bhp and while this is clearly no Prius, it will return an improved combined economy figure of 36.2mpg. Decidedly un-terrifying. The same story applies to emissions. You'll see 179g/km if you choose the manual car and a mere 163g/km if you plump for the automatic. It wasn't so long ago that these were the sort of numbers you'd be delighted with from a bog-standard 2.0-litre hatchback. EfficientDynamics, BMW's suite of energy-saving features, continues with an Auto Start-Stop function available on both manual and automatic transmissions. An ECO PRO mode, activated using the Drive Performance Control, is a new feature on BMW's that adjusts various on-board systems to maximise efficiency. When in ECO PRO mode, the throttle response is adjusted to encourage a more economical driving style. The extra economy created in ECO PRO mode is fed back to the driver, with the in-car displays showing the additional number of miles achieved.