What can easily be considered as the German brand’s most important model, the 2012 BMW 3 Series Sedan’s world premiere is being held today in Munich.
For those in attendance, the celebration starts at the BMW Museum and moves across the street to the BMW Welt, a stunning conference center and event forum perfect for this kind of high-exposure event.
The sedan is the first BMW 3 Series model to be unveiled; in typical BMW fashion, Touring, Coupé and Cabriolet launches will all follow successively in the coming months.
The new 2012 BMW 3 Series Sedan will receive a lot of changes in addition to the redesigned sheetmetal. Four engines will initially be offered, all turbocharged: a 241-hp, 2.0L inline-4 that’s found in the X1, a carryover 300-hp 3.0L inline-6, a 2.0L turbodiesel four that belts out 280 lb-ft of torque as well as a hybrid powertrain.
A bunch of fuel-saving technologies will also be on board, the most significant one being a start/stop system, standard on every model. BMW is stating a fuel consumption average of 6.4 L/100km for the 4-cylinder 328i and 4.1 L/100km for the 320d. Two gearboxes will be offered as well, a 6-speed manual and an 8-speed automatic.
The car’s exterior styling is a spitting image of its bigger sister, the 5 Series, but gets i3 and i8 styling cues that should gradually be applied to all models, such as the headlight clusters that stretch all the way to the trademark kidney grille.
Compared to the outgoing 3 Series Sedan, the 2012 model is longer and wider, while sitting on a longer wheelbase and a wider track. Interior space is said to be improved, particularly for rear-seat occupants.
In addition to the usual M Sports package, three different equipment lines will be offered: Sport Line, Luxury Line and Modern Line. Each will boast their own exclusive material combinations and trimmings.
Finally, the ActiveHybrid 3 will be launched sometime in 2012. Other variants of the 3 Series Sedan will also turn up in the spring of 2012, such as the 320i, the 316d and the 318d. BMW will also add a 6-cylinder diesel model as well as versions equipped with their xDrive all-wheel drivetrains.