BMW M3 Touring Autobahn driving REVIEW

BMW M3 Touring Autobahn driving REVIEW

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510 horsepower, M3 power, but with also 500 liters of loading volume. This is the M3 Touring, and here with Thomas and Autogefühl in 4K, full screen, full length. Let's go with an autobahn experience here in Germany today and all details you need to know about the M3 Touring. BMW is attacking the customers also of Audi and Mercedes, who have been offering the performance estates in the same segment. Here in the front, we can see Frozen Pure Gray, an awesome color.

It's just matte paint, and I think it really looks still elegant. However, here then, the typical frameless double kidney in the front of the M3. This one also optionally has a Carbon Fiber package. We can see carbon fiber in the lower part here, also at the side mirrors. You don't have to go for that if that's actually too loud for you.

And a very interesting setup here also as for the wheels: 19 inches in the front, 20 inches in the rear. Then you can also optionally go for a Racetrack Package for 15,000 euros. Well, the most expensive thing about that is actually carbon ceramic brakes. You can also see them right here with

these golden brake calipers. That is really impressive. Forged wheels actually to save some more weight. 4 meters, 80, or 189 inches is the length of the M3 Touring, and we have the typical estate form right here.

The roof can be bought in high-gloss black in the vehicle color. Do you like it visually even more than the sedan, or maybe the coupé, the M4? Tell me in the comments. Here, look at these really strong hips here in the rear, even possible in here for an estate; that looks super unique. It also gets the adaptive suspension.

We'll also go through different driving modes later on, on the German autobahn. Of course, you can make it, let's say, not from super comfortable to stiff, but from stiffer to stiffest. Turning indicators in the rear here, beautiful slim integration alongside the tail lamp.

Yeah, I think that's how it's done. Looks really cool, doesn't it? Turning indicators in the front. This is here the so-called, I would say, like base LED. It's already full LED. Then you also have different turning indicators here at the side.

They are normal ones, but then they have this special look because they're kind of like segmented with this, you know, with these elements here. You could also go for the laser lamps, and you have like 550 meters high beam in Europe at least, and then also the whole daytime running light signature and turning indicators would look different. Optionally, you can unlock the top speed to 280 kilometers an hour or 175 miles per hour.

Yeah, but I think the normal top speed at 250 kilometers an hour or like 150 miles per hour is also just fine. Here in the rear, you can see really sculpted three-dimensional tail lamps. On your real eye, they look more reddish. On the camera, they always look a little bit more orange-ish, by the way, just that you know that. Then, this really strong lower part, diffuser style here also with the option carbon fiber and four real exhaust pipes, but I think not with being too much, you know, I always like to keep it classy at some point.

What do you think? Acceleration figure, by the way, 3.6 seconds to 100 kilometers an hour or 62 miles an hour... Which engine can do that? Under the hood, the 3-liter inline 6-cylinder by BMW, famous engine, here, of course, an M-tuned. Look at these struts here, you know, for extra torsional stiffness in the front and 510 horsepower, 650 newton-meters of torque.

It's all-wheel drive, xDrive, however, rear-wheel biased, and you can also set it here in the driving settings. You can still drive it rear-wheel drive only. When you have deactivated all of the stability systems, and it also gets a rear differential lock. Standard key fob here with the M colors, then door closing sound... Standard actually, quite good. Then, inside of the doors, sporty contrast stitches, and I really like this Hofmeister kink design, which they use on the exterior, also the interior door handle, also here, the window levers, not just plain plastic and so on. Then you also have an M3 entry badge and also a special steering wheel here, in this case then done with carbon fiber inserts, and you have these M1 and M2 buttons, and this is where you can individualize your driving experience.

For example, make the M2 button the sportiest ride and the M2 a sportier ride or something, but you can just decide it on your own. Soon, more to the instruments and so on. You either get the normal sport seats or these bucket seats, so these are optional, and they, of course, look sportier, cooler. Here with the carbon fiber in the top there, it can get a little bit stiff then between your legs actually, and also here, the M3 logo at the head restraint is also illuminated, so that one looks cool, and it is quite open actually but it gets quite hot. It's only available in the animal skin. So there's no alternative for it, and of course, for the raciest vehicle especially, they should go for microfiber like in, you know, Alcantara and so on.

That would be better also, you know, for the grip and so on, but considering this is such a bucket-like seat, it is not that uncomfortable from the seat ergonomics. I was surprised by that, and I even feel it might be better than the standard sports seat. Yeah, even better than, as I said, with some microfiber and so on. Then, seating position.

It's super low indeed and definitely lower with these bucket seats here than the normal 3 Series, so you really have to put the head-up display, which is also available, a little bit higher so that I can still see it. In this case, then, massive amounts of headroom. Interior cockpit overview. You're racing central

here, steering wheel in and out, up and down, smooth process, no problem, a lot of carbon fiber here, the decor element, and so on, manual volume jog. However, here then, the integrated screen, a little bit curved, two displays, and the climate unit is just here inside. Of course, I like to have it more manual, but yeah, some share my view, some say I don't care.

