One thing that immediately stands out is the iDrive 8 infotainment system, which hasn’t been included in the M4 CSL. It takes up a good chunk of the dashboard, together with the digital instrument cluster behind the M steering wheel, and can be controlled via the rotary dial mounted next to the gear shifter. The whole center console surround features lots of carbon fiber, and we think that the lightweight material bedecks the dashboard panel too.
On the outside, the M3 Touring should have an identical front end to the M3 Sedan. Its more family-friendly nature will obviously be defined by the extra luggage capacity behind the rear seats. It will have a roof spoiler made using 3D printing technology, BMW M says, aggressively-styled diffuser, four tailpipes, and dedicated M wheels, and colors. The typical M badges will round off the styling, further setting it apart from the normal 3 Series Touring models.
Powering the premium compact sports wagon from the Munich auto firm will be the twin-turbo 3.0-liter straight-six. Reports have indicated that it will launch in the Competition flavor exclusively, meaning that we should expect 510 ps (503 hp / 375 kW) and 650 Nm (479 lb-ft) of torque. The engine is understood to work in concert with the dual-clutch eight-speed automatic transmission and the M-tuned xDrive rear-biased all-wheel drive system.
In terms of straight-line performance, we’d expect the 0 to 100 kph (0-62 mph) to take in the region of 4 seconds. This would make it about as fast as the RS 4 Avant, which needs 4.1 seconds to complete the sprint and has a top speed of 155 mph (250 kph) or 174 mph (280 kph) when ordered with the optional RS Dynamic Package. The M3 Touring should max out at 155 mph (250 kph) without any extras.
Don’t look for the five-door M3 on this side of the pond, as BMW will keep it out of North America. In Europe, deliveries should kick off in the second half of the year, shortly after the grand unveiling, allegedly set for June. In all likelihood, these are some of the last spy shots of the car, so don’t forget to check them out in our image gallery.