BMW unveils 2020 3 Series Touring
Don't wait for it in America, though.
BMW is continuing its model offensive. After showing the new front-wheel drive 1 Series, the high-performance M8, and the updated X1, the Munich-based automaker unveiled the station wagon variant of the seventh-generation 3 Series online.
There are no major surprises: it's a longer, more practical version of the sedan it's based on that's aimed at buyers who need space without the extra ground clearance of a crossover or an SUV. Visually, it's not a major departure from its predecessor, and it's still recognizable as a BMW wagon. That's what its target audience expects. As a bonus, it's a little bit lighter than the model it replaces.
Because it was developed with practicality in mind, the Touring comes standard with an automatic tailgate whose window can open separately, and its rear seats have been redesigned to make long trips more comfortable for the passengers sitting on them. Folding the rear bench flat yields 53.3 cubic feet of trunk space thanks in part to a cargo compartment that's wider than before.
The Touring line-up will include three gasoline-powered models and three diesel-powered variants called 318d, 320d, 330d, 320i, 330i, and M340i, respectively. The 318d gets as turbocharged, 2.0-liter engine rated at 147 horsepower; at the other end of the spectrum, the M340i benefits from a 370-horsepower, 3.0-liter straight-six.
The 318d and the 320d come standard with a six-speed manual transmission, but all other models receive an eight-speed automatic. Rear-wheel drive comes standard, but the 330d and the M340i are all-wheel drive-only. Finally, BMW will add a plug-in hybrid powertrain to the line-up a little bit later in the Touring's production run. Don't expect an M3 Touring, though.
Manufactured in Munich, the new BMW 3 Series Touring will go on sale in its home country of Germany and in an array of other markets (including Japan and Australia) by the end of 2019. Pricing information hasn't been released yet, it will be published closer to the model's on-sale date, but it's of little interest to us because there is no sign the long-roof model will return to American dealers.