IAB Drive - BMW 330i

08/03/2010 - 10:41 | ,   | Anish

The BMW 330i is powerful, but slightly cramped

IAB drove the BMW 330i. We saw the word "Joy" all over the BMW dealership and were hoping the car lives up to it. We did not have this car for long and the short time would not do justice to a full review. We only wish to share our thoughts on the drive here.

At first, we spoke to the people at BMW and if there is a common word that comes out of everyone at BMW it's "Joy". I do not know why they keep emphasizing on it, but did get bored with it.

The word really did not appeal to me and seeing it at every corner of the dealership forced me to do something else. Yes, finally the right thing to do...look at the cars and you would not want to take your eyes away.

So, we neatly buckled up in our car 330i and set out. I had two advisors from BMW who must have thought that I've never driven a car before. They kept saying, "Sir, you are two close to the wall", "Sir, the brakes", "Sir, please ensure you do not put your left leg on the brakes". Well, I let them do their job and said "Agreed" to every one of their comments.

You forget everything when you get inside this car. I was trying to check out every feature on the dashboard before I shifted the car to drive and took my legs of the brakes. The car moves in the most gentle manner possible, very balanced. Shift up on the gear flaps and raise the revs, you will hear the sweet roar of 3L straight six cylinder engine.

There is so much power on offer at low end, but takes a second late to deliver all of it to the wheels. I tried to get the wheels to spin, but may be the traction control cut in. For once, it made all the other cars (including the menacing IT cabs) to keep a certain distance from me.

I must admit, it is a little cramped for a tall person. I had to push my seat back to the max. We did get some road noise in especially when on rough tarmac. The smoother highway tarmac was our favorite. The only noise that got in to the cabin was the engine.  The steering was a bit stiff or heavy, but there is a sense of confidence about it. No feedback, but precise.

I did not like the automatic version and the flap shifts. May be if I were to drive this car in the long term, I would get to like it, but certainly, I missed the manual.No doubt the automatic is good, but for a complete driving experience, I would prefer the manual.

The air con was great, kept us cool through the hottest time of the day. The leather seats were a delight and offered the right lumbar and neck support. It makes you feel as if it is has been custom fit for you. We tried the park assist with sensors at the front and rear and it was helpful. We did not have the car for long, but the drive certainly made us smile. We spoke about it for the rest of the day. Is this the "Joy" that BMW refers to?

BMW 330i Launch Live shots

If you're not able to see the slideshow above, visit the images directly at the BMW 330i Image Gallery

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