The car that defined the compact sports sedan has thoroughly grown up. It now even offers decent accommodation in
In its latest iteration, the 3 comes with the usual blend of performance (Twin- Power Turbo engines throughout), sporty
suspension tuning and tech (full-colour Head-Up Display, Driving Experience Control with Eco Pro mode). There’s an option of an 8-speed auto gearbox, too.
Now into its 6th generation, the 3 Series is bigger all round. That size is most felt in the rear – most notably the effect of the 93 mm increase in overall length and 50 mm in wheelbase. Yet, bucking the trend in today’s safetyconscious (and therefore bulkier and heavier) designs, the new car is a massive 40 kg lighter than the outdoing version.
Available engines are diesel and petrol 6-cylinders and new turbo Fours in the 328 and 320. Under BMW’s EfficientDynamics “green” tech umbrella, the new 3 gets Auto Start-Stop, Brake Energy Regeneration, Optimum Shift Indicator and ancillary activation on demand – including automatically disengaging air-con compressor. New for 2012 is Eco Pro driving mode, which helps stretch fuel economy.
Safety and driving aids besides the Head-Up display range from a bird’s-eye perspective display of the vehicle to active cruise control with lane departure warnings and camera-based collision warning.