We recently shared local pricing for the new BMW 3 Series ahead of the G20-generation sedan’s launch in South Africa, interestingly revealing that just two derivatives will initially be offered here. But now BMW SA has confirmed the base 320i will arrive at some point “later in 2019”.
While the 330i and 320d will hit the market from launch in March 2019, local buyers will have to hold out a little longer for the 320i (with BMW in Germany having yet to make any mention of a 318i derivative, the 320i will assume the role of entry-level variant … for now, at least). BMW SA says the reason the 320i won’t be offered from the get-go has to do with “global production planning”.
For the record, the 320i employs a turbocharged 2,0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine sending 135 kW and 300 N.m to the rear axle via an eight-speed Steptronic transmission. The obligatory zero to 100 km/h sprint takes a claimed 7,2 seconds, while top speed comes in at 238 km/h.
As we’ve already reported, the M340i xDrive (which churns out 275 kW and 500 N.m) is scheduled to be introduced locally in September 2019, stepping into the role of the 3 Series range’s most powerful model (now that the F80-generation M3 has exited the stage) until the expected arrival of the new M3 in 2020.
Interestingly, BMW SA furthermore told us its new 330e iPerformance plug-in hybrid model is “still under review” for South Africa.