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Used BMW 3 Series Touring 2012 - 2019 review

Category: Estate car

Section: What is it like?

Used BMW 3 Series Touring 12- present
  • Used BMW 3 Series Touring 12- present
  • Used BMW 3 Series Touring 12- present
  • Used BMW 3 Series Touring 12- present
  • Used BMW 3 Series Touring 12- present
  • Used BMW 3 Series Touring 12- present
  • Used BMW 3 Series Touring 12- present
  • Used BMW 3 Series Touring 12- present
  • Used BMW 3 Series Touring 12- present
  • Used BMW 3 Series Touring 12- present
  • Used BMW 3 Series Touring 12- present
Used BMW 3 Series Touring 2012 - 2019 review
Star rating

What's the used BMW 3 Series estate like?

The BMW 3 Series saloon has defined the compact executive car class for many years now, so it’s not surprising that those buyers seeking out a classy estate of equivalent merit flock to the Touring version. It embodies all the good qualities of the saloon, with a dose of extra practicality thrown in.

This sixth-generation version is roomier than 3 Series' of old, too, so it now makes even more sense as an estate car. In fact, its boot is roughly the same size as its main rivals, the Audi A4 Avant and Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate, though it’s worth noting that it can't match the capacity offered by the Skoda Superb Estate and the Volkswagen Passat Estate.

There are four major trim levels on offer: ES, SE, Sport and M Sport. ES has 17in alloy wheels, climate control, a DAB radio, Bluetooth, cruise control and a 6.5in infotainment screen. Go for SE to get auto wipers and lights, rear parking sensors and dual-zone climate control. Sport grade adds numerous sporty touches including lots of red trim inside; some gloss black exterior trim and sports seats. M Sport adds firmer suspension, larger 18in wheels, and a more aggressive bodykit outside.

There were also a couple of styling packs called Modern and Luxury on pre-facelift cars. The former doesn't alter much over a regular SE car other than swap some piano black interior inserts for matt chrome alternatives, but the latter gives you upgraded leather on the seats and some wood paneling to the dash and door cards.

Trim varieties aside, the main attribute of the 3 Series Touring is the way it drives. It’s rear-wheel drive and offers a great driving experience, steering and handling with just enough precision for a keen driver. There’s also an excellent four-wheel drive option: the xDrive. It rides well, too, though versions without the optional adaptive suspension can be a bit too firm; especially so with the M Sport suspension, which we'd avoid.

Inside, there’s the quality you expect from the premium BMW badge, with an upmarket interior and that much-lauded iDrive infotainment system controller. Overall, it is a much plainer design than the glitzy C-Class, but it does feel far better screwed together, coming close to the quality feel of the superbly finished A4.