BMW’s 3 Series remains the car maker’s golden egg as its seventh-generation version hits the road

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NOTHING divides this great country more than the B-word.

No, not Brexit, silly. BMW.

The latest offering from our German cousins needs no introduction. It’s the 3 Series. BMW’s core model. The golden egg. The car BMW engineers fuss over most. The driver’s saloon
The latest offering from our German cousins needs no introduction. It’s the 3 Series. BMW’s core model. The golden egg. The car BMW engineers fuss over most. The driver’s saloon

Half of us think Beemer owners are the rudest drivers on the road, closely followed by Transit and Black Cab drivers.

But the rest of us? Well, we’d be proud to have a Beemer on the drive.

The latest offering from our German cousins needs no introduction. It’s the 3 Series. BMW’s core model. The golden egg. The car BMW engineers fuss over most. The driver’s saloon.

This seventh-gen model is a little lighter (-50kg), longer (+7cm) and wider (a bit) but it’s still very much a 3 Series.

This seventh-gen model is a little lighter (-50kg), longer (+7cm) and wider (a bit) but it’s still very much a 3 Series
This seventh-gen model is a little lighter (-50kg), longer (+7cm) and wider (a bit) but it’s still very much a 3 Series

Powertrain excellence is a given here. As is razor-sharp handling. As is, shall we say, a taut ride.

But I have to tell you this 330i is a bit of a peach. Remarkably quiet and smooth when mooching about but races sweetly to the red line when you mash the loud pedal. It can box off the 0-62mph sprint in 5.8 seconds.

Stump up another £2,200 for the M Sport Plus package and you get 19in alloys, beefier brakes, adaptive dampers and a rear e-diff.

Want more speed? The straight-six 340i coming in September will be faster, 4WD and lovely to listen to.

Want even more speed? Be patient. There’s an M3 on the horizon too. Want something more eco? The 330e plug-in hybrid will do 37 miles on pure electric and emits just 39g/km.

And it has a boost button which makes it as fast as the 330i. Nice.

That’s coming in September too.

The cabins are modern and clean and beautiful . . . but just a little boring
The cabins are modern and clean and beautiful . . . but just a little boring


But of course we buy the 320d (2-litre twin turbo diesel) in big numbers in Blighty and that’s more keenly priced at £33,000.

The cabins are modern and clean and beautiful . . . but just a little boring. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with the craftmanship or the tech, it’s just not as plush as an Audi or Mercedes. Other positives. You’ll notice the extra space in the back. The quietness – the lack of wind noise, tyre and engine roar – adds to the quality.

Which also means you won’t hear half of Britain shouting expletives at you.

They’re only jealous anyway.

KEY FACTS: BMW 330i M SPORT

Price: £38,170

Engine: 2-litre 4cyl turbo petrol

Power: 258hp, 400Nm

0-62mph: 5.8 secs

Top speed: 155mph

Economy: 48mpg

CO2: 139g/km

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