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BMW Vision Neue Klasse previews next 3 Series

Up to 1000km of battery range, retro-inspired looks for BMW Vision Neue Klasse

4 Sep 2023

THE BMW Vision Neue Klasse has been unveiled at the Internationale Automobil Ausstellung (IAA) in Munich this week, the concept model showcasing what “the next generation of vehicles from its core BMW brand will look like”, and in particular the eighth-generation 3 Series that is due in 2025.


Drawing styling cues from the previous iVision Dee concept – and indeed earlier BMW Neue Klasse vehicles from the 1960s and 70s – the Vision Neue Klasse gives an early glimpse of the Bavarian brand’s future styling and incoming technologies.


Stylistically, the Vision Neue Klasse features powerful wheelarches over aero-styled 21-inch wheels in a classic, cross-spoke design. The “almost monolithic” body is characterised by strong indentations front and rear, and a large daylight opening (DLO) that offers a “new aesthetic”.


The body is finished in Joyous Bright paintwork with a subtle yellow hue and is contrasted by black skirts and bumpers. The kidney grilles and double headlights are said to meld into a “singular transaction”, the latter able to interact with the driver via a series of animations.


Inside, analogue controls and hard switches have been reduced to a minimum. Instead, human-machine interaction takes place through the personalisable BMW Panoramic Vision central display and via steering-wheel mounted and voice controls.


The iDrive controller is retained on the centre console while a head-up display provides vital driving information.


BMW says the four-seat cabin is completely free of decorative chrome and leather, helping to further optimise the car’s carbon footprint.

Likely to be badged as the i3 and sold alongside petrol- and diesel-powered 3 Series variants, GoAuto understands the Neue Klasse will ride on all-new underpinnings, leaving the ICE variants to continue using the current seventh-generation car’s platform.


BMW said the Vision Neue Klasse embodies a clear design language with expansive surfaces and “just a few distinct character lines”. It is styled to look as if the brand has “skipped a generation” from the current 3 Series, the design set to flow into other models as their lifecycles are updated.


The Vision Neue Klasse retains the brand’s famed kidney grilles and Hofmeister kink of the side DLO for a “distinct” BMW feel, while incorporating far more secondary raw materials and a resource-efficient production system that promises to reduce the model’s carbon footprint.


Although specifications have yet to be announced, it is understood the next generation electric 3 Series will be powered by BMW’s sixth generation eDrive fully electric powertrain.


The model promises up to 30 per cent more range, 30 per cent faster charging and 25 per cent greater efficiency when compared with its current contemporary, and forms part of what the brand says it’s the “biggest investment in the brand’s history”.


“The BMW Vision Neue Klasse combines our ability to innovate in the core areas of electrification, digitalisation and circularity,” explained BMW chairman, Oliver Zipse.


“In this way, we are always able to stay two steps ahead of the future. The Neue Klasses is already bringing the mobility of the next decade to the roads in 2025 – and leading BMW into a new era.”

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