Of all of the cars Top Gear host Richard Hammond has driven – and that's a lot of cars – it is an oil-burning entry-level luxury sedan that has earned the plaudit, "possibly the best car ever made." He's referring to the 2013 BMW 320d in an article for the UK's Mirror newspaper, further crediting it with "brilliant handling," an easy-to-use infotainment system, "very accurate steering" and being "one of the nicest Threes to drive in decades."

His conclusion does come from a lack of negatives just as much as the positives. However, even though it's still a huge call, we've heaped our own ultimate praise on BMW's gasoline four-pot, the 328i, which trades a quicker sprint to 60 mph for a few mpg less than the 320d's 52 Imperial mpg (43 U.S. mpg).

Hammond's a fan of the styling, and in fact the only thing he doesn't like is a stripe on his 3 Series tester. Click the link to get the words straight from the Hamster's mouth.


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  • 90 Comments
      TrueDat
      • 2 Years Ago
      while i don't doubt it's an amazing car, i honestly don't really like the new 3-series from the outside too much. i don't like how the headlights are connected to the grille by this awkward, and quite frankly, cheap looking bridge. also, i hate how they basically used the exact same taillights as they did on the M5. it just shows an extreme lack of inspiration. and lastly, the lower rear fascia is akin to that of something from kia. it's bland, flat, and just looks lazy. bmw could have done much better with this one.
      Michael S
      • 2 Years Ago
      Here's how it compares with the 328i we get... 328i: 34.4 mpg Imperial, urban 54.3 mpg Imperial, extra-urban 44.8 mpg Imperial, combined 0-62: 6.1 sec 320d: 52.3 mpg Imperial, urban 72.4 mpg Imperial, extra-urban 62.8 mpg Imperial, combined 0-62: 7.6 sec I'd happily wait another 1.5 seconds to 62 mph to get 40% better fuel economy. Current 328i gets 23/34 MPG US (EPA); a 40% improvement would make that 32/46 MPG, nearly as good as the hybrid 2013 Ford Fusion (47/44 MPG)!
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Michael S
        [blocked]
      RaymondC
      • 2 Years Ago
      There's a chance the US market may get the 320d. The reason is simple: with the new Euro6 emissions certification soon coming into force (and most automakers in Europe making their engines Euro6 compliant anyway), that means turbodiesel engines in Europe only need minor changes to make them US legal. And that means the circa 165 bhp 2.0-liter turbodiesel engine could be offered on the F30 3-Series models as little as one year from now.
      Osama bin Larry
      • 2 Years Ago
      Back end - good, profile - good, front end - wtf?
      nea
      • 2 Years Ago
      I drive a previous gen (E90) 320d manual... and I don't know about being the best car EVER, but damn it sure is a fun car to drive. Perfect balance, great feedback, plenty of torque. I did get a chance to drive test a new-gen 318d and I have to say the looks are growing on me. Definitely looks better than it did in the photos. Handling seemed on par with the previous gen to me.
      merlot066
      • 2 Years Ago
      Haven't driven one but the new 3 sure is a looker. Sadly most of BMWs other cars have a Lincoln-type grille fiasco going on.
      CarCrazy24
      • 2 Years Ago
      They should bring the 320d here, would love a 3 series that gets 40+ mpg.
      J
      • 2 Years Ago
      Forgettable.
      leo
      • 2 Years Ago
      While I agree with him that this is the best car BMW has ever made, I'd have the 335i with the sport pack or the M3 variant any day over the diesel or the 328i just to get the soundtrack a car like this deserves. I totally love this car, but I do wish there was a naturally aspirated 3.0L I6 under the hood. I am sure BMW could have easily cranked out 280HP and 260lb-ft out of it. I think that would have been so good, the 335i might have not needed to exist, except to claim the title of fastest in class
      judgesmails
      • 2 Years Ago
      I've heard that said about the previous 335d. I'd be more likely to go along with that, but neither is going to win any styling awards.
      Myles
      • 2 Years Ago
      Are there any plans to bring this car over here? I'd get one, especially if it came with 6-Spd.
        BRKF06
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Myles
        Unlikely. BMW made a giant blunder with the 335d and so I'll be shocked if they take another chance by giving us a diesel 4 cylinder here. They're undoubtedly try to sell a lame hybrid though and americans will buy that heavy garbage.
          ChrisH
          • 2 Years Ago
          @BRKF06
          The 335d simply had too much engine so it failed to deliver really stellar economy.
          PJPHughes
          • 2 Years Ago
          @BRKF06
          Totally disagree. Read bimmerpost, and you'll find that 335d owners love them. As a 335d (w/ sport package) owner, it's the best car I've ever owned. 425 lb/ft of torque and 36 to 40mpg on the highway. The biggest issue is American's fear of diesel...and the fact that outside of CA, diesel is a lot more expensive than premium.
          k_m94
          • 2 Years Ago
          @BRKF06
          sales blunder, the 35d is an awesome engine.
      Avinash Machado
      • 2 Years Ago
      Great all rounder.
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