BMW 3 Series 330e M Sport 5dr Step Auto

  • Automatic
  • Petrol/PlugIn Elec Hybrid
  • 5 door touring
  • 5.9 secs 0 to 62 mph
  • 292 bhp Engine power

Ten Second Review

The improved version of the seventh generation 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 bit more versatility. In this enhanced form, it's smarter and gets a much more sophisticated cabin. Plus the diesels now feature 48V mild hybrid tech and there's a big step forward in media connectivity. All the things you'd expect from a facelift really.

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 might be a surprise for some people to learn that many mid-sized executive estate cars are only fractionally roomier than their saloon equivalents - and some even have less space out back. Estate buyers in this sector are typically also asked to pay around £2,000 more for the privilege over the cost of the alternative saloon. That's extra money for extra space. How much extra space in this case? With the rear seats in place, just 20-litres over the saloon. You don't, in other words, buy this car for its luggage cramming talents. You buy it because you want the capability in hand and also because it's a little more 'lifestyle' and a little less 'field sales' than the standard 3 Series saloon.

Driving Experience

The well-versed themes of the 3 Series are present and correct in this improved version of the sixth generation Touring model. BMW has refined its engine selection as part of this facelift: the previous entry-level 318i (petrol) and 318d (diesel) units are no longer listed. So the range begins with the 184hp 320i petrol model or the 190hp 320d diesel, the latter gaining 48V mild hybrid tech. Eight-speed Steptronic auto transmission is now standard on all versions. If you can spend more, then the four cylinder 330e Plug-in variant with 292hp offers a tempting combination of speed and frugality. A more classic 3 Series combo though, lies with the petrol six cylinder 330i, with 258hp. Across the line-up, rear wheel drive is still this 3 Series model's calling card of course, though xDrive 4WD is an increasing popular option - on the 320i, the 320d and the 330e. You have to have it on top M340i (374hp petrol) and M340d (340hp 48V diesel) variants. The road-burning M3 saloon still tops the range of course, with its 503hp 3.0-litre twin turbo six cylinder engine and optional xDrive system. Otherwise, much is familiar here; a front engine, rear wheel drive formula with near perfect 50:50 weight distribution has defined the 3 Series to date and this seventh generation model doesn't deviate too far from that script. Still notable are the standard 'lift-related' dampers. These clever shock absorbers incorporate structures that provide extra damping at the extremes of wheel travel, allowing quite a firm sporting set-up to be adopted, but also one able to deliver a fluent ride over tarmac imperfections. Thanks to that, this car's able to combine a set-up for Silverstone with something that works equally well on the North Circular.

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 model. Compared to the old pre-2018 'F30'-series Touring model, this seventh generation 'G20'-series version grew by 76mm to 4,709mm in length, by 16mm to 1,827mm in width and by 11mm to 1,440mm in height. So it's usefully more spacious - and with the facelift updates, the revised model is slightly better looking too. If you know this MK7 model, you'll notice the updated front end, which offers slimmer LED headlights, a resculpted grille and gloss black brake cooling vents. M Sport variants get a distinctive hexagonal lower air intake too. There are reshaped bumpers at the rear and colour-coded trim elements, plus M Sport models feature a chunky diffuser. The major changes though, have taken place inside, where this improved 3 Series Touring gets the new-look curved instrument panel that we first saw on the iX luxury EV. this incorporates a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and a 14.9-inch infotainment screen with the brand's latest eighth generation iDrive interface. This all allows for a big step forward in media functionality, with things like real-time mapping, a parking space locator and wireless smartphone-mirroring. Other cabin updates include slimmer air vents, a redesigned gear shifter, standardised gear shift paddles and new touch-sensitive buttons for the centre console. Otherwise, things are much as before. As a Touring customer, you'll want to know about the boot, accessed via a standard powered tailgate. It's 500-litres inside (20-litres bigger than the boot of a 3 Series saloon model). The capacity falls a bit (to 410-litres) with the 330e PHEV Touring variant, due to the battery placement beneath the floor. Fold the seats flat and there's a maximum capacity of 1,500-litres (1,420-litres with the 330e).

