BMW’s new tech leader revealed at Paris motor show
BMW has unveiled its all-new seventh-generation 3 Series sedan at the 2018 Paris motor show.
Due to arrive locally in early 2019 the new compact luxury four-door will look to gain ground on Australia's most popular prestige vehicle the recently updated Mercedes-Benz C-Class.
The next-generation 3 Series brings revised styling, fresh tech and more efficient engines.
The 3 Series maintains the previous versions overall look but various nip, tucks and creases give the car a more modern and aggressive appearance. While an extended wheelbase will provide for more interior space.
Tech upgrades are highlighted by the addition of BMW's new digital assistant. In a similar way to several other artificial intelligent (AI) assistants the in-car tech responds to the prompt "Hey BMW".
However, BMW's assistant differs from other manufacturers' examples by allowing owners to give the assistant a name that it will respond to.
The technology will also explain to owners how certain safety features work and can provide current status of information - for example a driver can ask "is the oil level ok?" and the AI assistant will respond in kind. These features are on top of the technology's ability to control climate and infotainment functions.
All the car's infotainment features all accessed through a large, nicelt integrated 10.25-inch display which combines with the 12.3-inch digital instrument display to bring the 3 Series up to speed with current competition.
The 3 Series has also taken a significant step forward in semi-autonomous technology with the car able to maintain its position in the lane without driver input via a number of functions including lane keep assist, side collision protection and evasion aid.
The BMW is also kitted out with a decent suite of active driver safety aids including active cruise control, cross traffic alert and autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection.
Initially BMW is launching the 3 Series with a pair of new efficient petrol engines and three diesel units - Australia is unlikely to get all the diesel options. A hybrid variant and a more performance focused petrol model should join the line-up at a later date.
BMW will reveal local prices and specifications closer to the car's launch date.