BMW Adds Line of M Performance Parts for X3 and X4
Power Upgrades, Cosmetic Tweaks, Lightweight Wheels Alter Styling, Boost Performance
BMW released details behind its line of M Performance parts for the X3 and X4 sport-utility vehicles today in advance of the Essen Motor Show. Included on the list are aggressive body kits and lightweight wheels, and global customers who own an X3 or X4 xDrive30d can option a power upgrade kit that drops 0-60 times by 0.3 second. Although BMW has not announced which parts will be available in the USA, we can safely bet that the power kit will not come here, as that particular model is not available from American BMW dealers.
As BMW says, the accessories are designed to “shine an even brighter spotlight on the cars’ sporting ability and dynamic aura,” which to us seems like a tacit acknowledgement that they don’t necessarily augment performance too much (with exception given to the not-for-U.S. 3.0L diesel models). However, for X3 and X4 owners looking to give their cars a little more edge, M Performance has several options.
Styling-wise, M Performance amplifies the look of what are already some of the most aggressive compact SUVs on the market. The M-branded accessories include black carbon kidney grilles, mirror caps, and an X4-only rear spoiler. Functionally, M Performance 21-inch forged-alloy wheels reduce unsprung weight compared to the standard wheels, which will actually improve handling, braking, and fuel economy.
The interior gets some M-flavored attention as well, with illuminated stainless steel kick plates, carbon or Alcantara trim strips, and a grippy Alcantara steering wheel on offer for the X3 and X4. Additionally, stainless steel pedal pads and M-branded floor mats finish the interior off in a subtly sporty fashion.
To be totally honest, we don’t love the idea of upgrading a car’s appearance without providing meaningful performance upgrades, and most of the performance parts are cosmetic upgrades only. It’s disappointing that the power kit is only available for an engine we don’t get here, but at least the lightweight wheels add both performance and style to the sporty SUVs. We’ll see if BMW chooses to expand the performance envelope with more substantial upgrades in the future, as it has with the larger X5 and X6 SUVs.