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Friday, January 27, 2023

2022 BMW M3 Touring spy shots: Speedy wagon coming, but not to US

BMW M is cooking up a combination that’s sure to make fans salivate: an M3 wagon.

The vehicle, to be known as the M3 Touring in most markets where it will be offered, was confirmed last August and has been regularly spotted testing since then, including at the Nürburgring and on some of the German racetrack’s surrounding roads. The vehicle is related to the latest M3 sedan and M4 coupe and convertible models.

Touring is the name BMW uses for wagons outside the U.S., and this new M3 Touring will be the first time the M3 has spawned the longroof option. There have been M5 Tourings in the past, however.

But before anyone in the U.S. opens their wallets, BMW spokesman Oleg Satanovsky told Motor Authority “there are no plans to import this vehicle to the U.S.” The 3-Series wagon was also discontinued in the U.S. in 2019. Elsewhere, the M3 Touring is expected to start sales in 2022.

The latest hot wagon battle should’ve enticed BMW to bring the M3 Touring to the U.S., as Audi finally brought the RS 6 Avant (Audi speak for wagon) to local showrooms for the 2020 model year. Mercedes-Benz AMG offers an E63 S Wagon in the U.S. as well. But sadly, BMW isn’t budging. Sorry, America.

The M3 Touring would be smaller than both the Audi and Mercedes, but it would’ve theoretically undercut their $100,000-plus price tags. Elsewhere, it will compete directly with the Audi RS 4 Avant and Mercedes-Benz AMG C63 Wagon (nee Estate).

Expect the BMW M3 Touring to feature the same specs as the M3 sedan, meaning power will come from a 3.0-liter twin-turbo inline-6 code-named S58. For the M3, the engine delivers 473 hp in standard guise and 503 hp in M3 Competition guise. The standard M3 also comes exclusively with a manual transmission and rear-wheel drive, while the M3 Competition comes exclusively with an 8-speed automatic and the choice of rear- or all-wheel drive. It’s unclear what the plan is for the M3 Touring, although it would be pretty sad if the manual wasn’t offered.

Interestingly, BMW came close to launching an M3 Touring two decades ago as part of the third-generation M3 range. A prototype was built but never approved for production.

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