2015 BMW 3-Series facelift LCIBMW has revealed a subtle but focused facelift for the 3 Series saloon and Touring, in an early response to the surprise challenge of Jaguar’s all-new XE.

Prices for the new 2015 3 Series start from £24,195 for the 318i SE, and £27,435 for the 316d SE. Ordering opens this month for deliveries from September.

The new 2015 3 Series range has restyled front and rear lights, all-new engines and more on-board technology: BMW also confirmed a Plug-in Hybrid 330e will go on sale in 2016 – blending 252hp, 134.5mpg and 49g/km CO2.

More significant is the new, improved BMW 320d EfficientDynamics Plus: this matches the green new Jaguar XE diesel by averaging 72.4mpg and emitting 99g/km CO2.

It is the first-ever 3 Series to emit less than 100g/km CO2.

Speaking at the launch of the new car, BMW’s head of 3 Series project Dr. Stephan Neuyebauer said the target was to remain the benchmark in the sector, by tweaking dynamics, design, performance and efficiency.

“The 3 Series is now sportier than ever,” he said.”It epitomises the heart of BMW more than any other car we sell.”

2015 BMW 3 Series: visual changes

2015 BMW 3-Series facelift LCI

BMW has revised the headlights of the 2015 3 Series, offering optional full LED headlights for the first time (they replace the old Xenon lights). On all cars, the ‘eyes’ are further apart – and cars without LED lights have two LED daytime driving lights ‘linking’ the lights together.

A new front bumper has more sculptural air intakes and there’s a new bumper at the rear too – plus full LED lights for all, with more distinctive night-time lighting pattern.

2015 BMW 3-Series facelift LCI

All cars also get new exhausts, with BMW designating engine power by exhaust pipe shape:

  • 340i: individual 80mm pipes on both sides
  • 320i, 320d and up: dual 70mm tailpipes
  • Entry-level cars: single 75mm tailpipe

There’s a new range of alloy wheels and a choice of 16 exterior colours: new ones include Mediterranean Blue, Platinum Silver and Jatoba. Love the Estoril Blue metallic? Best buy an M Sport: this colour remains reserved for those models only.

2015 BMW 3 Series: interior

2015 BMW 3-Series facelift LCI

Inside, BMW’s upped the quality of the solid but slightly dour interior of the current 3 Series with more chrome highlights and gloss surfaces.

There’s chrome on the electric windows switches, for example, and the air vent controllers – and in Luxury, Sport and M Sport models, the swish trim on the dash now stretches back into all four doors.

Cupholders in the centre console have been redesigned and there’s a new stowage area in front of them – ideal for smartphones, says BMW. Unlike before, this now has a sliding lid.

2015 BMW 3 Series: Life Cycle Impulse

The 2015 3 Series facelift – or, in BMW-speak, ‘Life Cycle Impulse’, or LCI – arrives in showrooms from September, with sales beginning in July: prices will be revealed at a later date, says the firm.

It will be based around an almost entirely new engine range, from the new BMW modular engine family. Significantly, this means there’s a new three-cylinder 1.5-litre 318i, a hot new 340i and the aforementioned super-green 320d ED.

The line-up is as follows:

318i: 136hp

320i: 184hp

330i: 252hp

340i: 326hp

316d: 116hp

318d: 150hp

320d: 190hp

320d ED: 163hp

330d: 258hp

335d: 313hp