BMW 3-Series Touring 330d M Sport 5dr Step with Sat Nav, Leather Seats & DAB Radio 3.0 Diesel Automatic Estate (2016) at Preston Motor Park Fiat and Volvo

01772 950 707

£18,500

WAS £20,500, SAVE £2,000

Combining large family practicality with phenomenal driving dynamics and slick BMW M sport styling, this 330d M Sport Touring is a great combination. Black Dakota Leather upholstery provides excellent comfort and long lasting durability; 18in M Sport alloy wheels provide best in class handling and add extra style to the aggressive yet sporty BMW M Sport exterior lines; BMW Navigation system to help you get to where you want to go; DAB digital radio giving a huge choice of in-car entertainment. With a relaxing automatic gearbox keeping you comfortable in traffic and BMW's famous driving dynamics, this 3 Series Touring is an excellent alternative to an Audi A4 Avant S line, Mercedes C Class AMG Sport, or Jaguar XF Sportbrake. Contact us today to request a personalised video and arrange your test drive.

16/11/2015

29172

Automatic

Diesel 53.3 combined MPG

BLACK

New Lower Price



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CO2: 138 g/km

MPG: 53.3

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Combining large family practicality with phenomenal driving dynamics and slick BMW M sport styling, this 330d M Sport Touring is a great combination. Black Dakota Leather upholstery provides excellent comfort and long lasting durability; 18in M Sport alloy wheels provide best in class handling and add extra style to the aggressive yet sporty BMW M Sport exterior lines; BMW Navigation system to help you get to where you want to go; DAB digital radio giving a huge choice of in-car entertainment. With a relaxing automatic gearbox keeping you comfortable in traffic and BMW's famous driving dynamics, this 3 Series Touring is an excellent alternative to an Audi A4 Avant S line, Mercedes C Class AMG Sport, or Jaguar XF Sportbrake. Contact us today to request a personalised video and arrange your test drive.

General

Badge Engine CC: 3.0
Badge Power: 258
Based On ID: N
Coin Description: d
Coin Series: M Sport
Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07: 38E
Man Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years: 6
Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years: 3
NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %: N
NCAP Child Occupant Protection %: N
NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09: N
NCAP Pedestrian Protection %: N
NCAP Safety Assist %: N
Service Interval Frequency - Months: 24
Service Interval Mileage: 15500
Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage: 999999
Standard manufacturers warranty - Years: 3
Timing Belt Interval Frequency - Months: N
Timing Belt Interval Mileage: N
Vehicle Homologation Class: M1

Emissions - ICE

CO: 0.294
CO2 (g/km): 149
HC: N
HC+NOx: 0.106
Noise Level dB(A): 73
NOx: 0.058
Particles: 0.0002
Standard Euro Emissions: EURO 6
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - Max: 187
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - Min: 180
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Extra High - Max: 185
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Extra High - Min: 177
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - High - Max: 165
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - High - Min: 159
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Low - Max: 245
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Low - Min: 238
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Medium - Max: 184
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Medium - Min: 178

Engine and Drive Train

Camshaft: DOHC
Catalytic Convertor: True
CC: 2993
Compression Ratio: 16.5:1
Cylinder Layout: IN-LINE
Cylinders: 6
Cylinders - Bore (mm): 84
Cylinders - Stroke (mm): 90
Engine Code: N57D30O1
Engine Layout: NORTH SOUTH
Fuel Delivery: COMMON RAIL
Gears: 8 SPEED
Number of Valves: 24
Transmission: SEMI-AUTO

Fuel Consumption - ICE

EC Combined (mpg): 49.6
EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies: True
EC Extra Urban (mpg): 55.4
EC Urban (mpg): 42.2
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - Max: 7.1
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - Min: 6.9
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High - Max: 7
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High - Min: 6.8
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High - Max: 6.3
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High - Min: 6.1
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low - Max: 9.3
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low - Min: 9.1
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium - Max: 7
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium - Min: 6.8
WLTP - MPG - Comb - Max: 39.8
WLTP - MPG - Comb - Min: 40.9
WLTP - MPG - Extra High - Max: 40.4
WLTP - MPG - Extra High - Min: 41.5
WLTP - MPG - High - Max: 44.8
WLTP - MPG - High - Min: 46.3
WLTP - MPG - Low - Max: 30.4
WLTP - MPG - Low - Min: 31
WLTP - MPG - Medium - Max: 40.4
WLTP - MPG - Medium - Min: 41.5

