BMW 3 Series (2005–2012)

Model History

Bigger 3 Series 4,520mm long, 1,817mm wide and 1,424mm high. Original plans to offer with all-new 4.5 litre V8 called 345i (became the M3V8), 275bhp 3.6 litre V8 (didn't happen), M57 3.0 diesel, N52 3.0 and 2.5 petrol sixes and M46 2.0 petrol and M47 diesel fours. 6-speed auto and manual with electric clutch + SMG steering wheel shift buttons. 400bhp M3. Power outputs, torque, 0-60, top speed and economy: 320i 150bhp, 200NM torque, 9.0 sec 0-60, 137mph top speed, 382.mpg; 320d 163bhp, 340Nm torque, 8.3 sec 0-60, 140mph top speed, 49.6mpg; 330i 258bhp, 300NM torque, 6.3 0-60, 155mph top speed, 33.5mpg. Also 218bhp 2.5 six with 250Nm torque. All have runflat 'get-you-home-without-stopping' tyres.

September 2006

New 6 cylinder engine range from September 2006.

Model/Power (hp)/Torque (Nm)/0–60 mph/Top Speed/Combined mpg/gkm CO2

M57 325d saloon/197hp/400Nm/0-60 7.1/top speed 146/44.1mpg/171g/km CO2

N54 335i Saloon/306hp/400Nm/0-60 5.3/top speed 155/29.4mpg/231g/km

M57 335d Saloon/286hp/580Nm/0-50 5.9/top speed 155/37.7mpg/200g/km

September 2007

EfficientDynamics fuel saving and emissions cutting measures from September 2007. Fuel economy improved by up to 24 per cent and CO2 emissions down by as much as 19 per cent. Engines with outputs increase by up to 21hp. EfficientDynamics includes Auto Start-Stop, Brake Energy Regeneration, active aerodynamics, electric power steering, optimum gear shift indicator and low rolling resistance tyres.

318i with its 1,995cc engine now comes with an extra 14hp, up from 129hp, but 47.9mpg economy on the combined cycle (a 24 per cent improvement) and CO2 emissions that are slashed by 19 per cent to 142g/km.

BMW N47 (timing chain at the back) replaced M47 (timing chain at the front). 318d output is up by 17 per cent to 143hp, fuel consumption improves to 60.1mpg (19 per cent more economical) and CO2 emissions are cut by 18 per cent to 123g/km. N47 320d’s output rises from 163hp to 177hp while fuel consumption improves 19 per cent to 58.9mpg. CO2 emissions drop by 16 per cent to 128g/km. 325i gained new 2,996cc engine with same 218bhp power output but lower emissions. N57 3.0 litre straight six diesel engine replaced M57 3.0 litre straight six diesel engine.

March 2008

BMW 3 Series Edition ES, Edition SE and Edition M Sport models from March 2008 offer an even broader range of models and customer choice, with 24 new models available. All four-cylinder petrol- and diesel-powered 3 Series Saloon and Touring models are available in Edition ES, Edition SE or Edition M Sport models. These models will add further driver appeal and offer even higher levels of standard equipment to the compact executive car of choice for retail and corporate buyers alike.

Edition ES and SE models come as standard in a choice of Carbon Black, Titanium Silver or Sparkling Graphite colours. To complement the exterior colour, these models also feature Dakota leather upholstery and Brushed Aluminium interior trims. In addition, they are all equipped with a 17-inch V-spoke alloy wheel (currently standard on 335i/d Coupé and Convertible models) and a three-spoke M multi-function leather steering wheel.

Both the Edition ES and Edition SE models add £750 to the price of the existing car but, at retail prices, add around £3,000 of equipment value to the car. For those drivers who appreciate the sporting credentials of the 3 Series, Edition M Sport Saloon and Touring models are available. Building on the sporting pedigree of the 3 Series, the Edition M Sport models come as standard in Carbon Black, Titanium Silver or Sparkling Graphite. Like the Edition ES and SE models, Dakota leather seat coverings are standard.

The Edition M Sport also features the same 18-inch WTCC-style alloy wheel as is fitted to the triple championship-winning BMW 320si. In addition, the Edition M Sport models feature Business Navigation system, complete with map guidance, Bluetooth mobile telephone connectivity and BMW’s new ConnectedDrive Online and Assist telematics package as standard. With a nominal cost of £1,000 on top of the cost of the ‘standard’ M Sport models, the Edition M Sport derivatives add up to £3,100 of additional customer value to the car.

September 2008

Facelifted for 2009 on sale from 20 September, 2008.