So, yeah, what about you? And the lower part here, there's so much to control with M-specific settings. Shifting lever, still real one, this would be reverse, then here, drive mode, and one more time to the manual shifting. So, here on the shifting lever, this and the shifting characteristics, when it's all full of these three layers, then the shifting is, let's say, more extreme, more RPM, lower gears, and so on.

And if you really want it all manual, then I said just one more time to the right, then you have the manual shifting either in here, plus, minus, or at the steering wheel. Here, the digital instruments. On the right side, you can put in the driving modes, and this would be normal driving mode.

This would be manual shifting. Or putting it to neutral, left side speed, and right side RPM. Here with the M mode button, you choose the different assistance systems characteristics. Set up here, this one then gets to the menu where you can individualize the settings for engine, chassis, steering brake, and the xDrive, even go for the two-wheel drive only mode, and you can also set these then on the M1 and M2 buttons. And here for individually activating or deactivating the exhaust crackles. And you can also get this head-up display here with a allowed speed and GPS view and so on, but you can also change it.

Other than that, BMW infotainment system, it's actually pretty quick. You also have this climate menu where then you can activate the seating when the engine is running. To me, yeah, not that much straightforward. And, actually, you have this main menu here, for example, also switching to Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, both available wireless. And then here, going back, you also can access special M apps like M Laptop or the M Drift Analyzer.

What about a short interior ASMR or car ASMR session? The seats in the back here, carbon fiber, weight savings, really massive, and these huge holes. Of course, there's not really a seat belt going through there, that's just this racing gimmick in the styling, and as for the headroom in the rear with 1.89 or 6'2", no problem. The legroom here, you see, they look slim, however, it doesn't give you much more legroom or something, and it's, of course, really hard here, so for the back passengers here, the bucket seats are not actually a good idea, so it does work with four tall adults, but just barely here with the knees overall, but then, the ergonomics of the bench here in the rear is actually not too bad. So, what does it make it a Touring? Yes, this one here. First of all, here they separate the glass opening for quickly reaching over. That's always a nice feature and also unique selling point.

Then, of course, the wheel hatch, electric hatch here, and 500 liters, up to 1,510 liters. Here, the width between the wheel arches is less than a meter or 40 inches but wider in the very front part. And the length here is also a good meter or 40 inches.

These rubber pads here, they actually, you know, get a little bit inflated while driving, and then it gets even stickier, and it holds the suitcase. This one here is the manual cover. You can also set it in here on the top part. That's also possible.

And here at the side with these levers, we can actually unfold the seats. Here we go. Yeah, that's a nice solution, and then we can load all the way through. We are welcoming the BMW M3 Touring to the German autobahn.

There is so much to control here. For example, here, the shifting shifts down earlier here. You can control that one, how the automatic shifting reacts.

Now, it's crisper. We can also change here to the M1 mode or even M2 mode. I've set it even sportier. Then, here, the engine is on Sport Plus, for example. Then, we also have the M mode, which I can set to Sport. Also, follow me here with the shifting and the speed in the middle.

Assistance systems are drawn back then, so so many individual details you can control, and the best is you find your own individual setting for each driving mode because controlling it while driving all the time. It's not that easy, but here we found a very nice setup then for you to show you all the performance of the 510 horsepower. And then you also have to pay attention to which shifting mode you are in. This here, for example, I have to shift myself.

One more pressing to the right. When it says D, then the car shifts on its own. So, always pay attention to that. And now, we're starting from 50 kilometers an hour. Let's see what we can score for the acceleration. Let's go.

180. And 200 kilometers an hour, 125 miles an hour. Wow, that was really quick. The official acceleration figure from 0 to 100 or 62 miles an hour, 100 kilometers an hour is 3.6.

That's 0.1 seconds slower than the sedan, but who cares? That 3-litre inline six-cylinder is a gem. 220, 230, and it feels like nothing.

It's so easy, so well under control. These bucket seats, they are holding us really tight. No problem at all driving towards the sun in the evening sunlight. So much joy it brings to you, and I mean, they're not that uncomfortable as they look like at first sight, actually, the seats. And once again, they have a lot of shoulder support. Therefore, they also take weight off your lumbar area and so on.

Wow, and, of course, talking about shifting ourselves, so I push the shifting lever one more time to the right, then the car really stays in that gear, and then I can either use the big shifting lever to shift down when I press forward and shift up when I press backward. I love that setup. Some do it the other way around. I prefer it that way, and, of course, also these shifting paddles. Oh, this Porsche Macan behind me is bullying me.

Even in fifth gear here, it sounds great, and it's a good acceleration, but I can also go back. Multiple gears, no problem at all, and then when I really put it to the rev... Yeah, Leah is also having fun. When I really put it to the rev limiter, then you also hear that really like this plop from the exhaust there, from that sports exhaust. Wow, and the good thing is I feel so much in control still. You know that when you turn off all the stability control, like ESC, then you could also go to this two-wheel drive mode, the rear-wheel drive only mode.

