2015 BMW 3 Series

 
 
2015 BMW 3 Series
 

2015 BMW 3 Series

MSRP 
$33,900
Invoice 
$32,545
Target 
 
 

Vehicle Highlights

  • Fuel Economy: 24 mpg City, 36 mpg Hwy
  • Engine: 2.0 L Intercooled Turbo Premium Unleaded I-4, 180 HP
  • Transmission: Automatic (standard)
  • Drive Train: Rear Wheel Drive
  • Passengers: 5
  • Doors: 4

View More Features and Specifications

What You Will Like

The BMW 3-Series is a family of sporty sedans and wagons sized at what would be considered a compact car in the U.S. The 2015 BMW 3-Series Sedans and Sports Wagon models are built on a platform that made its debut with the 2012 model. Across its entire lineup, the 3-Series models stand out for being athletic, responsive and fun to drive, as well as more fuel-efficient than most other alternatives. The F30 redesign brought more back-seat space and cargo space to sedans, as well as a more sophisticated and isolated ride. M3 models, meanwhile, continue to be one of the most practical high-performance cars on the market.

Compare the 2015 BMW 3 Series against similar models

What's New For 2015

For 2015, the BMW 3-Series receives only minor changes to packages and equipment. Bluetooth audio streaming is now standard across the model range.

Warranty

  • Basic Warranty: 4 Years / 50,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain Warranty: 4 Years / 50,000 Miles
  • Roadside Assistance: 4 Years / Unlimited Miles

A vehicle's warranty can significant impact your maintenance costs after you drive off the dealer's lot, and it's important to understand the different parts. Typically, a new car warranty includes a Basic warranty, which covers everything except the wear items such as brakes and tires; and a Drivetrain warranty, that covers all the parts that make the car move, such as the engine and transmission

NHTSA Crash Test Rating

  • Frontal Driver: 4 stars
  • Frontal Passenger: 5 stars
  • Side Driver: 5 stars
  • Side Passenger: 5 stars
  • Rollover Rating: 5 stars

The NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) provides consumers with vehicle safety information based on independent testing, primarily front and side crash rating results, and more recently rollover ratings, to aid consumers in their vehicle purchase decisions.

Select options for 2015 BMW 3 Series

Est Target Price With Options

$33,900

Est. Savings Of MSRP Price

$0

 
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Specifications for 2015 BMW 3 Series

