2016 F30 3 Series LCI spied for the first time

by Tim Jones on March 26, 2014, 5:11 pm
2016 BMW F30 3 series LCI

We bring you the first pictures of the 2016 F30 BMW 3 series Life Cycle Impulse (LCI). If you're not intimately familiar with BMW's model cycle, you might be wondering what LCI stands for. Life Cycle Impulse as BMW calls it, also commonly refereed to as a 'face lift' is the mid-life refresh that BMW does to each model. A typical body style will run 7 years so about 3.5 year in BMW refreshes the styling, changes the power train offerings and generally refreshes the car bringing it up to date visual, engine and technology wise it doesn't seem long in the tooth. The F30 3 series went on sale February 2012 as a model year 2012. Summer of 2015 will be just about 3.5 years into the F30 life and just the right time to introduce the LCI as a 2016 model year.

The visual changes are very minor reflecting how well the F30 is selling. The less dramatic the visual changes the more confident BMW feels about the current styling. For those that were hoping the head lights to the grills design language would be discontinued, you are in for a disappointment. Exterior wise most of the changes seem to be in the front end. The bumper designs will get refreshed for all the lines and the kidney grills get more aggressive angular shape. Typically BMW would add full LED rear taillights but the uncovered rear end seems to say otherwise. It could also be that BMW is not yet testing the rear end enhancements. With over a year until the LCI goes on sale there is plenty of time for additional test mules.

The biggest changes to the F30 3 series will take place under the hood. The very long in the tooth 6 cylinder N55 in the 335 will get replaced with a B58 from BMW's new engine family and the 320i will get the B48 4 cylinder turbo from the new MINI. Rumors have it that the 328i will continue with the N20 for another year, perhaps while BMW sorts out the higher power output needed from the B48 for the 328i. The 328d will continue with the N47 until the diesel variants of the new B engine line are ready to go. In all it will be an exciting upgrade to the F30 3 series, we just have to wait a year for it.

Does the LCI information effect anyone's purchasing in the next 4-8 months?


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36 responses to 2016 F30 3 Series LCI spied for the first time

Nordique commented:
March 26, 2014, 5:50 pm

Thanks, Tim--the changes seem modest. More interesting, to me, was the engine info!
boramkiv commented:
March 26, 2014, 6:10 pm

Please tell me there are LED brake lights, because I'm not seeing them.
tim330i commented:
March 26, 2014, 6:11 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by boramkiv View Post
Please tell me there are LED brake lights, because I'm not seeing them.


Quote:
Originally Posted by tim330i View Post
Typically BMW would add full LED rear taillights but the uncovered rear end seems to say otherwise. It could also be that BMW is not yet testing the rear end enhancements. With over a year until the LCI goes on sale there is plenty of time for additional test mules.
boramkiv commented:
March 26, 2014, 6:15 pm

Haha, I started reading after I saw pics. I do it backwards, pics first. I was anticipating the looks of this car.
Noted.
Dave 20T commented:
March 26, 2014, 6:57 pm

I don't see any difference in the shape of the headlights. Of course, headlight design is expensive so keeping it the same is what I favor. I do wish U.S. BMW's had the German amber taillights. Red seems to be the dumbing down to American cars. The amber blends in well with the red.
Dave 20T commented:
March 26, 2014, 7:07 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by tim330i View Post

The biggest changes to the F30 3 series will take place under the hood. The very long in the tooth 6 cylinder N55 in the 335 will get replaced with a B58 from BMW's new engine family and the 320i will get the B48 4 cylinder turbo from the new MINI. Rumors have it that the 328i will continue with the N20 for another year, perhaps while BMW sorts out the higher power output needed from the B48 for the 328i. ?
I wish they wouldn't do this. I'd like to see a couple of years of the N20 so that there will be a lot of them around, making servicing easier in terms of parts and knowledge.