Performance

0 to 62 mph (secs): 5.6
Engine Power - BHP: 258
Engine Power - KW: 190
Engine Power - PS: True
Engine Power - RPM: 4000
Engine Torque - LBS.FT: 413
Engine Torque - MKG: 57.1
Engine Torque - NM: 560
Engine Torque - RPM: 1500
Top Speed: 155

Test Cycles

Emissions Test Cycle: NEDC Correlated

Tyres

Alloys?: True
Tyre Size Front: 225/45 R18
Tyre Size Rear: 255/40 R18
Tyre Size Spare: RUN FLAT TYRES
Wheel Style: M STAR SPOKE STYLE 400M
Wheel Type: 18" ALLOY

Vehicle Dimensions

Height: 1429
Length: 4633
Wheelbase: 2810
Width: 1811
Width (including mirrors): 2031

Weight and Capacities

Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres): 57
Gross Vehicle Weight: 2220
Luggage Capacity (Seats Down): 1500
Luggage Capacity (Seats Up): 495
Max. Loading Weight: 560
Max. Roof Load: 75
Max. Towing Weight - Braked: 1800
Max. Towing Weight - Unbraked: 750
Minimum Kerbweight: 1660
No. of Seats: 5
Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb: 11.3

TOUR OPERATOR (new2) 16/11/2012

The improved BMW 3 Series Touring now offers an even stronger package for those who don't pack light. Jonathan Crouch checks it out

Ten Second Review

The improved sixth generation of BMW's 3 Series Touring holds no great surprises to those who understand the narrative of this model. It's not the most accomplished load lugger in its class but it's the best drive and offers the most efficiency. That'll be enough to clinch the deal for most who just hanker after a 3 Series with a hatchback. This revised version gets revised styling front and rear and much stronger levels of efficiency thanks to a rejuvenated range of freshly-developed four and six cylinder engines.

Background

Conventional wisdom dictates that estate cars are designed for people who can't fit all the paraphernalia of modern life inside a conventional saloon or hatchback model. You'd certainly imagine that an estate would require a lot more space than the saloon on which it is based in order to justify its own existence but, particularly in the compact executive sector where BMW's 3 Series Touring competes, it isn't always that straightforward. It will be a surprise for most people to learn that many compact executive estate cars are only fractionally roomier than their saloon equivalents and some even have less space out back. In this case, you get only 15-litres more boot capacity than you would in the saloon, despite a near-£1,500 price premium. But then you don't buy a car of this kind for its luggage-cramming talents. Yes, you want a bit of practicality but if you're a typical customer, you'll be more interested in the fact that the estate bodystyle is a little more 'lifestyle' and a little less 'field sales' than a saloon is perceived to be. BMW has traded on this for years with the 3 Series Touring, as has Audi with ts A4 Avant and Mercedes with its C-Class Estate. With both these two German rivals now usefully improved, BMW needed to up its game. Let's see if it has.

Driving Experience

The well-versed themes of the 3 Series are present and correct in this latest generation Touring. The car in question is rear wheel drive, it features a very meticulously balanced weight distribution, and, as a result, BMW is keen to position this Touring as the best model to drive in its class. What has changed in recent years is a clearer focus on efficiency and this generation Touring campaigns with some hugely impressive engines. If you're of a generation who remembers the badge on the back of a 3 Series denoting its engine size, you might be a bit confused by the latest line-up. The 330i, for example, no longer packs a six-cylinder lump, instead squeezing 252bhp from its turbo four, replacing the old 328i in the process. If you do want a six-cylinder petrol engine, BMW will sell you the 340i, a new variant that delivers 326PS (the same as the old 'E36' M3 Evo super-coupe) and will take a blink over five seconds to get to 62mph. At the other end of the petrol engine range is - and you might want to take a seat for this - a 318i model featuring a 136bhp three-cylinder 1.5-litre engine that's been pinched from the MINI line. Most of the diesel engines are heavily modified or new. At the base of the range is the 116bhp 316d and the 150bhp 318d derivative, but the most attractive models will likely be the 320d and 320d Efficient Dynamics Plus variants. The regular 320d weighs in with a gutsy 190bhp, for a 0-62mph time of 7.6sec in manual form. The aforementioned 320d ED wields a more modest 163bhp but retains the same 400Nm torque, so it's not much slower but it is a whole lot more economical. The 258bhp 330d is automatic only and scuttles to 62mph in 5.6sec, while there's a 313bhp 335d at the top of the tree with a huge 630Nm. BMW will continue to offer the 3 Series with its xDrive four-wheel drive system. It's available as an option on the 320i, 320d and 330d and is standard on the 335d. Munich has also made big advances with the latest eight-speed Steptronic transmission.

