2020 BMW 330e m Sport [white] static

What is BMW M Sport trim and is it worth it?

If you’re looking to buy a BMW, you may have noticed that many of them are M Sport models. But what, exactly, is M Sport? Our guide explains.

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By Cazoo editorial team

Most BMW cars are available with several different trim and equipment packages but the most popular in the UK is M Sport.

The name refers to ‘BMW M’, the division within BMW that designs and builds racing cars and high-performance road cars such as the M2 and M5. M Sport models aren’t as extreme as those cars but they have a sportier look and driving feel than other BMW models, giving you some of the experience of having a high-performance car without the compromises – or higher costs – they sometimes demand.

So, what do you actually get if you choose a BMW M Sport model?

BMW M Sport exterior styling

M Sport BMWs include a lot of styling changes over less-sporty models. On the outside, there’s a deeper front bumper with large air intakes. At the sides, there are ‘M’ badges behind the front wheels, deep ‘skirts’ below the doors and, around the back, the bumper is deeper again. There’s also a small spoiler on the boot lid of saloons, or above the rear window on models with a full-height boot lid. Bigger wheels, lower suspension and blue or red brake calipers behind the wheels complete the look.

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BMW M Sport interior styling

There are more styling changes inside, though they differ slightly among the various BMW cars. These include sports seats designed to hold you in place through corners, a thicker steering wheel with an ‘M’ logo at the bottom, metallic or carbon fibre-effect dashboard trim, metal pedals and door sill plates with an ‘M Sport’ logo.

BMW M Sport driving experience

M Sport models have bigger wheels, different suspension and larger brakes than other BMW models. Wider tyres give more grip, the suspension reduces the extent to which the car leans into corners and the brakes bring it to a stop more quickly. Add that together and it means that M Sport cars are more fun to drive. And that’s saying a lot because even non-M Sport models feel better to drive than most rival cars.

The trade-off is that M Sport models generally aren’t quite as comfortable because their lower suspension and low-profile tyres mean that you feel bumps in the road more easily. Bear in mind, though, that if you’re looking at a used M Sport model it may have optional adaptive or air suspension that smoothes out the ride to an almost luxurious extent.

M Sport cars also don’t accelerate any more quickly than other models because they are available with exactly the same engines as every other BMW. Not that any BMW is anywhere near being slow.

BMW M Sport equipment

BMWs are generally very well equipped. Most models have sat nav, climate control, smartphone connectivity and more. M Sport models get roughly the same equipment as SE models, though it depends on which BMWs you’re comparing.

Does BMW M Sport trim cost more?

M Sport models do cost more than equivalent SE models, whether you’re getting a new or used car, but you may feel the sportier looks and driving experience are worth it. Also, because they’re so popular, M Sport models tend to hold onto their value especially well, too.

Which BMW cars are available in M Sport trim?

Most BMW cars are available in M Sport trim. The exceptions are the i3, iX3 and iX electric cars, the i8 sports car and the M2, M3, M4, M5, M6 and M8 high-performance cars.

Is BMW M Sport trim worth it?

You should always get the car you love and if you love an M Sport BMW, it’s worth the extra cost. The sportier looks andstiffer suspension (if fitted) won’t be to everyone’s taste, but otherwise, there are no downsides.

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