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2019+ BMW 3 AND 4-SERIES FORUMS (G2x Generation) General G20 Sedan /G22 Coupe / G26 Gran Coupe Discussions BMW 330e Plug In Hybrid First Drive Review by Motortrend

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      03-05-2019, 12:03 PM   #1
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BMW 330e Plug In Hybrid First Drive Review by Motortrend

Motortrend has posted their first drive review of the BMW 330e plug in hybrid and they came away impressed.

The full review can be read here: https://www.motortrend.com/cars/bmw/...-drive-review/

Some highlights:

On paper, the 2016 330e looked like a perfect example of everything that was wrong with modern BMWs. BMW's lost its way. BMWs aren't fun to drive anymore. Why would you even bother building a hybrid 3 Series? Yet, as we found out in our First Test, the 330e was actually pretty good. Thanks to the electric motor's low-end torque, it actually felt slightly more responsive than the 330i.

But if the old 330e wasn't enough to convince you that a plug-in hybrid can be a real 3 Series, the new one definitely should. In part, that's because the new 3 Series is such a better car than its predecessor. Somehow, it manages to be larger, more spacious, and more upscale while also being quicker and more fun to drive.

BMW says that's enough power to give the 330e a 0-60 time of a little less than 6 seconds, but that has to be conservative. Extremely conservative. When we last tested its predecessor, it made the same run in a relatively quick 5.6 seconds. The new car is no M3, but after driving both generations back to back, it definitely feels quicker.

But if you're interested in a hybrid 3 Series, you're probably at least partly interested in better gas mileage. We're still waiting for EPA figures to be announced, but BMW claims the 330e's electric range has been increased by 50 percent. On the European test cycle, that means it's rated to go 60 kilometers (about 37 miles) on a single charge, but because the old version only had a 14-mile EPA range, we're going to be conservative and bet it's actually closer to 21 miles. The mpg-e should also be improved, though we're not sure by how much.

We'll need to see pricing and the official EPA figures before we can say just how much of an improvement the new car is, but at least for now, we're confident that if you want a fuel-efficient sport sedan, the BMW 330e is going to be a hard car to beat.
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      03-05-2019, 12:39 PM   #2
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Not a bad car for someone with a short commute, wants to save on gas, and still wants a BMW.
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      03-05-2019, 12:44 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thescout13 View Post
Not a bad car for someone with a short commute, wants to save on gas, and still wants a BMW.
agree. I was hoping for a little more range (Estimated 37?) but this is still nice for small commuters which is most people these days from what I am noticing

sure it will be popular in my neck of the woods of Cali
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      03-05-2019, 12:48 PM   #4
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What's the point. Poor electric range, extra weight, less boot higher price
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      03-05-2019, 12:51 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cc3 View Post
What's the point. Poor electric range, extra weight, less boot higher price
Exactly...
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      03-05-2019, 12:54 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cc3 View Post
What's the point. Poor electric range, extra weight, less boot higher price
It's perfect for someone with a short daily commute and only has one car. Electric most of the time, but if needed it can be used for a long road trip without needing to stop to charge every 200 miles.
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      03-05-2019, 01:00 PM   #7
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Any info of curb weight on this 330e?
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      03-05-2019, 01:04 PM   #8
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Quote:
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What's the point. Poor electric range, extra weight, less boot higher price
Not sure the price will be much higher if any, given that the 530e and 530i start at the same MSRP.
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      03-05-2019, 01:12 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cc3 View Post
What's the point. Poor electric range, extra weight, less boot higher price
How many miles would someone need to drive to make up the difference in price?

If the 330e is closer to the 330i pricing, I am sure BMW will sell tons of them.
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      03-05-2019, 01:27 PM   #10
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This would only make sense financially if it's price the same as a regular 330i.
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      03-05-2019, 01:27 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frankchn View Post
Not sure the price will be much higher if any, given that the 530e and 530i start at the same MSRP.
Less considering various gov rebates.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cc3 View Post
What's the point. Poor electric range, extra weight, less boot higher price
Same concept as a Volt. Some Volt owners go months on same tank of gas. Most of their daily commuting is done within the electric range. BMW just needs to work on increasing the electric range some, sweet spot would be around 40-50miles.
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      03-05-2019, 02:27 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alex2364 View Post
This would only make sense financially if it's price the same as a regular 330i.
I'd definitely buy one if priced the same as a regular 330i.
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      03-05-2019, 02:53 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bavarianride View Post
Any info of curb weight on this 330e?
this cnet review, claims 220lbs more. https://www.cnet.com/roadshow/news/2...-drive-review/