Standard Equipment

  • Safety Options
    • Electronic Stability Control (ESC)
    • ABS And Driveline Traction Control
    • Side Impact Beams
    • Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Seat-Mounted Side Airbags
    • BMW Assist eCall Emergency S.O.S
    • Tire Specific Low Tire Pressure Warning
    • Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Front Airbags
    • Curtain 1st And 2nd Row Airbags
    • Airbag Occupancy Sensor
    • Driver And Passenger Knee Airbag
    • Rear Child Safety Locks
    • Outboard Front Lap And Shoulder Safety Belts -inc: Rear Center 3 Point and Pretensioners
  • Entertainment Features
    • Radio: Anti-Theft AM/FM/HD Stereo CD/MP3 Player
    • Radio w/Seek-Scan, Clock, Speed Compensated Volume Control, Aux Audio Input Jack, Steering Wheel Controls and Radio Data System
    • Regular Amplifier
    • Audio Theft Deterrent
    • Wireless Streaming
    • Window Grid Diversity Antenna
    • Hi-Fi Sound System
    • Satellite Radio Preparation
    • 1 LCD Monitor In The Front
  • Exterior Features
    • Wheels: 17 x 7.5 Lt Alloy Star-Spoke (Style 393)
    • Tires: P225/50R17 AS Run-Flat
    • Wheels w/Silver Accents
    • Clearcoat Paint
    • Body-Colored Front Bumper
    • Body-Colored Rear Bumper
    • Body-Colored Door Handles
    • Black Side Windows Trim and Black Front Windshield Trim
    • Body-Colored Power Heated Side Mirrors w/Manual Folding and Turn Signal Indicator
    • Fixed Rear Window w/Defroster
    • Light Tinted Glass
    • Speed Sensitive Rain Detecting Variable Intermittent Wipers w/Heated Jets
    • Fully Galvanized Steel Panels
    • Chrome Grille
    • Trunk Rear Cargo Access
    • Tailgate/Rear Door Lock Included w/Power Door Locks
    • Fully Automatic Aero-Composite Halogen Daytime Running Headlamps w/Delay-Off
    • Front Fog Lamps
    • Perimeter/Approach Lights
  • Interior Features
    • Front Bucket Seats
    • 6-Way Driver Seat -inc: Manual Recline, Height Adjustment and Fore/Aft Movement
    • 6-Way Passenger Seat -inc: Manual Recline, Height Adjustment and Fore/Aft Movement
    • Bench Front Facing Rear Seat
    • Manual Tilt/Telescoping Steering Column
    • Gauges -inc: Speedometer, Odometer, Tachometer, Oil Temperature, Trip Odometer and Trip Computer
    • Power Rear Windows
    • 5 Person Seating Capacity
    • Leather Steering Wheel
    • Front Cupholder
    • Rear Cupholder
    • Proximity Key For Push Button Start Only
    • Interior Lock Disable
    • Valet Function
    • Power Fuel Flap Locking Type
    • Remote Keyless Entry w/Integrated Key Transmitter, 4 Door Curb/Courtesy and Illuminated Entry
    • Remote Releases -Inc: Power Trunk/Hatch
    • Cruise Control w/Steering Wheel Controls
    • Dual Zone Front Automatic Air Conditioning
    • Rear HVAC w/Separate Controls
    • HVAC -inc: Underseat Ducts, Residual Heat Recirculation and Console Ducts
    • Illuminated Locking Glove Box
    • Driver Foot Rest
    • Full Cloth Headliner
    • Leatherette Door Trim Insert
    • Leather/Metal-Look Gear Shift Knob
    • Interior Trim -inc: Metal-Look Instrument Panel Insert, Metal-Look Door Panel Insert, Metal-Look Console Insert and Metal-Look Interior Accents
    • Driver And Passenger Visor Vanity Mirrors w/Driver And Passenger Illumination
    • Day-Night Rearview Mirror
    • Full Floor Console w/Covered Storage and 3 12V DC Power Outlets
    • Front And Rear Map Lights
    • Fade-To-Off Interior Lighting
    • Full Carpet Floor Covering -inc: Carpet Front And Rear Floor Mats
    • Carpet Floor Trim and Carpet Trunk Lid/Rear Cargo Door Trim
    • Cargo Area Concealed Storage
    • Cargo Space Lights
    • FOB Controls -inc: Trunk/Hatch/Tailgate and Windows
    • Tracker System
    • Hands-Free Bluetooth & USB Audio Connection
    • Driver / Passenger And Rear Door Bins
    • Power 1st Row Windows w/Front And Rear 1-Touch Up/Down
    • Delayed Accessory Power
    • Power Door Locks w/Autolock Feature
    • Systems Monitor
    • Trip Computer
    • Outside Temp Gauge
    • Analog Display
    • Manual Anti-Whiplash w/Tilt Front Head Restraints and Manual Adjustable Rear Head Restraints
    • Sliding Front Center Armrest and Rear Center Armrest
    • Engine Immobilizer
    • Air Filtration
    • 3 12V DC Power Outlets
  • Mechanical Features
    • Engine: 2.0L TwinPower Turbo 4-Cylinder 16V DOHC
    • Transmission: 8-Speed Automatic w/STEPTRONIC
    • Engine Auto Stop-Start Feature
    • Transmission w/Driver Selectable Mode
    • Rear-Wheel Drive
    • 3.15 Axle Ratio
    • 90-Amp/Hr 900CCA Maintenance-Free Battery
    • Regenerative 170 Amp Alternator
    • 4340# Gvwr 900# Maximum Payload
    • Gas-Pressurized Shock Absorbers
    • Front And Rear Anti-Roll Bars
    • Electric Power-Assist Speed-Sensing Steering
    • 15.8 Gal. Fuel Tank
    • Single Stainless Steel Exhaust w/Chrome Tailpipe Finisher
    • Strut Front Suspension w/Coil Springs
    • Multi-Link Rear Suspension w/Coil Springs
    • 4-Wheel Disc Brakes w/4-Wheel ABS, Front And Rear Vented Discs, Brake Assist and Hill Hold Control

