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BMW's diesel range


Three new models are being fast-tracked for Australia as BMW meets the demand for extra engine choices.

Two will have diesel power and the third will use the classy twin-turbo six that has been a huge hit in the 3 Series sedan and coupe.

The diesel is a new 2.0-litre turbo and will be installed in the X3 and 5 Series sedan. The 335i lineup will be extended to include a Touring wagon.

The diesels will be on the road before the end of the year and the Touring will reach Australia next year.

“We've always wanted to have more diesels. We're had our toe in the water with diesels. And one in five in our end of the market is a BMW. There is potential there,” BMW Australia's Nadine Giusti says.

“The 335i Touring is not being brought to set the world on fire, but the engine is very popular and a lot of people are asking for it,” Giusti says.

The new X3 and 5 Series turbodiesels will be price leaders, but should still go well with an engine that produces 125kW and 340Nm.

The X3 will be priced from $62,500 with a manual gearbox, undercutting the $65,900 of the current 2.5Si and well below the 3.0-litre turbodiesel at $75,900. BMW says it will run to 100km/h in 9.6sec and return fuel economy of 7.0 litres for 100km.

“It's a good price point. It should go well,” Giusti says.

How many will BMW Australia sell?

“It's a lot, but we're not putting a number on it,” she says.

Sales of the existing diesel ran about half of all X3 deliveries and the new model is predicted to scoop about one third and boost sales beyond the current level of 1200 cars a year.

The new 520d will sell in Australia as an automatic only, with the same equipment of the 523i, for about $115,000. Performance will be 0-100km/h in 8.6sec and fuel economy 6.1 litres/100km.

BMW arranged a brief introduction drive for the three newcomers in Germany, and all look pretty good.

The 335i Touring has the same punchy performance, excellent flexibility, the latest twin-turbo motor and the back end has enough flexibility to make a case for a performance wagon.

The 2.0-litre turbodiesels are not the punchiest of their type, but both the X3 and 5 Series get along fairly well and the price will be attractive.

BMW has not finished with model extensions there may be a 535 performance diesel.

“We're looking at it. We're looking at it in all the body styles and it hasn't been taken off the field. But we don't want to keep bringing out cars just for the sake of it,” Giusti says.