Celebrating its 50th anniversary, this year has been a busy one for BMW M, with the performance arm of the German marque revealing the all-new M4 CSL and a celebratory variant, the M4 50 Jahre edition. The new M2 is also scheduled to make its global debut in 2022. However, now, its first-ever M3 estate will be the talking point. Yes, BMW has finally whipped the wraps off the first-ever M3 Touring, a 375 kW wagon combining authentic motorsport feeling, a distinct character, and a broader spread of practical qualities.
According to the Bavarian-based brand, “Its powertrain technology is focused wholly on delivering beguiling performance.” The M3 Touring is equipped with the firm’s familiar 3.0-litre inline-six engine. The twin-turbocharged petrol powertrain sends 375 kW and 650 Nm to BMW’s xDrive all-wheel-drive system via the company’s eight-speed M Steptronic automatic transmission.
In addition to the “basic” 4WD setting, the automaker says the xDrive system also features a 4WD Sport mode which provides “an even more intense” experience of the set-up’s rear-biased tuning. Switching off dynamic stability control brings “pure” rear-wheel drive into play.
BMW claims the 1 865 kg performance wagon accelerates to the three-figure marker from a standstill in 3.6 seconds and completes the 0-200 km/h sprint in 12.9 seconds. The top speed is electronically governed to 250 km/h. However, specifying the M Driver’s package increases the maximum speed to 280 km/h.
The M3 Touring’s chassis technology has been tuned to the performance profile of the engine and specific vehicle concept. The estate “creates an ideal balance of sports performance and majestic ride comfort in everyday use and over longer-distance journeys”.
Like the updated 3 Series, the M estate’s cabin features a curved display, incorporating 12.3-inch information and 14.9-inch control displays. A head-up display is optional. M Carbon bucket seats are also optional.
In terms of practicality, the M3 Touring offers 500 litres of luggage space. Folding down the 40:20:40-split rear bench increases loading capacity to 1 510 litres.
Unfortunately, unlike the models mentioned above, the M4 CSL and M4 50 Jahre edition, the M3 Touring has not been confirmed for South Africa. But we’re keeping our fingers firmly crossed that it does, indeed, make its way here.