Best BMW 3 Series Lease Deals in the UK from Intelligent Vehicle Finance
Twin power turbo engines for the greatest performance and a comfortable, yet dynamic drive from the improved suspension. This article explains why leasing a BMW 3 Series is still the choice of the driver looking for an entry level luxury car.
Leasing a BMW 3 Series over its rivals used to be an easy decision because it was so much cheaper to run and better to drive than rival manufacturers cars.
However, BMW no longer dominates like it once did – not because its standards have dropped, far from it, but because rivals have raised theirs. Audi and Mercedes have now closed the gap, but the BMW 3-series is still an excellent choice, combining an entertaining drive with a classy interior and low company car tax bills. With the current BMW 3-Series leasing deals in the UK, there has never been a better time to drive a BMW.
BMW 3-Series: Look
BMW rolled out a new facelifted 3-Series last year to help it tackle the surprisingly fierce challenge from the Jaguar XE and Audi A4. Visual changes are minor but there are an almost entirely new engine range and a lift for the interior.
The new BMW 3 Series remains every inch the driver’s car with its driver-oriented cockpit, rear-wheel drive dynamics and flowing lines running from bonnet to boot.
The latest model holds true to all that has come before, with its chrome and high gloss finishes exuding pure elegance, and its striking features giving it a broad, sporty presence.
You have a choice of four trims available. The range starts with SE, then there’s Sports trim, Luxury and M Sports variants. The latter M Sports cars are marked out by a subtly more aggressive body kit and M Sports badges. The BMW 330e Hybrid gets subtle pale blue detailing, although it could easily pass as a conventional model as it’s offered in all trim levels bar SE.
BMW 3-Series: Drive
Speak to BMW and the driving experience is where it believes it holds the biggest advantage over other cars in this class – which is saying something given that the previous 3 Series was regularly hailed as the best car in its class in holding down the road.
The 1.5-litre three-cylinder petrol engine in the entry-level 318i model is willing, but needs to be revved fairly hard to get going, while the 320i offers genuine acceleration – it’s quicker in the real world than an equivalent Jaguar XE and a close match against other rivals. For those looking for higher performance, the BMW 330i and BMW 340i are very quick, while the BMW 425bhp M3 offers speed to rival many of the supercars’.
If you prefer diesel engines, with the exception of the BMW 316d, which feels a little underpowered. Go for the BMW 318d, or better still the BMW 320d. The latter’s 2-litre engine has plenty of low-end power for effortless day-to-day pace and has the measure of similar size engine versions of its rivals. The even more efficiency-focused BMW 320 ED models are a little slower, but not by much and still feel more than capable. Like the larger petrol engines, the BMW 330d and particularly BMW 335d won’t disappoint for speed.
Those looking to drive mainly short distances may be interested in the BMW 330e, which combines the engine from the BMW 320i with an electric motor and battery pack. It offers similar pace to a BMW 330i but with much lower CO2 emissions thanks to a 25-mile “electric only” range.
BMW has forged a reputation for making fun-to-drive cars, and the 3 Series is no exception. The excellent grip and direct steering mean it’s easy to keep control of the car at all times, and its rear-wheel drive layout gives it a great feeling of agility and security on the road. All models get ESP to keep you on the straight and narrow if anything should happen in poor conditions.
A system called Drive Performance Control offers four different modes to choose from EcoPro, Comfort, Sport and Sport+. It’s not too hard to tell what each one does – EcoPro is set up for economy driving, while Comfort and Sport are self-explanatory, adjusting the engine and gearbox settings (on auto models) accordingly. Sport+ ups the ante and reduces the amount of electronic assistance – allowing you to “drive” the car.
BMW 3-Series: Interior
All BMW 3 Series car models come with a manually adjusted driver’s seat that includes height adjustment, as well as a height and reach adjustable steering wheel.
You might also want to consider electric seat adjustment if more than one person regularly drives the car because the standard manual controls are a little fiddly. However, once you’ve got the seat where you want it, you’ll find it very comfortable and supportive.
You have to pay extra if you want lumbar adjustment for added lower back support or electric seats, even on more expensive trims other than the M3. M Sport models come with sports seats that have added side support to help grip you firmly when cornering.
On the whole, it’s a good set-up.
The ergonomics work really well, partly helped by the centre console being angled towards the driver. All the buttons are within easy reach, and their size and clear labelling make them easy to find whilst driving.
Despite being shorter than a Jaguar XE, the BMW is surprisingly roomy. Space in the rear of the saloon is compromised by an intrusive transmission tunnel, but it has a fraction more head and legroom than an XE. Up front, the 320d’s low-set driving position places you closer to the action with a sporty feel.
BMW 3-Series: Summary
If you are looking to drive a comfortable luxury badged car, where style, drive and running costs are probably the “best in class” then leasing a BMW 3 Series is the sensible (and exciting!) choice for you. For the best lease deals in the UK for BMW 3-Series have a look at the website of Intelligent Vehicle Finance.