BMW took some of the best aspects of the last 3 Series—its sharp handling, responsive drivetrain, and comfortable seats—and ratcheted them up half a notch with the revamped 2019 model. But it makes even bigger strides in terms of fuel economy, infotainment features, and standard advanced safety systems. As such, it continues to be one of the best sports sedans available.
The drivetrain in our 330i xDrive (all-wheel drive) test car is nearly without fault. The four-cylinder turbo engine delivers plenty of punch and the eight-speed automatic transmission shifts quickly and smoothly. It leaves from a stop without any turbo- or transmission-related delays, delivering more than enough get-up-and-go for any situation, highlighted by its dash from 0-60 mph in just 6.3 seconds. Even with its strong acceleration, the 330i returned 29 mpg overall on premium fuel in our testing, making it the most efficient offering in the luxury compact sedan class.
The 3 Series has a tied-down, composed attitude that makes it a joy to steer through bends. It felt even more agile and lively when driven with vigor around our track, living up to its sports-sedan heritage, with a playful yet controllable character. Its ride quality, however, has taken a step back. The 3 Series often feels jittery, and the taut suspension occasionally allows sharp jolts into the cabin; the car can even feel tense on relatively smooth highways. The cabin is very quiet, though, and the engine emits a boisterous sound that adds to the sporty demeanor.