BMW 330e vs BMW 530e practicality

BMW makes two of the best plug-in hybrids you can buy, in the shape of the 330e executive saloon and the plusher but more expensive 530e. So, which should you choose?...

BMW 3 Series rear seats

Space and practicality

Front space, rear space, seating flexibility, boot

There are no prizes for guessing that the BMW 5 Series 530e has the BMW 3 Series 330e licked here – although that doesn’t mean the latter is cramped. Even when fitted with a space-sapping electric sunroof (also part of the Premium Package), tall people sitting in the front will find that there’s enough clearance above their heads. However, the 530e has even more head room, especially when, like our test car, it does without a sunroof. Maximum available leg room is similar in both cars, although the 530e’s interior is significantly wider.

That extra width really pays off in the rear, where the 530e is more comfortable for three adults sitting side by side and has a bit more leg room. There’s more head room, too, but the 330e still has enough room for a couple of six-footers. They just won’t feel quite as well catered for.

BMW 5 Series Saloon 2019 rear seats RHD

Remember the boot-mounted batteries we talked about earlier? Well, they make their presence felt in both cars, pushing up the floor and reducing the amount you can carry. The 330e’s boot is particularly shallow – worth considering if you plan to use your car for family holidays.

The 530e’s is significantly bigger in terms of capacity and length, although it can’t actually hold any more carry-on suitcases; both can manage just five. That’s well down on the regular models’ tallies of seven (3 Series) and eight (5 Series).

Rear seatbacks that split and fold in a 40/20/40 arrangement are standard in the 330e, but you have to pay £335 to get them in the 530e.

BMW 330e

BMW 3 Series boot

Boot 375 litres Suitcases 5

BMW 530e

BMW 5 Series Saloon 2019 boot open RHD

Boot 410 litres Suitcases 5

<< Previous | Next: How much will they cost to run? >>

Page 3 of 5

Also consider