New BMW 3 Series revealed
02 October 2018
Author: Sean Keywood
BMW has unveiled its new 3 Series saloon.
Compared with the outgoing model, the new 3 Series is 85mm longer, 16mm wider and 1mm taller.
The car's wheelbase has also been extended by 41mm, and its track widths have also been increased by 43mm at the front, and 21mm at the rear.
BMW says the wider track helps improve handling, as does an increase in body rigidity by around 25% and a weight reduction of up to 55kg. While the model's drag coefficient drops from 0.26 to 0.23.
The car's bigger dimensions also mean more interior space, while boot capacity is 480 litres.
Standard kit with entry-level SE trim includes: extended LED headlights, reversing camera with reversing assistant, three-zone air conditioning, cruise control with braking function, and BMW Live Cockpit Plus with an 8.8in central instrument cluster including sat-nav.
Sport trim adds sporting cosmetic tweaks along with 18in alloy wheels, Vernasca leather seats and heating for the front seats. The M Sport adds more styling tweaks along with lowered suspension and BMW Live Cockpit Professional, which features a 12.3in digital instrument cluster, 10.3in central instrument cluster and BMWs new ID7 operating system - featuring extra personalisation features.
Standard safety systems across the range include speed limit information, lane departure warning and autonomous emergency braking, while a further Driver Assistant Professional pack can also be specced.
The new 3 Series also features BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant, a new system that responds to voice commands - it is triggered by saying 'Hey BMW'.
Launch engine options are a 320d diesel with 190hp, and a 330i petrol with 258hp.
The diesel will come with either rear or four-wheel drive. Transmission choice is between a six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic for the former, and auto only with the latter.
The petrol will be rear-wheel drive and automatic only.
Combined fuel economy and CO2 emissions figures are 64.2mpg and 115g/km for the manual diesel; 67.3mpg and 110g/km for the automatic rear-wheel drive diesel; 62.8mpg and 118g/km for the four-wheel drive diesel; and 48.7mpg and 132g/km for the petrol.
The new 3 Series will go on sale on 9 March 2019.
Prices start at £33,610 for diesel rear-wheel drive cars, rising to £36,800 for diesel four-wheel drive, and £37,660 for petrol.
A plug-in hybrid model will subsequently join the range, while other engine options at both lower and higher price points to those already announced are also expected.