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View Poll Results: Which BMW?
530d 244 58.65%
M340i 172 41.35%
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Old 9th April 2021, 18:31   #61
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

Voted for 530d. I would wait for the 5 series LCI.


The case against M340i

M340i is a 4WD version, which means by design BMW has to add quite some unsprung mass to withstand the torque requirements at the front axle too. So the front axle in addition to steering also is used to transit driving power. This inherently causes the vehicle to behave like a proper 4WD sports car. Also being an M, the suspension is stiffer (may be a bit softened a little for Indian conditions) than 530d. So combined with a higher unsprung mass and a stiffer suspension, this is going to be pretty much a driver's only car for good roads. For me hooligan of an engine does not only cut it. The whole powetrain+chassis have to support my use case if it is my only family sedan.

The case for 530d

530d is in essence the purity of a BMW. The rear wheel drives, the front wheel steers. They do what they are supposed to do (The Best of the best sportscars are RWD for a reason. Case in point T.50). The font axle does not get additional mass to aid in transmitting power. It just needs to steer. 530d is not a hooligan of an engine, but is not an average joe either. It's a pretty composed and understated package for the 1 quintessential family sedan. I would still suggest waiting on the 530d LCI just around the corner.

The 530d LCI looks much smarter than the pre-LCI sold in India. See all the highlights in one short video :

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Old 9th April 2021, 20:31   #62
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

Its a tough “Heart vs Mind” question.

530d is a beautifully packaged allrounder car whereas 340i is a mean machine which will cause your heart skip a beat every time you drive it.

Voted for 530d, though!

Reason: I personally feel when you have an option of climbing up to a higher segment, you should not miss it. 340i is a brutal car which is hard to ignore but with the larger footprint, better interiors and features, 530d always pulls me towards it. I literally drool over the car everytime I spot it on the road.

Keeping in mind the fact that this is going to be their only sedan, 530d makes even more sense.

Last edited by ShivWason17 : 9th April 2021 at 20:32. Reason: Minor typo.
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Old 9th April 2021, 21:04   #63
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

Originally Posted by carthick1000 View Post

So combined with a higher unsprung mass and a stiffer suspension, this is going to be pretty much a driver's only car for good roads.
You mean reducing unsprung mass. Increasing insprung mass reduces handling, driving pleasure and comfort.
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Old 9th April 2021, 21:40   #64
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

Originally Posted by AMG Power View Post
You mean reducing unsprung mass
No. I meant unsprung mass is higher esp. in the front axle of an M340i due to AWD in relation to a RWD 530d. That’s also noticeable in the kerb weights : 530d, inspite of being a diesel+bigger car, is only 45kg heavier than M340i.

Last edited by carthick1000 : 9th April 2021 at 21:42.
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Old 9th April 2021, 22:15   #65
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

The 530d it is from my side. For the simple reason that it is the family car and need to transport family in comfort. And the legroom of the 3 series is nothing to write home about. With the 530d it's the best of both worlds - a savage performer in its own rights and keeping the passengers comfortable as you are flogging it.

Now if there was a third car to take up major familial duties then yes the 340i would be my recommendation.

All the best. Either choice can't go bad!

Drive on,
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Old 9th April 2021, 23:41   #66
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

This is going to be a tough one for anyone to decide. The 340i is a very special package on paper but the are some compromises he needs to factor in.

The engine gearbox combo on the 340i is a bomb, no two ways about it. But itís let down by the weight of the XDrive (itís closer than ever to a 5 now) and those run flats and MSport suspension are not a great match for Indian roads, and no Iím not taking about it being stiff (I am ok with stiff if I get more grip), my grouse with it is how skittish and bouncy it is on uneven roads. Get some great roads however and the 340i is a blast, but this wonít always be the case in India.

Looks - the LCI 5 series thatís a month away looks amazing, and the bigger luxury car look will get you the Ďyouíve arrivedí status, if thatís something your family cares for. Either way the LCI 5 is a much better looker than the rather stock 340i which looks too much like a 330i.

