2022 marks the M division's 50th anniversary and BMW has plans to celebrate the milestone with a cornucopia of exciting cars. Relevant examples include the next-generation M2 and the two-seater M4 CSL, but we're more anxious to see this – the M3 Touring. The first production car of its kind, the AMG C63 Estate rival will pick up where the M3 E46 Touring concept left off more than two decades ago. This time around, it'll be a production model.
BMW took to social media to drop a couple of fresh teaser images depicting the M3 Touring, still fully covered in camouflage. The fast wagon is currently being tested on a frozen lake in Sweden ahead of an official debut slated to take place in the coming months. It’s worth noting the long-roof performance vehicle will be based on the 3 Series facelift, thus bringing a substantial novelty inside the cabin.
We're not talking about those orange seats we can see in the top teaser image, but BMW's revamped infotainment system. The 3er LCI and all of its members will switch to the iDrive 8, which you can partially see by looking at the top section of the dashboard. The upper area is flat since there are now two side-by-side screens installed on the same level – one for the digital instrument cluster and the other for the touchscreen.
The updated 3 Series / M3 Touring will borrow the setup from recent products such as the iX and i4 electric vehicles, along with the new 2 Series Active Tourer MPV. Also on the inside, the fast estate won’t have a manual gearbox lever as we’ve heard BMW will sell the car exclusively with an automatic and in the hotter Competition guise.
While the AMG C63 Estate will halve its cylinder count to just four, BMW will retain the inline-six good for 503 bhp and 479 pound-feet (650 Newton-metres) of torque. Performance should be roughly on the same level as the M4 Convertible xDrive due to the extra weight over the M3 Saloon and M4 Coupe.
By arriving with the midlife update of the 3er, it means the M3 Touring will have a short lifespan of around three years. It's expected to be joined by a limited-run M3 CS special edition believed to debut in 2023 when an equivalent M4 CS could hit the streets as well.