Market and Model

The 3 Series Touring range mainly occupies the £40,000 to £55,000 bracket and comes in two trim levels: 'Sport' and 'M Sport'. All models now include the 'BMW Live Cockpit Plus' screen set-up, which includes cloud-based BMW Maps, over-the-air updates and an improved version of the brand's 'Intelligent Personal Assistant' voice control system. The company's 'Parking assistant' is now standard, steering you automatically into spaces. And yoiu can upgrade it with Park View, Panorama View and 3D View functions. M Sport customers are being offered a choice of exterior upgrades, including a carbonfibre rear diffuser, a large rear spoiler for the saloon and individual wheel designs of up to 20-inches in size. As for safety, well as before, an optional across the range is the brand's 'Driving Assistant Professional' pack, which includes Active Cruise Control with a Stop&Go function. There's also a 'Steering and Lane Control Assistant', which helps the driver maintain their position on motorways where the lane narrows. The 'Active Navigation' function detects when a lane change for a motorway exit is required and prepares to steer the car into that lane. The system also comprises a 'Lane Keeping Assistant' with active side collision protection and an 'Evasion Assistant'.

Cost of Ownership

Although the upfront price might be a bit of a hurdle for some, the 3 Series Touring looks as if it will prove a fairly cost-effective car to own. They're no longer the cast iron financial prospect they used to be - the laws of supply and demand have seen to that - but if residuals have softened a bit, then the improved efficiency of the latest cars make up for it. The addition of mild hybrid 48V tech for the diesels has usefully improved efficiency. the 320d diesel many will want now manages up to 58.9mpg on the combined cycle and up to 127g/km of CO2, readings which are difficult to better in this class. The M340d, which also gets the 48V technology, manages up to 48.7mpg and up to 153g/km. Otherwise, things are much as before. The 320i petrol variant manages up to 44.1mpg and up to 145g/km of CO2. For the 330i petrol model, the combined cycle figure is up to 43.5mpg and the CO2 reading is up to 148g/km. If you want to do better, you can ask about the 330e petrol/electric Plug-in hybrid which can deliver up to 217mpg on the combined cycle and a CO2 return of as little as 30g/km.. What else? Well the Steptronic automatic transmission 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 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

This 3 Series station wagon has long been one of the quiet achievers in BMW's model range. There's a reason for that. Look behind the low-key styling and you find a car that does so much so well. This improved model has become quite expensive, but thanks to the updated hi-tech cabin, at least you now feel you're getting a very complete benchmark-standard product for that not-inconsiderable outlay. You might rarely use the added dynamic dimension it has over its rivals, but it'll always be good to know you have it. True, this car still isn't vastly practical, but the changes BMW made to the cargo area when this 'G20'-series model was first launched have had more of a real word impact than the stats suggest. And pragmatic estate buyers will appreciate the fact that this car is the most efficient choice you can make in the premium part of the mid-sized estate sector. A lot to like them, which is just as well given the premium prices being asked. Still, if you're shopping in this sector, we think you'll find this contender even more difficult to ignore.

