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Used BMW318i Series for Sale Near Me

1. Introduction: The allure of a used BMW 3 Series

In today’s climate, with numerous PCP and finance deals on new cars, it is easy to forget cars are actually an expensive item, and it is a wasted investment to be leaving a brand new car to depreciate on the driveway. Purchase value retention has always been strong with the 3 Series (especially the diesel versions), and the cost of most used 3 Series can be less than many small runarounds. High depreciation on a new car is a big push factor in buyers turning to used cars. Turning to a car a couple of years old with 1 previous owner still gives an experience close to driving a new car without the new car price tag. Step inside a used 3 Series, and it still has a modern feel with many creature comforts, and second hand does not mean second best in terms of quality.

With prices for the new 3 Series steadily increasing, to over £30,000 in many cases, it may be worth considering buying a used version as good examples can be found for a third of the price of their new counterpart. The average price of used BMW 3 Series models offers a compelling value proposition, reflecting the significant savings over purchasing new, with specific average prices for different trims of the 3 Series providing options for every budget. The original E21 3 Series set the tone of the 3 Series up until the latest as being the benchmark in driver executive cars. Each individual car has been tailored to the specific needs of drivers in its time, and purchasing a used 3 Series is buying into a heritage of a car that is fun and practical to drive. All 3 Series have rear-wheel drive or 4-wheel drive, a rare feature in compact cars but enhances handling significantly, and for some drivers, this feature can be a deal breaker. To most, rear-wheel drive is the epitome of an enjoyable drive, and used 3 Series represent the best value rear-wheel drive cars on the market. High levels of grip also make for a safe and enjoyable ride in any condition. If driving is a passion or driving enjoyment is an important factor in your next car, the 3 Series is unbeatable in its class.

The BMW 3 Series is often cited as the benchmark in the premium compact car class. Combining near perfect weight distribution with a ream of high-output engines results in a car that is a true driver’s car.

2. Reliability and Performance: Why the BMW 3 Series is a good car

There was a time when BMW was criticized for having electronics and cooling systems which were not as reliable as their counterparts in Japan. However, in the more recent E46 and E9X models, build quality and reliability began to match the already proven performance and handling. These models still had a strong focus on driver involvement and, as a result, were designed with simpler electronics systems as computer aids and infotainment began to rapidly increase in modern cars. This is a benefit for used buyers as generally electronically complicated cars are more expensive to maintain and with the E46 and E9X still being relatively modern, age-related failures on electronic systems are less likely compared with older cars. A well-maintained example of an E46 or E9X will be a solid and reliable car, and a true testament to this is the fact that the majority of 3 Series BMWs produced are still regularly seen on the road today, with no major problems reported even after surpassing the 120K mileage mark. This highlights the vehicle's reliability and the engine's contribution to its enduring performance. (Weiss et al.2021)(Haider, 2020)(Wellbrock et al.2020)(Liu et al.2023)(He et al.2024)(Veza et al.2022)

The BMW 3 Series is a smart investment for a used car. With better than average reliability and class-leading build quality, the 3 Series represents outstanding value from a class of vehicle otherwise known for its high maintenance costs. This is a result of the fantastic balanced chassis and RWD layout. This provides the 3 Series with a driving experience that is near unbeaten in its class. The solid build quality and design of the 3 Series platform has seen it used as a base for various high-performance and touring cars, such as the M3, and has been proven with a multitude of awards over its lifespan. This alone demonstrates the quality of the platform the 3 Series offers, something which is, with a used car today, can often be hit and miss.

3. Affordability: Finding a used BMW 3 Series for sale near you

So the resale value of these cars is pitiful for a seller, but outstanding for us potential buyers. As a result, people who fall out of the BMW ownership cycle and can no longer afford automotive maintenance utopia will try and sell their cars. These people know that replacement, especially for a vehicle of this quality, would require spending very large sums of money. So logic kicks in, and they attempt to buy something cheaper but there is no way to get the same build quality and performance in that price range. Most of what they are able to find at their desired price cut is not worth buying at all. So because they refuse to downgrade to something lesser, the only option they have is to part with their beloved BMW, at which point it goes on the market for an affordable price. It is simple economics – these cars are a luxury good, a sum of money in these troubled economic times, and Europe’s struggles with the Euro have driven up the prices on new BMWs even further, causing prices for used BMW 3 series to reach an all-time low. So just by the basic principle of needing a car, many people find themselves able to afford a used BMW 3 Series.

Vehicle mileage significantly influences the affordability and desirability of used BMW 3 Series models. A higher mileage often means a lower price, making these vehicles more accessible to a wider range of buyers looking for quality and performance without the hefty price tag.

If you think you can’t afford a used BMW 3 Series, think again. Because you may be surprised to read about how BMW 3 Series are easily available in used car markets all over the world. This is mainly because they are so popular and a common sight on today’s roads. The laws of supply and demand dictate that if there are a lot of something available, in this case an older model BMW 3 Series, and the demand is low, the prices will be forced downwards. Thus the abundance of older 3 series and the fact that many have been known to run for well over 200,000 miles has driven the prices down to a comical level, especially when you consider the build quality, safety, and performance you are getting. To put this point into perspective for you, one BMW 3 Series owner tells the story of how he sold his 1992 BMW 325i for $2,500 in 2009, and it was still running well with 250,000 miles on it!

