Latest long-roof 3 Series could be BMW’s most attractive station wagon, yet.
BMW has revealed its bigger and better sixth-generation 3 Series Touring – which you still won’t be able to buy from your local South African dealer.
The new 3 Series Touring is 76 mm longer bumper-to-bumper, 16 mm broader across and 8 mm taller than the previous generation BMW compact station wagon. What those dimensions yield in terms of usable cabin architecture, is 1% more utility space, with total luggage capacity now rated at 500-litres.
Crucially, the load area has a 112 m larger overall aperture, with a lower lip, to ensure easier manoeuvring of items in and out of the rear of a new 3 Series Touring.
BMW’s engineers have also standardised an electric fifth-door and powered 40/20/40 rear seat split function. Further improving convenience, of those who just love loading things into cars, is the ability to open the fifth door's window only, for loading lighter shopping, instead of having to open the entire tailgate.
Mechanically the 3 Series Touring shadows all the new features available in its sedan sibling. Overall weight distribution is at parity, with an equal 50/50 split between the axles. There’s a 41 mm longer wheelbase too, balanced by a wider track, to improve both handling stability and cornering agility.
Engine options are similar to what you’ll find in the latest 3 Series sedan, with two turbocharged four-cylinder powerplants. The 330i is powered by a 2-litre petrol, boosting 190 kW and 400 Nm, whilst 320d compresses diesel for peak outputs of 140 kW and 400 Nm.
Those who desire the most responsive possible driving experience from their 3 Series Touring can specify an M Sport package, which lowers the ride height by 10 mm and adds adaptive M suspension, which includes electronically-controlled dampers.
A car with terrifically balanced proportions and admirably practicality, the BMW 3 Series Touring will not be available to South African buyers. This is a shame.