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320d - Potentially expensive failure


Preformance, Economy, choice of trim, extras

reliability  -  Expensive turbo failure, Rear Seat Space, Boot Space

Recommendable No:

Detailed rating:

Value for Money

Road Handling



Fuel consumption


8 Ciao members have rated this review on average: helpful See ratings
very helpful by (14%):
  1. HokaHey
  2. workangel
helpful by (86%):
  1. redrose200515
  2. Soho_Black
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This is my first BMW, and I am sorry to say my last. The 320d has a reputation for turbo failure, which I believe applies only to pre July 2003 models. This failure can happen at any time regardless of service history and so cannot be predicted or circumvented and is a widely publicised failure amongst 320d owners on the internet!. The cost of repairing this vary between £2000 - £3000 and is not something which I would expect from a name like BMW.

Other drawbacks include driver comfort, which is virtually non existant, after 15 mins in the drivers seat you rapidly experience another feature of the 320D - namely BMW "Numb Bum", which I must admit was not publicised in the brochure. The driving position is also somewhat strange.

Both rear seat and boot space are limited and certainly not inline with the size of vehicle, and all BMW's rivals all seem to have more copious amounts of both, so if you have a family (or are planning one) maybe this car is to avoided!.

I bought the BMW 320d thinking that I was going to experience comfort and reliability, and within 1 month of buying a 2002 model, i was left bitterly disappointed on both accounts, especially as I found that the Turbo failure was a known problem and affected a large number of pre 2003 320D's

So if you are planning on buying a 2nd hand model, then avoid anything below a 2003 model, unless you factor in the risk (and expense) of needing a new turbo.

Prior to buying this model, I owned a Vauxhall which in comparison suffered no faults in the same league (or expense) as the BMW in the nine years in which I owned it, and was also more comfortable in comparison.
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Comments about this review »

HokaHey 05.11.2007 18:42

Couldn't agree more!

lindsayjayne 30.05.2006 18:10

Welcome to Ciao. My partner's just been given a £35,000 BMW courtesy car by his insurance company after someone drove into his £9,000 Jaguar. He says the BMW is nice, and has everything you could possibly want in it, but the Jaguar drives 1000 times better. x x

workangel 30.05.2006 14:48

Hi, welcome to Ciao - have to say, I think BMW's are overrated. I was lucky? enought to have two as Company cars - both had niggly ongoing faults. Caro

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Product Information »

Manufacturer's product description

BMW present the 3 Series 320d Saloon with 6 Speed - (Man) / 6 Speed - (Auto), Rear (RWD) running on Diesel

Product details

Manufacturer BMW
Boot Capacity (litres) 460
Weight 1490, 1505


Listed on Ciao since 27/08/2000

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This review of BMW 320d has been rated:

"very helpful" by (14%):

  1. HokaHey
  2. workangel

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