BMW Australia has rejigged the equipment list of its volume-selling 3 Series, gifting it an up-to-date infotainment package, new cabin materials and a smattering of other cosmetic tweaks for the 2018 model year.
The changes are admittedly minor, with the only external clues being the addition of a lurid ‘Sunset Orange’ paint scheme to the palette, and new alloy wheel designs (18-inch for 318i and 320i/320d, 19-inch for the 330i, 330e and 340i).
As before, the Sport Line grade is standard for all models in the range bar the 340i. The 340i can be had with the sportier M Sport package or Luxury Line at no cost, while Luxury Line is also a no-cost option for the 330i and 330e.
Greater changes are evident from the driver’s seat, with BMW’s latest generation of its iDrive infotainment suite now fitted across the 3 Series line-up. Displaying through either a 6.5-inch colour display on the 318i, 320i and 320d, or on an 8.8-inch touchscreen on other models, the iDrive6 system includes, among other features, a DAB+ digital radio tuner, AM/FM radio, satellite navigation and Bluetooth telephony and audio streaming.
All models in the range also feature a head-up display, which can now detect and display the speed limit for the road being travelled.
BMW says the cabin has been “redesigned with a driver-focused geometry”, but the changes are few beyond the addition of a USB port to the lower dash and a double-stitched upper dash treatment. ‘Cognac’ high-grade Dakota leather upholstery has joined the option list, however, and a dark ‘Aluminium Carbon’ trim is also available for cars equipped with the M Sport package.
Under the bonnet, there are no changes to the 3 Series’ engine range.
Beginning with the 100kW/220Nm 1.5-litre turbocharged inline three of the 318i, the 3 Series petrol powertrain range also includes the 135kW/270Nm 2.0-litre turbo of the 320i, the 185kW/350Nm 2.0-litre of the 330i and 330e (the latter of which makes peak torque of 420Nm thanks to its additional electric motor) and tops out with the 240kW/450Nm 3.0-litre turbo inline six of the 340i.
A sole diesel option is offered in the form of the 135kW/270Nm 2.0-litre of the 320d.
Available from November this year, prices for the 3 Series have risen across the board. See below for retail pricing, as well as their respective price increases:
BMW 318i sedan - $57,300 (+$800)
BMW 320i sedan - $63,400 (+$900)
BMW 320i Touring - $67,500 (+$1000)
BMW 320d sedan - $65,800 (+$900)
BMW 330i sedan - $70,900 (+$1000)
BMW 330i Touring - $75,000 (+$1100)
BMW 330e sedan - $73,900 (+$1000)
BMW 340i sedan - $91,200 (+$1300)