Sponsored by BMW
For 45 years, the BMW 3 Series has been a fixture of the automotive landscape. Through seven generations, the rear-drive sports sedan set the benchmark, and now, with the all new G20 3 Series, the benchmark has been raised.
But to understand where the 2020 BMW 3 Series came from, we have to wind the clock back to where it all started, with the BMW E21 3 Series.
Launched in 1975, the E21 was available only as a 2-door coupe and hard-frame cabriolet.
It led the way for the iconic E30 in 1982, a car which cemented the 3 Series as the ‘ultimate driving machine’. A four-door sedan, five-door touring wagon and full convertible were added to the range, which spanned 14 years in market.
The 1990s brought plenty of change and the third generation E36. Here, aerodynamics and efficiency were brought to the forefront, as well as a 3-door 3 Series hatchback! By 1997 the little BMW had established itself as a technology platform, with the E46 offering satellite navigation and LED lighting for the first time.
In 2004, the fifth generation E90 arrived, and not only brought BMW’s iDrive Infotainment System, but a change in BMW nomenclature. The sedan, coupe, cabriolet and touring models all received their own product code and unique design elements. This went a step further when the F30-generation arrived in 2011, separating the coupe and convertible models into the BMW 4 Series line.
By now the 3 Series was an established leader in performance, driving dynamics and technology, all elements which have been refined and enhanced in the new G20 model.
Bigger, more powerful and more advanced than ever before the BMW 3 Series, from the first to the latest, has always set the rules. Always engaging, always capable. This is the ultimate driving machine.