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BMW 3 Series [2016-2019]

17 reviews | Write a review
Last recorded price : 39.8 - 47.3 Lakhs
BMW has discontinued the 3 Series [2016-2019] and the car is out of production.
BMW New 3 SeriesCheck Out New 3 Series 2019

Expected Launch : 21st AUG 2019

BMW 3 Series [2016-2019] Review

BMW added the acclaimed petrol version of its 3 Series, the 330i, to their Indian portfolio in May this year. It goes without saying that it caters to the petrol-head crowd who like the smoothness and refinement that’s associated with a gasoline motor. Let’s dive into the looks now.

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What is it?

Why would I buy it?

Strong refined motor, comfortable ride with good long distance capability

Why would I avoid it?

Petrol efficiency can be a deterrent, vertical movement at higher speeds with some roll too


BMW added the acclaimed petrol version of its 3 Series, the 330i, to their Indian portfolio in May this year. It goes without saying that it caters to the petrol-head crowd who like the smoothness and refinement that’s associated with a gasoline motor. Let’s dive into the looks now. 

On the whole, there aren’t any surprises in this department since the 3 has been around for some time now. Since this is the M Sport version, there are some mild differences such as the restyled front bumper with redesigned air dams, and the reshaped rear bumpers. 

That aside, the stance is still sporty thanks to the arrow silhouette with the long bonnet and a low-set posture. Then, there are the sharp creases, those 18-inchers with low profile 225-section tyres upfront, and 255-section ones at the rear. On the whole, we’d describe the 330i as nothing short of looking ‘purposeful’ – read shred the tarmac!

How is it on the inside?

Its standard BMW 3 Series fare here too. Sadly, the dashboard layout has begun to show its age and looks outdated to say the least. Segment competitors like the A4 have taken the game forward with modern dashboards. Nevertheless, quality levels are in-sync with what we’ve come to expect from the German brand. Our car came with attractive brown leather seats that elegantly lit up the ambience within the cabin. However, it somehow didn’t get along the silver textured trim and overall black interiors.

Let’s get to the seats now. The front ones are sporty since they have lots of contours, are firm and have electrically adjustable lateral support for that snug fit. It doesn’t end here. And there’s manually adjustable thigh support, adequate headroom and lots of knee-room too. At the rear, a tall transmission tunnel limits this to a strict four-seater. 

That said, the rear bench is flatter (compared to the front), and this combined with the ample legroom and a relaxing backrest angle makes for a comfortable place to be. Then again, it is slightly short on thigh support, and headroom could be a hassle for tall passengers. This brings us to the boot which despite being large, suffers from the spare wheel eating into the useable space. So, it can swallow one medium-sized suitcase and some soft bags at the most. 

Our BMW 330i came with the M Sport Package. It uniquely adds an aggressive black-gloss finish on the kidney grille, BMW etched on the door sills, the M Sport steering wheel, and the catchy ‘M’ logo on the car key and front fenders. When it comes to safety features, the 330i gets eight airbags, ABS, dynamic stability control with dynamic traction control, side impact protection, tyre pressure indicator and run-flat tyres.

How does it drive?

Now this is the exciting bit. Under that long hood is the 2.0-litre turbocharged motor that dishes out 252bhp and 350Nm of torque. All that power is passed on to the rear wheels through an eight-speed auto transmission with paddle shifters. Just like all BMW petrol motors, this one is smooth and packs enough performance to keep the driver’s adrenaline pumping. And what’s impressive is that any enthusiastic pedal input is instantly rewarded with some enticing exhaust growling too.

This motor lays down its power on the road extremely well with hardly any turbo lag, and at no point would you feel the need for more performance. What also aides matters is the potent/ quick-shifting eight-speed automatic gearbox. With ample gears closely stacked, the ‘box always finds the right gear at the right time. Not to forget that the gears downshift sportily to the red-line too.

There are four driving modes that alter the engine/gearbox and steering responses - Eco Pro, Comfort, Sport and Sport+. Eco Pro mode gets the motor to offer the least response when compared to all modes. It coasts as soon as you get off the throttle and is mainly done to maximize efficiency. Comfort mode doesn’t offer the coasting feature, but is partially more responsive than Eco Pro. Here, as soon as the driver backs off the accelerator pedal, the transmission upshifts multiple times almost immediately. 

