Smooth and powerful six-cylinder turbo makes the right noises and tops off the excellent new 3-series range very nicely

What is it?

We've heaped praise on the new-generation BMW 320d, and said good things about the 328i despite its lack of two cylinders compared with past wearers of that badge. Now it's the turn of the only new 3-series, so far, to have a petrol-fuelled straight six under the bonnet.

What’s it like?

You feel like you've returned home as soon as you press the start button. Here is a well-specced 3-series which makes the sound you expect: a smooth, creamy hum with a crisp edge when roused a bit. This engine is well known from other BMWs, a 3.0-litre unit whose twin-scroll turbocharger helps it to 302bhp and 295lb ft of torque, matched here to an eight-speed automatic transmission which accounted for £1660 of the already Luxury-spec test car's £12,835 option tally (which also included a stupendous stereo system).

The pace is predictably rapid, with 62mph claimed to arrive 5.5sec after blast-off despite the Efficient Dynamics-enhanced CO2 score of 169g/km. The economy this promises doesn't quite materialise in practice, but the trip-computer average of 30.5mpg over a week's motorway-biased driving is acceptable given the performance on offer. That's after making very little use of the Eco Pro mode, which flattens the performance to the point where you might just as well have bought a 320d.

The auto 'box shifts imperceptibly smoothly once on the move but its step-off can be very abrupt, especially when the driving dynamics control is set to Sport. Manual shifts are similarly silken, as well as instant, but it's easy to lose count of all those gears unless you pay attention to the display.

Should I buy one?

So, does the extra engine weight up front spoil the impeccable dynamics so far relished in the new 3-series? The steering is perhaps a shade less delicate and its artificial weighting now more obvious, but the balance remains delightfully throttle-sensitive and the 335i feels as you'd think a modern BMW should. There's a lot of road noise to go with the suspension's well-damped firmness, but when you consider that BMW has had the good sense to retain a manual handbrake in this latest 3-series range, you can forgive that transgression.

John Simister

BMW 335i Luxury

Price: £38,685 with auto; Top speed: 155mph; 0-62mph: 5.5sec; Economy: 39.2mpg (combined); CO2: 169g/km; Kerb weight: 1520kg; Engine type, cc: 6 cyls, 2979cc, 24V, turbocharged; Power: 302bhp at 5800-6000rpm; Torque: 295lb ft at 1200-5000rpm; Gearbox: 8-spd automatic

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orlandpark66 22 November 2014

There are some things that are never

There are some things that are never out of fashion. This is a high-quality BMW coolant pipe to pass the time. Opportunities in the far future, BMW and still one of the most desirable on the road.
Peter_Mould 21 March 2013

I have had a test drive a

I have had a test drive a year ago of the BMW 335i, and I was not disappointed. Being a BMW car owner, I know how it feels to drive one and the 335i just improved the driving experience. I recall having my first disappointment with BMW was when the car I bought - a BMW 320d, has its engine fitted with a swirl flap. Good think that someone advised me of the disadvantage and the harm it can cause to my engine, before it actually disintegrated into the system. I had it removed, fitting blanking plates instead. The driving experience was the same, and it is actually negligible.

smithscott 4 July 2012

BMW is really most advance car in the world.


BMW is really most advance car in the world, it has modified as per requirement of fuel economy, speed, mileage, also with well specification. I am planning for this model,within next month.


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