2016 BMW 320i review, test drive

    BMW adds a petrol engine to 3-series sedan; we take it for a spin.

    Published on Aug 05, 2016 02:45:00 PM


    Make : BMW
    Model : 3 Series

    What is it?

    Luxury and driving pleasure have always been the focus of every BMW, and with the sporty 3-series luxury sedan, the brand’s bread-and-butter model, it’s no different. The car recently received a facelift and in the wake of the ongoing anti-diesel sentiment in India, BMW has now brought back the petrol model in the form of the 320i.

    The engine in question displaces 1,998cc and comes with a twin-scroll turbo to boost performance. Power produced is a healthy 184hp and there’s 270Nm of torque. Like all traditional BMWs, power is sent to the rear wheels and there’s an eight-speed automatic gearbox. The car is available in two variants – Prestige and Luxury– which retail at Rs 36.90 lakh and Rs 42.70 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi), respectively.

    The exterior of the car remains unchanged from the diesel 3-series, but what keen drivers may miss is the sportier body kit and bigger 18-inch wheels that the diesel 3-series offers on its range-topping M Sport variant.

    What’s it like on the inside?

    BMW did update the interior of the 3-series recently with the facelift and it now makes use of better quality materials all around. The insides are a bit brighter and more plush looking, and there are more metallic highlights thrown around. However, it still doesn’t feel as plush as the class-benchmark, the C-class. Some of the plastic bits still feel hard and the basic design has started to age a bit as well. What some older customers also won’t like is the low and sporty seating position that is typically BMW. The rear seats though, have plenty of legroom and support for the thighs and the seat-back is better than most cars in its class.

    In terms of equipment, the more expensive Luxury gets a new and larger 8.8-inch iDrive screen, 20GB of internal storage, navigation, a 205W-nine-speaker audio system and full-leather seats. This variant also gets steering-mounted paddle-shifters for the gearbox and Sport+ mode(the Prestige version only gets three driving modes – Comfort, EcoPro and Sport).


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