Tech Specs

  • Brakes Features
    • Brake ABS System - 4-Wheel
    • Disc - Front (Yes or ) - Yes
    • Disc - Rear (Yes or ) - Yes
    • Front Brake Rotor Diam x Thickness (in) - 12.3
    • Rear Brake Rotor Diam x Thickness (in) - 11.8
  • Cargo Area Dimensions Features
    • Trunk Volume (ft³) - 13
  • Electrical Features
    • Cold Cranking Amps @ 0° F (Primary) - 900
    • Maximum Alternator Capacity (amps) - 170
  • Engine Features
    • Engine Type - Intercooled Turbo Premium Unleaded I-4
    • Displacement - 2.0 L/122
    • Fuel System - Direct Gasoline Injection
    • SAE Net Horsepower @ RPM - 180 @ 5000
    • SAE Net Torque @ RPM - 200 @ 1250
  • Exterior Dimensions Features
    • Wheelbase (in) - 110.6
    • Length, Overall (in) - 182.5
    • Width, Max w/o mirrors (in) - 71.3
    • Height, Overall (in) - 56.3
    • Tread Width, Front (in) - 60.3
    • Tread Width, Rear (in) - 61.9
  • Fuel Tank Features
    • Fuel Tank Capacity, Approx (gal) - 15.8
  • Interior Dimensions Features
    • Passenger Capacity - 5
    • Front Head Room (in) - 40.3
    • Front Leg Room (in) - 42
    • Front Shoulder Room (in) - 55.1
    • Second Head Room (in) - 37.7
    • Second Leg Room (in) - 35.1
    • Second Shoulder Room (in) - 55.1
  • Mileage Features
    • Fuel Economy Est-Combined (MPG) - 28
    • EPA Fuel Economy Est - City (MPG) - 24
    • EPA Fuel Economy Est - Hwy (MPG) - 36
  • Steering Features
    • Steering Type - Rack-Pinion
    • Turning Diameter - Curb to Curb (ft) - 37.1
  • Summary Features
    • Vehicle Name - BMW 3 Series
    • Body Style - Sedan
  • Suspension Features
    • Suspension Type - Front - Strut
    • Suspension Type - Rear - Multi-Link
    • Suspension Type - Front (Cont.) - Strut
    • Suspension Type - Rear (Cont.) - Multi-Link
  • Tires Features
    • Front Tire Size - P225/50VR17
    • Rear Tire Size - P225/50VR17
  • Transmission Features
    • Drivetrain - Rear Wheel Drive
    • Trans Order Code - 205
    • Trans Type - 8
    • Trans Description Cont. - Automatic w/OD
    • First Gear Ratio (:1) - 4.71
    • Second Gear Ratio (:1) - 3.14
    • Third Gear Ratio (:1) - 2.11
    • Fourth Gear Rato (:1) - 1.67
    • Fifth Gear Ratio (:1) - 1.29
    • Sixth Gear Ratio (:1) - 1.00
    • Reverse Ratio (:1) - 3.30
    • Final Drive Axle Ratio (:1) - 3.15
    • Seventh Gear Ratio (:1) - 0.84
    • Eighth Gear Ratio (:1) - 0.67
  • Vehicle Features
    • EPA Classification - Compact Cars
    • Annual CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year - 6.4 (Est)
  • Weight Information Features
    • Base Curb Weight (lbs) - 3295
  • Wheels Features
    • Front Wheel Size (in) - 17 X 7.5
    • Rear Wheel Size (in) - 17 X 7.5
    • Front Wheel Material - Aluminum
    • Rear Wheel Material - Aluminum

2015 BMW 3 Series Photos & Colors

Photos

Below are pictures of the 2015 BMW 3 Series. Select the picture you want to view below

Available Colors

Below are the available colors for the 2015 BMW 3 Series. Select the color to see a close-up view.

  • Alpine White Black Sapphire Metallic Glacier Silver Metallic Imperial Blue Metallic Jet Black Liquid Blue Metallic Melbourne Red Metallic Mineral Gray Metallic Mineral White Metallic Mojave Metallic Orion Silver Metallic Sparkling Bronze Metallic
  • Alpine White
  • Black Sapphire Metallic
  • Glacier Silver Metallic
  • Imperial Blue Metallic
  • Jet Black
  • Liquid Blue Metallic
  • Melbourne Red Metallic
  • Mineral Gray Metallic
  • Mineral White Metallic
  • Mojave Metallic
  • Orion Silver Metallic
  • Sparkling Bronze Metallic

Compare the 2015 BMW 3 Series

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Introduction

Still one of the best sports sedans on the market, the BMW 3 Series continues into the 2015 model year with only a few changes in features, such as Bluetooth audio streaming, which comes standard. With a variety of powertrains and body styles, the BMW 3 Series offers stylish design, the latest in-car technology and best-in-class driving dynamics.

