All-new 3 Series will make rivals’ lives tough

BMW has showcased the seventh-gen 3 Series and it will go sale in 2019. For the first time, BMW has given the 3 Series the PHEV treatment as well. What other surprises has BMW prepared in the new 3 Series for buyers?

Here’s what I was thinking about while covering the BMW 8 Series – how will it affect the 3 Series? The BMW 3 Series is the brand’s best-selling sedan. BMW has sold over 15 million 3 Series units since it first came to life in 1975. In fact, let me go a step further and say that it is not the crossovers and SUVs but the 3 Series that keeps the company running (that’s just my take). Will the 2019 BMW 3 Series change my outlook towards currently the most affordable BMW sedan or just enhance it?

Specifications 2019 BMW 3 Series Petrol 2019 BMW 3 Series Diesel
Engine DOHC, 16-valve, direct-injected, turbocharged, 2.0-litre inline four-cylinder petrol DOHC, 16-valve, turbocharged, 2.0-litre inline four-cylinder diesel/ Turbocharged, 3.0-litre inline six-cylinder diesel
Power 184 – 258HP 150 – 190HP/265HP
Torque 300 – 400Nm 320 – 400Nm/580Nm
Transmission 8-speed Steptronic automatic 6-speed manual/8-speed Steptronic automatic (optional in four-cylinder models)
Front Suspension

Double-jointed strut type, Adaptive M suspension optional

Rear Suspension

Multi-link (5-link) type, Adaptive M suspension optional

Front Brake

Unknown size, single piston caliper

Rear Brake

Unknown size, single piston caliper









Mileage 17.24 – 17.54kmpl 22.2 – 23.8kmpl/20.83kmpl
Fuel Tank Capacity 59 litres 40 litres (59-litre tank optional)

What’s new about the 2019 BMW 3-Series?

The 2019 BMW 3 Series is the seventh generation model of BMW’s premium midsize sedan (codenamed G20). BMW did take inspiration for its design from the reborn 8 Series. The design is dominated by clean lines, long hood, short overhangs, cab-rear silhouette, and a gently-sloping roofline. Reminding one of the 8 Series influence are the kidney grille and new headlamps.


The rear end of the car is the most striking bit of the 2019 BMW 3 Series’ exterior. New taillamps with L-shaped light guide and twin exhaust pipes give it a sporty flair. At this point, I am just going to ask you to do one thing – take a look at all the exterior images of the car. I don’t remember the last time a 3 Series model did sporty, edgy, and stately so nicely in one go.


Meet the 2019 BMW 3 Series PHEV

As a part of its new-gen overhaul, the 2019 BMW 3 Series also gets an all-new interior. It gets a dual-layer treatment with layers separated by brushed aluminium insert across the dashboard. Looked in conjunction with the centre console, it has a Y-shaped appearance (similar to the front bumper’s shape, front fog lamps’ housing, and reflectors’ housing at the rear on the outside).


BMW went for a clean look when redesigning the 3 Series interior. As a result, the dual-zone HVAC system controls are now located around the central A/c vents with display housed between them (the car has tri-zone climate control A/c). A 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment display and 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster called BMW Live Cockpit Professional (paired with a Heads-Up Display) are the central attractions of the seventh-gen BMW 3 Series’ interior.


The 2019 BMW 3 Series will be offered in four trims – Advantage, Sport Line, Luxury Line, and M Sport. The car is at least 50kg lighter than its predecessor (due to use of high-strength steel and aluminium in construction) and has a drag co-efficient of 0.23 (almost completely sealed underbody, front air curtains, and active air flap control in kidney grille help).


New features in the car include adaptive LED headlamps with BMW’s Laserlight technology, active cruise control, auto start-stop, collision+pedestrian warning, city braking, lane keep assist and cross traffic alert. Lastly, there is also the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant on the new 3 Series.


Let’s now get to the mechanical bits of the 2019 BMW 3 Series. The highlight of the seventh-gen sedan from the Bavarian automaker are four-cylinder and six-cylinder engines. The former will be found in 320i, 330i, 318d, and 320d models while the six-cylinder unit will be found in 330d model.


The 320i and 330i models get a DOHC, 16-valve, direct-injected, turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine with power and torque outputs ranging between 184 – 258HP and 300 – 400Nm, respectively. The 318d and 320d models get a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder diesel engine with power and torque outputs between 150 – 190HP and 320 – 400Nm, respectively.


The 330d and M340i models will get an inline six-cylinder engine. In the latter application, the inline-six petrol engine has power and torque output of 374HP and 500Nm, respectively. In the former, the turbocharged inline-six 3.0-litre diesel motor outputs 265HP power and 580Nm torque.


Lastly, there will also be a 330e plug-in hybrid model with 60km (37 miles) all-electric range. Coupled with a regular combustion engine (likely a four-cylinder) the car’s combined power output will be close to 300HP (with XtraBoost engaged).