Since you should not turn the ESC off on public roads, we're not doing that, but this four-wheel drive mode is still so much rear-wheel biased that you never get the feeling of, oh, I'm driving like a boring all-wheel drive version or something. No, this is here always something. It hooks up to the road so well, you know, that is just amazing. The only thing we talked about it in the different 3 Series reviews is that the steering feel, I mean, here in the M, I feel it's a little bit better, definitely, but here, you know, it lacks a little bit of feeling, I feel, and of reaction, and then to this side here, it suddenly gets... Too progressive, so it doesn't feel that natural.

It's still a lot of fun, and, you know, it's not bad at all, but I feel that the competitors here, like, you know, Alfa Giulia or Audi S4 or, yeah, in this case, it's RS4, yeah, it's the RS4 down here, of course, against the true M model, Alfa Giulia Quadrifoglio, which is not available as an estate, but just as for the steering setup, you know, that they... Do a better job that it gets a more natural steering feeling. So, that is one thing to criticize, but you still feel connected to the vehicle. It just could be better because I feel the 3 Series needs to be the benchmark for steering setup at BMW.

Now, we do a connection between two motorways. It's always a lot of fun. The good thing is that everyone is hearing us. That's, of course, a safety thing, right? That everyone knows I'm coming here.

And it's also a lot of fun to shift yourself here at the paddles, but we can also, of course, do it down there, so then you have, like, a sense of natural feeling when you shift here. It's also cool, right, because this is still a real shifting lever. More and more shifting levers disappear and are maybe, like, just, like, really, really tiny and sometimes need to be bigger. Back to the review. So, here we go.

Should I use the big shifting lever for you? Yeah, let's do that. Ah, sludgy behind that one. And the Tourneo Connect, let's race it. Awesome. Wow, and now hard on the brakes.

Wow, they deliver! Yeah, you can make your family father life so much more exciting with this one, definitely. Sometimes, I mean, yeah, it is quicker and also more efficient just to use the shifting levers here on the steering wheel. But it definitely has something, you know. I learned driving a vehicle with manuals only. That's what they used to do in Germany.

So, everyone had manual cars, being the expensive one still and the cheap ones anyway. It was always so much fun to click the gears in. Very annoying in traffic jam and so on, but for driving pleasure, the manuals are really cool, and this one still delivers some kind of manual feeling, although it's not one.

You know what I mean? So, that's definitely a cool thing to have. Other than that, if you would all put it to, you know, the normal civilized mode or just if you shift up and let it roll, you can also more or less have the same 3 Series experience. The only thing you always feel is, of course, the suspension is stiffer. You have the adaptive suspension here, so it reacts also to the settings.

So, when you put it all back, yes, you still feel it's stiffer, and also you have these large wheels. They make a huge difference. So, no doubt, you do lose comfort in the M3. So, if you want the soft comfort or this compromise of sportiness and comfort, then you would go for the M Performance model, the M340i.

That would be the more clever and better choice in a way. This one here, more the choice without so much compromise, but, yeah, after all, it's now available also as the estate, as the touring form here, so you also have more everyday usability. And, yeah, I feel you can still drive it as a primary vehicle with, again, some compromise to comfort, especially suspension-wise. Yeah, the seats here, I mean, you feel somewhat caged in, but since I'm not the biggest fan of the normal 3 Series seats, this is then, in that way, actually a little bit better to me because I don't feel that I would have, like, less comfort here in these bucket seats. So, Leah, what do you say? You love it? And I love it that she has a lot of fun. That is, you know, you know there's, you know, you have passengers who start to be really nervous and maybe start to freak out and say like, stop the car, stop the car! Had it all.

But there are also passengers who really enjoy it and yeah. That's what you need as a car to do this, right? What I actually love about this vehicle, especially like in general driving the 3.0-litre inline-six-cylinder with BMW, not necessarily that you put it in the lowest gear and rev it to the max, but just, you know, having it in high gear, and then applying some slight throttle and you just feel this slight rolling, you don't have like this extreme acceleration, but you know, hey, the potential is there and just use the six-cylinders, use the bigger displacement in comparison to a four-cylinder engine that is just tuned.

This one here, just use it in a higher gear and enjoy the fun also in a gentleman way, you know what I mean? This is awesome. It has such a great balance in the corners, so much driving fun, and at the same time, I could be transporting a fridge back there, so that's, of course, the key to it. Do I have less fun than in the sedan? Not at all, maybe even more. I mean, you could theoretically talk about weight balancing and that this here might even be better for such a vehicle because there's a lot of weight in the front axle with the engine. But you could even argue that this one is better balance-wise, like weight balance-wise, and I have somehow the gut feeling that I even have a little bit more fun with this. Not sure if that's really, like, based on facts, but just on the gut feeling, you know, so definitely a very interesting aspect.

Did you like that? Well, I did, and if you want to see more of that content, we have great comparison episodes of the Mercedes, Audi, BMW performance vehicles in this segment here, and what about the M4?

2023-09-25 17:43

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