Design and Build

It won't surprise you to learn that from the front bumper to the B-pillar, the 3 Series Touring is identical to the saloon version. From the side, this generation 3 Series Touring is defined by a sweeping silhouette, with a gently sloping roofline and glasshouse that extends to the rear of the vehicle. Onto the aesthetic changes made to this improved model. BMW has revised the front and rear bumper assemblies with broader horizontal elements. The headlights have also been tinkered with, LED indicators now acting as eyebrows across the top of the light units. At the rear, the tail lamps are full-LED units with more heavily curved light bars. There is also a revised range of wheels, with rims up to 19 inches in diameter available as an option - and 20-inch wheels can be selected from the BMW accessories range. The cabins have had a similarly light touch applied to them, with a splash of chrome here and a high-gloss surface there. Other updates include cup holders in the centre console with a sliding cover and an additional practical storage area for items such as a smartphone, positioned forward of the cup holders. There's a respectable amount of rear legroom for what remains a manageably-sized car. The boot practicality is unchanged. Offering 495-litres capacity with the seats in place, this latest Touring model offers only a nominal increase in carrying ability over the saloon version, but the entrance aperture is a lot bigger, allowing you to transport bulkier objects that much more easily. The rear loading sill is just 620mm off the ground and the luggage bay gets securing lugs, a pair of coat hooks, a luggage net and strap and a deep storage compartment on the left-hand side of the load area. The luggage cover can be stored under the boot floor when removed, while the rear seats have a 40:20:40 split. A sizeable through-loading hole in the centre adds versatility. Fold the rear seats down and there's up to 1,500 litres of space on offer and a near-level load floor means sliding large items in isn't too tricky. An electrically powered boot, controlled either via the key fob, a switch on the A-pillar or a button on the boot itself is standard and the rear glass can also open independently of the tailgate. In addition, customers can specify optional storage packs, roof transport systems, a trailer hitch and the 'Smart Opener' feature where the boot can be opened with the motion of a strategically placed foot beneath the rear bumper.

Market and Model

The premium to get yourself this Touring estate version of the 3 Series rather than the saloon version is just under £1,500. That means pricing that starts at around £26,500 for the petrol range and just under £29,000 for the diesel line-up. The Touring range shares the same trim structure as the saloon models, SE, Sport, Luxury and M Sport. Equipment levels have been beefed up (as they needed to be) and all versions of this car get a very complete tally. Even in SE trim, this runs to alloy wheels of at least 17-inches in size, a chrome-trimmed exhaust, LED daytime running lights, LED rear lights, tyre pressure monitoring and auto headlamps and wipers. Inside, you'll find two-zone air conditioning, Bluetooth, cruise control, a BMW Business Navigation system, a high quality stereo system with DAB tuner, a multi-function leather-trimmed steering wheel and BMW's 'Emergency Call' system, there to automatically alert the emergency services should you have an accident.

Cost of Ownership

BMW has concentrated on improving the efficiency of the 3 Series Touring and there are benefits right across the board. The three-cylinder petrol engine in the 318i variant records CO2 emissions that can be as little as 133g/km in manual form, or as little as 129g/km with the eight-speed Steptronic transmission fitted, a big improvement over the previous BMW 316i. Fuel consumption is equally impressive, with the 318i Touring returning 49.6mpg in manual form. The 320i Touring isn't far behind with CO2 emissions that can be as low as 141g/km in manual form (or 134g/km as an automatic) and fuel consumption that in mnual form can see the car return as much as 46.3mpg in manual form. Of course, most UK customers will look to the diesel engines and they're not going to be disappointed. For example, the 316d Touring manual model returns up to 64.2mpg in manual form, with CO2 emissions of 116g/km. Go for the pokier 320d Touring manual model and though you get more power than the pre-facelifted 320d variant could offer (up from 184 to 190PS), emissions have been reduced by 6% to just 118g/km, along with a combined cycle fuel showing that can be as good as 62.8mpg on the combined cycle with a manual gearbox: not at all bad for a car that can hit 62mph in 7.6s. There's also a 320d EfficientDynamics Plus version that improves that showing to 68.9mpg and 107g/km in manual form. The Steptronic automatic transmission option marginally improves all these figures and now features a coasting mode so that when the driver lifts off the throttle at higher speeds, for example on a gentle downhill grade on the motorway, the engine is automatically decoupled from the powertrain. It then simply ticks over in neutral, which saves fuel and ensures there is no unwanted engine braking at high speed. An additional fuel-saving feature, which also improves driving comfort, is the new Proactive Driving Assistant, which uses information from the navigation system to "anticipate" upcoming roundabouts, corners and junctions and select exactly the right time to change gear.

