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The next-generation BMW M3 has been spied during cold weather testing in Europe this week.

Not much is really known about the super sedan at this point, nor does the heavy camouflage lend much to the imagination in terms of its design, though we can tell the next-gen M3 – and the 3 Series it will be based on – will be an evolution rather than an revolution.

It’s believed the new M3 will be revealed sometime next year, potentially as late as the Frankfurt motor show in September 2019.

Rumours out of Europe suggest the iconic nameplate will remain internal-combustion only – no hybrid for now – with motivation to come from an updated version of the current car’s 3.0-litre twin-turbocharged inline six. Power is expected to be around the 470 to 500hp mark (350-373kW).

Interestingly, the new model is expected to offer either a six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic, ditching the dual-clutch transmission used in the current version for the new eight-speed torque converter already featuring in the new M5.

At this stage, it’s unclear whether the M3 will also pick up the rear-biased xDrive all-wheel drive system also seen in the M5, though it could be likely if BMW wants to dip the M3’s 0-100km/h time under the 4.0-second mark.

Stay tuned to CarAdvice for more BMW M3 updates in the coming months. Click the photos tab for more images.

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