No points for guessing that Sport+ mode is the way to go for the best possible performance. Electronic stability control (ESC) gets it switched off by-default, and the transmission holds a lower gear at all times to give you instant thrust as soon as the accelerator pedal is tapped. Although Sport mode offers the same qualities as ‘Sport+’, what essentially sets them apart is that Sport mode does not hold the gear at the rev-limit as it upshifts automatically at 6700rpm. In Sport+ (manual), the gears are held at the 6900rpm redline.

This brings us to the ride and handling. Armed with the strong motor and a supple ride, the 330i makes for a great long distance sedan. It rolls on a suspension that absorbs bumps well regardless of the speed, and it is only over the sharp bumps that the suspension can be heard with a thud inside the cabin. Plus, there is some vertical movement that tosses the passengers about, especially while going over undulations/bumps at higher speeds. Throw the 330i spiritedly around bends and it certainly exhibits more roll - more than what we would have liked. There is immense grip though, thanks to the M Sport version getting wider tyres at the rear. 

Also, the 330i’s steering is accurate and weighs up nicely as speeds increase. While the Comfort and Eco Pro modes help make the steering lighter, it is heavier/sportier in Sport and Sport+ modes. When it’s on the move, there’s ample feedback coming in from the wheels which allows the driver to push the 330i, especially around corners. On the braking front, we would have appreciated more feedback from the brake pedals as they felt wooden. Nevertheless, they stop the car as intended.

Should I buy one?

Let’s talk about what goes against the 330i. The overall design has begun to look outdated, and it will need frequent visits to the petrol pump. Then, there are things like the bouncy ride over sharp bumps at higher speeds and the lack of rear headroom for tall occupants. On a positive note though, one will thoroughly appreciate the entertaining power output from this motor, the comfortable ride, and the good grip from the tyres. It also entices with its sorted ergonomics, some flashy M Sport equipment, and the snug front seats and comfortable flatter rear ones. If you’ve been looking to park a competent petrol ‘3’ in your garage, then we think the search has surely ended.

Where does it fit in?

The BMW 330i M Sport Edition comes with a price tag of Rs 53.57 lakhs, and locks horns with the Audi A4 30TFSI that’s priced at Rs 50.32 lakhs, and the Mercedes-Benz C200 which is available for Rs 49.04 lakhs (all prices on-road Mumbai).


Pictures: Kapil Angane

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BMW 3 Series [2016-2019] Colours

3 Series [2016-2019] is available/sold in the following colours in India.

* Colours shown are indicative and may vary slightly from actual car colours.

BMW 3 Series [2016-2019] Expert Reviews

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BMW 3 Series [2016-2019] User Reviews

Never give up

for BMW 3 Series [2016-2019] on 30-Jul-2019 by Ariiq

Never give up BMW IS very beautiful car one day I will buy this my dream so we do hard work fulfil our dreams do work with patience And dedication do it and being human with work l

My best friend

for BMW 3 Series [2016-2019] on 23-Jun-2019 by M gouda

1. My dream is one,when i get the car key at the show room i felt i m achieve something. 2. Suspension is high,smooth driving with entertainment 3. I took white colour it look like a...

The beauty?

for BMW 3 Series [2016-2019] on 12-Jun-2019 by Ruturaj Patil

I have driven it so many times but I always enjoy myself while driving it and it always attract me and everyone whomever is sitting or looking it so my experience is that this car...

The best

for BMW 3 Series [2016-2019] on 10-Jun-2019 by Ashith

The best car with all the spectacular features. Its a Great feeling to go on a drive on this. And more than that its a RWD drive train which feels so good to drive. Also its well...

Nice car

for BMW 3 Series [2016-2019] on 08-Jun-2019 by Ashraf malik

This is the best car I love this car This car is luxurious This car is racing This car is heavier engine than other car Good well Awesome nice car it is Thanks for which company made...

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