Inside, the experience is more familiar than outside, the coupé changing little from other 3 Series variants. BMW fit different door linings and sculptured individual bucket rear seats, but you’re more likely to notice the new robotic arms that offer forward the front passenger seatbelts.

It’s hardly ground-breaking technology (Mercedes has had a similar system on its coupés for years) but the execution is perfect and the integration seamless.

Matt Saunders Autocar

Matt Saunders

Road test editor
Boot capacity is a useful 430 litres

With a broad transmission tunnel, rear-seat accommodation is strictly for two, but nevertheless this represents the most usable 3 Series coupé yet. The rear seats are adequate for most adults, and with memory front seats access isn’t difficult.

Likewise, luggage space increases by 20 litres over the previous model, and can swallow two full-size golf bags with ease.

Cabin materials are of good quality and it’s as well bolted together as an Audi A5 or Mercedes-Benz C-Class. We are disappointed that the driver-centric cabins of old have now been abandoned by BMW though, particularly in the more driver-focused coupe.

Seat comfort is difficult to fault. Obviously the chassis engineers saw some ride quality potential in the seat base by making it softer, and at times you can find yourself bobbing vertically in the seat when the car itself is barely moving. This could become slightly nausea-provoking on longer trips.

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But minor grievances aside, it’s business as usual for the 3 Series coupé: upmarket, practical and desirable.

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