The 2012 BMW 3-Series had an embarrassing moment on the Nürburgring when a prototype broke down and had to be rescued by an X5. While this probably made the engineers blush, at least it didn't pull an Audi R8 V10 and spontaneous combust.
Problems aside, the redesigned model will feature conservative styling that is heavily influenced by the 5-Series. Overall, the vehicle is expected to be 2 inches (5.1 cm) longer than the current model which should result in additional rear seat legroom.
For engines, likely petrol candidates include a turbocharged 2.0-liter with 184 PS (135 kW / 181 hp) and 245 PS (180 kW / 241 hp) as well as a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six with up to 320 PS (315 hp (235 kW) and 450 Nm (332 lb-ft) of torque. On the diesel side, we can expect a 2.0-liter four-cylinder with outputs of 143 PS (105 kW / 141 hp) and 184 PS (135 kW / 181 hp). A hybrid variant is also in the works and it will likely have a turbocharged 3.0-liter petrol and a 54 PS (40 kW / 54 hp) electric motor.
The 2012 BMW 3-Series will be introduced sometime next year, so stay tuned for official details.