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In association with MotorEasy

Car of the Year Awards 2022: Executive Car of the Year

A top-notch executive car must do it all – frugally and in style. Buyers want effortless long-haul capability, a comfortable and classy interior, and low benefit-in-kind tax rates...

WINNER: Executive car

BMW 3 Series 330e M Sport (Pro Package)

Car of the Year 2022 - MotorEasy

Every school has one: a supernaturally talented kid who’s in the top set for every academic subject, yet is also artistic and a sports wizard, while being universally loved by teachers and other students alike. Makes you sick just thinking about it. Well, the BMW 3 Series has been making other executive cars sick for decades, through the simple expedient of doing almost everything exceptionally well. And the 330e M Sport is the best of the best.

Let’s start with its prowess in economics. Its efficient 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine works alongside an electric motor and a substantial battery that, if you keep it charged, officially provides up to 35 miles of near-silent electric running. That’s far enough to cover the daily commutes of many, and company car users will love how its modest 11% benefit-in-kind tax rating stacks up. It’s a dab hand at design and technology, too.

BMW 3 Series 2022 interior

Internally, things are well thought out, with plenty of space for four adults to travel together, plus a big boot for their personal effects. Its Audi A4 classmate actually uses nicer materials for the dashboard, but the 3 Series’ is more clearly laid out and has an even better infotainment system, with crisp graphics and an intuitive rotary controller between the front seats. And yes, the 3 Series is sickeningly good at sports, with more balance and agility than any of its peers.

The 330e’s electrically boosted engine serves up a hearty combined output of 286bhp for an athletic 5.8sec 0-62mph sprint, and while this model isn’t quite as nimble on the playing field as its regular petrol and diesel siblings, it still knows how to take a corner without fumbling the ball. But while the 330e is the teacher’s pet, no 3 Series is anything other than a straight A student.

BMW 3 Series 2022 rear

The cheaper 320d diesel, which managed an impressive 47.2mpg in our real world True MPG test, is a punchy yet thrifty choice if you cover a high annual mileage, while at the other end of the scale, the M340i petrol and M340d diesel put the emphasis on performance (with the 0-62mph sprint taking just 4.4sec in the former).

The 3 Series’ overall grades only slip down on ride quality; its old foe the A4 has the upper hand here, but the optional M Sport Pro Package (which we recommend) adds adaptive suspension, and that narrows the gap considerably. In the final exam, the 3 Series really does have all the answers.

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See all of our Car of the Year 2022 winners >>