Depending on how you equip your 3-Series, you can end up with a spirited, sensible sport sedan, a focused track-day machine that really looks the part, or a small luxury sedan with a sporting edge. That much hasn't changed; for decades the 3-Series has been many different things to a wide range of people who do all have one thing in common—they enjoy to drive.And then there's the price. You add about $15k to the bottom line, but BMW has made a noticeable effort to pack more value into the base 328i or 335i models. At the base level, there's an impressive list of features, like a moonroof, automatic climate control, dynamic cruise control, ambient lighting, and fog lamps, as well as HD Radio and satellite radio prep. Base 335i models add a few more features, including larger 18-inch alloys, power front seats, and xenon headlamps with adaptive light control. Bluetooth hands-free and USB audio capabilities are built into all models.
Additionally, 3-Series models can be dressed up in Luxury Line, Modern Line, and Sport Line guise. Each version adds $1,400, up to several thousand, to the sticker price, but in return you get some distinct trim—some of which feels like it could be from a much more expensive vehicle. New for 2013 is an M Sport line that adds special 18-inch BMW M wheels, a sport suspension, an M steering wheel, Aluminum Hexagon interior trim, an aerodynamic package, an anthracite headliner, and other dress-ups.
The 3-Series' lengthy options list is packed with features that add either more luxury or advanced-tech appeal. The head-up display (HUD) is especially well-placed and useful here, while heated front and rear seats, as well as a heated steering wheel and retractable headlight washers, are all part of the Cold Weather Package. A Driver Assistance Package brings Lane Departure Warning and Active Blind Spot Detection. The Park Distance Control system is part of a Parking Package, which also includes a rear-view camera and the Side and Top View camera system.
The navigation system now has real-time traffic information and 3D topographical views that can help you qwe appreciated its 3D topographical views when zigzagging through mountainous terrain.
The BMW Apps integration—enabling music streaming from Pandora and MOG, using your smartphone’s data stream—requires a $250 smartphone holder, and it’s only compatible with versions of the iPhone.
There’s also a long list of a la carte items that includes performance items like the variable sport steering and Adaptive M suspension, plus items such as rear sunshades and upgraded wheels and trim.
The new-for-2013 ActiveHybrid 3 comes with essentially the same equipment as the 335i sedans, only with a hybrid-specific display, special 18-inch Streamline alloy wheels, and there's no Sport, M Sport, or Active Cruise Control option.