RE: BMW 320d: PH Trade-Off!

RE: BMW 320d: PH Trade-Off!

Sunday 24th March

BMW 320d: PH Trade-Off!

BMW's new diesel 3 Series offers the best of all worlds - but can Scrof do better for half the price?



It's one of the most important new cars that will be released in 2019. It's also one of the least powerful we'll road test here on PistonHeads. The new BMW 320d is a car you'll either love - as a diesel saloon that's actually a good steer - or loathe - as, well, a diesel saloon.

For all the bad press surrounding diesel - and the horizon full of variously-fuelled alternatives - an oil-burning four-door is still what some people need. Quite a lot of people, in fact, which is why the Mercedes C-Class regularly appears in top ten best-sellers lists - a position BMW is hoping to use the 3 Series to usurp.

There's a good chance it will, if our initial contact is anything to go by. Not only does the 3 Series feel every bit the upmarket junior exec it needs to, but it's bloomin' brilliant to drive. "You can fling the nose at a corner and it'll follow with a wonderfully neutral balance," said Sam in his road test. "Push harder and there's a tiny hint of adjustability from the rear - the first signal of it, anyway."


Even the price doesn't seem unreasonable. £36,510 for the M Sport model we tested slots it neatly between the cheaper Audi A4 and the pricier Mercedes C-Class - and as both are now older cars, the former ripe for a facelift and the latter fresh from one, that sounds about right. But as is the Trade-Off way, we think we can do better. Although, as that gives us just £18,205 to play with to find something used that can do everything a new 320d can, we may have bitten off more than we can chew.

The most obvious solution, of course, is simply to pick an older 3 Series. And the advent of the new model means used values are taking something of a hammering. That's bad if you've just taken delivery of your brand-new 3, but good news for us, because it means this two-year-old 320d M Sport with 23,000 miles on the clock can be had for just £17,801. It's finished in Estoril Blue, gets the optional automatic gearbox (which, let's face it, you'll probably want in a 320d) and comes in at a handy £400 less than our budget.

Tempting as it may be, though, we're not going to let that fly - partly because it's so blindingly obvious, but also because we think we can do better. Namely, this Jaguar XE 2.0d R Sport. Now, on the face of it, this is pretty similar to the 3 Series we've just shown you - even down to the fact it's a 2016 car with 23,000 miles on the clock. But the difference is this Jag is pretty well loaded-up with toys. You've got heated seats, a sliding panoramic roof, colour-coded leather and upgraded alloys.


It looks the part in deep metallic blue, too, but the real reason we'd take it over the older 3 Series is its handling. It's no secret that the XE could never beat the old 3 Series as an all-rounder, but in dynamic terms it always edged it, making this a more exciting steer. What's more, given that supple chassis, we'll wager this XE, even in R Sport trim, will ride a whole heap better than our brand-new 3 Series on passive dampers.

Not a bad alternative, then. But why have chicken, when you can have steak? Especially when today's prime cut comes in the form of this Jaguar XF 3.0 Diesel S. Just look at it. From every angle, that's a deeply handsome car; one of Ian Callum's finest moments, we'd go so far as to say. And in this specification, it's endowed with the perfect blend of aggression and elegance; in fact, this XF makes the new 3 Series look rather overblown.

Inside, we'll grant you, it's neither as well-finished nor as modern. But there are some sweet highlights, like those motorised vents and rotary controller, or the unashamedly big slab of aluminium that sweeps across the low dash. And don't those seats look gloriously comfy, too?


Of course, this particular XF gets the fine 3.0-litre diesel, all 275hp of it - enough to give it the edge on the new 3 Series in a straight line. And with six cylinders, it also gets a rather more satisfying engine note. There's a list of toys as long as your arm, too, including the upgraded Meridian sound system.

