Time doesn’t stop in the BMW world and several different models are being developed, designed and tested in parallel. The most important model in the BMW line-up is without a doubt the 3 Series, a high-volume seller that helps the company’s sales year after year.
Therefore, it is not surprising that the Bavarian automaker has already begun testing its next generation 3er Sedan. Dubbed, F30, the 3 Series Sedan will arrive in Europe in late 2011 with a U.S. launch scheduled just early in 2012.
A previous design analysis completed by a BMW fan (Mii), revealed some interesting aspects.
1. Shorter overhangs (Shorter than previous generation 3er)
2. Longer wheelbase (Estimate 1.5”+ longer than previous generation 3er)
3. Hofmeister Kink followed by near straight rear door cutline which nicely curved around rear wheel well
4. Forward pushing nose similar to E89 Z4 front end
5. Similar hood profile as E89 Z4
6. Minimal downward slope on rear quarter panel following the C-pillar
With longer wheelbase, BMW F30 looks longer than previous generation E9x. It also provides more legroom both front and rear judging from the door cutline. Although there are still missing details such as body panel creases, headlight and taillight shape from this phase of spy shots, the overall profile and proportion looked rather impressive.
As a normal progression in design and technology, BMW will also enable the next 3 Series to feature the very latest in Efficient Dynamics technologies, such as aerodynamically designed wheels , BMW active aerodynamics, solar roof panel for extra energy efficiency in the use of interior controls, brake energy regeneration , stop-start technology , pre-heating technology for the engine, gearbox and differential.
Many of the technology powering the new 3 Series, such as the climate control system or telematics, will be completely re-engineered.
Like the next 1 Series , the new 3er will take advantage of the new modular platform, again this allows BMW to spin off extra models, make savings in costs and enable production to very efficient.
Expect to see some new four and six cylinder engines, both petrol and diesel, and even a hybrid version. There were als rumors in the past that an all-electric 3er would be available at some point as well.
As a final note, in an article published today by Autocar, they referred to the photo bellow as the BMW 3 Series GT, but unfortunately, they were wrong about it.Autoweek and Autocar ]