Common problems with BMW 320i

BMW 320i

BMW 320i is one of the best midsize luxury sedans in the market. Unlike other high-end BMW 3-series models, this car is slightly cheaper and fuel-efficient. Nonetheless, it also has several problems that interested buyers ought to know about. But what are the common problems with BMW 320i?

Some of the common problems with the BMW 320i are transmission issues, electrical problems, timing chain issues, and rust problems. What’s more, some owners reported experiencing sensitive body paint, vibrating steering column problems, oil leaks, and fast wear of brake discs.

What are the common problems with BMW 320i?

Transmission issues

This is one of the most common issues across the BMW 3 series. That’s why owners of the BMW 320i have also complained about transmission problems. Note that most transmission problems in this car are caused by low transmission fluid levels or leakage. Therefore, it is vital to ensure that you not only flush the bad fluid but also have the right and ideal fluid level at all times.

Timing chain problems

Another common issue that users have reported about is a bad timing chain or timing belt. Timing belt issues are common after driving the car for several miles. Users have reported that the timing belt becomes loose, causing it to skip a tooth on the timing gear and cause the engine to run poorly.

  How to mix BMW coolant

To fix this issue, you will have to tighten or replace the bad timing chain or belt if it’s damaged.

Oil leaks

Oil leaks are also very common with the BMW 320i. As your car puts on several miles, different parts will become brittle, such as the oil filter housing gasket. If this happens, it may cause the oil to leak. The good news is that this part can be replaced and prevent further oil leakage.

Electrical issues

Several BMW 320i users have also reported experiencing electrical issues. Some of the common electrical problems reported are a faulty engine control module, a malfunctioning central locking system, and rear light failure. Before you fix any electrical issue, it is vital to detect the underlying problem.

For instance, if the engine control module is faulty, you will have to replace it. On the other hand, if the rear light fails, you will be needed to replace the connection plugs in the rear lights.

Sensitive body paint

This is another common problem across the BMW 3 series. The BMW 320i also faces this issue. Owners of this car have complained that the body paint on their car chips away quickly and easily, forcing them to apply another paint faster than anticipated. This is something that the manufacturer should work on.

Rust issues

Rust is another common problem that owners of this car should be ready to handle. However, this problem is common in older BMW 320i models. Rust can be found around door sills, on the wheel arches, and on the underside of the car. It is vital to deal with this problem faster before it gets out of hand and causes structural damage.

  Common Problems with BMW X1

Fast wear of brake discs

Another problem that many BMW 320i users have complained about is the faster wear of the brake discs. Surprisingly, this is one of the first parts that you will have to replace as the brake discs on this car are not very durable.

If you fail to replace the brake discs in time, you will notice the reduced ability to slow the car down and there will be vibrations through the brake pedal. 

Vibrating steering column issues

Last but not least, steering column issues are also common with this BMW 3-series. Many users have complained that they have experienced a noisy and vibrating steering column at low speeds of between 35 and 45 mph. Nonetheless, fixing this problem is pretty costly.


Is the BMW 320i a good car?

It depends on what you’re looking for. If you’re in the market for a luxurious, high-performance, advanced, and stylish car, then the BMW 320i is an exceptional car for you. On the contrary, if you desire a low-maintenance, affordable, and cheaper car, this is not the car for you.

Is it expensive to maintain the BMW 320i?

Of course, yes! Maintaining the BMW 320i is not cheap as its spare parts and cost of service is way above the average for midsize luxury cars. On average, the user will have to part with more than $770 on an annual basis. This is more than the average of about $750 for luxury cars.

What is the most reliable BMW 3-Series engine?

The BMW 3-series features several engines, including the 1.5-liter inline-3 turbo engine, a 1.6-liter inline-4 turbo engine, and a 3.0-liter inline-6 turbo engine. However, one of the best and the most reliable BMW 3-series engine is the 2.0-liter TwinPower turbo inline-4-cylinder engine.

  Common BMW N20 engine problems

Note that the 2.0-liter inline-4 engine is not only featured in the BMW 3-series models, but as well as BMW 4-series, X1, and 5-series. It is one of the most powerful and reliable BMW engines on the market.

How long does the BMW 320i last?

Despite BMW being one of the least reliable cars in the market, the BMW 320i is still pretty dependable. With good care and maintenance, the BMW 320i can last between 200,000 and 250,000 miles. Nevertheless, for the car to last this long, the owners have to adhere to BMW’s recommended scheduled maintenance service.

Is the BMW 320i fuel efficient?

Yes, the BMW 320i is one of the most fuel-efficient sedans in its class. It is also one of the most efficient models in the BMW 3-series 6th generation. It has a combined fuel efficiency of 28 mpg in the city/highway. On the same note, it has 24 mpg in the city and 35 mpg on the highway. 

Final thoughts

Now that you know some of the common problems with the BMW 320i, it is important to take good care of your car if you want it to last long. Most of the problems that we’ve discussed can be avoided if the owner adheres to BMW’s recommended maintenance service.

All in all, the BMW 320i is an outstanding midsize luxury sedan with outstanding modern and luxurious features. It is also fuel efficient and very practical.

What to know about BMW problems and issues.

Edwin Odipo

Why do you love writing about cars? Cars make our lives easy. You can visit your distant friend, relative or even rush to the grocery store a few miles from your home with a lot of ease. Imagine how life was before the invention of cars?? To me, cars are a blessing that made life more convenient.

Recent Posts