Sheep in Wolf’s clothing

In BMW on June 10, 2011 at 7:21 pm

Ever increasing fuel prices forced me into looking at a frugal alternative to our 135 Coupe.  The logical choice was a 320 diesel.  I took one out a low spec manual version.  Did I like it?  No. The notchy gearbox was a bit of a downer. So it seemed like a 2 litre petrol might be a better option. Six months on I’m not so sure.

The 135, and 335 were equipped with fabulous 6 speed autos, but the 120 M Sport seems to have a lazy counter intuitive box.  Usually the electronics seem to be happy to keep it in a lower gear than you’d really want.  Theoretically I can get over 40 mpg out of this petrol version (which misses out on the clever stop/start gizmo).  The strange thing is the car does manage 40 mpg, but the BMW trip computer actually reckons we only do 30.7. Checked miles travelled against fuel put in and can report my maths are better than the car’s.

So what’s good about the 320?

Excellent seats, superb array of “extras”, pretty face, nice behind, good ride, lovely sparkling black paint work.

 Plenty of room in the back, beautiful detailing and upholstery.

Why did I get rid of it?

Well actually we haven’t moved this one on yet, but I have given it to my wife, as I found the lack of oomph disappointing.  The moral of the story?  Always get a test drive before you buy.

Update – We finally traded in the 320 in November 2013.  Five months later it remains glued to Arden BMW’s forecourt. If you want something smart, and not particularly quick it could suit you at £15,495!


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