New BMW 3 Series Coupe, Convertible And Compact - 2003 Model Year Enhancements | Part Two

New BMW 3 Series Convertible

BMW 3 Series Coupé and Convertible 2003 model year enhancements: These enhancements add to the already well-established reputation of the BMW 3 Series. Renowned driving dynamics are a given, generated by BMW's engineers' zealous adherence to rear wheel drive, McPherson strut / Z-axle suspension units and 50:50 weight distribution, linked to technologically advanced engines.

Integral to driving enjoyment is the prospect of rewarding ownership. The 3 Series commands enviable residual values and CO2 levels and fuel consumption figures that frustrate the taxman and belie the car's performance.

Illuminating Design

The new 3 Series Coupé and Convertible can be distinguished by major work to the front of the cars with a more distinctive bonnet, featuring a raised power dome and 60 mm wider kidney grille. These features clearly introduce design cues that distinguish the Coupé and Convertible from the Saloon and Touring.

The front bumper is re-styled and brand new side-panels house new triangular, side indicator lenses. The headlight clusters now merge with the front indicators and free up space for state-of-the-art Adaptive Front Headlights that can be specified. Adaptive Front Headlights are a revolutionary active safety feature that swivel with the car as it corners. The headlights move left to right by up to fifteen degrees, illuminating the bend ahead rather than the verge directly in front of the car.

From the back, the design tweaks are a little more subtle, but also feature innovative new lighting.

The rear apron has been re-styled and now houses body-coloured Park Distance Control sensors. The Coupé features a wider boot grab handle. The most dramatic rear-end treatment sees brand new Light-Emitting Diode two-stage brake lighting in new rear clusters. This technology is not yet EU homologated, but still fitted to all new BMW 3 Series Coupés and Convertibles.

Once homologated, it's simply a matter of 'switching' on the system that communicates emergency braking by the BMW driver to other cars behind. Normal braking illuminates a single corona of LED brake lights, but heavy braking lights a second corona offering an extra split second of recognition for the drivers behind.

The new rear lights and wider boot lid grab handle are the only 2003-model year upgrades for the M3 Coupé and Convertible.

continues... | Part Three

Published : 14/05/03 Author : Melanie Carter

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