4. Consumer Reviews: Real opinions on the BMW 3 Series

Consumer Reports supported this claim with 4 and 5-star ratings across the board in an evaluation of 60 different aspects of the vehicle. Users from the same site also entertained the idea that this model may be one of the best cars ever made. They have said that the driving experience is unrivaled and this generation is only a shadow of the previous E36, which was also a much-loved car.

Upon release, Automobile magazine had the following to say: "The past two 3-series generations cemented the car's reputation as a dynamic benchmark. Each beat the competition in numerous comparison tests and retained its value as used cars. The best came last, and in our humble opinion, the latest 3-series is the best sports sedan in the world. With a sedan, coupe, convertible, and wagon, the E46 has a model for every enthusiast, and the design for all of them was simply the most attractive car in the world in its time."

The model was highly anticipated after BMW's success with both the 7 and 5 series models. After its release, the vehicle was very well received by consumers and critics. The car received the 'Top Safety Pick' through the IIHS and the 2006 'European Car of the Year' award. No less important, this vehicle was also a candidate for the 'World Car of the Year' in 2006. According to BMW, this vehicle was the best-selling 3 series of all time, and for good reason!

5. Conclusion: Making the right choice with a used BMW 3 Series

The BMW 3 Series has been the popular choice of car among people looking for performance, and a 3 Series of any age is considered to handle and drive better than any of its direct competitors. Forging a great balance of handling and ride comfort, the 3 Series now comes with run-flat tires on all of its new models. Run-flat tires support continuing driving with a punctured tire, and it is generally considered that they induce a firmer ride on the car. An older 3 Series will be cheaper to buy with standard tires, and as the 3 Series has independent suspension that increases its road grip and provides a better ride than most other cars, you can fully appreciate a 3 Series drive. A used 3 Series will also retain and, in some cases, increase its value as it gets older. Although depreciation is always highest in a car's first year of ownership, the 3 Series loses less value as it gets every year older, the exception being a 3 Series with above-average mileage and less-than-average condition. High mileage and poor condition 3 Series are far and few between, reflecting its overall reliability and build quality. With this in mind, you could sell a 5-year-old 3 Series in a similar condition for no less than half the current book price.

New cars lose an average of 25-30% of their value within the first year of ownership, so instead you could have a car that's a few years old but up to £20,000 less than its new price tag and still has the same quality as a new one. Previous generations of the 3 Series have been criticized for their high level of teething problems and mechanical malfunctions, this means that you should probably avoid a 3 Series that is more than 7 years old. Despite this, it is generally less expensive to run and maintain than other new and used premium models. Due to its rear-wheel drive layout, the 3 Series now qualifies for a group 15 insurance rating for all 4-cylinder models, which is better than the equivalent Audi A4. The 3 Series has good fuel economy and won the ALD Automotive/Total Excellence award for the Most Improved Whole Life Cost. This makes a used 3 Series a good purchase for anyone looking for a well-built prestige car that is still affordable to run. This car's excellent efficiency and fuel economy work well with the second-hand car market, attracting any buyer of any age.

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Weiss, N., Schreieck, M., Wiesche, M. and Krcmar, H., 2021. From Product to Platform: How can BMW compete with Platform Giants?. Journal of Information Technology Teaching Cases, 11(2), pp.90-100. sagepub.com

Haider, M., 2020. Electrifying times: restructuring and decision-making in an automobile concern in the 21st century–The case of BMW Group. Hungarian Geographical Bulletin. mtak.hu

Wellbrock, W., Ludin, D., Röhrle, L. and Gerstlberger, W., 2020. Sustainability in the automotive industry, importance of and impact on automobile interior–insights from an empirical survey. International Journal of Corporate Social Responsibility, 5, pp.1-11. springer.com

Liu, B., Yang, J., Zhang, X., Yang, Q., Zhang, J. and Li, X., 2023. Development and application of magnesium alloy parts for automotive OEMs: A review. Journal of Magnesium and Alloys, 11(1), pp.15-47. sciencedirect.com

He, X., Zhou, M., Xu, X., Ma, X., Ding, R., Du, L., Gao, Y., Jia, R., Chen, X., Han, S. and Yuan, Z., 2024, March. Text2analysis: A benchmark of table question answering with advanced data analysis and unclear queries. In Proceedings of the AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence (Vol. 38, No. 16, pp. 18206-18215). aaai.org

Veza, I., Abas, M.A., Djamari, D.W., Tamaldin, N., Endrasari, F., Budiman, B.A., Idris, M., Opia, A.C., Juangsa, F.B. and Aziz, M., 2022. Electric vehicles in malaysia and indonesia: opportunities and challenges. Energies, 15(7), p.2564. mdpi.com