Comfort and Tech - the 5 by a fair margin

Size and Practicality - again the 5 by a fair margin. So much more versatile. Long drives are effortless.

BUT, the allure of that B58 motor is strong... for me personally, the compromises for it are more than I imagined before I drove it. The 530Dís torque is not to be ignored either!

Either way, what a fantastic time to be an enthusiast in India!
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Old 9th April 2021, 23:49   #67
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

I would suggest you to have a look at Porsche Macan 2.0, which has best of both worlds, enough power punch with good boot space and ground clearance, better brand, reliable and very good resale
When I was in market looking for car, I always thought will I be able to use Sedan as daly driver, will it fit my family or luggage for long trips

of-course I am biased towards Porsche, after owning one, I can only say grin of my face is still there
If you are waiting for LCI 530D, price diff between Macan and 530d would not be much
Sorry for adding up confusion here
Happy Shopping
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Old 10th April 2021, 01:25   #68
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Just a note, guys = this will be my friend's ONLY sedan. His wife has a i20 for city usage.
This statement alone is enough for me to say 530d unless there’s an Innova (or similar) in the extended family and can be easily borrowed. I’m guessing your friend is upgrading from a Camry/Accord/Octavia/Superb?

If the family has other luxury crossovers/SUVs, then M340i.

Last edited by landcruiser123 : 10th April 2021 at 01:26.
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Old 10th April 2021, 08:56   #69
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

I have always lived the 5 series. The 530d in M sport trim is a hoot of a machine. I would go for it anyday. Yes, granted the M340i is a tempting proposition, especially the 6 cylinder petrol from the M division. But the 530d is no mean slouch either. And then there is the practicality of the additional space and generally higher levels of equipment that really clinches the deal in favour of the 530d, at least for me. And lastly there is the fact that the M340i being an M performance car comes with a stiffer suspension setup and lower ground clearance compared to the standard 3 series, which might not be very practical as a regular family car on Indian roads.
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Old 10th April 2021, 16:05   #70
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

I think M340i makes sense for some one who already has some other car in the garage which can take over the family duties especially on a long journey. It is an outright fun to drive car but i do not think the elders would take too kindly to the rear seat and the stiff ride.

I am in a similar dilemma as am planning to get some thing better next year with my F30 turning 6 years old shortly. Even the normal 3 is a great car for two people but it falters when you have four people in the car along with luggage. I have also found a new love for exploring new places and the sedan body style severely limits the usage on outstation trips. There is hardly any space in the boot, the car is quick to scrape the underbelly and the ingress/egress is not easy for every one, my mom hates getting in/out of the 3.

Like the OP, i neither have the money, nor the parking for a weekend car+ another one for family. If this is going to be the only car, 530D is what i would choose. It is a segment up, has stonker of a diesel engine, the interior bits are several notches above the 340i, turbo diesels do not face an issue with uncertain fuel quality and at the end of a day, its a 5 series. The adaptive dampers would lend a much better ride quality as well, when it comes to family, one needs to sacrifice a little bit personally so that every one is happy.

As for me, i think my time with sedans is over. Whatever destination i travel to from Delhi has dilapidated roads and uncertain conditions where i am not comfortable taking a sedan to. My eyes are set on the X4 30D, only grouse being this stupid 10 year diesel ban in NCR.
GTO, if your friend needs an all rounder sedan, it has to be the 530D but wait for the LCI.

Last edited by coolboy007 : 10th April 2021 at 16:09.
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Old 10th April 2021, 21:20   #71
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

I would go with the popular opinion and Vote 530d
My reasons
- Only Car
- Better availability so spares and service would be better
- It's a family car and given the touring requirements I don't think there will be any shenanigans or risky driving and power in the 530d can satisfy the occasional need for speed
- Contrary to popular opinion I feel the resale is better for the 5 series due to its luxo barge status
- Being the only sedan at home I am sure he is looking beyond 5-7 years as usage period and costs and service come into play
- The 330i might get boring or feel wanting in luxury once the long tours begin.
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Old 11th April 2021, 18:11   #72
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

If you wanted a 380hp M340i, youíd already know it. Since you have to ask, I suggest the 530d for its greater practicality.
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Old 15th April 2021, 16:39   #73
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

I had been in the exact dilemma the past few weeks.

