No mechanical changes
For the 3 Series, which is one of the main battle horses around the world, BMW is not risking the aesthetic. The current G20, marketed in 2019, is no exception to the rule, and retains a more reassuring than disturbing appearance, refusing for example to adopt the large kidneys that are so much discussed in the 4 and 7 Series in particular. The restyling of 2022 did not change anything. What could be more reasonable, since the 7th generation 3 Series, always the best-selling BMW, sold 1.1 million units? Note that its biggest market is… China, which absorbs more than 50% of the production.
On the outside, the changes mainly concern the redesigned headlamps. It will lose the notch in their lower part, which will be rectilinear, while including the new daytime light. They surround a revised double grille kidney, and overcome a shield with a larger air intake. At the rear, the bumper has a more prominent diffuser. Detail, as always with the Munich manufacturer. The mid-career changes are therefore unclear, but in fact, the new headlights give a clean air to the 3 Series. More modern? It’s okay.
Digitized and attractive cockpit at first glance
However, the improvements are most notable in the cockpit. The German has abandoned the traditional instrument cluster with a cap as well as the integrated central screen in favor of a large curved digital panel that combines two displays. The driver’s side measures 12.3 inches, compared to 14.9 inches in the middle. There is no doubt that in dealerships, it will appeal not only to geeks and children but also to ordinary customers with a good response and successful design, in my opinion, of the menus on the central screen that if not quite clear. The GPS data can be read very well there, thanks to the size of the display, but outside the field of vision of the driver, who can however refer to the reminder of this data on the screen facing him. This one offers more configurations, more readable but less pleasing to the eye. Ah, if only we had a digital reproduction of the old orange BMW dials… In any case, it’s great to use thanks to the new operating system 8.0 equipped with remote update, and integrating Apple Car Play . , Android Auto, Spotify or even Alexa.
However, we regret that the physical controls of the air conditioning are missing: this should be fixed by exploring the sub-menus on the central screen, which will force you to take your eyes off the road for longer that time…
The trunk, with a flat floor and regular shapes, is practical and very spacious (from 500 l to 1,510 l). Due to the 48-volt micro-hybridization, the storage under the boot floor loses volume.
The rest of the cabin is almost unchanged, which is not a negative criticism. The habitability has reached a good level, as well as the number of trees. The rear seat, in three parts, can be easily folded thanks to the remote controls located in the boot. We also appreciated the motorized tailgate with an open window, which is very convenient. A final word: it is irreproachable, BMW will not give (after some mistakes in the past) this way of reducing the perceived quality that we see in some Audis and Mercedes.
No mechanical changes
And under the hood? This is the status quo. No engine has been changed, no development in terms of electrification has taken place, the Mercedes C-Class hybrid continues to have a good head start in terms of electric autonomy. On the side of the box, the automatic remains, also unchanged. The combustion engine range consists of the 318i and M340i in gasoline (Germany has the rights to the 320i and 330i in addition), the 320e and 330e in the plug-in hybrid, while in diesel, you can count on the 316d, 318d, 320d, 330d and M340d . The fact that BMW offers so many oiled versions suggests the main clients of the 3 Series: companies.
There are no changes regarding the running gear, always composed in front of McPherson struts combined with a lower wishbone with double attachment to the side of the wheel (almost a quadrilateral in fact), and a multi-link rear axle. The result of all this: performance, fuel consumption and emissions do not differ.