The compact executive sedan is due for a nip-and-tuck.
It feels like the G20 generation of the BMW 3 Series was launched just the other day, but the Bavarian brand is already preparing a set of updates for its compact executive sedan. The enhanced range is expected to enter the production line in July of this year with an official reveal of the highlights to take place in the coming months.
According to information sourced by BMWBlog, the updated sedan and wagon will be available for the next three years until they are replaced by the Neue Klasse-generation models, which have been put together with electrification in mind. Updates to the design are expected to be mild while the cabin will benefit from more futuristic touches.
It has been suggested that the updated 3 Series will adopt a new infotainment and digital instrument cluster, which consists of two conjoined LCD screens. This is a similar setup to that being used in the i4 all-electric sedan, which features the new iDrive 8 operating software.
The new screen is quite a bit larger than the one found in the current model. In total, it measures 14.9 inches wide and supports a 200-PPI ultra-high-resolution widescreen which houses a series of eye-catching graphics. Making it easier for the driver to look at and interact with is a curved surface that's somewhat indicative of the angled control panels used on historic 3 Series models.
Further building on the digital format is a new head-up display that is now flush with the dashboard, thus hiding it from a clear view. Again, this is a feature that is sourced from the i4 and promises to provide clearer and more intuitive displays.
The exterior design facelift will be subtle with key changes being made to the headlights. It seems the kidney grilles will remain untouched, which should allow the 3er to retain a sleeker appearance as opposed to the aggressive persona translated by the 4 Series range. But what can we expect in terms of powertrains and performance?
As is the case now, the updated BMW 3 Series will be offered with gasoline, diesel, and plug-in hybrid options. It's understood that these will remain unchanged with the 318i remaining the base offering in most markets and the M340i and M340d keeping their places as the flagships. Both the 318i and M340d are not offered in the USA but we'll still have access to the thrilling B58-powered M340i in rear- and all-wheel drive format. The 330i will act as the entry-level model here, also with rear- and all-wheel drive options.
With electrification being a major focus for BMW, the plug-in hybrid 320e and 330e will be carried over too. The former makes use of a 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo engine while the latter utilizes a turbocharged 3.0-liter straight-six unit. Only the 330e will be available in our market.