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Value push for BMW 3 Series

Gran slam: BMW has increased the price on most variants of the sedan and Touring, but prices have come down by up to $3000 for the Gran Turismo hatchback.

BMW celebrates 3 Series' 40th birthday with extra kit


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3 Feb 2015

BMW has adjusted the pricing and added more standard specification to its 3 Series sedan line-up, as competition heats up in the premium mid-size segment with renewed pressure coming from the Mercedes-Benz C-Class.

The German car-maker's local arm says it is celebrating the 40th birthday of the 3 Series by including extra standard gear across the range that includes safety, comfort and aesthetic features.

All variants of the 3 Series sedan, Touring and Gran Turismo gain ConnectedDrive Driver Assistance features such as head-up display, a reversing camera (already standard on Touring), front and rear parking sensors, and the Driving Assistant system that includes a lane-departure warning, a pedestrian warning with Light City Braking and an Approach Control Warning as standard.

Bi-Xenon headlights are now also standard across the board, while wheel sizes have been upgraded to 17-, 18-, or 19-inches depending on the variant.

Every variant except the base 316i gains M Adaptive suspension that lowers the suspension by 10mm for “a more athletic appearance” and improved vehicle dynamics, according to BMW.

The 328i sedan and Touring, 335i and the ActiveHybrid 3 now feature BMW's Comfort Access keyless entry and hands-free tailgate for the Touring.

BMW has ditched the Modern line from its choice of 'character lines', but it is now offering the remaining Sport and Luxury lines as standard on 316i sedan, 318d Touring, 320i and 328i sedan, Touring and GT, and 320d sedan and GT. These were previously a $4100 option.

The M Sport and Luxury line packages are available as a no-cost option on 335i and ActiveHybrid 3 sedan.

Prices on most sedans and Touring variants have risen, with the 316i, 320i and d, and 328i sedans, all rising by $1000 apiece to $53,800, $61,500, $63,800 and $70,400 respectively.

BMW Group Australia head of product and market planning Shawn Ticehurst said the extra standard gear on the 316i, 320i and 320d added about $8000-9000 worth of additional value. Pricing for the 335i and Active Hybrid 3 sedan is unchanged.

The base load-lugger, the 318d Touring, has increased by $3100 to $63,900, while the 320i and 328i are up by $400 to $64,900 and $73,800 respectively.

BMW has cut the price of its GT (Gran Turismo) range as the spec now aligns with some of the sedan variants, with $3000 off the 320i ($67,000) and 320d ($69,300), while the range-topping 328i is down by $1100 to $75,900.

A part of this adjustment sees the 320i and 320d lose leather upholstery as standard in the GT, but it remains an option.

Last year BMW sold 4588 examples of the 3 Series sedan and Touring, representing a 17.5 per cent dip over the previous year, while Mercedes-Benz shifted 5845 C-Classes in the same period.

The sales difference is less stark when you include BMW's other two 3 Series-based variants – the Gran Turismo and the 4 Series Gran Coupe – which brings the total to 5289.

Speaking with GoAuto at the X6 launch in the Yarra Valley last week, BMW Group Australia managing director Marc Werner declined to say whether the 3 Series realignment was a direct response to the success of the C-Class, but added that the company was aware of its competitors.

“At the end of the day you have to have a convincing and competitive offering in the market,” he said. “So moving forward with BMW products for example we will make some adjustments which are necessary across the range.

“We have to always be mindful of what competitors are offering and follow also what the customers expect. And this was one of the reasons we upgraded the 3 Series.” BMW 3 Series pricing*
316i (a) $53,800 (+$1000)
320i (a) $61,500 (+$1000)
320d (a) $63,800 (+$1000)
328i (a) $70,400 (+$1000)
335i (a) $93,430 (no change)
ActiveHybrid 3 (a) $100,200 (no change)
318d (a) $63,900 (+$3100)
320i (a) $64,900 (+$400)
328i (a) $73,800 (+$400)
Gran Turismo
320i (a) $67,000 (-$3000)
320d (a) $69,300 (-$3000)
328i (a) $75,900 (-$1100)
*Excludes on-road costs.

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