Over 44 years BMW has produced more than 15 million examples of the 3 Series. That's roughly one every minute and a half... for over four decades.

And the latest, seventh-generation version of what the famous German maker defines as the "heart and soul" of its brand has landed in Australia.

The new '3' is longer and wider. It's also claimed to be slicker aerodynamically, up to 55 kilos lighter, more fuel efficient, and faster.

And it'll need every advantage it can muster to take a chunk out of its arch rival, the all-conquering Mercedes-Benz C-Class.