Q: I have been searching for a car for that offers the same balance of performance, power and economy as the BMW 320d. Does one exist? So far my efforts have be fruitless.
A: As the winner of our Compact Executive of the Year for three years on the trot, there's nothing to match the 320d in its class.
Branching out a little into other sectors provides a few alternatives, though. The Ford Mondeo drives beautifully, and in 2.0-litre diesel guise it's not short of pulling power, even if it isn't quite as muscular as the BMW.
It won't do quite as many miles to the gallon, but it will cost you a fair bit less to buy.
If you want to spend more money, the BMW 525d is bigger, better equipped and more powerful than the 320d. It's quite a bit thirstier, though.