2008 BMW 335d

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If you’re thinking about buying a BMW 335d, you might also consider a Lexus GS 450h or a Lexus HS 250h. Compare these vehicles.

The BMW 335d is the ultimate driving machine for so many reasons. Its handling dynamics are unparalleled. Its shape and styling are world famous and recognizable from virtually any distance and angle. And its interior boasts a level of luxury and refinement that is considered a benchmark in its class. Now, there’s another reason to be excited about the 3-series: clean diesel technology.

The BMW 335d has arrived with a diesel engine, specifically a 3.0-liter biturbo inline-six powerplant, something the Europeans have enjoyed for quite some time now. As Toyota’s hybrid marketing machine continues to march on, BMW will try to corner a piece of the diesel market, promoting it as another viable and effective way to go green.

“We realized that with the additional weight of a hybrid battery, the miles per gallon is not as good as we thought. We think the better solution at the moment is diesel,” says BMW Chief Executive Norbert Reithofer. And though US perception of diesel has always been low, it will be hard for Americans to ignore a 3-series that offers better fuel efficiency (an estimated 30 percent improvement which calculates to 23 city and 36 highway), and a significant upshot of torque, a characteristic of diesel. This means fans of the 3-series will enjoy more thrust off the line, greater overall acceleration, and passing power they did not have in the past. The fact is, a V-6 diesel can deliver as much torque as a larger gas-powered V-8, and with much better fuel economy.

The advanced diesel system will utilize BluePerformance urea injection, which will allow the BMW 335d to be sold in all 50 states, even those following California’s strict emissions standards. BluePerformance uses a solution called AdBlue, that is injected into the exhaust gas to turn oxides into nitrogen gas and water vapor. This works in conjunction with a particulate filter to further reduce emissions. The system works on virtually the same technology that Mercedes-Benz uses in its Bluetec diesels.

The advantages of diesel technology should also help offset some of the existing criticisms of the 335d, which include lack of interior storage space, the annoying i-drive interface (which BMW has made clear is here to stay), and its higher sticker price. Of course, the price will be even higher with the diesel engine, but chances are the premium in price will be fairly insignificant in comparison to the improvements to performance and economy. That was very much the case with the Mercedes Benz E320 Bluetec, which asks for $1,000 over its gas-powered counterpart, the E350. Consumers tend not to balk over a small price hike when they realize that in the big picture they are getting much more than they are paying for.

The BMW 335d diesel is a flagship automobile that could give American shoppers a compelling reason to think about clean diesel technology.

 


Pros
  • Crisp and smooth shifting form automatic transmission
  • Great accleration and thrust off the line
  • Impressive mileage even with sprited driving
Cons
  • Urea system may take some getting used to (although not major)
  • Hefty price tag, even with $900 tax credit
  • Tight back seat

Price quote for BMW 335d

2008 BMW 335d
Base MSRP: $44,700
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