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In-depth reviews

BMW 330e review: performance, top speed & engine

Keen drivers will be right at home in the BMW 330e, especially when they put it into Sport mode for extra power

Overall rating

4.5 out of 5

Performance, engine & drive rating

4.5 out of 5

Model

0-62mph

Top speed

Driven wheels

Power

330e

5.8s

143mph

Rear

249bhp (288bhp with XtraBoost)

330e xDrive

5.8s

143mph

Four

249bhp (288bhp with XtraBoost)

BMW has made the transition to hybrid and electric cars with its reputation for building the "ultimate driving machine" intact. The 330e’s larger sibling, the BMW 530e, is also rather sublime to drive, while the fully-electric BMW i4 is perhaps one of the best-handling electric cars out there.

BMW 330e 0-62mph, top speed and acceleration

A swift 5.8-second 0-62mph time and 143mph top speed are the bare performance figures for the 330e. For maximum performance, switching to Sport mode gives you access to something called 'XtraBoost', which temporarily increases the available power from 249 to 288bhp. This is useful for completing an overtake swiftly and safely, or getting up to speed quickly on a motorway slip road.

Handling

Like all BMWs, the 330e's driving experience is more about how it feels from behind the wheel than just the raw numbers. Especially with 'XtraBoost' turned on, it responds instantly to any prod of the accelerator, with the electric motor working well to fill in any gaps in power delivery from the petrol engine. Our one criticism is that the noise from the four-cylinder engine isn't great when you're 'pushing on' and the augmented artificial sound sent through the car's speakers isn't much better.

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On the plus side, the 330e doesn't feel like it weighs 200kg more than a petrol or diesel 3 Series – the extra bulk is well disguised and it's as sweet-handling as we've come to expect from this model over the years. As standard, the 330e comes with special low-resistance tyres to further boost efficiency. They do this job well, but offer a fraction less grip than the typical sports tyres fitted to executive-saloon models and create quite a bit of tyre roar in the process.

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Hello there, I’m Tom Jervis and I have the pleasure of being the Content Editor here at DrivingElectric. Before joining the team in 2023, I spent my time reviewing cars and offering car buying tips and advice on DrivingElectric’s sister site, Carbuyer. I also continue to occasionally contribute to the AutoExpress magazine – another of DrivingElectric’s partner brands. In a past life, I worked for the BBC as a journalist and broadcast assistant for regional services in the east of England – constantly trying to find stories that related to cars!

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