For a very long time, the BMW 3 Series was the car to beat in the market for premium compact sedans. Recently the competition has caught up, with the likes of the Mercedes C-Class and the sharply styled Lexus.
The next BMW 3-series will be the most efficient yet, with at least two plug-in hybrid models and a miserly three cylinder engine promising to dip below the 100g/km CO2 emissions threshold.
The new car, codenamed G20, will also major on improved dynamics, better quality materials and enhanced safety in a bid to reclaim ground lost to the Mercedes C-class.
The hybrid option-will be a 1.5-litre with a 60kWe electric motor, good for approximately 30 mile range and the more performance oriented 2.0 liter with the 90 KW electric motor will offer approximately 50 EV miles.
The more conventional modular four and six pot engines will still account for the bulk of
The next M3 / M4 will adopt electronic turbochargers, and water injections, inspired by the forthcoming current generation of M4 GTS.
The dynamic brief is to fuse cushy ride with sportier handling, via adjustable dampers, switchable anti roll bars, second generation active steering and a new torque vectoring system, which piggybacks ABS and DSC.
Longer wheel base, wider track, lower center of gravity, and lighter overall weight will enhance the handling road holding as well.
On the quality front BMW will invest in better materials for carpets rubber seals and sill covers to re-take the premium crown.
In addition the 3 Series will be a techno tour, de-force that can park itself via remote control. It will stay in lane or change lines if required, overtake if needed under certain conditions, brake when required will drive semi autonomously on the road. This feature is especially helpful in stop and go traffic up to 60 kilometers in hour.
Although the 3 series cockpit looks familiar, it boasts a variety of new high quality instrument graphics, a more comprehensive head up display and a large color monitor in the center stack which blends touchscreen access, gesture control and voice activation with the existing iDrive controller.
G20 will be built on the flexible new cluster architecture chassis and will be designed with sharper creases and harder edges than the current car.
Expect to see it on the road in North America in 2018.