The G20/G21 3 Series family is bound to receive a mid lifecycle refreshment right in time for 2023 model year. Scheduled to be revealed around Spring 2022, the medium class premium models are expected feature mild visual updates, whereas the big revolution is expected in the cabin. To be precise, BMW will gradually roll out the new BMW iDrive 8 infotainment architecture, following its premiere this year on the new iX and i4. Starting 2022, more models are expected to receive the new OS, complete with the revamped digital interface and the classy Curved Display.
Spy photographers have recently managed to scoop a camouflaged test prototype in a car park in Arjeplog, near the Arctic Circle. Even though the test model featured no visual change on the outside, the dashboard was covered as to possibly the new screen layout with no cowling whatsoever, like in the iX. As we don’t own the photos, we invite you to see them here. The vehicle still carried the traditional electronic gear shifter, but given the specificities of the new BMW OS 8.0, that one too is on its way out.
It will likely be replaced by a small lever, like the one seen in the new iX and also destined for the i4, and other upcoming Bimmer, such as the U06 2 Series or the U11 X1. Of course, the rotary knob is here to stay, as it had a pivotal role ever since the introduction of the BMW iDrive infotainment concept 20 year ago and the Munich-based brand decided to stick to it.
Speaking of design revisions, we are expecting some minor changes on the outside, with probably a new front light signature with split filaments, just like the ones expected on the forthcoming X3/X4 facelift models. In terms of engines, things will go mostly unchanged between the model generations, with the 320e and 330e at the forefront of the environmental offensive. According to some rumors, there are also chances we see an all-electric 3 Series, but reserved for the Chinese market. Likely to be titled i3L (given longer wheelbase), the pure-electric sedan could be also offered in Europe at a later date. Expect further properly camouflaged 3 Series LCI prototypes to hit streets in the following period.
[Top Image: BMW Concept i4]