While we know BMW has a refresh for the 3 Series lineup on the way, these shots offer an odd way to see the updated model. Here's how the revised wagon looks in the German police livery.
Other than the blue, white, and neon green colour scheme, this updated model looks generally the same as the other revised 3 Series examples we are seeing. There's a tweaked front fascia and slight tweaks to the headlights. While BMW covers it in lots of camouflage, the adjustments to the rear are very minor to the point of almost being unnoticeable.
Gallery: BMW 3 Series Touring Facelift Police Car Spy Photos
Our spies believe BMW is testing the police car to evaluate the updated model for service duty. Officers carry lots of heavy gear that can require tweaks to the suspension to handle frequent driving with the extra weight.
If you want a good idea of what the updated 3 Series looks like, then the recently launched, fully electric i3 for China is a good guide. The model has some of the tweaks we are seeing for the refreshed model.
The electric 3 Series makes 281 bhp (210 kilowatts) and 295 pound-feet (400 Newton-metres) of instant torque. It can reach 62 miles per hour (100 kilometres per hour) in 6.2 seconds. The 66.1 kilowatt-hour battery provides an estimated 327 miles (526 kilometres) in China's CLTC test. It can charge from 10 to 80 per cent in around 35 minutes.
It's not yet clear when BMW intends to give the refreshed 3 Series a full debut. We are expecting the reveal to be fairly soon, though. Spy shots indicate the saloon, estate, and the respective Alpina variants all have tweaks on the way.
The updated range will include the long-awaited M3 Touring that will debut sometime in 2022. It will feature a twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre straight-six engine making 503 bhp (375 kW) and 479 lb-ft (650 Nm) of torque. The powerplant connects to an eight-speed automatic gearbox and xDrive all-wheel drive. There are no plans to offer a manual. The result is all the capability of the sporty model with the extra storage capacity of an estate.