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Our fleet: BMW 3-series 2.0 320d ED Plus saloon car review - December 2015



BMW has addressed a few annoying quirks on the new 3 Series, ones which we noticed during our three-month loan of the slightly older-generation 4 Series.

The first is the speed of engagement of the automatic transmission. Flicking from forward drive to reverse is much quicker to connect – it is almost instantaneous, whereas the 4 Series took the best part of a second (maybe more), an age when you are trying to perform a swift manoeuvre.

In addition, both cars offer the option of selecting a preferred driving mode - Eco Pro, Comfort or Sport - but the 4 Series insisted on reverting to comfort each time the ignition was switched off. However, once the 3 Series was put into eco mode, for example, it stayed in eco mode.

So far I have stuck with Eco Pro and, according to the on-board computer, it is paying dividends. In Eco Pro, pedal recognition, gear recognition and the best point at which to change gear are all optimised, and the heating and air-con are adapted accordingly to minimise energy consumption.

The panel display also changes to show brake energy regeneration while the on-board computers shows the bonus range display highlighting how much further it was possible to travel thanks to utilising EcoPro.

In the 4 Series, the best I got was around 10 additional miles; the 3 Series has already claimed an additional 36 miles from a full tank by being in economy mode – a 5% gain over the full range.

With the car averaging around 52mpg, that equates to a saving of around £3.50 on the full tank (which is costing just under £60 to fill up).

CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.

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