But the biggest reason it's here is the way this generation of XF drives, with sublime weighting to the steering, and a deftness the like of which few saloons can match. In fact, we reckon it'll be every bit as involving, if not more so, as the newer, smaller car. It'll almost certainly ride better, too. And while the XF's fuel consumption is obviously miles off the pace thanks to its heft and extra power, its 44.8mpg combined figure suggests it won't ruin you any more than the depreciation on the newer car will.

Talking of which, let's discuss price. This example, with 19,000 miles on the clock and a full Jaguar history, will set you back just £16,990 - more than a grand below our budget, and almost £20,000 less than a brand-new 3 Series. More than enough change to stick in the bank in case of any big mechanical issues, and to pay for a very nice holiday besides. So what'll it be: a brand-spanking example of Munich's finest, or a lovely old Jag and a couple of weeks in Barbados?


SPECIFICATION - BMW 320D M SPORT

Engine: 1,995cc, four-cyl diesel turbo
Transmission: six-speed manual, rear-wheel drive
Power (hp): 190@4,400rpm
Torque (lb ft): 295@1,750-2,500rpm
0-62mph: 6.8 seconds
Top speed: 149mph
Weight: 1,525kg
MPG: 62.8 (NEDCc combined)
CO2: 110g/km
Price: £36,510

SPECIFICATION - JAGUAR XF 3.0 D S PREMIUM LUXURY

Engine: 2,993cc V6 diesel turbo
Transmission: eight-speed automatic, rear-wheel drive
Power (hp): 275 @ 4,000rpm
Torque (lb ft): 443 @ 2,000rpm
0-62mph: 6.4 seconds
Top speed: 155mph
Weight: 1,770kg
MPG: 44.8 (NEDC combined)
CO2: 169g/km
Price: £16,990

Author
Discussion

Darren1101

Original Poster:

83 posts

90 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
Hate to point it out, but no one will buy the new 320d with cold hard cash; PCP more likely.

Therefore it will actually be hugely unlikely they have the readies to stump up for the Jag.

Such a shame.

Shadow R1

3,297 posts

117 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
Darren1101 said:
Hate to point it out, but no one will buy the new 320d with cold hard cash; PCP more likely.

Therefore it will actually be hugely unlikely they have the readies to stump up for the Jag.

Such a shame.
Exactly.

fredd1e

651 posts

161 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
320D trade off? has PH morphed into WhatCar?

thebraketester

7,408 posts

79 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
36k for a miserable diesel..... no thanks.

Augustus Windsock

1,667 posts

96 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
Darren1101 said:
Hate to point it out, but no one will buy the new 320d with cold hard cash; PCP more likely.

Therefore it will actually be hugely unlikely they have the readies to stump up for the Jag.

Such a shame.
Or Companies. I’d suggest the majority of the market for these and their equivalent Audi A4 will be chosen by fleet managers for their doting employees

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cerb4.5lee

11,344 posts

121 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
fredd1e said:
320D trade off? has PH morphed into WhatCar?
Neither of them are going to get you out of bed on a Sunday morning to go for a drive just for the sake of it that is for sure.

The 320d is dull(I do actually like this new 3 series though), and PH have managed to come up with a car that is the epitome of dull. frown

cmoose

44,339 posts

170 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
Buy an E9x 330i manual for far less than half the money. Savings on depreciation will more than offset increased fuel costs. And you get the last great non-M BMW engine hooked up to a manual box.

The coupe version still looks very fresh inside and out and is a strong all rounder. Far more appealing than any diesel lump, however new and spangly.

Shiv_P

1,786 posts

46 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
cmoose said:
Buy an E9x 330i manual for far less than half the money. Savings on depreciation will more than offset increased fuel costs. And you get the last great non-M BMW engine hooked up to a manual box.

