Even in its most basic form, the interior of the BMW 3 Series is very high in quality, with tactile materials and slick switches used throughout. The driving position is quite low down, but comes with a lot of adjustment for the seat and steering wheel. The seats are wonderfully supportive, too, and leather upholstery is standard on most versions.
is critical in any estate car, and the good news for the 3 Series Touring is that its 500-litre loadspace holds a slim advantage over those of its two main rivals, the Audi A4 Avant
and Mercedes C-Class Estate
. A bulky bootlid can be tricky to open in a tight parking space, so the 3 Series has a rear window that opens independently of the rest of the tailgate that allows you to drop smaller bags in easily. It’s a really handy touch.
The way the 3 Series behaves on the road depends largely on the specification of the car. Even with the least hardcore of the various suspension setups fitted, the car has a very sporty character. It’s grippy, controlled and keen to change direction, and the crisp, feelsome steering also helps makes it really enjoyable
to drive on a twisty road, more so than any of its rivals
. Be aware, though, that even with the most forgiving setup, it’s still not as smooth as some rivals, especially on the larger wheel options. M Sport specification also adds a firmer-still sports suspension, though this can be mitigated by going for the optional adaptive dampers you can switch to a more comfortable mode if required. It’s well worth the upgrade if you can afford it.