BMW’s upcoming G20-based M3 will weigh less, be more rigid and have more power than the outgoing model
30 November 2018

The next-generation BMW M3 – due for launch in 2020 – is expected to use an extensively updated version of BMW’s twin-scroll turbocharged 3.0-litre straight-six engine producing around 465bhp. 

Officials at the 2018 Paris motor show, including company boss Harald Krüger, confirmed that a new M3 was under development, although they declined to give details. It is understood, however, that engineers have been set the target of giving the new M3 a power boost over the M3 CS, which produced 454bhp. 

New BMW 3 Series launched with renewed driver focus

It is believed the additional performance is likely to come from the use of a water injection system, like that used by the M4 GTS, to enable reduced cylinder temperatures for more efficient running. The only obstacle to this system being employed is believed to have centred on the issue of effective packaging, but that is now thought to have been overcome. 

The additional weight of the water injection system is minimal and unlikely to compromise BMW’s goal of making the car lighter than the 1585kg M3 CS. This is thanks to the savings already made with the basic structure of the new 3 Series, as well as the potential benefits of using carbonfibre parts, including the roof.

Both a four-wheel-drive system, similar to that used on the M5, and any form of electrification are believed to have been vetoed because they would add too much weight, complexity and cost. However, persistent reports suggest that the 2020 M3 could be the final M model to be launched without some form of electrification, which is necessary due to the increasing priority of meeting fleet-average CO2 targets.

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BMW M3

You’d imagine that a higher roofline and four doors would hinder the BMW M3 saloon’s capabilities compared to the M4, but you'd be wrong

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There are no further details about the new M3’s potential performance, but the lighter, more powerful car will eclipse the current M3 CS’s 0-62mph time of 3.9sec. It will be sold with a choice of six-speed manual gearbox or optional eight-speed automatic, but the auto will enable the better performance figures thanks to a built-in electronic launch control system. 

The M3 will also benefit from the increased rigidity offered by its part-aluminium, part-high-strength steel CLAR underpinnings. This is a key reason why BMW is already making class-leading claims about the dynamic abilities of the base 3 Series. The regular car’s wider track and uprated suspension systems should also give engineers the foundations for a dynamically more capable M3.

As well as offering greater performance potential, the stiffer chassis should reduce the amount of vibration transmitted into the car to enhance overall refinement. It should also allow engineers to adopt softer spring rates to give the M3 a more compliant ride in its most comfortable mode without hampering the car’s overall dynamic ability. 

Inside, the next M3 will follow in the M5's footsteps and swap its dashtop infotainment screen for one that’s more tidily integrated into the dashboard. The iDrive system is expected to retain a rotary control knob because it has been praised for its ease of use in current cars. The M3 will also gain significantly more advanced driver assist features, but former sales and marketing boss Ian Robertson has hinted to Autocar that most BMW models will steer clear of the full autonomous hardware suites to be used on i5 and i7 due from 2021. M models, in particular, will still possess a very driver-centric character.

The M3 will continue to form the basis for the technically identical M4 coupé, while M-worked 3 Series models will lend their hardware to a two-door M440i M Performance coupé and M440d M Performance coupé. These models are also due to arrive in showrooms in 2020 and are part of a 26-model onslaught of M division-tuned cars that aims to more extensively rival the growing ranges of Mercedes-AMG and Audi Sport.

It remains uncertain whether the car will feature an active rear-wheel steering system to enhance agility and boost high-speed stability. Although it is under consideration, the business case for developing the system for the M3 only is believed to be under debate.

The car, now testing on public roads in development form and due to go on sale in 2020, would inherit the active technology from the 5 Series and 7 Series. If the hardware does make the cut and is fitted to the super-saloon, the M3 would be the only car in the upcoming 3 Series range to feature it.

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Comments
28

19 December 2017

That's the question that M3 owners (and M4) that were previously burnt by BMW will be asking.

 

From BimmerBoost:

BMW ignores the F80 M3 & F82 M4 S55 engine crank hub issue and is it the worst BMW M3 production engine defect of all time?

Owners change bearings as preventative maintenance but if you are out of the warranty period it almost feels like a ticking time bomb. BMW does not care and just wants cars out of the warranty period as quickly as possible so they can wash their hands of any issue.

BMW has its flaws and its marketed image versus the reality (and reliability) of its products are vastly different things. They will chase profit over proper design.

 

19 December 2017

All the German manufacturers seem to have proritised Soft palstics, conectivity and "infotainnment" over actual substance to keep the price down.

Alfa are far more reliable than their reputation suggests and its a better drivers car, with harder plastics, so if I was able to by a "super Saloon", I'd go for the Alfa

19 December 2017

.... as your anti-BMW post following a BMW M series article

typos1 - Just can’t respect opinion

19 December 2017
xxxx wrote:

.... as your anti-BMW post following a BMW M series article

Do you seek the truth?   If so, then do your own searches.   Do your own research.   Go and find out for yourself.

 

30 November 2018
Symanski wrote:

xxxx wrote:

.... as your anti-BMW post following a BMW M series article

Do you seek the truth?   If so, then do your own searches.   Do your own research.   Go and find out for yourself.

 

 

I hate to rain on your little anti BMW parade, but faults are not exclusive to BMW. They can and do happen to every brand.

Grow up and give it a rest already.

19 December 2017

My 140i has covered 27000 miles and unfortunatly I have had to put 1/2 cup of water into the cooling system, when I bought my 1300 Meastro I had to put a bucket full in every day.Get Real.

19 December 2017
Gojohnygo wrote:

My 140i has covered 27000 miles and unfortunatly I have had to put 1/2 cup of water into the cooling system, when I bought my 1300 Meastro I had to put a bucket full in every day.Get Real.

 

You have B58 engine.    Quickest of searches and here's what you find:

 

The upper crankshaft guide bearing may wear out prematurely. The wear on the upper guide bearing can cause the clutch pedal to malfunction during shifting. The Engine Malfunction warning may be illuminated and a fault will be stored in the DME memory for the crankshaft sensor. Noise may be heard from the lower engine and transmission bell housing area. If the crankshaft guide bearing or crankshaft is found damaged during the inspection then the engine must be replaced.

 

(Read that back to yourself - cranshaft guide bearing wearing out requiring a new engine!).

 

30 November 2018

 Correct if I’m wrong, but this is old News, I never had one bit of bother with my 04’ plate one, ran sweet as a Nut.

Peter Cavellini.

19 December 2017

It looks huge. How many generations of 5 Series do you have to go back to to find one smaller than this 3?

jhg

19 December 2017
johnhg wrote:

It looks huge. How many generations of 5 Series do you have to go back to to find one smaller than this 3?

 

Current 3 series length 4,624 mm, wheelbase 2,810 mm

 

autocar wrote:

with an expected 20mm growth in wheelbase and 60mm expansion in total length

New 3 series length 4684mm, wheelbase 2830mm

E60 (Dame Edna) 5 series is 4,841 mm long / 2,888 mm wheelbase

E39 (the one that looked like a big E46) 5 series is 4,775 mm long / 2,830 mm wheelbase

E34 (the 'classic') 5 series is 4,720 mm long / 2,760 mm wheelbase

E28 ('mk2') 5 series is 4,620 mm long / 2,625 mm wheelbase

 

So bigger than a mid 80s 5 series, with the same wheelbase as a late 90s model.

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