  • Automatic Start/stop button
  • Driving experience switch
  • DAB tuner
  • "Electrified by i" exterior badging on charging flap
  • BMW emblem, engine compartment lid and tailgate
  • Body colour roof fin
  • Door sill strips
  • Front and rear bumper system with replaceable deformation elements
  • Front apron plastic in body colour
  • Fuel filler flap - right rear in body colour
  • Illuminated bow type door handles in body colour drivers side with door lock
  • Licence plate panel integrated into front bumper and tailgate
  • Matt black B-pillar finsher
  • Matt black window recess cover
  • Model designation on right side of tailgate
  • One piece front bumper cover including towing eye cover in body colour
  • Rear side wing doors
  • Side frame decorative moulding black matt
  • Visible exhaust tailpipe finisher
  • 12V power socket in front storage compartment
  • 2 front cupholder in centre console with clamping elements and matt black inlay
  • Anthracite headlining
  • Armrest integrated in front and rear door trim + front centre console armrest
  • Battery in luggage compartment
  • BMW ID
  • Folding rear centre armrest with 2 cupholders
  • Height adjustable mechanically and infinitely variable steering column
  • Illuminated glove compartment
  • Lashing eyelets in luggage compartment
  • M Sport multifunction leather steering wheel
  • Toolkit located in luggage compartment
  • Connected pack professional - 3 Series Saloon/Touring
  • Interior and exterior mirror pack - 3 Series Touring/Saloon
  • M Aerodynamics package - 3 Series Saloon/Touring
  • M sport exterior styling pack - 3 Series Saloon/Touring
  • Storage compartment pack - 3 Series Saloon/Touring
  • 3x3 point rear seatbelts
  • BMW emergency call
  • Child locks on rear doors
  • Crash sensor activating of airbags,Unlocking doors,hazard warning lights,fuel cut off,interior lighting+activation of safety battery terminal clamp
  • Driver and front passenger with seat occupancy detection for driver's and passenger side
  • Driver and passenger side airbags, body protection at side and airbags deploy from seat backrests
  • Head airbags in 1st and 2nd row, head protection at side, curtain airbags open from headliner above 1st and 2nd row
  • Plastic fuel tank
  • Side impact protection
  • Tyre pressure monitoring with three level warning strategy
  • Warning triangle and first aid kit
  • Alarm system
  • Centre lock switch
  • Closing system with central locking
  • Electronic vehicle immobiliser
  • Battery Capacity in kWh: 12
  • Battery Charging Scenario 1 - Charge Time (Mins): 360
  • Battery Charging Scenario 1 - Percentage Change: 0-100
  • Battery Charging Scenario 1 - Power Supply - kW: 2.3
  • Battery Charging Scenario 2 - Charge Time (Mins): 258
  • Battery Charging Scenario 2 - Percentage Change: 0-80
  • Battery Charging Scenario 2 - Power Supply - kW: 2.3
  • Battery Charging Scenario 3 - Charge Time (Mins): 216
  • Battery Charging Scenario 3 - Percentage Change: 0-100
  • Battery Charging Scenario 3 - Power Supply - kW: 3.7
  • Battery Charging Scenario 4 - Charge Time (Mins): 156
  • Battery Charging Scenario 4 - Percentage Change: 0-80
  • Battery Charging Scenario 4 - Power Supply - kW: 3.7
  • Battery Leased: False
  • Battery Type: Lithium-ion
  • Charging Port Location: Right Side Rear
  • Coupler/Connector Type: Type 2
  • Maximum Charging Rate - kW: 3.7
  • Usable Battery Capacity: 11.15
  • WLTP - AER (km) - City: 64
  • WLTP - AER (km) - Comb: 52
  • WLTP - AER (miles) - City : 39.8
  • WLTP - AER (miles) - Comb : 32.3
  • WLTP - EC (kWh/100km) - City: 19.4
  • WLTP - EC (kWh/100km) - Comb: 20.7
  • WLTP - EC (kWh/100km) - Extra High: 24.9
  • WLTP - EC (kWh/100km) - High: 18.8
  • WLTP - EC (kWh/100km) - Low: 21.4
  • WLTP - EC (kWh/100km) - Medium: 18.3
  • WLTP - EC (miles/kWh) - City: 3.2
  • WLTP - EC (miles/kWh) - Comb: 3
  • WLTP - EC (miles/kWh) - Extra High: 2.5
  • WLTP - EC (miles/kWh) - High: 3.3
  • WLTP - EC (miles/kWh) - Low: 2.9
  • WLTP - EC (miles/kWh) - Medium: 3.4
  • WLTP - EC AC Ch Dep (kWh/100km) - Comb: 21.4
  • WLTP - EC AC Ch Dep (miles/kWh) - Comb: 2.9
  • WLTP - EC AC Weighted (kWh/100km) - Comb: 16.1
  • WLTP - EC AC Weighted (kWh/100km) - Comb - TEH: 17.2
  • WLTP - EC AC Weighted (kWh/100km) - Comb - TEL: 16.1
  • WLTP - EC AC Weighted (miles/kWh) - Comb: 3.9
  • WLTP - EC AC Weighted (miles/kWh) - Comb - TEH: 3.6
  • WLTP - EC AC Weighted (miles/kWh) - Comb - TEL: 3.9
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - City: 65
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Comb: 61
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Comb - TEH: 57
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Comb - TEL: 61
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Extra High: 51
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - High: 67
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Low: 60
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (km) - Medium: 68
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - City: 40.4
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Comb: 37.9
