Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Straight-Six Splendour; Impressive Performance and High Specification in BMW's 340i, but It Comes at a Cost

Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Straight-Six Splendour; Impressive Performance and High Specification in BMW's 340i, but It Comes at a Cost

Article excerpt

Grant Edwards

PERSONALTIES are more than skin deep.

Remember the fresh-faced Kylie Minogue doing the locomotion, Justin Beiber when he has just a Canadian kid strumming his guitar and the girl before band camp in American Pie?

Well take one look at this BMW 3 Series and you could forgive it for being your traditional straight-laced sedan - renowned for doing just about everything well, but not quite the "take me to bed or lose me forever" material.

Perhaps the greatest hint that this Beemer is something special comes via the price-tag. At $100 shy of $90,000 it's hardly pocket-change, although anyone looking to get into a 340i might need some new strides as this executive-styled sedan is fly by the seat of your pants stuff.

Comfort

Hints of the prowess within lie with those famous M tri colours. M Sport touches including the door sills, steering wheel and figure-hugging front pews dictate the sporting bent of the range-topping 3 Series - until you hop into the M3 of course.

Our test machine featured striking oyster interior with brilliant white trim offset by the black dash. That colour scheme delivered some excitement to a typically straight-forward BMW cabin layout.

While it lacks some pizzazz, it remains supremely functional and easy to navigate - one you master the central dial for the primary menu operations.

On the road

Plant your right foot and you see what all the fuss is about. Launching from standstill with brutish force, it feels quick. Officially you can reach 100kmh in a tick over five seconds.

This is the same turbocharged six-cylinder found in the 7 Series, but this is more nimble weaponry.

It'll handle everything you throw at it with Germanic nonchalance...corner (ja), sprint (ja), sprint and corner (ja). Even better you can fit the whole family in to enjoy the experience.

What do you get?

Equipment is high-spec, including 19-inch alloys, radar cruise control, head-up display, front and rear parking sensors, automatic parallel and 90-degree parking, surround view cameras for top, side and rear views, Dakota leather trim, dual zone air con, sports steering wheel with paddle shifters, full Bluetooth functionality with snap-in charger, 600 watt 16-speaker Harman/Kardon surround sound along with sat nav featured on an 22. …

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