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2017 Mercedes E-Class Passes 2018 BMW 3 Series on Nurburgring Like a Racecar

While this piece of news is focused on the upcoming 2018 BMW 3 Series, we couldn't help but notice how the next-gen 3er prototype got passed racecar-style while testing on the Nurburgring last week.
2017 Mercedes E-Class Passes 2018 BMW 3 Series on Nurburgring 9 photos
2017 Mercedes E-Class Passes 2018 BMW 3 Series on Nurburgring2017 Mercedes E-Class Passes 2018 BMW 3 Series on Nurburgring2017 Mercedes E-Class Passes 2018 BMW 3 Series on Nurburgring2017 Mercedes E-Class Passes 2018 BMW 3 Series on Nurburgring2018 BMW 3 Series on Nurburgring2018 BMW 3 Series on Nurburgring2018 BMW 3 Series on Nurburgring2018 BMW 3 Series on Nurburgring
The machine that made a late-corner pass, with its tires screaming as it overtook the BMW, is a... 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class. In fact, judging by how loud the tires were, we could be dealing with eco rubber here, which could mean Mercedes-Benz is working on an efficient-focused version of the W213 E-Class.

Would such a Benz make for the Non-Beast of the Green Hell? We're not sure, but let's switch to the Bimmer business.

Speaking of fuel-efficient development, the upcoming G20 BMW 3 Series will get its fair share of green powertrains. The new entry-level model will be animated by the 136 hp 1.5-liter three-cylinder we've seen on the 218i, for instance.

Then there will be the hybrid powertrains, with the Bavarian automaker expected to introduce at least two plug-in hybrids on the G20. The first will mix the 1.5-liter engine with a 60kW electric setup, while the second is set to combine a 2.0-liter turbo four with a 90kW electric motor.

Those worried about the weight should keep in mind that the new platform will allow the 3 Series to shed some weight. Factor in the longer wheelbase, the wider tracks, as well as a lower center of gravity and we'll get even more speed-gracious handling than that delivered by the current model.

When it comes to the cabin of the 2018 BMW 3 Series, we've already shown you a series of interior spyshots, but the spied prototypes are still far from their final form. Nevertheless, BMW is expected to increase perceived quality, finally reaching the level delivered by Mercedes-Benz and Audi.

And, thanks to the 2017 7 Series introducing a number of automated driving technologies to the BMW line-up, expect the 3 Series' optional extra list to become richer too.

The next-gen BMW 3 Series is expected to debut late next year, as a 2018 model, but an early 2018 debut is still possible - keep in mind that the German automaker has introduced the current F30 3 Series' mid-cycle facelift for the 2016 model year.

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