A dizzying number of models comprise the 2015 BMW 3 Series lineup. Sedans are available in gasoline and diesel variants, most with a choice of rear-wheel or all-wheel-drive. There's the entry-level BMW 320i, powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine; the popular BMW 328i and BMW 328i xDrive, with a more powerful version of the same engine; the exhilarating BMW 335i, with a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-6 that makes 300 horsepower and 300 pound-feet of torque, and the efficient BMW 328d and BMW 328d xDrive diesel sedans, which use 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder diesel engine that makes 180 horsepower and 280 pound feet of torque, the latter available at just 1750 rpm.

Sports Wagon body styles offer more space than the sedan, with car-like performance and maneuverability. They're available only with turbocharged four-cylinder engines, powered by either gasoline (328i xDrive) or diesel (328d xDrive). As the xDrive model name suggests, Sports Wagons come only with all-wheel drive. Cargo space in the wagon is plentiful at 17.5 cubic feet with the rear seats in place, enough for two large suitcases and multiple small carry-ons.

The 2015 BMW 3 Series GranTurismo is the roomiest of the bunch, with a more upright shape compared to the wagon. It's available in BMW 328i xDrive and BMW 335i xDrive variants (gasoline only) and comes exclusively with all-wheel drive. The GranTurismo offers nearly 3 inches more rear legroom than either the sedan and wagon, and boasts 18.3 cubic feet of cargo space with all seats in place.

As before, 3 Series models are available in different lines, including Luxury, Sport and M Sport, each with its own unique exterior and interior trim. The different trim levels available on the sedans also have unique features on the inside. Each line lends the 3 series its own character, from warm and modern to cool and athletic.

Refined handling and BMW's classic 50/50 weight distribution make all 3 Series cars a joy to drive. With the switch of a drive mode, any variant can go from comfortable daily driver to racy canyon carver. Engine, transmission, steering and brakes work in harmony. The 328 gasoline engine is perfectly suited to everyday driving, while the BMW 328d diesel engine excels when it comes to long-range efficiency. The BMW 335i is the most fun, however, with its powerful engine and plentiful torque.

The 2015 BMW 3 Series sedan remains the benchmark among luxury sport compact cars such as the Audi A3, Cadillac ATS, Infiniti Q50, Lexus IS and Mercedes-Benz C-Class. Though all offer similar dimensions and features, none can quite match the weight balance and performance-oriented dynamics of the BMW. Sports Wagons have fewer competitors, and include the Audi Allroad, as well as the smaller Audi A3 sportback, which are both also available with a diesel TDI engine. Volvo offers the utilitarian XC70 and the most stylish V60, both of which start at about $5,000 less. The 3 Series Gran Turismo lacks any apples-to-apples competitors, though it's a viable alternative for drivers who want more space without the stigma of a station wagon.

Lineup

The 2015 BMW 320i sedan ($32,750) uses a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 that makes 180 hp and 200 lb-ft. of torque. Standard features include dual-zone automatic climate control, leatherette (vinyl) upholstery, eight-way manually adjustable front seats, a leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, cruise control, a trip computer, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, BMW's iDrive interface with a 6.5-inch display screen, a nine-speaker audio system with CD player, HD radio, an auxiliary audio jack and USB port, split folding rear seat, foglamps, rain-sensing automatic wipers and 17-inch alloy wheels. An automatic stop/start feature is also included to help save fuel.

The 328i sedan ($37,300) comes with a more powerful version of the turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 that makes 240 hp and 255lb.-ft. of torque, plus eight-way power-adjustable front seats with driver memory functions, wood interior trim, auto-dimming rearview and exterior mirrors. It's also available with all-wheel-drive ($39,100). The 328i xDrive Sport Wagon ($41,750) and 328i Gran Turismo ($41,750) are similarly equipped.

The diesel-powered 328d sedan ($38,600), 328d xDrive sedan ($40,600) and 328d xDrive Sport Wagon ($43,250) use a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that makes 181 hp and 280 lb.-ft. of torque. Standard features are similar the 328i.

The 335i sedan ($43,400), 335 xDrive sedan ($45,500) and 335 xDrive Gran Turismo ($47,100) are powered by a 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-6 that makes 300 hp and 300 lb.-ft. of torque. Additional features include a power sunroof, adaptive xenon HID headlights and 18-inch wheels.

Every 3 Series sedan is available with either rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive (xDrive). Sport Wagons and Gran Turismo models are all-wheel drive only.

BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo ($41,450) and 335i xDrive Gran Turismo ($46,850) models are equipped similarly to their sedan counterparts and come only with the 8-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive.

Option packages and standalone options include leather upholstery, heated seats, navigation, different wheels and tires, and more. Also, three additional trim packages are available: Luxury, Sport and M Sport. Each has its own unique wheels, exterior trim, interior styling, wheels and suspension tuning. Prices vary depending on the line and the model.

Safety features on all models include front-impact airbags that deploy at different rates depending on the severity of impact, front passenger side-impact airbags, full-cabin, curtain-type head protection airbags, ABS, stability control, traction control and BMW Assist eCall crash notification system. Safety options include side and top view cameras, a adaptive cruise control, parking assist, blind spot detection, lane departure warning, forward collision warning, pedestrian warning, collision mitigation, all-wheel drive.

Walkaround

Now in its sixth generation, the 3 Series sedan is instantly recognizable as a BMW. Signature design cues include the twin kidney grille, stretched back, slightly wraparound headlamps with double-bezel lamps, short front and rear overhangs and a uniquely shaped side rear window, whose distinctive curve is known as the Hofmeister kink.

The Sport Wagon is decidedly a wagon, but has a front end nearly identical to the sedans. From the side, it's somewhat boxy, although the gentle curving slope from the top of the roof to the rear bumper softens an otherwise squarish appearance.

Gran Turismo models bear the least resemblance to the rest of the 3 Series lineup. The 3 Series Gran Turismo rides on a longer wheelbase by 4.3 inches, and it's 7.9 inches longer overall than the 3 Series Sport Wagon. It's also 3.2 inches taller. Not quite a wagon and not really a crossover vehicle, the GT looks big and tall. The gaping maw and fastback silhouette from many angles looks more like a mini version of the 5 Series GT than its 3 Series relatives. In back, BMW's first active rear spoiler sits atop the GT's shelf-y behind, which reduces lift at highway speeds.

All 3 Series body styles are available in Luxury, Sport and M Sport trims. Each has unique exterior trim. Luxury Line uses chrome kidney grille bars, a chrome exhaust pipe trim and a multi-spoke wheel design. Sport Line comes with black kidney grille bars and a five double-spoke wheel design. The M Sport line adds an aero body kit that includes a larger lower front air intake, sculpted rocker sills and different five-spoke wheels.

Interior

The standard 3 Series interior looks like traditional BMW. The base seats are comfortable and functional. The Luxury line interior is traditional and attractive, and is our choice for commuting, business or road trips. Luxury models are warm and pretty with tan leather and burr walnut wood. The Sport line cabin looks more athletic, while the M Sport is the most aggressive of the bunch, featuring sport seats with high bolsters and black and red interior trim, our choice for track days.

The different trim levels available on the sedans also have unique features on the inside. A choice of leatherettes (vinyl) and leathers is available for the different trim levels. All the seats we tried, base, Sport, Luxury and M Sport, were comfortable and held us in place. We hardly took note of them, a good sign. And getting in and out of these cars was easy.

Regardless of trim, the 3 Series cockpit is oriented around driving, the dash angled slightly toward the driver bringing all controls within easy reach. Four circular dials (fuel gauge, speedometer, tachometer and oil temperature gauge) come with a black panel display. Climate controls are traditional BMW, intuitive and easy to operate. Overall, the trim is nice. Soft-touch plastic inside the interior door handles feels upscale. One gripe was the plastic glovebox latch, which looked and felt cheap.

The iDrive screen is large, bright and easy to read. But unless your car is equipped with navigation, it will be of little use. In one of our test cars without any options, the screen simply displayed audio, phone and vehicle information. The Technology package adds a whole suite of features, including navigation with real-time traffic information and BMW Connected, an app that allows users to sync their smartphones with their cars to use Facebook, Twitter, Yelp, a vehicle finder function and more. The BMW Apps suite also integrates selected subscription-based applications into the car such as Pandora, Stitcher and MOG. The tech pack also adds a head-up display.

The 3 Series is available with a traditional rearview camera that automatically displays what's behind the car or an optional Surround View with side- and top-view cameras, which offers a bird's-eye perspective of the vehicle and the area around it. If that's not enough, the optional Parking Assistant helps the driver parallel park by finding a space, turning the steering wheel, practically parking the car itself.

