So what’s different?
The new model is longer (85mm), wider (16mm) and a tiny bit (1mm) taller than the outgoing one. Other highlight figures are an extra 11mm rear leg room and an overall weight saving of 55kg compared to the previous model.
Up front, the obvious change is the grille, considerably larger and wrapping over the leading edge of the bonnet. The lights appear flatter, wider and the day running lights - two lower halves of hexagons in each lamp - are a stylish evolution of the two round lamps gracing the fronts of early 3-Series models.
The neat rear has received a similar makeover although more subtle. The lights are more slender, darkened and have a cleaner ‘L’-shaped illumination.
In profile, the new 3-Series now has a rising window line. The bolder, lower door profile sweeps up dramatically and the swell of the rear wheel arches is purposeful, all adding to the enhanced, muscly look.
Inside, the story is similar. The whole facia has been neatened by integrating the main infotainment screen into the design (rather than the popped-up toast appearance in the previous generation). The air vents sit flush in the sweeping trim and rather than using multiple tiers, the heating and ventilation controls sit within the same bezel.
It works. It’s less cluttered-looking and the screen gently angled toward the driver keeps it intimate and involving.