Two transmission options will be offered on the 2019 BMW 3 Series – a six-speed manual as standard in 318d and 320d models. All other models will get eight-speed Steptronic automatic gearbox as standard. Additionally, the automatic will be available as optional equipment on the 318d and 320d models. The automatic gearbox will also offer a Launch Control function and will be paired to steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters.


Suspension duties on the all-new 3 Series are taken care of by a double-jointed strut setup at front and multi-link setup at the rear. Depending on the model chosen, adaptive M suspension will be offered as optional equipment.


In the braking department, the all-new 3 Series gets disc brakes at four corners with single-piston floating calipers. Also on offer as optional equipment will be M Sport brakes with four-piston calipers up front and single pot calipers at rear. The 2019 BMW 3 Series measures 4,709mm in length, 1,827mm in width, 1,442mm in height and its wheelbase spans 2,851mm.

Is the 2019 BMW 3 Series worth consideration?

Here’s a tricky bit but let me try and simplify it. The 2019 BMW 3 Series will go on sale worldwide starting from March 9, 2019. However, do consider this – the seventh-gen 3 Series will be made in three places – Germany, China, and Mexico. Perhaps the wait for the new car will not be as long as it seems right now.


There are a few reasons to wait for this car’s arrival though. First of all, just look at it. If you ask me, this car looks better than its German rivals (the Audi A4 and the Mercedes-Benz C-Class). That’s no small feat. What helps this car in this department? New design, new styling elements, and that 50:50 weight distribution.


The all-new BMW 3 Series has so much technology all around, it’s mind-boggling. Headlamps with Laserlight tech, virtual driver assistant, fully digital instrumentation, a Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) model, a raft of driver assistance features, and BMW Digital Key (turn your smartphone into the car’s key). That’s not all, by the way. The tech in the car is worth its own separate piece.


Those bemoaning the demise of manual gearbox (me included) do get to rejoice too. The 2019 BMW 3 Series is not killing them completely. Moreover, manual gearbox-equipped models seem poised for India launch (cost factors). The complaint here is that only diesel models get a manual gearbox. In petrol models, it’s not even an option. Something’s better than nothing though and it’s another reason to wait for this car’s arrival.


The all-new BMW 3 Series model range will also welcome a new model (expected to be called 318i*) which will get a turbocharged 1.5-litre three-cylinder petrol engine. Your questions about its pricing, positioning in 3 Series lineup, gearbox options, or others will have to wait until its arrival.


Lastly, with production of the all-new BMW 3 Series taking place at three plants across the globe, you may not have to wait long. March 9, 2019 seems far right now. However, the seventh-gen 3 Series will likely be the perfect way to usher in the financial year 2019-2020, don’t you think? Who knows India may get this car by April next year? I am keeping my fingers crossed for that one and so should you.

2019 BMW 3 Series – Synopsis

  • Prices yet to be announced, global launch on March 9, 2019
  • Codenamed G20, seventh-gen model larger than outgoing F30 model, has 50:50 weight distribution and is lighter by at least 50kg
  • To be produced in Germany, China, and Mexico plants of BMW
  • Exterior highlighted by a long hood, gently-sloping roofline, and cab-rear silhouette
  • Y-shaped exterior highlights include front bumper design, front fog lamp housing, and rear reflector housing
  • Equipped with adaptive LED headlights with BMW Laserlight tech and new taillamps with L-shaped light guide
  • Interior highlighted by a dual-layer dashboard design
  • Interior gets the ‘Y’ treatment with brushed aluminium insert on centre console and between top and bottom dash layers
  • Interior highlights include 12.3-inch BMW Live Cockpit digital instrumentation for driver and 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment unit with iDrive controller
  • Drivers can make use of a digital assistant to activate various functions
  • Host of driving aids like pedestrian+collision warning, lane departure warning, and cross traffic alert included
  • Model lineup to consist of 8 drivetrain options (minus available combinations)
  • Three petrol and diesel engine options (each) – two four-cylinder and one inline six-cylinder
  • One PHEV model to make use of a petrol engine and can go 60km on a single full charge
  • Inline four-cylinder turbocharged petrol and diesel engines have 2.0-litre displacement and will be paired to eight-speed Steptronic automatic gearbox
  • Inline six-cylinder engines displace 3.0 litres and are paired to eight-speed automatic gearbox
  • 318d and 320d models will be paired with a six-speed manual as standard, eight-speed Steptronic automatic to be offered as an option
  • 1.5-litre turbo three-cylinder engine expected to join the model lineup later
  • Suspension duties handled by double-jointed strut setup (front) and multi-link setup (rear)
  • Adaptive M suspension as well as M Sport differential will be offered as options
  • Front and rear ends to sport disc brakes with single piston floating calipers; can be optioned with M Sport brakes with four-piston calipers at front and single pot calipers at the rear


*Thanks Automotive News Europe for that great nugget of information!

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