The way it is now, the F30 would have used the N20:
328i 2012-2016
320i 2013-2015

I would have preferred 2012-2019, at least.
Hangman4358 commented:
March 26, 2014, 8:58 pm

If the only thing they are changing is the front bumper I can already see someone just buying a new bumper in their body color.
Boxsterless_B commented:
March 26, 2014, 11:02 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by tim330i View Post
2016 BMW F30 3 series LCI

We bring you the first pictures of the 2016 F30 BMW 3 series Life Cycle Impulse (LCI). If you're not intimately familiar with BMW's model cycle, you might be wondering what LCI stands for. Life Cycle Impulse as BMW calls it, also commonly refereed to as a 'face lift' is the mid-life refresh that BMW does to each model. A typical body style will run 7 years so about 3.5 year in BMW refreshes the styling, changes the power train offerings and generally refreshes the car bringing it up to date visual, engine and technology wise it doesn't seem long in the tooth. The F30 3 series went on sale February 2012 as a model year 2012. Summer of 2015 will be just about 3.5 years into the F30 life and just the right time to introduce the LCI as a 2016 model year.

The visual changes are very minor reflecting how well the F30 is selling. The less dramatic the visual changes the more confident BMW feels about the current styling. For those that were hoping the head lights to the grills design language would be discontinued, you are in for a disappointment. Exterior wise most of the changes seem to be in the front end. The bumper designs will get refreshed for all the lines and the kidney grills get more aggressive angular shape. Typically BMW would add full LED rear taillights but the uncovered rear end seems to say otherwise. It could also be that BMW is not yet testing the rear end enhancements. With over a year until the LCI goes on sale there is plenty of time for additional test mules.

The biggest changes to the F30 3 series will take place under the hood. The very long in the tooth 6 cylinder N55 in the 335 will get replaced with a B58 from BMW's new engine family and the 320i will get the B48 4 cylinder turbo from the new MINI. Rumors have it that the 328i will continue with the N20 for another year, perhaps while BMW sorts out the higher power output needed from the B48 for the 328i. The 328d will continue with the N47 until the diesel variants of the new B engine line are ready to go. In all it will be an exciting upgrade to the F30 3 series, we just have to wait a year for it.

Does the LCI information effect anyone's purchasing in the next 4-8 months?
I don't think it will affect my decision to order a 2015 in a few months. But I'm curious.....is the last year of the N55 presumably the most reliable and most people will want it, or are people anxious for a new engine and the majority will wait for 2016?
Joseph@x-ph.com commented:
March 26, 2014, 11:41 pm

Thanks for Sharing
Eagle11 commented:
March 27, 2014, 2:13 am

Nice to see that the 320i wont get a 3 cyl like some people on Bimmerfest was speculating.
falar commented:
March 27, 2014, 11:30 am

I can't wait for the new hp numbers on the B58.
jjcruiser commented:
March 27, 2014, 12:30 pm

To answer the OP's question, the LCI doesn't look very different to me and since I'm getting a F30 328 this year, that suits me just fine since I didn't want to wait another year for slightly different bumper molding.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave 20T View Post
I don't see any difference in the shape of the headlights. Of course, headlight design is expensive so keeping it the same is what I favor. I do wish U.S. BMW's had the German amber taillights. Red seems to be the dumbing down to American cars. The amber blends in well with the red.
I read some articles about this and the whole amber/red turn signal issue was quite a bit more complicated than I would have thought. I agree amber is nicer and there's at least some evidence it's safer.
raqautle commented:
March 27, 2014, 12:55 pm

So BMW is going to change the N55 for the B58, which is the 1.5l 3 cylinder engine in the i8?
Chris90 commented:
March 27, 2014, 12:58 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eagle11 View Post
Nice to see that the 320i wont get a 3 cyl like some people on Bimmerfest was speculating.
Pity, the 3 cylinder sounds amazing, check it out:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zkgXnEQvLk8
falar commented:
March 27, 2014, 12:59 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by raqautle View Post
So BMW is going to change the N55 for the B58, which is the 1.5l 3 cylinder engine in the i8?
??