Summary

The 3 Series Touring has long been one of the quiet achievers in BMW's model range. It might just be the lowest key car the German giant sells but it's also one of the most impressive. Look behind the low-key styling and you find a car that does so much so well. What's more, estate car buyers usually have a sense of the pragmatic and will appreciate the great strides BMW have made with this improved version in terms of efficiency. It used to be that nothing really got close to a 3 Series in this regard. The gap has narrowed in recent years, but this 3 Series Touring still astonishes in offering sports car straight line speed with supermini fuel and tax bills. Plus of course, this model retains its unique selling point, something that no other prestigious compact estate in this segment can offer - rear wheel drive. If you're an enthusiast, you'll appreciate the benefits at once the first time you throw the car into a corner. Even if you're not, you might notice more responsiveness through the turns than you might usually expect from a car of this type. With contenders in this class so closely matched, it's the sort of thing that might tip the balance BMW's way. Try a Touring and you'll see why.

3 STYLING (used) 26/10/2018

By Jonathan Crouch

Introduction

The 3 Series has always been the heart of the BMW brand, traditionally responsible for a quarter of the company's global sales and the benchmark against which every mid-sized premium executive car measures itself. At its original launch in 2012, the sixth generation version set the bar higher still, but key competitors responded in kind, necessitating the arrival of this cleverer, more efficient facelifted version in 2015, complete with a rejuvenated range of engines, cutting-edge technology and the option of all-wheel drive. It's a strong proposition for the used market buyer.

Models

4dr Saloon / 5dr Touring Estate (318i, 320i, 330i, M3, M3 CS / 318d, 320d, 330d, 335d)

History

For over four decades, one car has dominated the segment it first invented. BMW's 3 Series established the market for sporting premium mid-sized executive cars way back in 1975 and it's been a benchmark in this sector ever since. Never though, has the competition been stronger, opposition that back in 2015, this much improved sixth generation version had to be good enough to face down. What was needed at this time was more than just a wash 'n brush-up - and we duly got just that. For a start, nearly all the powerplants on offer in this revised model were completely new, some of them real headline-makers. Like the three cylinder MINI-derived engine. The Plug-in Hybrid variant capable of nearly 135mpg. And a diesel engine able to return nearly 75mpg and sub-100g/km CO2 emissions. There was stunning performance on offer too: a six cylinder 335d diesel with almost as much torque as a Lamborghini V12. And a petrol 340i variant boasting the kind of power previously limited to BMW's M3 street-racer. The changes to this updated MK6 model weren't only about performance and efficiency though. There were sharper looks and clever LED headlights, plus this car was the first in its segment to support the much faster data transmission speeds of 4G LTE as part of the class-leading smartphone connectivity that BMW knew its business buyers would want. On top of that, almost countless little tweaks were made in polishing the class-leading handling dynamics, with the classic rear wheel drive configuration joined on selected models by an xDrive 4WD option for those wanting it. On paper then, what was offered here seemed to be a very complete package - and sure enough, it sold well until the car was finally replaced in early 2019.