The coupe version still looks very fresh inside and out and is a strong all rounder. Far more appealing than any diesel lump, however new and spangly.
Anyone looking at a brand new 320d is unlikely to but a 10 year old 3 litre straight 6 petrol engined car are they


Why buy the new BMW M3? Just buy an E46 for £15k don't lose any money and the money you save can go on fuel

Why buy a mclaren p1? Just buy a fiat 500 and the money saved can go on fuel

fatboy b

8,116 posts

157 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
Given that model XF hasn’t been made for nearly 4 years just goes to prove BMW’s rate of style changes doesn’t work. Given the choice, I’d still have the Jag. I does look good still.

spikyone

307 posts

41 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
Utter heresy to put this on the PH forums. As everyone here knows, a 320d is the best small sports car you can buy wink

225

1,319 posts

167 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
Oh dear its finally happened. After months of seeing pictures of this new 3er this is the first time I didn't instantly think how terrible the new grille is. Familiarity has finally won the day..

Back to the topic, while interesting, we all know list prices are somewhat irrelevant these days. They are only there for joe public (aka salespersons fodder) who have no idea and think haggling 2k off list is a good deal and the tax man for rip off VED pricing.

cmoose

44,339 posts

170 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
Shiv_P said:
Anyone looking at a brand new 320d is unlikely to but a 10 year old 3 litre straight 6 petrol engined car are they


Why buy the new BMW M3? Just buy an E46 for £15k don't lose any money and the money you save can go on fuel

Why buy a mclaren p1? Just buy a fiat 500 and the money saved can go on fuel
Tiny bit of overreach. Just a tiny bit.

Nobody really buys 320d saloons with their own money, so the whole thing is moot. But were someone to consider it, my point would hold whether or not you can grasp it.

mikey P 500

1,042 posts

128 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
So the diesel BMW 330 has lost over 50% of its value in less than 2 years and about 20k miles. Surely any fuel saving of running the diesel model must be wiped out by horrific depreciation if buying new. Most cars take nearer 5 years to reach 50% of new value.

Pistonheader101

955 posts

48 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
spikyone said:
Utter heresy to put this on the PH forums. As everyone here knows, a 320d is the best small sports car you can buy wink
https://youtu.be/zKrXFTL_6pw

WJNB

1,637 posts

102 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
Who wants to be seen in the fleet version of a car issued to junior sales reps. or used as an estate agents run-about & customer (sorry client ) taxi? Could put a few M badges on it of course.
Pity because it's a handsome machine. Overpriced sure but then what new BMW isn't?

Thesprucegoose

17,741 posts

136 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
spikyone said:
Utter heresy to put this on the PH forums. As everyone here knows, a 320d is the best small sports car you can buy wink
why do bmw derv owners/potential think a rep derv is a sports car even in msport spec. Drivers car but come on sports car, nothing of the sort.

Mr Tidy

8,264 posts

68 months

Sunday 24th March
quotequote all
I no longer do business miles with a car allowance, so don't need diesel but can't justify nearly new cars any more either!

I put a deposit on an E90 330i today for less than 10% of the quoted price of that M-Sport 320d, and less than 20% of the price of the Jags.

OK it's done 107K miles, but come on, this PH! It's a straight 6 manual petrol with RWD, and it's got the split/fold rear seat option, glass electric tilt/slide sunroof and auto/fold mirrors - I can't wait to pick it up. laugh:

red997

1,186 posts

150 months

Monday 25th March
quotequote all
surprised at the list price for the BMW; not purchased a new BMW for many years, so I'm obviously out of touch !
as others have pointed out, PCP will be king for these

Bit surprised at the fuel consumption figures - my E46 320d (2003) easily manages a 'real' 60 mpg (141K miles on the clock ).
thought the new one would be better - probably rather lardy....

Mind you, my E46 did only cost just over £600 10K miles ago smile

GTEYE

1,321 posts

151 months

Monday 25th March
quotequote all
red997 said:
Bit surprised at the fuel consumption figures - my E46 320d (2003) easily manages a 'real' 60 mpg (141K miles on the clock ).smile
Hmm...are you sure about that? Downhill in neutral for a short distance perhaps, but nowhere else.

Tominator

3 posts

20 months

Monday 25th March
quotequote all
Um, £36510 / 2 <> £18205...