Enough has been discussed and written above about both cars so I will just write about my personal case. Long needed an upgrade from my 2015 Octavia 1.8tsi and while in terms of performance both cars would have been proper upgrades I also wanted an upgrade in the "lux factor". The M340i in terms of sheer usable cabin size would have probably been a downgrade from the Octavia including seating 4 in comfort as well as boot space. Like some others have also mentioned being a Bombayite we love our road trip's to Mahabaleshwar/ Panchgani, Goa, etc. While I do have other cars at home that can be used for those outstation trips but I wanted an all rounder that gives me proper luxury while driving around the city, the snob value and something that I wont mind driving up to a star hotel in at the same time I wanted that same car to take on a road trip that would give me good amount of performance on the highway but without worrying about the comfort of my passengers, luggage space and even ground clearance to an extent.

I have never been very comfortable with diesel engines so first considered a 330I Msport but for all the reasons I have written about above it did not feel like a worthy upgrade to the Octavia specially with its size and missing features (No passive entry, come on BMW) moved towards the 530i Msport which did not really do much for me in terms of performance, then came the news of the M340i launching soon which really excited me, the price reveal made my day, did not test drive the M340i but the numbers on paper were enough to convince me. But the family was not very understanding of the idea of buying a 3 series for a price higher than the 530i Msport and they had loved the rear seat comfort on the 5 as well.

Finally i took the plunge and I cannot even decide what won here the head or the heart but finally brought her home yesterday my 2021 BMW 530d Msport In Carbon Black with Dark Mocha interiors.

The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i-unnamed-1.jpg

The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i-unnamed.jpg

Was lucky to have found one that was manufactured just a month back from the limited stocks available before the LCI comes in the next few months and in the exact spec that I would have liked. It was by chance that the sales advisor mentioned the 530d Msport that he had in stock, I had not considering one till now for two reasons;

1. Diesel engine - Took a good long test drive and was left blown away by the torque and almost zero turbo lag.
2. Always considered it out of my budget - Negotiated and managed a good deal I would think where it ended up costing me almost similar money as the M340i on road would have which also made the case stronger for the 530d over the M340i.

While I could have waited for the LCI but the prices are expected to be much higher almost touching 90L OTR, wont be discounted for a year after atleast and also the LCI does not gain much over this variant maybe I will miss the laser lights if the 5 gets it but that's not a deal breaker for me.

Now waiting for the COVID related lockdowns to end to be able to properly experience this torque monster thats now parked in my garage .

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Old 16th April 2021, 20:10   #74
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

Voted for the M340i
Considering the moolah being spent, I am pretty sure FE would not be a concern.

Usually you don't spend this kind of money often and if it were me, I'd definitely, get the M340i.

Yes the 530d and the M sport trim do make a very well case in terms of comfort, space and those 9 yards but it would always feel like a compromise getting the 5 over the 3. The mere fact that someone is considering the M340i says there is a car guy kid somewhere hidden in that soul.

I'd rather compromise and use the comfort mode on the M340i than the sport on the 530d.

Just my 2 cents.

Last edited by hrbheda : 16th April 2021 at 20:13. Reason: typo and added a line.
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Old 16th April 2021, 23:13   #75
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Default Re: The inevitable dilemma | BMW 530d vs M340i

Because of covid, all family travels are being done by car. Not using flights/trains. I have been thinking about this thread during every drive. I say yes to 530D every time I have to overtake a boy racer without my passengers knowing about it, everytime I hit a bumpy patch where an asphalt section is poorly joined with a concrete section. When I see a sweeping curve ahead, I know the longer wheelbase, wider track and better suspension will keep my gang blissfully unaware of my "challenge accepted" nod. Sports car (or sports oriented car) is more like a bike - different flavour where family has very little to benefit from.
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