Although categorized as a compact, the current 3 Series generation is much bigger compared to older models, especially those used to the e46 and before. As such, rear passengers fit with relative ease. In the sedan, rear legroom measures 35.1 inches, and headroom comes in at 37.7 inches, which is about on par with the Audi A4, but slightly more than the Mercedes-Benz C250. Trunk space is about average for the class at 13 cubic feet.

The Sport Wagon is just as comfortable as the sedan; however, the rear center seat's tall headrest hampers rearward visibility so much that we opted to drive our test car with the center seat folded down, exposing the rear pass-through slot. The wagon's wide C and D pillars also create some rather large blind spots. In the back, the wagon gets slightly more headroom with 38.3 inches.

Cargo space in the wagon is more plentiful, at 17.5 cubic feet with the rear seats in place, enough for two large suitcases and multiple small carry-ons; a total of 53 cubic feet is available with the rear seats folded flat.

Seats in the Gran Turismo models are about two inches higher than those in the sedans, giving a commanding view of the road. There's also more leg- and headroom, including 2.8 inches more legroom in the rear than in the sedan and wagon. This is the roomiest of the bunch, with 18.3 cubic feet of cargo space with all seats in place.

Driving Impressions

In any BMW 3 Series variant, refined handling and near 50/50 weight distribution make them a joy to drive. With the switch of a drive mode, the 3 Series can go from comfortable daily driver to racy canyon carver. Engine, transmission, steering and brakes work in harmony.

The BMW 328i gasoline engine is perfectly suited to everyday driving, while the BMW 328d diesel engine excels when it comes to long-range efficiency. The BMW 335i is the most fun, with its powerful engine and plentiful torque.

Around town, the BMW 328i is perfectly able but doesn't sound particularly refined. The clatter of the direct-injection engine is noisy, especially from outside the car when idling, and audible in the cabin at lower speeds. On long road trips, it comes into its own, however. The turbocharger provides boost through a broad torque range, delivering 255 lb.-ft. of torque from 1250-4200 rpm. We found the torquey motor plenty peppy climbing steep mountain terrain at freeway speeds while cars around us were struggling to keep up. Getting from just about any speed to 80 mph is a breeze, and passing is easy.

By contrast, the BMW 335i's turbocharged six-cylinder engine purrs like a contented cat. In normal driving around town, we found the power advantage of the 335i over the 328i to be negligible. But put the pedal to the metal on a freeway onramp or a racetrack straightaway, and that power bump is instantly noticeable. The 335i has more torque, with a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-6. It makes 300 hp at 5800 rpm and 300 pound-feet of torque from 1300-5000 rpm, a broad power band that gives the 335i strong response to throttle input at all engine speeds. In other words, just stand on it and she goes. Turbo lag feels nonexistent, and 0-60 mph comes quickly, just 5.4 seconds with either transmission, according to BMW. While the 335i is slightly more enjoyable, we heartily recommend the 328i.

The 8-speed automatic transmission works very well. Some drivers prefer to shift with the paddles, but most will simply put it in Drive and let it do its thing. We still enjoy the manual transmission available on the gasoline-powered sedans; clutch-pedal effort makes taking off easy, and the gear ratios are perfectly spaced for either engine. Gran Turismo, 328d and both Sport Wagon models are only available with the automatic transmission.

Handling is excellent on all variants of the sedan, and all offer a good balance of ride quality and handling response. The steering is light at low speeds, with proper resistance and feedback at higher speeds. Near-50/50 weight distribution, aided by locating the engine behind the front axle, leaves the driver in full command. It's an easy car to drive fast. We drove hard up a primitive mountain road, overdriving the tires, allowing the active safety features to limit speed around the bumpy switchbacks. At Laguna Seca Raceway, we strapped on helmets, switched off the electronics, and pushed hard around the turns. These cars are very easy to control at the limit, giving the driver confidence, delivering joy.

Traction control kicks in when accelerating hard out of low-speed corners, eliminating wheelspin and reducing the chance of a spin. When driving hard, on a racetrack, for example, we found it beneficial to switch the system off, allowing the car to slide more and the tires to spin to achieve higher cornering speeds and more responsive acceleration performance coming out of the turns. Traction control is useful on an unfamiliar mountain road, but won't help you win an autocross. The active safety features can be switched off or dialed back in degrees, allowing the driver to tune the system to conditions and his or her preferences.

Braking is excellent in all models. The large brake calipers and rotors deliver more clamping force than most competitors. And thanks to BMW's electronic management, the brake pads move within a hair of the rotors if the driver suddenly releases the gas pedal, even if the driver hasn't yet considered slamming on the brakes. The pads also lightly sweep the rotors every few seconds if it's raining, just to be sure there is no significant moisture build up.

