Sharper, sportier and SA-bound - BMW reveals updated 3 Series and it looks good!

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BMW revealed its updated 3 Series sedan.

The new car is headed for South Africa and will go on sale locally in Q3 of 2022.

Mild-hybrid technology will be available on two of the 3 Series models.

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BMW pulled the wraps off its updated 3 Series sedan. The most notable changes to the car include a new face and rear, and an improved interior. Under the skin, the car remains rear-wheel driven, while the top models will continue with the all-wheel-drive setup, xDrive.

BMW said in an official statement: "Targeted updates to the front and rear-end design shine an even brighter spotlight than ever on the sporting ability for which the BMW 3 Series Sedan is renowned. BMW Operating System 8, including the BMW Curved Display, brings extra modernity to the interior."

The 3 Series has been a part of BMW's portfolio for more than 45 years, and this new model looks to continue where its forebear left off. The car will again be built at the BMW Group Plant in Munich, Germany, and now also at the BMW Group Plant in San Luis Potosí, Mexico. For those hoping that the 3 Series Touring would form part of the line-up, BMW South Africa confirmed that it sadly would not be the case.

The design

The front design of the facelifted 3 Series focuses on dynamic lines and larger air intakes, while the rear is also redesigned for a greater sense of sportiness. BMW says the updated 3 Series focuses on blending dynamism and modernity into the design. In achieving it, the design lines have been made tighter, sharper, and accentuate the width and muscular stance.

The exhaust pipes, for instance, measure either 90 or 100mm in diameter, but this is engine-dependent. Rounding off the exterior look is a set of 17-inch alloy wheels. Depending on the model you choose and the size of your wallet, you can specify bigger tyres with different wheel designs.

The updated 3 Series is also available with the M Sport package and M Sport package Pro. These only enhance the car's kerb appeal and upgrades the 17-inch wheels to 18 (19-inch wheels are optionally available). The M Sport package Pro is a new addition to the 3 Series and adds to the standard M Sport package. Enhancements include extended M high-gloss Shadowline trim, M lights Shadowline, and an M Sport braking system with red callipers.

BMW 3 Series
2023 BMW 3 Series

New cockpit

Inside, the updated 3 Series is a massive update over the model it's set to replace. Behind the steering wheel, a 12.3-inch information display relays information back to the driver, merging with a 14.9-inch screen to create a single fully digital and high-resolution unit. BMW says its new Curved Display is standard across the range.

Three-zone automatic climate control is standard across the range and can be operated via voice command or touch. BMW Live Cockpit Plus, including BMW Maps, is standard, too.

BMW 3 Series
2023 BMW 3 Series

Powertrains explained

The updated 3 Series will again be offered with four petrol engines and one diesel. Though the power outputs for these units are yet to be confirmed, the German automaker said that "electrification in the form of a 48V mild-hybrid technology" would form part of the M340i and 320d's equation. Power outputs for the new 3 Series range from 110kW to 285kW, with the latter coming in the form of BMW's twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre six-cylinder petrol engine powering the M340i xDrive.

All engines are linked with an eight-speed Steptronic automatic transmission. Steptronic Sport is available as an option and provides a launch control function.

The facelifted BMW 3 Series will be available in South Africa from the end of 2022's third quarter.

BMW 3 Series
2023 BMW 3 Series

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