Good reliable mileage eater
Faulty rear seat-belt (doesn't lock).
The engine and handling are both fantastic. I've a fairly heavy right foot, and experience hours of stationary to stop start traffic every day of the week. I think the worst fuel return experienced worked out at 39 mpg. The chassis stays flat in corners, damping can be a little harsh, but overall very impressive. However, forget going anywhere in the snow!
6 speed box is a little "notchy". Quite often find myself catching a nice grind between 2nd - 3rd when pushing it.
For the price of the car I feel the interior is a bit of a let down. Only a single CD, no trip computer, climate control. Just electric front windows, that's about it. I also found it a little gloomy. Folding rear seats is a cost extra, and with a fairly small boot this is something I'd really liked to have seen.
The seats are fairly comfortable for long trips, and a decent sitting position isn't too hard to find, even for the taller person (I'm 6'4). Legroom is short in the back though, but there again this is a medium sized car. I also found the pedals are a little offset to the exterior of the car (to the right in this case). I found this the only cause of discomfort, and the reason why I sold the car.
I guess in summary it's a great mileage eater, cheap to run (fuel wise) but fairly expensive to purchase, but there again will retain a good re-sale value. I've not had the car serviced, but labour quotes for getting the seat-belt replaced bought a tear to my eye. If you just want a better than "good car", get one. If you want something that makes you feel a little special then I'd look at something else. Maybe still a 3 series, but not the 320d ES.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 1st August, 2007