All-new BMW 3-series spotted; boasts bolder front-end design
18 August 2011

BMW’s all-new 3-series has been spied completely undisguised ahead of its planned October reveal. These images were taken while the new four-door saloon, codenamed F30, was filming a commercial in Barcelona earlier this week.

The pictures reveal a much bolder and distinctive front-end than earlier spy images of the car had indicated. The front light clusters extend all the way to the 3-series’ reshaped kidney grille in a departure from the 5-series-inspired look for the new 3-series’ front-end that had been expected.

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This front-end treatment for the lights and grille, along with the full-width air ducts and LED light strips in the lower section of the front bumper, give the new 3-series a lower, wider stance than the current car.

The new 3-series’s rear-end is more high-set than the current car and the sides more heavily sculpted sides with a prominent shoulder line. There’s also a sleeker design for the wing mirrors, more defined wheel arches, a heavily angled rear window and a higher bootline.

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Read more about the BMW 3-series

Underpinning the new 3-series is a heavily reworked version of the current car’s platform, complete with a 50mm longer wheelbase and tracks that are around 20mm wider at the front and 15mm wider at the rear. All the dimension changes are designed to increase interior space.

Double wishbone suspension at the front replaces the current MacPherson set-up and a reworked multi-link suspension – complete with variable damper control – features at the rear. The new 3-series also adopts electro-mechanical steering.

An 11-strong turbocharged engine range includes five petrols and six diesels. The long-serving naturally aspirated 3.0-litre straight six is dropped in favour of a new 2.0-litre four, although a 306bhp 3.0-litre six will be used in the 335i.

Mark Tisshaw

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