Hands-on with the 328i M Sport Wagon

Feb 10 • F31 Touring8 Comments

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Since the inception of BimmerFile we haven ‘t been shy of our love of the BMW wagon. Offering all the utility of a crossover with the performance and efficiency of a sedan, it ‘s the perfect family vehicle in our minds. Yet the wagon marketshare has been in steady decline especially in truck-happy America. So it was with great pleasure that we stumbled upon a well specced M Sport wagon at the Chicago auto show press day.

The first thing you notice is the stance of the car. Even in xDrive format (which is regrettably standard here in the US) it ‘s low and purposeful looking with the M Sport bodykit. Finished in Estoril Blue this particular 328i looked like it could have been a medical car for an open wheel series. In fact the only potential critic is that the higher belt-line on the F3X models calls for 19 ” wheels to hit that magical wheel/tire/belt-line ratio that we all tend to like. Unfortunately 19 “s aren ‘t a factory option on the 328i.

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The 3 Series will hit US showrooms later this spring in 328i form with xDrive standard. The exceptional 8 speed auto will also be standard and unavoidable. Yes if you ‘re looking for the purist rear wheel drive manual wagon you ‘ll have to move out of the US market. Yet we ‘re not all that bothered by the lack of options. Especially with the ZF sourced 8 speed auto as it continues to impress the most diehard manual fans like us.

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The 3 Series wagon continues the tradition started with the E30 and then continued on with the E46 touring. Sport mixed with utility wrapped in a package that is arguably the best looking 3 Series model. Look for it to hit US showrooms April of this year. And if you value the future of wagons in the US, don ‘t be shy when it comes to voting with your wallet.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/charles.r.luxton Charles Rob Luxton

    hallelujah!!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/lilmacarony Cameron Love

    what seats and leather is that?!

  • Frus Trated

    I am ok with the 8 speed slush box. But if it comes only in AWD, I will have to pass.

    C’mon, BMW — don’t make me pay for the stupidity of others this way

  • CB

    Clearly BMW is positioning the new wagon to compete with the A4 Allroad.

  • Losing Faith

    If the wagon’s x-drive only, drivers may go for an x-drive x1instead – far less expensive, same engines & transmission plus the (superior) HYDRAULIC steering rack.

    • http://bridger.us/ Gabriel Bridger

      Say what you will (and we’re no fans of electric steering) but the steering is decidedly better in the 3er than the X1.

    • Frus Trated

      Exactly… The only reason to pay more for the F31 is to get the “ultimate driving machine” experience combined with a little practicality. If AWD is mandatory, buyers will save thousands for a very similar experience with an X1, or pass on BMW completely.

  • Evan

    I thought it was going to be RWD or xDrive, both automatic only.

    I truthfully love my 2012 E91 RWD with the sport package. I don’t think the F31 can quite match the handling of the E91 (based upon a drive in the F30) but if the rumors stick with a diesel wagon actually coming to the USA, that may be my next car. Well, a car in addition to the E91…. :)

    As you can tell, I’m a huge fan of the 3er wagons. And the X1 is one of the unfortunately proportioned BMWs- it looks like a forced SUV version of a 3er wagon which is what it is. I was actually hoping it wouldn’t make it here after all of the delays…. but oh well. As long as the wagon keeps coming I’ll be happy.

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