BMW is set to expand its line-up of M performance cars with the first ever M3 Touring. The first test prototypes of the hot estate will soon begin on-road development ahead of a likely launch in 2022.
Powered by a twin-turbo straight-six with 480hp or 510hp
The hot estate is likely to follow the design of the M3 sedan
Said to be as practical as the regular 3 Series Touring
It was reported in 2018 that an M3 Touring was being strongly considered by BMW. The firm has now confirmed the model shortly before it begins development work at its Garching facility near Munich. Track tests on the Nürburgring Nordschleife are set to follow.
What’s under the bonnet of the new M3 Touring?
BMW has yet to largely reveal technical details of the M3 estate, but has confirmed it will use its turbocharged six-cylinder petrol M engine. The M3 Touring is expected to share its mechanicals and powertrain with the new M3 sedan and M4, which use the S58 twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre in-line six engine producing 480hp and 600Nm in standard form. It’s possible it will also be offered in Competition guise, with 510hp.
BMW said that “further speculation on engine and performance is quite welcome” and confirmed that the machine will offer the M division’s signature wide axles, large front air intakes and quad exhaust pipes.
What’s the new M3 Touring going to look like?
BMW hasn’t released any images of the M3 Touring yet, although it will likely follow the M3 sedan in adopting a distinctive large grille that borrows heavily from the divisive new 4 Series, rather than adopting similar styling to the regular 3 Series Touring.
Will it be practical?
BMW say the estate will offer the full space and capacity of the regular 3 Series Touring. It added that it will fulfil “the hopes of all those who wish to take the M-specific interplay of racing-orientated performance and everyday suitability to the extreme”.
When will the M3 Touring go on sale?
A release date for the M3 Touring has yet to be confirmed, although BMW stated that it’s in the early stages of a two-year development process, suggesting an arrival in international markets in late 2022.
While BMW has never previously offered an M3 Touring in the 34-year history of the M3, it did produce a feasibility study prototype based on the third-generation model in 2000.
The firm has also twice offered a Touring version of the larger M5, with the second-generation model between 1992 and 1995 and from 2006-2010 as part of the fourth-generation line-up.
The M3 Touring will sit alongside the new M3 sedan and M4 coupé, both of which are set to be unveiled in September, and next year’s M4 Convertible.
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