BMW 328i vs. 320i – which is better?

BMW 328i vs. 320i - which is better?

The BMW 320i with a 2.0 L engine generates 180 horsepower and is around 20 percent less expensive than the BMW 328i, which is equipped with a 2.0 L engine that peaks at 240 horsepower. Both of the vehicles have the option for an 8-gear automatic and a six-speed manual transmission. If you aren’t craving power, the 320i is more valuable for the price.

BMW 320i is a better value for the money

Regardless of whether you go for a 320i or a 328i, the naked eye of a random person on the road is unlikely to differentiate between these two models. They have the option of coming with the same wheels, colors, and decorative elements.

The 320i is the least expensive luxury sedan that BMW produces, and 328i is one of the most sold in the series. But which is a better choice for you?

Engine and transmission comparison

Both of these vehicles are equipped with a 2.0 L engine, however the 328i is more powerful than its 320i competitor. At the same time, the 320i has the advantage of having a SPORT Mode that can optimize maneuvers, turning, and aggressive cornering during high speeds.

The BMW 328i is a clear winner in the category of engine comparison since it produces 258 pound-feet torque, compared to the 200 pound-feet torque of the BMW 320i. Only the driver can decide whether the extra power is worth the extra price.

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Both cars offer a STEPTRONIC auto transmission, as well as the six-speed manual you can choose from. When talking about fuel economy, the 320i is a sure winner. It brings in 23 miles per gallon in the city traffic and 35 miles per gallon on the highway, whereas the BMW 328i falls behind with one mpg in each category, making it less efficient.

Price comparison

When looking at two vehicles competing for your cash, you should keep in mind how much each car costs, and whether the higher price on one of them brings in a better value for the buyer.  The BMW 320i, on average, costs between $34,000 and $36,000. Whereas the BMW 328i sells around $42,000. Is the difference in price worth it?

If you choose to go for the 320i brand new, you will save an average of around $5000, compared to the 328i. If you purchase it pre-owned, you might get a deal that’s only $3000 less than the price of a 328i.

Interior and features

The interior of both cars is very similar with little to no differences. Both vehicles are equipped with the typical BMW electric seat adjustment for the driver. They also have advanced key memory, which allows you to memorize more than one seating position for the driver.

Both cars feature the same SensaTec upholstery on all their seats, which greatly resists abrasion, staining, and most forms of damage.

On the other hand, the seats of both vehicles are designed for driving pleasure and not for long trips. Many consumers have reviewed them to be rather uncomfortable on both vehicles.

The only benefit of paying a few extra grand to get the BMW 328i here is the availability of several add-on options such as shiny metallic inlays, Ash Grain wood interior, and Dakota original leather, which are not available for the BMW 320i.

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The sound system of the 320i is a premium Hi-Fi that goes all the way up to 205 watts and works directly with an HD Radio, and a SiriusXM Satellite radio. However, if you are a music enthusiast, the BMW 328i will probably appeal to you more, since it comes with a slightly better sound system than the 320i’s Harman Kardon.

Other advantages of the 328i are slightly more advanced technological features like a better cutting-edge GPS, with a touchpad instead of a touchscreen like the 320i’s. Both cars are equipped with a very intelligent start-stop technology to improve mpg in the city.

Is the BMW 320i or 328i better for you?

The BMW 328i brings in some extra features, but it looks just like the 320i on the outside and most people would only differentiate it by looking at the text on the rear. If you are in for the extra power and you feel comfortable with spending a few extra grand to get it, the 328i is the better option for you.

On the other hand, the 320i simply uses a slightly deflated engine of the 328i and gets to benefit from all the technology it brings. If you choose the 320i xDrive, you will get an amazing all-wheel-drive luxury sedan for a good price and a much better mileage per gallon both in city traffic and on the highway.


How reliable is a BMW 328i?

The reliability rating of a BMW 328i rates 2.5 out of 5, putting it in 30th place out of 32 in total. A used BMW 328i can offer a large discount on the original price, but might also come in with extra issues to fix, resulting in greater ownership costs, due to repairs and maintenance.

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The average repair cost for the model is $750 and varies depending on mileage, age, and the issue you are experiencing.

How reliable is a BMW 320i?

The BMW 320i has received a rating of 3 out of 5 from J.D. Power, which makes it slightly more reliable than the BMW 328i. Despite being the entry-level in the luxury sedan market, the BMW 320i can last all the way up to 150,000 or even 200,000 miles if serviced and maintained properly.

Do BMW 320i and 328i have the xDrive package option?

Both the BMW 320i and the BMW 328i offer the option to add an xDrive package to the vehicle. The BMW all-wheel-drive intelligent system allows you to drive safely in slippery road conditions and colder climates.

The addition of the BMW xDrive package might be costly for some, but it provides additional safety, as well as a quicker acceleration from 0-20 mph, since your tires are less likely to spin without friction when the power is properly distributed.

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Dan Gurbalov

Why do you love cars? I love the sound of most gasoline engines. I love the smell too.

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