From what I've read the B58 is related to the new M3/M4 engine and is a modular design that will be the basis for a few engines coming down the pipeline.
Chris90 commented:
March 27, 2014, 1:00 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by raqautle View Post
So BMW is going to change the N55 for the B58, which is the 1.5l 3 cylinder engine in the i8?
Did you read the article? The engine comes in 3 sizes, 1.5L, 2.0L and 3.0L. The US will get the 2.0L in 320i and 3.0L in the 335i. The 328i will stick with the N20 for now.
raqautle commented:
March 27, 2014, 1:00 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris90 View Post
Pity, the 3 cylinder sounds amazing, check it out:



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zkgXnEQvLk8

I'm guessing that's a Diesel engine?
raqautle commented:
March 27, 2014, 1:01 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris90 View Post
Did you read the article? The engine comes in 3 sizes, 1.5L, 2.0L and 3.0L. The US will get the 2.0L in 320i and 3.0L in the 335i. The 328i will stick with the N20 for now.
Oh thanks, I just read the post
tim330i commented:
March 27, 2014, 1:02 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by raqautle View Post
So BMW is going to change the N55 for the B58, which is the 1.5l 3 cylinder engine in the i8?
No. The B58 is based on the same technology and engine family as the i8 but is the 6 cylinder variant.
Quote:
The new family of engines is based upon optimized cylinder modules, each with a capacity of about 500 cc, designed for thermodynamic efficiency, smooth, quiet operation and high-enjoyment - perfect for powering passenger vehicles. With the new three, four and six-cylinder engines, the BMW Group provides a range of engine capacities from 1.5 to 3.0 litres, thus adequately servicing a model portfolio consisting of very large volumes.
Read more about BMW's new 'B' family of engines
Chris90 commented:
March 27, 2014, 1:04 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by raqautle View Post
I'm guessing that's a Diesel engine?
No, it's the 3 cylinder gas engine that people were so worried would end up in the 320i.

It is in the base Mini but in detuned form (135 hp). In the i8 it gets 230 hp, supposedly.
tim330i commented:
March 27, 2014, 1:04 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by raqautle View Post
I'm guessing that's a Diesel engine?
No, it is the 1.5 cylinder gasoline engine in the i8. That being said is that really what the engine sounds like or the sounds that BMW pumps into the cabin?

Tim
Chris90 commented:
March 27, 2014, 1:07 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by tim330i View Post
No, it is the 1.5 cylinder gasoline engine in the i8. That being said is that really what the engine sounds like or the sounds that BMW pumps into the cabin?

Tim
The article claims that's what it sounds like without the Active Sound Design, which will make it quieter. Probably has no sound deadening or something.

It's also 230 hp from what I read, that's a far cry from the Mini's 135 hp 3 cylinder.

I would love that 230 hp 1.5L engine in a small BMW.
tim330i commented:
March 27, 2014, 1:11 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris90 View Post
The article claims that's what it sounds like without the Active Sound Design, which will make it quieter. Probably has no sound deadening or something.

It's also 230 hp from what I read, that's a far cry from the Mini's 135 hp 3 cylinder.

I would love that 230 hp 1.5L engine in a small BMW.
It was a blast in the F20 1 series prototype I drove -

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho....php?p=7476245
Chris90 commented:
March 27, 2014, 1:14 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by tim330i View Post
It was a blast in the F20 1 series prototype I drove -

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho....php?p=7476245
I know, but sounds like you drove a 175 hp version, the Mini gets a 135 hp version. Would rather have it in a BMW, and 175+ hp.

220i Gran Coupe, please, BMW!
tim330i commented:
March 27, 2014, 1:16 pm

The reason it can put out more power in the i8 is that it is coupled to the electric motor that 'torque fills' allowing for a bigger turbo making more power. McLaren use the same idea on the P1.

