Look out Audi RS4, the BMW M3 Touring is coming to Australia. We repeat, the BMW M3 Touring is bound for our shores.
“We plan to introduce the M3 Touring and will advise arrival timing closer to the launch date,” a BMW Australia spokesperson this morning told CarExpert.
The new M3 Touring was today confirmed on the BMW M Instagram, after speculation began swirling earlier this week. When it’s revealed, the new long-roofed M car will be the first mass-produced M3 Touring in the model’s long and storied history.
BMW’s reluctance to develop a long-roof M3 has long proved puzzling, especially considering it’s applied the M name to tuned versions of the X3, X4, X5 and X6 SUVs.
Rival Audi has a rich heritage in high-performance wagons. Its very first RS-branded car was the RS2 Avant, which was succeeded by the first-generation RS4 that was also offered only as a wagon.
Likewise, Mercedes-Benz has always offered a wagon version of its hottest, AMG-fettled C-Class models.
BMW has considered an M3 Touring in the past, even going so far as to develop a feasibility prototype of the E46 M3 back in 2000. It’s always demurred, leaving tuning firms like Alpina to pick up the slack.
It’s not yet clear whether the M3 Touring will offer a choice of both rear- and all-wheel drive, as the upcoming sixth-generation M3 sedan will do for the first time in the nameplate’s history.
The M3 sedan will also offer a choice of a twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre inline six in two different tunes: a 353kW version for the regular M3 and a 375kW version for the M3 Competition.
The defunct fifth-generation M3’s twin-turbo 3.0-litre inline-six produced 331kW of power and 550Nm of torque, bumped up to 338kW of power and 600Nm of torque in the M3 CS.
The new M3 will swap out its seven-speed dual-clutch automatic for an eight-speed torque-converter automatic from the M5, while a six-speed manual transmission will still be available.
Could the M3 Touring offer a rear-wheel drive, manual version? Stop, we can only get so excited.