The diesel engine found on the 328d is surprisingly smooth and quiet. There is still an audible ticking noise at lower speeds and the slight rumble characteristic of all diesels, but it's quite refined in comparison to the old rough, smelly diesel engines of years past. Although torque is a healthy 280 lb.-ft., the 328d is still the slowest 3 Series of the bunch, with a 0-60 mph time of more than 7 seconds, according to BMW. There's sufficient thrust off the line, but you won't win any drag races. Tall gearing designed to maximize fuel economy keeps the 328d running at low rpms most of the time. The real reason to get the 328d is its efficiency, with excellent range at highway speeds and an EPA fuel economy rating of 32/45 mpg City/Highway for 328d sedans, and 31/43 mpg City/Highway for 238d xDrive sedans and Sport Wagons.

The BMW 328 xDrive Sport Wagon models use the same engines as the 328i and 328d, and are both paired with the 8-speed automatic transmission. Each boasts very similar driving dynamics to its sedan counterpart, and the 328i in particular is every bit as nimble. Around corners, you'd be hard-pressed to remember you have a copious rear end bolted onto the back. That is, until you look in the rearview mirror; the wide D-pillar and rear center-seat headrest reduce rearward visibility.

An automatic Stop/Start function comes standard on all 3 Series models. It helps fuel economy, but it annoys us. Although the latest version doesn't shutter quite so violently as the first iteration, it continues to be invasive and, in our opinion, kicks in way too soon. After only a couple of seconds of idle, even if you're just pausing briefly, the engine shuts off. We found this especially disconcerting to crossing pedestrians who looked startled when they heard our car fire up just as they crossed our front bumper. The system can be turned off.

Summary

With a dizzying combination of engine options and body styles, the 2015 BMW 3 Series remains an outstanding choice in its class. The sedan is arguably the best in its class, with a diesel option that's smooth and efficient. Sport Wagons retain the sedan's precise dynamics while offering more space.

NewCarTestDrive.com editor Mitch McCullough filed this report from Monterey, California, with Laura Burstein reporting from Los Angeles.

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Interest Rate: The estimated interest rate on the loan %
Term: The length of the loan (in months). Longer Terms allow for lower monthly payments.
Your Monthly Payment: Calculated Monthly Payment
Other 2015 BMW 3 Series styles
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sedan 320i xDrive AWD
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sedan 328d RWD
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sedan 328d xDrive AWD
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sedan 328i RWD
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sedan 328i RWD SULEV
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sedan 328i xDrive AWD
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sedan 328i xDrive AWD SULEV
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sedan 335i RWD
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sedan 335i xDrive AWD
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sedan ActiveHybrid 3
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sports Wagon 328d xDrive AWD
2015 BMW 3 Series 4dr Sports Wagon 328i xDrive AWD

Similar
2015 Lexus IS 250 4dr Sport Sedan Crafted Line RWD
2015 Audi A4 4dr Sedan CVT FrontTrak 2.0T Premium Plus
2015 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class 4dr Sedan CLA250 4MATIC
2015 Cadillac ATS Sedan 4dr Sedan 2.0L Standard RWD
2015 Acura ILX 4dr Sedan 2.0L
2015 Hyundai Accent 4dr Sedan Auto GLS

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About These Prices

As you know, pricing cars is particularly complicated. One of our duties at CarQuotes.com is to help our customers comprehend this process better.

Three important prices we may show on a particular vehicle

CarQuotes.com Estimated Target Price is for research purposes only. It reflects a typical, negotiated price (before taxes and other customary fees and charges, such as dealer documentation fees, tire and battery disposal fees, license and registration, and where applicable, finance charges) generally found for the vehicle that you selected. The Estimated Target Price is NOT a price quote from CarQuotes.com or any other dealer. If you request a price quote from a dealer via CarQuotes.com displaying an estimated target price, your price may differ.

Invoice is commonly known as the published amount that the dealer paid the manufacturer for the vehicle. This may or may not represent a close relation to the dealer’s actual cost, but can be beneficial as a benchmark. This figure is available on many other web sites however CarQuotes.com adds an estimate of local and regional fees from manufacturer to the dealers to this price, which makes it very close to the actual invoice amount for cars at your local dealer.

MSRP is the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price. This is a proposed price only. For most vehicles, the CarQuotes.com price is below this amount. Some high demand cars may be priced over this amount.