Tim
Bemo commented:
March 30, 2014, 11:45 am

And the ugly hood line endures...
ynguldyn commented:
May 28, 2014, 7:45 pm

Since the time of the thread creation, there's been a change in the engine planned for 320i LCI. It is now highly likely 320i will keep N20 in the U.S. until end of production.
Dave 20T commented:
May 29, 2014, 12:19 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by ynguldyn View Post
Since the time of the thread creation, there's been a change in the engine planned for 320i LCI. It is now highly likely 320i will keep N20 in the U.S. until end of production.
Great news! I hate it when one's car is too unique.
the_phew commented:
June 19, 2014, 3:12 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by ynguldyn View Post
Since the time of the thread creation, there's been a change in the engine planned for 320i LCI. It is now highly likely 320i will keep N20 in the U.S. until end of production.
Source? I was hoping to get a B48 320i in 2017 when my lease ends, but if it's basically the same car with the same engine as I have now, I don't see much point in signing a new lease. Now, if they offered the diesel and/or the wagon with a manual transmission, that would keep me in the BMW fold...I'm not holding my breath though.
Orient330iNYC commented:
June 19, 2014, 4:29 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by the_phew View Post
Source? I was hoping to get a B48 320i in 2017 when my lease ends, but if it's basically the same car with the same engine as I have now, I don't see much point in signing a new lease. Now, if they offered the diesel and/or the wagon with a manual transmission, that would keep me in the BMW fold...I'm not holding my breath though.
originally it was also rumored to possibly get a 3cyl b38... so it keeping the n20 is not a bad thing...
the_phew commented:
June 19, 2014, 4:33 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orient330iNYC View Post
originally it was rumored to get a 3cyl b38... so it keeping the n20 is not a bad thing...
The 3-cyl B38 in the i8 makes 231 HP and sounds incredible while being much lighter than the N20. I would be all over that. That said, the B48 with more power, more torque, less weight, and better MPG than the N20 sure looked appealing.
ynguldyn commented:
June 20, 2014, 12:04 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by the_phew View Post
Source? I was hoping to get a B48 320i in 2017 when my lease ends, but if it's basically the same car with the same engine as I have now, I don't see much point in signing a new lease. Now, if they offered the diesel and/or the wagon with a manual transmission, that would keep me in the BMW fold...I'm not holding my breath though.
I _am_ basically the horse's mouth on this. You won't be able to find anyone closer to the source who would be willing to talk.

Having said that, just like they flipped from 320i LCI B48 to 320i LCI N20 a few months ago, they might decide B48 does make sense and flip back to it for MY2017. Who knows? I only report the situation as it stands at the moment.

Manual wagons are absolutely out of the question. While they built a few test examples for the initial intro of F31 (not diesel though, only 328i), and then decided not to proceed with them, in the case of LCI there is nothing planned to be built, not even test examples.
ynguldyn commented:
June 20, 2014, 12:05 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orient330iNYC View Post
originally it was also rumored to possibly get a 3cyl b38... so it keeping the n20 is not a bad thing...
It was just a rumor. B38 was never going to be used in anything above ?18i.
Chris90 commented:
June 20, 2014, 6:39 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by ynguldyn View Post
It was just a rumor. B38 was never going to be used in anything above ?18i.
We'll see about that. A number of reviews have said they like the Mini's 3cylinder better than the new 4cylinder. Better sound and more character.
ynguldyn commented:
June 20, 2014, 11:25 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris90 View Post
We'll see about that. A number of reviews have said they like the Mini's 3cylinder better than the new 4cylinder. Better sound and more character.
This is irrelevant. 320i-328i will get various versions of B48. Period. End of story.
njbimmerman commented:
June 20, 2014, 4:51 pm

[QUOTE=
220i Gran Coupe, please, BMW![/QUOTE]

I 2nd that emotion