Bigger but lighter, more powerful yet more economical engines, more space inside and extra standard kit – these are phrases you could attach to almost any new car launch in 2011. But there are new car launches and then there is the new BMW 3-series.
Right about now, the Bavarian giant is taking the covers off the all-new sixth-generation 3-series, codenamed F30. We’re at the launch, so stay tuned to autocar.co.uk for all the very latest news, car details and pictures from Munich.
We’ve already seen the car undisguised on a commercial photo shoot but nothing beats a close-up examination of those touched-up studio shots, a deciphering of the spec and a good debate (or argument) over the questions inevitably thrown up.
So, what can we expect from the new 3-series? Styling wise, it may not be the smaller 5-series clone we are all expecting. Those Barcelona spy pics showed a subtly different treatment for the front-end, in particular the headlights.
Under the bonnet, there are to be five petrol and six diesel engines, all turbocharged, and, of course, with more power and performance yet better fuel economy and CO2 emissions than the current line-up.
But 3-series purists are unlikely to be in favour of the staple normally aspirated straight-six 3.0-litre engine in the 325i being dropped for a new four-cylinder 2.0-litre turbo petrol, first seen in the Z4 and X1.