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Comb - TEH: 35.4
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Comb - TEL: 37.9
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Extra High: 31.7
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - High: 41.6
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Low: 37.3
  • WLTP - Equivalent AER (miles) - Medium: 42.3
  • HC+NOx: N
  • Particles: N
  • Standard Euro Emissions: EURO 6
  • WLTP - CO2 Ch Sus (g/km) - Comb: 161
  • WLTP - CO2 Ch Sus (g/km) - Comb - TEH: 171
  • WLTP - CO2 Ch Sus (g/km) - Comb - TEL: 161
  • WLTP - CO2 Ch Sus (g/km) - Extra High: 161
  • WLTP - CO2 Ch Sus (g/km) - High: 139
  • WLTP - CO2 Ch Sus (g/km) - Low: 228
  • WLTP - CO2 Ch Sus (g/km) - Medium: 150
  • WLTP - CO2 Charge Depleting (g/km) - Comb: 13
  • WLTP - CO2 Weighted (g/km) - Comb: 31
  • WLTP - CO2 Weighted (g/km) - Comb - TEH: 37
  • WLTP - CO2 Weighted (g/km) - Comb - TEL: 31
  • Camshaft: DOHC
  • Catalytic Convertor: True
  • CC: 1998
  • Compression Ratio: 11.0:1
  • Cylinder Layout: IN-LINE
  • Cylinders: 4
  • Cylinders - Bore (mm): 82
  • Cylinders - Stroke (mm): 94.6
  • Engine Code: B48B20M1
  • Engine Layout: NORTH SOUTH
  • Fuel Delivery: TURBO INJECTION
  • Gears: 8 SPEED
  • Number of Valves: 16
  • Transmission: SEMI-AUTO
  • EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies: False
  • WLTP - FC Ch Dep (l/100km) - Comb: 0.3
  • WLTP - FC Ch Dep (mpg) - Comb: 941.6
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Comb: 7.1
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Comb - TEH: 7.6
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Comb - TEL: 7.1
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Extra High: 7.1
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - High: 6.2
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Low: 10.1
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (l/100km) - Medium: 6.7
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Comb: 39.8
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Comb - TEH: 37.2
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Comb - TEL: 39.8
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Extra High: 39.8
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - High: 45.6
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Low: 28
  • WLTP - FC Ch Sus (mpg) - Medium: 42.2
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (l/100km) - Comb: 1.4
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (l/100km) - Comb - TEH: 1.6
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (l/100km) - Comb - TEL: 1.4
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (mpg) - Comb: 201.8
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (mpg) - Comb - TEH: 176.6
  • WLTP - FC Weighted (mpg) - Comb - TEL: 201.8
  • Badge Engine CC: 2.0
  • Badge Power: 292
  • Based On ID: N
  • Coin Description: e
  • Coin Series: M Sport
  • Generation Mark: 7
  • Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07: 34E
  • 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
  • Safety Concerns: False
  • Special Edition: False
  • Special Order: False
  • Timing Belt Interval Frequency - Months: N
  • Timing Belt Interval Mileage: N
  • Vehicle Homologation Class: M1
  • 0 to 62 mph (secs): 5.9
  • Engine Power - BHP: 292
  • Engine Power - KW: 215
  • Engine Power - PS: True
  • Engine Power - RPM: 5000
  • Engine Torque - LBS.FT: 310
  • Engine Torque - MKG: 42.8
  • Engine Torque - NM: 420
  • Engine Torque - RPM: 1350
  • Top Speed: 143
  • Emissions Test Cycle: WLTP
  • RDE Certification Level: RDE 2
  • Alloys: True
  • Space Saver: False
  • Tyre Size Front: 225/45 R18
  • Tyre Size Rear: 255/40 R18
  • Tyre Size Spare: TYRE REPAIR KIT
  • Wheel Style: DOUBLE SPOKE STYLE 848M
  • Wheel Type: 18" ALLOY
  • Height: 1442
  • Height (including roof rails): N
  • Length: 4713
  • Wheelbase: 2851
  • Width: 1827
  • Width (including mirrors): 2068
  • Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres): 40
  • Gross Vehicle Weight: 2350
  • Luggage Capacity (Seats Down): 1420
  • Luggage Capacity (Seats Up): 410
  • Max. Loading Weight: 525
  • Max. Roof Load: 75
  • Max. Towing Weight - Braked: 1500
  • Max. Towing Weight - Unbraked: 750
  • Minimum Kerbweight: 1825
  • No. of Seats: 5
  • Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb: 11.4

What our customers say...

Grant Pearson
5 stars

Everything was fantastic from start to finish. Scott was amazing he explained everything .The service, and delivery of the car was fantastic and as promised. Would thoroughly recommend willow leasing.

Leased a BMW 3 Series
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Excellent service. Delivered when other brokers failed. Will be using again

Leased a BMW 3 Series
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5 stars

Everything from quote to delivery was spot on. The team was always on hand to answer any of my questions and put up with my impatience and change of minds with professionalism and understanding. 100% would recommend and will certainly be using again for my next car!

Leased a BMW 3 Series