The BMW X4 M40i has been seen in development guise since last autumn
The model seen here has been named the X4 M40i
Key changes over the standard X4 include styling modifications to the front, sides and rear
New twin exhaust exits can be seen at the rear of the test car
This model sports a blacked-out kidney grille at the front
The model is due to be revealed at the Detroit motor show next year
BMW is preparing to launch a new M-Performance model in the form of a hot X4 M40i.
The M40i is planned to make its public debut at the Detroit motor show next January prior to the start of UK sales during the first quarter of 2016. It will sit at the top of the BMW X4 line-up at a price pitched above the existing £49,295 X4 xdrive35d M Sport, according to highly placed BMW sources.
Details about the X4 M40i remain scarce although Autocar understands it will receive a powered-up version of BMW’s superseded N55 engine that goes under the internal codename S55.
The turbocharged 3.0-litre six-cylinder petrol motor - which was first developed for the 1 Series M Coupe and is also earmarked for the upcoming BMW M2 - is rumoured to have a revised induction system to achieve an output around 350bhp.
This would provide the 4WD X4 M40i with 41bhp more than the X4 xDrive35d M Sport and 48bhp more than X4 xDrive35i – the latter not sold through official BMW channels in the UK.
The new engine is expected to be mated to a reworked version of the standard X4’s eight-speed ZF-produced automatic gearbox, with steering wheel-mounted Steptronic shift paddles and BMW’s xDrive 4WD system with electronic torque vectoring.
With a kerb weight in the region of 1820kg, BMW’s new M-Performance model is likely to get to 0-62mph in 5.0sec, with a top speed limited to 155mph.
By comparison, the turbocharged 3.0-litre six-cylinder diesel powered X4 xDrive35d M Sport hits 62mph in 5.2sec, with a top speed of 154mph.
Other tweaks include a heavily revised steel spring suspension, an M Sport exterior styling package and an upgraded interior with exclusive M Sport instruments, multi-function steering wheel, and various trims.
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