The 2022 BMW 3 Series facelift is “coming soon”, but we may have already seen it in full

BMW announced on its social media overnight that a new 2022 mid-cycle facelift will be coming soon for the BMW 3 Series. Normally, we’d already be trying to pore over the short teaser video CSI-style to try and look for any sort of information we can get. But weirdly, not this time – and that’s because we may have already seen the new 2022 BMW 3 Series facelift in full, courtesy of a little China-exclusive model called the i3.

The fully-electric 3-er debuted in China at the end of March this year, with a reworked design to the current 3 Series that many presumed to be a preview of the updated 3 Series facelift (for the rest of the world) that’s due to be revealed soon. And based on the shadowy teaser showing off the facelift’s front fascia, we’re inclined to believe that the rumours are true.

The most noticeable feature of the new front fascia is the reworked headlights, and surprise, surprise: it matches that of the BMW i3 almost identically. There’s a new housing without the notch at the bottom, while the daytime-running lights have also been replaced by a new twin boomerang-shaped signature, with the main horizontal element running along the top rather than the bottom as before.

Other changes are not apparent yet, but the grille should also receive a slight tweak to its profile to match the reworked headlight enclosures. The bumpers should also receive some tweaks (and will be largely variant-dependent), while changes to the rear are likely relegated to minor updates on the taillight and fascia designs.

RELATED: BMW i3 returns as China-only fully-electric 3 Series, previews upcoming facelift

Aside from the exterior design changes, we are also expecting quite a significant change on the 2022 BMW 3 Series’ interior as well, with the major change being a big curved display housing (with two large widescreen displays) similar to the iX, running the firm’s latest iDrive 8.0 operating system.

The change will necessitate some other tweaks to the dashboard layout, and recent spyshots have also suggested that the new 2022 BMW 3 Series facelift could also receive a new steering wheel for the driver. Wondering how it’ll all look? Well, luckily for us, there’s already the new i3 for us to refer to…

We still don’t know what engines BMW will offer on the new 2022 3 Series facelift, but rumours are suggesting that it’ll mostly retain the same line-up as before, with the addition of a new mild-hybrid 4-cylinder petrol engine. We probably won’t have much longer before we find out, as the official debut is just likely a few weeks – or even days – away with the teaser train now rolling in.

It’s about to be a busy few months for the BMW 3-er, with the hot M3 CSL scheduled for launch on May 20, and the M3 Touring wagon expected sometime in June. And with the next BMW 3 Series recently confirmed to be fully electric, built on the firm’s new Neue Klasse EV architecture, this might just be the final major change we’ll see to the petrol-powered sports sedan. Best savour it while we still can.


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