BMW 318i Saloon man 143PS, 190Nm, 0-60 8.8, 131mph, 47.9mpg, 143g/km

BMW 320i Saloon man 170PS, 210Nm, 0-60 7.9, 142mph, 46.3mpg, 146g/km

BMW 325i Saloon man 218PS, 270Nm, 0-60 6.5, 155mph, 39.8mpg, 170g/km

BMW 330i Saloon man 272PS, 320Nm, 0-60 5.9, 155mph, 39.2mpg, 173g/km (Direct injected N53 replaced N52)

BMW 335i Saloon man 306PS, 400Nm, 0-60 5.4, 155mph, 31.0mpg, 218g/km (N55)

BMW 318d Saloon man 143PS, 300Nm, 0-60 9.0, 130mph, 60.1mpg, 123g/km

BMW 320d Saloon man 177PS, 350Nm, 0-60 7.6, 143mph, 58.9mpg, 128g/km (N47)

BMW 325d Saloon man 197PS, 400Nm, 0-60 7.1, 146mph, 49.6mpg, 153g/km

BMW 330d Saloon man 245PS, 520Nm, 0-60 5.9, 155mph, 49.6mpg, 152g/km

BMW 335d Saloon auto 286PS, 580Nm, 0-60 6.0, 155mph, 42.2mpg, 177g/km

June 2009

June 2009 launch of most fuel efficient and cleanest BMW 3 Series so far: BMW 316d ES Saloon. The BMW 316d is powered by a 1,995cc four-cylinder diesel engine that records 62.8mpg on the combined cycle. This economy figure is enough to give the car a possible range in excess of 800 miles between fill-ups. Its CO2 emissions of just 118g/km mean it's cheap to tax.

BMW 316d ES Saloon: £23,330, 116PS, 260Nm, 0-60 10.6, 125mph, 62.8mpg combines, 118g/km CO2.

A 13% benefit-in-kind rating also ensures it makes economical sense for the business user. To put this in context, the BMW 316d with its CO2 emissions of just 118g/km and a P11D value of £23,240 means a 40 per cent tax payer is liable for £1,208 a year. A person in the 25 per cent bracket need only pay £755. Compare this to the award-winning BMW 318d and savings of £524 and £328 respectively can be made.

August 2009

BMW 320d EfficientDynamics Saloon announced, combining 0-60 of 7.9 and top speed of 137 with 68.9mpg combined and 109g/km CO2. So costs just £35 a year to tax courtesy of a Vehicle Excise Duty band B rank. A 13 per cent benefit-in-kind rating also ensures it makes maximum economical sense. While for Corporation Tax purposes the entire cost of the car can be set against a single year's profits.

The single turbocharged 1,995cc diesel engine features an all-aluminium crankcase and third generation common-rail injection technology with piezo injectors to achieve its consumption and emissions figures without diluting driver enjoyment. BMW 320d EfficientDynamics Saloon: 163PS, 360Nm, 0-60 7.9, 137mph, 68.9mpg combined, 109g/km CO2

The BMW 320d EfficientDynamics Saloon develops 163hp between 3,500rpm to 4,200rpm and 360Nm of torque from 1,750rpm to 3,000rpm. Acceleration in fifth gear from 50mph to 75mph takes just 9.6 seconds. The heightened performance has been made possible due to changes to the engine construction, a longer rear axle transmission ratio, lowered suspension and the use of specially designed 16" aerodynamic alloy wheels with 16" Michelin EnergySaver tyres.

January 2010

New BMW 320d EfficientDynamics Saloon is the cleanest, most efficient BMW ever. At 109g/km it is the first premium car with CO2 emissions under 110g/km and manages to eke out 68.9mpg from a single gallon of fuel on the combined cycle.

Company car drivers benefit because 320d EfficientDynamics attracts only 13% BIK. Companies also benefit from the opportunity to write down 100 per cent of its value in the first year, and claim tax relief against profits, greatly improving cash-flow. The cash flow benefit and the lower cost of money should see contract hire rates fall by up to five per cent over 36 months, according to the fleet industry. (Compared to equivalent vehicles with emissions above 110g/km).

The revised engine produces 163hp and 380Nm of torque enabling the 320d EfficientDynamics Saloon to sprint to 62mph in 8.0 seconds, accelerate smoothly in fifth gear from 50 to 75 mph in 9.1 seconds and reach a top speed of 142mph. Peak torque is available from 1,900rpm ensuring flexibility where the driver needs it.

It uses the same new all-aluminium 2.0-litre diesel engine announced above with developments to minimize friction and improve thermodynamics – resulting in more efficient motoring that is easy and comfortable to achieve. Diesel engines are most efficient at lower engine speeds, but they suffer greater vibration at low revs. BMW engineers reduced this by deploying centrifugal pendulum absorbers within the two mass flywheel to compensate for the rotational lack of balance at lower speeds. That allowed a longer final drive ratio and a gearshift indicator that encourages earlier up-shifts. This allows drivers to spend a greater proportion of time in a higher gear and at a lower engine speed, thereby lowering fuel consumption.

