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Promise kept: BMW shows sportier X2 M35i

by Ronan Glon

The M35i inaugurates BMW's most powerful four-cylinder engine.

BMW hinted it was only a matter of time before it released a more powerful . The model broke cover online wearing the M35i nameplate.

Power comes from a turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine developed with input from M. It produces 306 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque, figures that makes it the most powerful four-cylinder engine in the BMW portfolio. The power flows to X2's four wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission.

The X2 M35i takes 4.9 seconds to reach 62 mph from a stop. That's about as quick as the model is going to get because BMW most likely build a full-blown X2 M.

The modifications extend beyond the engine. BMW also made the suspension stiffer to deliver a sportier, more engaging driving experience on winding roads. Bigger brakes on both axles keep the power in check. Finally, the company promises it made the steering sharper to achieve what it describes as a direct and precise feel.

Subtle design tweaks help the M35i stand out from the base, xDrive28i model. They're fairly standard; up front, you'll notice gray trim around the kidney grilles and a more sculpted bumper with additional air vents. The mirror caps are more aerodynamic, while the back end gets a new bumper insert. M35i-specific alloy wheels are also on the menu.

The interior gains a leather-wrapped, three-spoke steering wheel. Buyers can order front sport seats at an extra cost.

BMW will start building the 2019 X2 M35i in November of 2018. Deliveries will begin shortly after. Pricing information hasn't been released yet.

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