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BMW 3 series G21 touring guide

The BMW 3 Series Touring has a certain lack of class.

It is popular with everyone from rural aristocracy to suburban parents, and it checks practically all of the boxes for almost all possible clients.

It’s done this for a long time, too: BMW’s 3 Series is currently in its seventh iteration, yet we still rate it as highly as when the first debuted in 1975.The 3 Series Touring is one of the most enjoyable estates to drive. With precise, direct steering and strong levels of grip, it outperforms competitors such as the Audi A4 Avant, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, and Volvo V60. Buyers may also choose for BMW’s outstanding xDrive four-wheel drive system, while the transmission is either a snappy six-speed manual or the efficient eight-speed automatic from ZF.

With scarcely noticeable road and wind noise, its refinement is also the finest in class – as one would anticipate considering that the estate is identical to the 3 Series saloon but for the cargo compartment. The ride isn’t the most pleasant in the category, but that’s to be expected.The petrol variants begin with the 318i, which has a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder 154bhp engine and a peak speed of 137mph. This is less powerful than the 320i (184bhp, 7.5sec, 143mph) and 330i (184bhp, 7.5sec, 143mph) (255bhp, 5.8sec, 155mph). If you require practicality but also additional power, the 369bhp M340i has an extra pair of cylinders (369bhp, 4.5sec, 155mph).

Those who travel by car may be lured to diesels. The 318d, with 148bhp, is the first model in the lineup. Our testers gave the 320d saloon five stars and the estate half a score less, pleased by its 0-62mph time of 7.4 seconds and fuel economy of roughly 50mpg. They also praised the more powerful, six-cylinder 261bhp 330d, calling its performance-to-economy ratio “world class.” However, if you favor the former criteria, the 335bhp M340d could be for you.

There’s also the 330e plug-in hybrid for individuals who mostly drive around town. This combines a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine with an electric motor and a battery for a total of 252bhp and 0-62mph acceleration in 6.0 seconds, with a range of 32 to 37 zero-emission miles.

At introduction, BMW offered three model levels, beginning with SE Pro, which included 17-inch wheels, a 10.25-inch touchscreen display, satellite navigation, cruise control, and a rear-view camera.

Second-rung Sport included 18-inch alloy wheels, leather interior, and heated sports seats, as well as body modifications (note the black grille and air intakes).

M Sport included more aggressive external appearance, M Sport suspension and brakes, and improved infotainment (not that the dial-controlled iDrive system needed much improvement, already being among the best on the market).

Keep an eye out for vehicles that have appealing extras. The Premium Pack provided motorized front seats and lumbar support, while the Technology Pack included wireless phone charging, a head-up display, and a fantastic Harman Kardon sound system. Meanwhile, the Visibility Pack includes Laserlights, which deliver double the high-beam range of normal LED headlights.

What you should know

The estate’s practicality over the saloon is a strong selling feature. The 500-litre boot outperforms the C-Class Estate (460 litres) and A4 Avant (450 litres) (420 litres). Despite the fact that the wheel arches protrude into the back region. With 529 litres, the V60 outperforms all three.

Residual values are high. Prices for used cars start at little around £30,000. The petrol and diesel M340 give the greatest savings and start at £41,000.

According to What CarMotability ?’s evaluation, the 3 Series provides decent access because to its wide-opening doors, which open to 71 degrees, which is the same as the Passat’s and higher than the A4’s 65 degrees. It does, however, sit low, with the driver’s seat 510mm from the ground. If you need a wheelchair, the boot is 625mm above the ground and easily accessible.

Beware the buyer.Engine replacement: The most serious recall for the 3 Series has been for a crankcase bearing bushing that may not have been properly pushed into the engine. This applies to vehicles manufactured between March 11 and July 9, 2019. It’s so important, in fact, that it necessitates the installation of a new engine.

Replacement battery: Plug-in hybrids manufactured between March 3, 2020, and September 22, 2020, may be damaged by debris in some of the battery packs created by the welding process during manufacturing. This may cause a short circuit and need the replacement of the battery pack.

Our top option is the 320d, a mid-range diesel that offers the finest combination of useful everyday performance and cheap efficiency. It was a popular choice among first-time owners, so there are lots of options on the secondhand market.

The ace of spades

M340i: This M-badged variant is the most powerful 3 Series Touring available and the greatest for sheer driving pleasure. It also sounds nearly as nice to drive as it does to listen to.

Our highest specification

Sport: This second-tier trim level includes desired features like as heated sports seats and provides the vehicle a more purposeful appearance while avoiding the stiffer M Sport suspension.

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