What You Get

The style and aesthetic proportions of a BMW 3 Series are now familiar to almost every business buyer, with classic cues like the kidney grille at the front, the sharp lines of the flanks and the powerful rear end all present and correct. So too the distinctively sculpted long bonnet and set-back passenger compartment, which combine with short front and rear overhangs and a long wheelbase to create the kind of dynamic proportions you'd expect from a BMW. In their own way, all these things are as much a hallmark of this Munich model as its famed perfect 50:50 weight distribution. Aesthetic changes were made to this improved sixth generation model though. Mind you, some of the detail tweaks - the broader side air intakes that smarten this more sculptural front bumper for example - will be difficult to spot unless you happened to own the original version of this car. Perhaps more noticeable are the LED 'eyebrows' that sit above headlights now positioned a little further apart. Take a seat up-front and if you happen to be familiar with the original version of this sixth generation 3 Series model, you might think that relatively little has changed with this post-2015-era revised version. Look at little closer though and it's clear that BMW has poured over the details here, the result being a significant lift in perceived quality - and a classier feel. The dashboard looks smarter and less plasticky and it's harder to find the kind of low-rent, shiny plastics that should have no place on a car of this price. Key areas like the control panel in the centre console are finished in high-gloss black, while chrome accents feature around the air vents, as well as on the re-designed switches provided for window and seat adjustment. You still get a proper old-school handbrake and, as usual, the low-slung driving position perfectly places you in front of a grippy three-spoke leather-trimmed multi-function steering wheel. Through it can be viewed a familiar set of clear analogue dials. Everything else you might need to know has been packed into the many and varied menus of the iDrive infotainment system you view via a 6.5-inch freestanding control screen that sits on top of the dash and is operable via a circular rotary controller below the gearstick. As with direct rivals like Audi's A4 and the Mercedes C-Class, the rear of the cabin will feel rather squashed if it's asked to take three passengers, partly because the rear wheel drive layout means you have to have a hefty central transmission tunnel. As for the boot, well it's 480-litres in size - the same as you'd get in a Mercedes C-Class or an Audi A4 but around 25-litres more than is offered by a rival Jaguar XE. A folding rear backrest was optional for original buyers. Of course, if you're regularly going to be carrying bulkier cargo, you'll be wanting to find an example of the Touring estate model, which offers 495-litres with all the seats in place and 1,500-litres with the rear bench folded.

What You Pay

We'll base the values below around the saloon body style: allow £1,800 more for the Touring estate body style. Most 3 Series buyers want the 2.0-litre diesel engine. Prices for this facelifted post-2015-era MK6 model start at around £12,500 for a '15-era 318d featuring base 'SE' trim, with values rising to around £19,200 for a later '18-era car. For a 320d, prices start at around £14,800 for a '15-era car with vase 'SE' trim, with values rising to around £19,200 for a later '18-era car. If you'd prefer to look at petrol power, prices start at around £12,800 for a '15-era base 'SE'-spec model, with values rising to around £16,000 for a later '17-era car. Upgrade to a 320i and for a '15-era 'Sport' model, you're looking at around £15,000, with values rising to around £18,600 for a later '18-era car. Not much more gets you xDrive 4WD too. Whatever your choice of mainstream 3 Series engine, you might want a plusher trim level. If you want to progress from base 'SE' trim to mid-level 'Sport', think in terms of around £1,000 more. From that point, where offered, you've the choice of finding around £1,200 more for plush 'Luxury' spec or around £2,200 more for dynamic 'M Sport'-spec. There are other options if you've more to spend. What about the 330e iPerformance petrol/electric hybrid? One of those costs from around £18,300 on a '15-plate, with values rising to around £25,200 for a later '18-era car. If you're after a really powerful petrol model, the rare 340i version is priced from around £28,700 on a '17-plate, with values rising to around £31,700 for one of the last of the '18-era models. Finally, the top street-racing M3 is priced from around £32,200 on a '15-era plate, with values rising to around £48,000 for a late '18-era car.

What to Look For

Our owner survey did reveal many satisfied users of this car but inevitably, there were a few issues reported. Obviously, a fully-stamped service history is vital. This car uses complex engines and only regular and appropriate maintenance will see them go the distance. The biggest potential for financial grief down the track is the variable valve-timing mechanism (VANOS, in BMW-speak) which is vital to the engine's efficiency and performance but can suffer if that maintenance has not been observed. The tiny oilways that help make up the VANOS system can become clogged with dirty oil and this won't be cheap to put right. In fact, early-build 3-Series with the six-cylinder engine were actually recalled over VANOS issues. It seems the oil-feed line to the VANOS unit on these engines could become loose, leading to a loss of oil pressure and sending the car into 'limp-home' mode. And you won't see a tell-tale oil leak from the loose fitting, because it was an internal leak that caused the dramas. According to BMW, a lack of lubrication in the booster's vacuum pump could lead to a loss of braking assistance. The brakes would still work, but would require a much bigger push on behalf of the driver. Otherwise, it's just the usual things. Insist on a fully stamped-up service record and check the alloys for scratches and scuffs.

