science

The first time of a super wagon

For the first time in its history, BMW is introducing a high-performance version of the 3 Series Touring. A family car with bold looks and sporty performance that allows you to travel in comfort and exceed 280 km/h top speed.

Tommaso Marcoli

– Milan

BMW’s sports division has been building high-performance cars for 50 years. Or rather: it deeply mods production cars, turning them into real sports cars. The news of the debut of the all-new M3 Touring is exhilarating: it is a novelty in the history of BMW’s sports department, which rarely commits itself to developing family members to such a level. A highly anticipated product that is part of an uncrowded but very successful segment, where competition, among other things, has been around for decades.

long waiting

The sedans were the first (and very successful) results of the M experience. Then the era of SUVs inevitably led to the direction of the department’s projects that focused primarily on the X-band. Without neglecting, of course, the super sedans: from 3 (perhaps the most original), in 4, not forgetting the newer M5 and M8. Only wagons were touched upon, with the E39 and E60 (with naturally aspirated V10) both based on the 5 Series. BMW even this generation of the Series 3 is, as might be expected, a potentially more authentic M, the sport division has always innovated. M3 is rear-wheel drive only, not suitable to accommodate a high-performance family configuration. The latest generation is also available with xDrive all-wheel drive, and this also made it possible to test a Touring configuration that will soon be available in a series after a long wait.

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510 hp and 650 Nm of torque

Every technical and mechanical aspect is shared with the sedan. The main engine of the project is a 3-liter six-cylinder engine with 510 hp and 650 Nm of maximum torque. 8-speed automatic transmission and xDrive all-wheel drive. The declared performance is great: acceleration from 0 to 100 km / h in 3.7 seconds and a top speed of 250 km / h (can be improved to 280 km / h with the M Driver’s package). The management electronics are very advanced and interact with a sophisticated and complex all-wheel drive system that, depending on the selected driving mode, distributes the torque between the two axles. With the Sport settings, traction is primarily rear, with frontal intervention only when needed; By deactivating traction control, the car switches to a two-wheel drive only. The contribution of the active M differential enhances driving pleasure and allows over-steering with M Drift Analyzer to assess the length, angle and speed of the ‘cross beam’ in the circuit.

Practical and versatile

If you do not lose comparison with the sedan in terms of performance and driving dynamics, then the Touring version of the M3 gains in practicality and versatility. The organization of the passenger compartment is the same in both versions: here too the new “curved” screen appears for the first time, which seamlessly develops between the dashboard and the dashboard. It consists of two screens: a 12.3-inch instrument panel and a 14.9-inch in-flight entertainment system. The latter with graphics and software specific for sports driving. Optional equipment includes carbon fiber seats. The different design of the car body made it possible to obtain more space for the rear passengers and for the boots, whose capacity ranges from 500 liters to 1510 liters. The look responds to a strong aesthetic customization, with carbon-fibre elements, emblems reminiscent of belonging to the M-segment and four polished tailpipes. The front grille features a double vertical kidney grille. Orders will open in September and production is due to start in November but pricing has not yet been revealed.

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Phil Schwartz

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