Especially in the last decade, BMW interiors have become less and less sumptuous, no matter how big is the paycheck requested to own one. The latest 3-Series is no exception to this "rule", with the center console following the general idea of plastic-fantastic, which can now be found from the 1-Series to the 5-Series.
BMW fans shouldn't prepare their torches and pitch forks since this is far from our opinion on the test car's interior. Sure, the center console and many other parts on in the inside are full of black plastic bits that don't look quite the bit premium at first sight (and touch), but they give an overall Teutonic, cold feeling. In some dictionaries, that feeling is also a synonym with "premium", and the overall ambiance is that of a car that is very well built.
The interior space doesn't excel, in typical BMW fashion, since the eventual extra room has been spared for the long six-banger under the hood, while the rear passenger space is separated in the middle by the protruding transmission tunnel. "Driving pleasure" has its price. No matter how many doors and/or seats a BMW has, they aren't exactly made for oversized people who only care about not spilling the mayonnaise from their burgers on the upholstery.
The iDrive information screen sits ergonomically on top of the driver-oriented center console. Speaking of "ergonomics" and "iDrive", the facelifted 3-Series benefits from both, since the addition of the touted controller between the front seats does get rid of a lot of extra buttons to push.
What we really didn't enjoy no matter how good the rest of the car made us feel was the complete absence of cup-holders or other places to put your drinks when doing a longer trip. True, a car this sporty should really involve the driver in doing just the driving, but what about the other passengers? Doesn't anybody in Bavaria care about them? They are on the options list though, so you shouldn't fret too much (yes, we're talking about the cupholders, not the passengers).Continue reading