There's a redesigned BMW 3-Series just around the corner, and once again the small sport sedan will spawn a wagon variant, known in the United States as a Sports Wagon. In other markets the 3-Series Sports Wagon is called a Touring.
Our latest spy shots and video show a prototype for the redesigned 3-Series Sports Wagon, which looks to feature similar proportions to the current model. This particular tester is likely for an M Performance model as indicated by its body kit and blue brake calipers.
The redesigned 3-Series sedan is due on sale later this year as a 2019 model. Cars Direct has learned that BMW will sell the current 3-Series Sports Wagon alongside the redesigned 3-Series sedan for 2019, which means the redesigned 3-Series Sports Wagon will likely only arrive for 2020.
Underpinning the redesigned 3-Series Sports Wagon is BMW's CLAR platform that debuted in the 2016 7-Series. The modular platform incorporates lightweight materials such as aluminum, magnesium and, in the case of the 7-Series, carbon fiber-reinforced plastic.
It should bring weight savings of around 88 pounds for the new 3-Series Sports Wagon. It can also support alternative powertrains including plug-in hybrid and battery-electric applications.
The CLAR platform will also see the new 3-Series Sports Wagon benefit from a 10-millimeter lower ride height, a wider track, increased wheel camber, and increased rigidity (for the body and suspension) compared to the current model.
2020 BMW 3-Series Sports Wagon spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien
The core powertrains for the United States should remain turbocharged 4- and 6-cylinder inline engines displacing 2.0 and 3.0 liters, respectively. The 2.0-liter mill should feature in a 330i model while the 3.0-liter mill should be reserved for an M340i M Performance model. While BMW will offer a diesel in some markets, the automaker has ruled out the option for the U.S. It will instead focus on a plug-in hybrid here.
An eight-speed automatic and rear-wheel drive will be standard on the 3-Series Sports Wagon in most markets, but in the U.S. we could see the longroof come with all-wheel drive as standard.
Look for the debut of the 3-Series Sports Wagon around mid-2019. Sales should start by the fall of that year.