The new BMW 3 Series is brilliant. It’s a beautiful, tech-laden sporty saloon featuring arguably the finest body proportions in the whole automotive industry. We are patiently waiting to see its future estate, coupe (4 Series coupe), and convertible (4 Series cabrio) versions, and, meanwhile, we are taking a look at the model’s history. Remember the time when there was a two-door Compact hatchback?
That time is back again through the virtual drawing of Kleber Silva. The modern-day 3 Series Compact is not exactly what you would expect it to be, but is still a nice attempt to expand the Bavarian company’s portfolio.
Naturally, it should be positioned below the 3 Series saloon and it’s probably safe to assume it should slot as an entry-level model, even below the 1 Series and the 2 Series MPV. We see it more like an Audi A1 competitor rather than a traditional hatch, but that’s okay. We are surprised to see a 320d badge at the back, but just imagine how playful a supermini hatch with a 190-bhp four-cylinder engine would be.
The original 3 Series Compact was produced in two generations between 1993 and 2004 (E36 and E46 model families). While it was definitely not among the most attractive vehicles on the market in terms of design, it was a truly unique offering in the mid-1990s and early 2000s, as it was virtually the only model with a front-engine/rear-wheel drive layout and six-cylinder engines.
Needless to say, we haven’t heard BMW ever saying that it has plans to revive the 3 Series Compact. The automaker is currently focused on launching its fresh new entries in the saloon, SUV, and sports cars segments – the new 3 Series, X5, and 8 Series, respectively.