Replacement Parts

[based on a 2015 model 320d diesel auto] Parts prices for a 3 Series from this period can be reasonable if you shop around. We trawled around the internet and found these: An air filter costs around £11-£27. An oil filter is in the £16-£33 bracket. A fuel filter is in the £16-£35 bracket. Front brake discs cost in the £70-£103 bracket, though pricier brands can cost in the £125-£135 bracket. Rear brake discs cost in the £65-£70 bracket, though pricier brands can cost in the £100 bracket. Front brake pads sit in the £36-£60, though pricier brands can cost in the £90-£120 bracket for a set. A set of rear pads is around £31-£80. A headlamp is about £265. A tail lamp is about £88. A front fog lamp is about £88. A radiator can be had for around £200-£227.

On the Road

The basic formula here hasn't changed much. Front engine, rear wheel drive, and near perfect 50:50 weight distribution have defined the 3 Series to date and this one doesn't deviate too far from that script, although BMW has of late been doing rather well in this country with its growing line-up of xDrive all-wheel drive versions. But it's in standard rear- driven guise that this car really seems to shine in comparison to its mid-sized executive segment rivals. Tweaks made to the suspension and steering for the 2015 MK6 model facelift made this car even more rewarding to drive and the manual and automatic gearboxes (also revised at this time) improve your feeling of connectedness still further. As usual in models from this era, BMW included a 'Drive Performance Control' system across the range allowing you to change steering and throttle settings (plus on automatic models gearshift timings), to suit the way you want to drive. Get a car whose original owner specified the 'Adaptive M Sport suspension' and the DPC set-up will alter the damping too. Under the bonnet, much changed as part of this MK6 model's 2015-era facelift, especially in the petrol line-up that for this improved design starts with a 136bhp three cylinder 1.5-litre MINI-derived engine in the base 318i variant. Next up is an in-line four cylinder 2.0-litre powerplant, developing 184bhp in the 320i and 252bhp in the 330i. Also improved as part of this facelift package was the six cylinder 3.0-litre unit in the potent 340i, which offers 326bhp. Most original buyers though, focused on the 2.0-litre four cylinder diesel models. Their TwinPower Turbo unit comes in 116, 150, 163 or 190bhp states of tune; the 163bhp 320d ED Plus model we'd recommend is capable of up to 74.3mpg on the combined cycle and as little as 99g/km of CO2. This variant sits below a 3.0-ltre six cylinder powerplant offering either 258bhp or 313bhp in the top 330d or 335d variants.

Overall

BMW has rarely had to work as hard on a mid-term facelift as was the case with this post-2015-era 3 Series model. The exterior tweaks might be subtle, but they hide the significant engineering changes that were necessary to allow this car to keep pace with rejuvenated premium rivals that by 2015 it was having to compete against. So this revised model delivered more where more was needed - in areas like power, equipment and technology. And less where less was required - in terms of fuel consumption and emissions. Beyond that, wisely, the winning formula was left largely as it was - which means that if you didn't previously fancy a 3 Series, you still might not be converted by this one. If, on the other hand, you already had it high on your shopping list and come in search of a used mid-sized premium saloon or estate from the 2015-2018 period, its much improved product and efficiency proposition will be more appealing to you than ever. If that's the case, then the class-leading rear-wheel drive handling dynamics will be merely the icing on the cake. Are there still faults here? You'd have to say that there aren't too many, provided you can afford the premium pricing and you're not looking for copious levels of boot space or rear seat accommodation: both, to be fair, are par for the course in this segment. Beyond that, the only real issues here lie in whether the original owner managed to get the spec of his or her car right. If you find a 3 Series on which too many boxes were ticked, it might be a touch pricey. If on the other hand, you find a more reasonably priced one on which the wrong ones were ticked - for things like the vague 'Variable Sport' steering or the super-stiff non-Adaptive M Sport suspension - then to some extent, those all-important driving dynamics will have been damaged. The latter issue is one you really want to avoid, given that exemplary handling is still the most compelling argument for this car. In a world where driving can so often be such a mechanical, joyless activity, this BMW remains involving in a way its competitors are struggling to match. In that respect at least, this version remains a benchmark for its period.

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