In addition, the chassis ride height has been lowered by 15mm, unique 16-inch ‘aero’ wheels are standard fitment and these are equipped with tyres with a lower rolling resistance, all measures to improve aerodynamics and reduce drag.

The BMW 318d has a 2.0-litre turbocharged unit with variable vane technology and common rail direct fuel injection. It delivers 143hp and 320Nm of torque from only 1,750rpm. The 20Nm boost helps the 318d Saloon to reach 62mph in 9.1 seconds (Touring is 9.4 seconds) while both go on to reach a top speed of 130mph. On the combined fuel consumption cycle the Saloon achieves 62.8mpg and emits only 119g/km of CO2 (Touring records 62.8mpg and 120g/km).

Both models have lowered emissions enough to drop below the critical 120g/km threshold putting them in band C for VED and just 13 per cent benefit in kind taxation. BMW expects this to give it a clear advantage against key competitors in the battle for corporate sales.

Like the equivalent engines in the BMW 3 Series Coupé and Convertible ranges, the 320d, 325d, 335i and 335d variants of the 3 Series Saloon and Touring also receive enhancements in the engine bay. The 320d Saloon now has a zero to 62mph time of 7.5 seconds (Touring is 7.7 seconds), down from 7.9 seconds, while combined fuel consumption is now 60.1mpg (58.9mph) and emissions are 125g/km (128g/km).

From March 2010 the BMW 325d Saloon’s six-cylinder engine takes it to 62mph in 7.0 seconds (Touring is 7.2 seconds) while combined fuel consumption is 49.6mpg (48.7mpg) and CO2 emissions are 151g/km (153g/km). Similarly the 335d Saloon and Touring record impressive statistics with fuel consumption improving from 42.2mpg to 42.8mpg (42.2mpg for Touring) and CO2 emissions now at 174g/km (176g/km).

Finally the BMW 335i Saloon and Touring featuring a new single turbocharged 3.0-litre engine sees improvements in fuel consumption, emissions and VED rates. The Saloon variant is now capable of 33.6mpg, 196g/km emissions and drops into band J VED tier. By comparison the Touring variant records 33.2mpg and 199g/km.

The BMW 316d Saloon can now be specified with optional 17- or 18-inch alloys instead of only being offered with 16-inch alloy wheels for enhanced customer choice.

EfficientDynamics technology comprises Brake Energy Regeneration, Intelligent Alternator Control, Electric Power Steering, Auto Start-Stop, Active Aerodynamics, Optimum gearshift indicator, Low Rolling Resistance Tyres, low friction fluids and lightweight engineering. They are available, in full or part, across the entire range of BMW models and, unlike some manufacturers, they are included as standard. All of the new BMW 3 Series variants announced 18-1-2010 went on sale in the UK on 20-3-2010.

July 2010

Two new 'Edition' models are now available on all new BMW 3 Series Saloons and 3 Series Tourings, with 320d, 320i, 318d and 318i engines. The Exclusive Edition and Sport Plus Edition models include an array of equipment for just £595 more than a standard SE or M Sport model.

The new Exclusive Edition comprises of exterior updates including Chromeline exterior trim, Chrome slatted Kidney grilles, Matt Silver front bumper valance, Satin Aluminium roof rails and metallic paint. Interior additions included in the Exclusive Edition are Dakota leather upholstery, Anthracite Bamboo interior trim, ‘Edition’ door sill finishers and a sports leather steering wheel. Completing the Exclusive Edition package are Bluetooth telephone preparation and 17 inch light-alloy Star-spoke wheels, resulting in a customer saving of up to £3,005.

Sport Plus Edition offers Black Dakota leather upholstery with contrasting Royal Blue stitching, floor mats with Royal Blue piping and a choice of Le Mans Blue, Black Sapphire or Alpine White metallic paint. The Sport Plus Edition also includes Bluetooth telephone preparation, dark chrome exhaust tailpipes, Chrome slatted Kidney grilles, sun protection glass and 18 inch light-alloy M Star-spoke wheels to further enhance the 3 Series’ sporting looks, whilst saving the customer up to £2,325.

July 2015

Haynes manual now available for facelift BMW 3-Series E90s from September 2008 to Feb 2012) 58 reg to 61 reg. Released on 23 July, this new manual covers: Saloon (E90) and Touring (E91) – Sept 2008 – Feb 2012: 318i; 320i; 318d; 320d'; 325d; 330d. The printed manual is priced at £22.99. The book number is 5901. The printed manual is priced at £22.99. The book number is 5901. Haynes Car Manuals are also available to download from the website Haynes Car Manuals Online cost just £20.00 per manual for a year or £25.00 for a lifetime subscription.

What does a BMW 3 Series (2005 – 2012) cost?

List Price from £36,300
Buy new from £30,112
Contract hire from £313.20 per month