It’s been a long wait, but the time has finally arrived. Celebrating 50 years of BMW M
and debuting at the Goodwood Festival Of Speed, we have finally been introduced to
the brand new BMW M3 Touring.
W has dabbled with prototypes in the past, with an E30 that never made it into
production, and an E46 generation M3. But this brand new, highly anticipated model
excels even the old M5’s 5.0 litre V10 with its’ 510PS (375kW) twin-turbo straight six,
putting power to all four wheels in a 0-62mph time of just 3.6 seconds.
The interior by far outclasses the M5, with its’ clean dashboard embellished with
cutting edge 12.3 / 14.9 inch information displays, which would have looked alien in
2009 when the last M-powered Touring went off sale.
The big news is that this powertrain is four-wheel-drive only; it’s been exclusively
launched in Competition x drive spec, and won’t be offered with less power or fewer
driven axels. The top speed is limited to 155mph, but the optional M Driver’s package
increases the maximum velocity to 174mph, while you can also spec a track pack that
brings carbon ceramic brakes and M’s opinion-splitting carbon bucket seats. Its
cooling and oil supply systems are designed to handle extremely high longitudinal and
lateral dynamic forces on the track, and the M-specific exhaust system with
electrically controlled flaps generates a desirable grumble, adding the cherry on top
of the performance experience.
Comfort is key, with features including three-zone automatic climate control, the
BMW Live Cockpit Plus including BMW Maps navigation system, ambient lighting, the
hi-fi speaker system, and the interior and exterior mirror package. It wouldn’t be a
car-of-the-future without it’s automated driving and parking systems. Front Collision
Warning, Speed Limit Display with no-overtaking indicator, Lane Departure Warning
and Park Distance Control come as standard. Among the available options are the
Driving Assistant Professional with Steering and Lane Control Assistant, Active Cruise
Control with Stop-go function, traffic light detection and Active Navigation, plus the
Parking Assistant with Reversing Assistant.
“Our message is that it’s a Touring that drives like an M3, not an M3 that drives like a
Touring.” It’s probably worth mentioning that in four-door form, xDrive M3s now
outsell rear-drive… If they were to sit in the front and not look behind, I think most
drivers wouldn’t feel whether it’s a Touring or a saloon. That’s what was really
important to us,” says M Division’s Head of Development, Dirk Häcker.
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