After we saw spy shots of a long-wheelbase BMW 3 Series for China, we knew it one was coming. Now BMW has confirmed that the car will indeed bow at Auto China 2012, otherwise known as the 2012 Beijing Motor Show, which kicks off on April 23.

The LWB 3 Series has an 4.3-inch wheelbase stretch and will be offered with three powertrains. The smallest is the 184-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder that's not available in North America. The 240-hp, 2.8-liter sold here in the 328i will also be available, as will the 300-hp, turbo 3.0-liter six-cylinder. The LWB 3 Series models will carry the "Li" suffix like we've seen on the 7 Series, so the three models will be designated 320Li, 328Li and 335Li.

Click past the jump to see the press release, and be sure to check out our gallery.
Show full PR text
BMW at Auto China 2012 in Beijing
World premiere – the new BMW 3 Series sedan in the long wheelbase version.


Developed at BMW head office in Germany, it will be rolling off the production line in the new Shenyang production plant and celebrating its world premiere at Auto China 2012 in Beijing – the new BMW 3 Series sedan in the long wheelbase version. With its wheelbase extended by 11 cm, a conspicuously elegant design, and the best rear seat travel comfort among the competition, this new model fulfils precisely the expectations of Chinese automobile customers. They can choose from the BMW 335Li, the BMW 328Li, or the BMW 320Li, each fitted with a powerful and efficient engine featuring BMW TwinPower Turbo Technology. Also presented at Auto China will be the new BMW 3 Series sedan with the normal wheelbase and the full hybrid model BMW ActiveHybrid 3.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 37 Comments
      Matt
      • 2 Years Ago
      Wow. Really autoblog. The 328 has a 2.8 four cylinder? I can deal with all the stupid typos but to get such a basic CAR stat wrong...I may just have to leave.
      Jimbo
      • 2 Years Ago
      The 240 hp engine is a turbo 2.0L, not a 2.8 L.
      Stover
      • 2 Years Ago
      There is no 2.8 liter engine from BMW. Don't be fooled by the 328 model number.
      Slideways
      • 2 Years Ago
      Another mistake, the 320i with the downgraded 2.0 turbo is not available in the states but is available in Canada. Stop making mumbo jumbo and get your facts straight ab.
      Lachmund
      • 2 Years Ago
      LI haha
      Jamie Goldstein
      • 2 Years Ago
      So these people can afford a chauffeur but not a 7 Series, or even a 5 Series? I am confused.
        Yang
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Jamie Goldstein
        Cars are more expensive in China (usually 2x of the US) but chauffeurs are employed for <$500s/mo. Well, they are usually not wearing uniforms like US chauffeurs, but they do the same job.
          Pandabear
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Yang
          Base salary for $500, but for those who works for executives and gov officials, they get overtime whenever their bosses are out social. These do add up quite quickly.
      JJH
      • 2 Years Ago
      Would bringing this to NA a bad idea? I find rear legroom for this segment of cars really small... To the point that they are unacceptable... for adults. I think Li would work in NA as well, any thoughts?
        Hampton
        • 2 Years Ago
        @JJH
        I think they should offer it as an option. Maybe they are afraid it would cannibalize 5 series sales
          IBx27
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Hampton
          Because it would be a 5-series.
      Julius
      • 2 Years Ago
      In seeing this, I wonder what would have been cheaper to develop - the LWB 3-series, or a down-engined 5-series to fit with the Chinese tax structure...
      desinerd1
      • 2 Years Ago
      That's not fair! Chinese get a normal sized car but Americans get subcompact.
        IBx27
        • 2 Years Ago
        @desinerd1
        Buy the 5 series. Done.
          kobe718
          • 2 Years Ago
          @IBx27
          5series also have a Li version in china, which almost as long as a normal 7 series, and, 7series only have Li version in china, too.... and all A4/6/8 in china are extended, and called as A4L/6L/8L, that's why 3 series have to be extended in china, just because everyone have been extended...
          desinerd1
          • 2 Years Ago
          @IBx27
          but I agree with you. 3 series is a slightly bigger 1 series. and 5 series is a longer 1 series, 7 series is an even longer 1 series. They just added extra doors in few models. And X1, X3, X5 are taller versions of 1 series, 3 series and 5 series respectively. X6 is X5 with it's rear end smushed by a wrecking ball. And lastly, 1 series is a modified version of mini cooper.
          desinerd1
          • 2 Years Ago
          @IBx27
          That's like saying everyone in America should fly first class. Done.
      IBx27
      • 2 Years Ago
      That's like buying a stretched yaris.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        havelogo
        • 2 Years Ago
        The new 3 is just 11cm longer while the 5er is 17cm longer, so this new one is at half the distance, besides the 3er theoretically would drive better and maintain it's lightness and newly developed dynamics.
        Monkaroo
        • 2 Years Ago
        Well the 5 series weighs a lot more with the same engines, except for V8, and if you want a little more rear passenger space this will be the way to go.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
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