The fifth generation of the 3 Series made an impressive showing by beating 26 rivals in the competition for the most significant worldwide automobile award.
The "World Car of the Year Award" is given out by a jury consisting of 46 industry journalists who evaluate the year's most important model innovations on the basis of 20 criteria, including design, vehicle performance, handling, comfort and functionality.
This year?s awards were presented at the New York International Auto Show.
For the 2006 "World Car of the Year Award", no other manufacturer managed to make such a lasting impression on the professional jury as BMW.
In addition to its victory in the overall ranking, the BMW 3 Series also was singled out as one of the three strongest competitors in the specialty category, "World Car Design of the Year".
Both these awards and its strong commercial success demonstrate that the BMW 3 Series is still setting the bar for design and driving pleasure, even in its fifth generation.
Moreover, the BMW M5 placed among the top three vehicles in the 2006 "World Performance Car" category.
The jury was impressed by the unique character of this high-performance sedan.
Its high-performance V10-cylinder engine, with a capacity of 373 kW, provides a level of performance that previously was available only in true super sports cars.