The New BMW 3 Series Saloon | Part Three

BMW 3 Series 6-Cylinder Petrol Engine, 3.0 Litre

BMW 3 Series

Starting the engine at the touch of a button

A new feature in the midrange segment is that the driver, benefitting from the comfort start function, just has to briefly press the starter button in order to fire the engine. Everything else is automatic, all processes continuing by themselves until the engine is running smoothly.

Top technology for even greater driving dynamics
Taking up a great BMW tradition, the new BMW 3 Series naturally comes with all the characteristic features so typical of the brand - that is the engine fitted lengthwise, power going to the rear wheels, and perfect axle load distribution of 50:50. Clearly, all this makes a significant contribution to the superior agility of the new BMW 3 Series.

The double-joint front axle newly developed for the 3 Series and made completely of aluminium ensures an optimum balance of driving dynamics and motoring comfort. Two of its strongest points are superior tracking stability and particularly low roll noise. And despite its low weight, the aluminium front axle is very stiff and stable.

The five-arm lightweight-steel rear axle is the optimum guarantee for supreme agility and sports handling, ensuring precise wheel guidance and a very high standard of roll comfort.

Active Steering: unique in this segment

For the first time in the midrange segment, the customer has the choice of BMW Active Steering in the six-cylinder models of the new BMW 3 Series as an option. The big advantage of this modern concept is a more direct steering transmission ratio at low speeds and a more indirect ratio at high speeds, thus providing the ideal solution to the old conflict of interests with a conventional steering between agility, stability, and motoring comfort. In the new BMW 3 Series this superiority is further enhanced by a significant everyday benefit: Applying the brakes on surfaces varying in their frictional coefficient, such as roads with patches of ice, snow and asphalt, Active Steering, intervening actively in the car's steering mechanism, stabilises the vehicle more quickly and precisely than a normal driver in such a situation.

Latest-generation DSC

DSC Dynamic Stability Control featured here in its latest generation also ensures extra safety on the road. In addition, DSC on the six-cylinder models comes with further useful functions such as dry-braking the brake discs on wet roads or brake standby by pre-setting the brake linings for a quick, smooth and firm response. And now the system also prevents the car from rolling back when setting off on an uphill gradient and avoids that usual 'dive' effect when braking shortly before the car comes to a standstill.

As a result, BMW's Sports Saloon now offers even greater leadership in driving dynamics.

continues... | Part Four
Published 19 January 2005 Melanie Carter

The information contained this BMW 3 Series news article may have changed since publication on the 19 January 2005. Our car specifications, reviews, and prices may only apply to the UK market. You may wish to check with the manufacturer or your local BMW dealer, before making a purchasing decision. E.&.O.E. You may NOT reproduce our car news in full or part, in any format without our written permission. © 2018