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Bodystyle, dimensions and technical details

While the 3 Series may be the nucleus of the BMW range, so too is the four-door saloon the central core of the 3 Series, from which all the other models extend like spokes on a wheel.

In design terms, the F30 3 Series is a better looking and more distinctive shape than its ultra-conservative E90 predecessor. It’s a large car, longer overall than a 5 Series of 30 years ago and with a longer the 161bhp 320d Efficient Dynamics; the former now cracking 0-62mph in 7.2sec when paired with the eight-speed auto 'box.

Tick BMW’s option box for Comfort Access and you’ll get an automatically opening bootlid that’s triggered by waving your foot under the bumper

The automatic-only 330d churns out 255bhp and a hefty 413lb ft of torque, while the flagship 308bhp 335d sprints from 0-62mph in 4.8sec and offers combined fuel economy of 51.4mpg. 

There’s also a plug-in hybrid version – the 330e iPerformance, which combines a electric motor to a 2.0-litre petrol engine which produces 249bhp and 310lb ft of peak twist combined with CO2 emissions of just 44g/km.