The 2016 340i is The Beginning of Something Great
I was handed the keys to a 2016 BMW 340i in warm Arizona recently. Rear wheel drive, turbocharged inline six and a BMW badge on it? I couldn’t resist.
The 3.0 inline six is not the N55 of the 335i’s but a new engine called the B58. It is similar in a sense but it now has a larger twin scroll turbo, a closed-deck block, an air to water intercooler, dual VANOS and a slightly higher compression ratio than the N55 ringing in at 11:1. All of these singing up to a 7k rpm redline making a massive 20 more BHP than the outgoing N55’s 302 BHP. Wait really? That’s it? Well, let me explain. Look at the picture below.
Ignore the red line, the blue line is what we are after. The blue line is a stock baseline of how much power it makes at the rear wheels. It makes 331 whp. That is more than BMW’s claimed BHP at 322. If we factor in 15-20% (No exact number of drivetrain loss but this is rule of thumb) the B58 is really pushing out around 370-390 BHP! Then to add to that the red chart is with a tune alone, no exhaust, no intake, just a reflash of the ECU. I will tell you one thing, this car will be popular in the aftermarket. The 335i is already gaining that reputation that it is easy to make power.
This model was an automatic. Luckily you can get these with a Getrag six speed. On the otherhand the ZF 8 speed is a wonderful autobox. The entire time I drove the car I left in manual mode forcing me to shift everywhere. It is scary how fast the car shifts. It is very, very analog. Downshifts are so quick and precise it is discomforting. In my video review I have a clip showing just how quick it is by. It doesn’t force you to shift either, it let me go a few hundred rpm above redline, to which I decided that I should shift. Also while we are on this image, the interior is worthy of moving out of wherever you live and residing inside of the interior of this car.
Handling is what you would imagine out of a BMW. It is great especially for a sedan. You won’t be your local Takumi but this still derives plenty of mechanical grip for you to get moving really fast around a canyon or a racetrack. I really wonder how it would do with a really good set of summer tires. Steering feels great when in sport mode, some people have complained about the steering but hopping in this it gave decent feedback. It didn’t exceed my expectations for a sedan like so. The one driving dynamic that disappoints me is the differential. It has an E-LSD which basically applies braking force to the wheel with more wheelspin in the rear to try and mimic a LSD. At one point in the video I was able to get the car to drift but the E-LSD couldn’t keep up.
I feel these are going to hold there value. This thought comes back to the engine. When these start to hit the used market more frequently, more people are going to modify them. People are going to find out that this car makes power very easily. With that being popularized more people are going to want there own B58 powered rocket. When there is a large demand and a fixed amount of supply, this car will depreciate very slowly. Thinking this I wondered to myself, why is this? This happened with the Supra (The Supra had F&F also but before that some people wanted them for the power gains). It is happening with the E90 335i. It struck me that this is desired because a car that is easy to modify with massive gains gives people instant gratification. This stems into a larger discussion to car culture as a whole. A lot of car people are gravitating towards areas of car culture where that instant gratification can be achieved, I mean look at the stance scene. Wheels, coilovers and bam you are insta-famous, easy gratification. The same can be said for cars that make power easily. Exhaust, intake, tune and you now have a 400 whp saloon that you can swing your pride and joy to other people at meets in person and online. I am getting off topic but I think would make for a great discussion in the future.
As with my other written reviews there is a bonus video at the bottom! I feel its my best to date, I got new audio equipment and some lenses that make the video look great. To add to this, I used my new mic to get intake and exhaust sound clips. Watch the video and let me know what you guys think. If you liked the review please like and subscribe. Thank you everyone!