Estimated Target Price

The CarQuotes.com Target Price is to be used as a general guide that reflects a typical, market price (before taxes and other customary fees and charges) generally found for the vehicle that you selected. This price is based on our research and estimates of supply and demand in the marketplace. There are many factors that go into the final price of a particular vehicle including local supply and demand. Your final price may differ.

CarQuotes.com Estimated Target Prices include

The ’base’ price of the vehicle
All options that you select
Base Destination Charges — this is a charge that is added to the base price for every vehicle
Any related Estimated Manufacture to Consumer Cash Rebates. Note: rebates are subject to change at any time. Please make sure to confirm any consumer Cash rebates with your dealer representative at the time of purchase.

CarQuotes.com Estimated price(s) do NOT include any of the following:

Local taxes, license fees and other local fees, such as dealer documentation fees, tire and battery disposal fees, and where applicable, finance charges — these fees are also excluded from Dealer Invoice and MSRP and would be excluded from most advertisements you might see.
Random ’special qualification’ rebates — i.e., for new college grads only; for customers trading in a specific type of car.  Ask your dealer Representative for more information on ’special qualification’ rebates.

CarQuotes Estimated Dealer Price

The Estimated CarQuotes Dealer Price is an estimate of the pricing presented to CarQuotes members from CarQuotes Authorized Dealers in your area, and is calculated by subtracting an estimated savings value from the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price ("MSRP") as well as a value that relates to invoice for the "ideal vehicle" you configured. Dealer documentation, administrative or similar processing fees are not included in the price estimate. Any vehicle configured on the CarQuotes website is an "ideal vehicle" and may not exist at a CarQuotes Authorized Dealer or any other partner dealer. Each Dealer attempts to match a member’s vehicle preferences with the best possible selection from current, in-stock inventory.

Estimated Savings

The Estimated Savings represents the estimated amount of savings off of MSRP available to you from CarQuotes Dealers for a vehicle consistent with your configured preferences plus any customer incentives currently available.  This is also true when it comes to CarQuotes estimated target prices. Your actual savings will depend on several factors including market conditions, the style of vehicle you select, installed options, dealer coverage, and applicable manufacturer incentives. Each dealer sets its own pricing.

Advertised Rebates, Special Manufacturer Financing or Leasing Programs

In most cases, you must choose between these programs OR a customer rebate or a special manufacturer-to-dealer incentive that may or may not already be included in your CarQuotes.com Target Price. So, your final price may go up if you take advantage of special manufacturer financing. Credit Union members should contact their Credit Union loan department to determine what type of loan and financing options are right for you.

Please note that CarQuotes.com strives to include identified manufacturer incentives within the CarQuotes.com Target Price. CarQuotes.com does not administer these programs, which are subject to and often change without notice. Eligibility for these programs is subject to verification by a licensed auto dealer.

Ask your dealer representative for complete manufacturer program details for your area, and how participation in these programs will affect your price.

Base Vehicle

The base vehicle is the vehicle before any optional equipment or destination fees have been added. All of the standard features are included in the base vehicle.

Options

This is the total charge for all optional equipment included in the configuration of your virtual vehicle. The Options charge varies depending on whether it is calculated based on the Factory Invoice or MSRP. Options are not included in the base vehicle price and are not considered standard features.

Regional Fees

A Regional Fee is the fee a manufacturer charges a dealer to advertise and promote the vehicle in the dealer’s market. CarQuotes also includes estimated manufacturer preparation charges (manufacturer charges to the dealer to cover any work done on the car prior to delivering it to the dealership) and fuel charges (the charge for the fuel in the tank when the buyer purchases the vehicle) in this total. CarQuotes attempts to include regional ad fees in its Factory Invoice calculations; other sites at times do not.

Destination Fees

These are the amounts that manufacturers charge to deliver a vehicle from the factory to the dealership.

Customer Incentives

Customer incentives are also commonly known as customer cash or bonus incentives. These incentives are offered by manufacturers as a way of enticing buyers into purchasing a vehicle.

 

Note: Dealer Invoice amount might not be the amount that the dealer paid to the manufacturer

Dealer Invoice price may or may not bear close relation to a dealer’s actual cost for the vehicle. In some cases, a cost for a vehicle may be significantly less than the invoice price originally paid for the vehicle. Any difference between invoice price and the dealer’s final cost may be caused by many factors including factory refunds, rebates, allowances, or incentives which the manufacturer or distributor may provide to the dealer.

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