I find that hard to believe, but if its true it'd be a miracle. I think the 530e with actually has a smaller battery the difference is 500lbs... and having driven one before its noticeable so I'm really hoping 220lbs is real

Last edited by hans007; 03-05-2019 at 03:01 PM.
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      03-05-2019, 02:55 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by HP Autosport View Post
How many miles would someone need to drive to make up the difference in price?

If the 330e is closer to the 330i pricing, I am sure BMW will sell tons of them.

if the federal tax credit is still good its $5500 off on a purchase for 12kwh.

Plus state incentives if you qualify (such as $1500 in CA if you are under the income cap).

It could definitely be worth it if you have a house, cheap electricity, and or charging at work (at my work there are 30-40 spots just for charging, and they are much closer parking spots too... definitely a pro)
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      03-05-2019, 02:57 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bavarianride View Post
Any info of curb weight on this 330e?
I'll guess 3800 lbs.

The interesting thing is the F30 330e was sort of made hybrid by retrofitting a battery into the trunk and making it work. The motor is attached to the ZF8 where the slush box is on a regular car.

The G20 here is designed to fit the battery properly low to the ground so it SHOULD drive much better than the F30 and not compromise the trunk space.

I expect this to be a massive I improvement dynamically as it was designed from the ground up with this car in mind.

It's also interesting to note the engine here has 180 hp but is the same engine in the 330i meaning you could easily bump it to 240 hp plus your 87 electric and you're looking at a nice 300 hp 3 series with great torque. Some people report some minor harsher shifting but otherwise it seems to work.

Also, the AWd set up In the i8 is much better than this because it allows the front wheels to pull with the torque during turns. This is RWD for both e and petrol.

Anyway, should be a fun car to mess with despite the weight penalty.
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      03-05-2019, 03:11 PM   #16
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Also, i3 with an unlocked Rex seems to be a much better choice. Hybrids are always going to be meh. Weight of the battery kills performance and weight of the ICE kills the range.

This will be ok for commuters who want an occasional road trip but with i3s being so cheap it's much easier to just get one and buy a used 328i for road trips
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      03-05-2019, 03:40 PM   #17
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I think that might be the most enthusiastic article I've read on Motor Trend in a while. The author spoke mainly of the drive, while still reporting the specs. It seems like a lot of their print pieces lately have been rewording the brochure. I hope they write more pieces like this.
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      03-05-2019, 05:56 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cc3 View Post
What's the point. Poor electric range, extra weight, less boot higher price
You receive tax reduction in
my country. That's why alot of self-employed people buy it. My doctor has a 5 ehybrid and he can deduct his car for 96% of his taxes. They don't buy because it's ecological, but for reducing taxes.
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      03-05-2019, 07:11 PM   #19
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The e drive vehicles are perfect for Hawaii. Just having the 4 digit EV number plate grants you access to free airport parking, metered parking, etc.
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      03-05-2019, 10:41 PM   #20
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I've been considering a used hybrid (not phev) Accord as a beater just to drive in the HOV lanes.

I have essentially zero ability to charge at home. How long can you use a 330e without charging it? Can I drive it indefinitely without ever plugging it in? Just curious as I don't care about fuel economy or tailpipe emissions. I only want HOV access.
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      03-05-2019, 10:41 PM   #21
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It's unlikely you'll ever get 37 miles in city running and will end up being about 20+. In my opinion that's a pointless range even if you have a short commute.

I would have been interested if they managed to achieve at least 100 miles that'll allow me to go on for couple of days even if I don't charge it.
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      03-05-2019, 10:50 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glennQNYC View Post
I've been considering a used hybrid (not phev) Accord as a beater just to drive in the HOV lanes.

I have essentially zero ability to charge at home. How long can you use a 330e without charging it? Can I drive it indefinitely without ever plugging it in? Just curious.
I'm pretty certain you could do that indefinitely. I had a G30 loaner for more than a week and it had no charge left. I didn't bother charging as I don't have a charger at home or work. Had no issues at all.
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