BMW will replace its entire 3-series family over the next three years via the introduction of a new 3-series saloon, 3-series touring and X3 SUV, the model pictured here.
BMW is also working on a 3-series ‘GT’ model to broaden the appeal of its biggest selling model family, although the new fastback model will not replace the Touring, a car traditionally thought of as the most practical in the range.
Frankfurt 2011 is the earliest that we’re likely to see the new 3-series, putting the very first UK saloon sales in early 2012. The touring is likely to follow later that year.
Slated for a potential show debut as early as this year’s Paris show, however, and based on the same platform as the new 3-series is BMW’s all-new X3.
Being a year closer to production, the X3 in our picture is wearing much less disguise than the 3-series. It’ll be a significantly larger car than the current X3, allowed to grow by the introduction of the X1. A 2900mm wheelbase will make it slightly roomier for rear seat passengers than the current car too.