One of the first plug-in hybrids that landed in Malaysia was the F30 BMW 330e, which sent 6,200 Malaysians on a constant hunt for a charging station in fuel stations and malls. In case you’re wondering, the 6,200 is the number of F30 330e that was delivered to customers, which is no mean feat. So what does the G20 BMW 330e M Sport offer to match or beat that number?
On the outside, the 330e is recognisably a 3 Series with its sharp, dynamic lines and adaptive LED headlights and L-shaped taillights. And the sedan looks more like a fuel-guzzler rather than a fuel-saver with its M Sport aerodynamic package.
Unique colours such as the Alpine White, Black Sapphire, Portimao Blue, Mineral Grey, and Sunset Orange are part of the new 330e’s exterior colour palate. No matter the body colour, the 330e wears blue M Sport brake callipers with its 18-in M alloy wheels.
Under the hood, the new 330e carries over the similar powertrain layout as the previous 330e, while incorporating the latest-generation BMW eDrive technology. The new BMW 330e has a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine mated to a ZF-sourced eight-speed Sport Steptronic transmission. Of course, an electric motor is on hand to boost performance.
The engine produces the same 181hp as before, while the electric motor has been uprated to produce 109hp, an increase of 22hp from the previous generation. Total system output is rated at a sprightly 292hp and 420Nm of torque, allowing the new 330e to make the 0-100kph sprint in just 5.9 seconds and all the way to a top speed of 230kph.
In Sport mode, the aptly named Xtraboost feature will be available for more responsive acceleration. While it has the performance of a full-fledged sports car, it is surprisingly very efficient given the level of firepower available from this family sedan. BMW claim that the 330e will only consume 2.2 litres per 100km, and emit only 50g of carbon dioxide per kilometre.
The interior of the new 330e is well-appointed, in your typical Teutonic manner. Upholstered with either Black or Cognac Leather Vernasca, the interior is finished with a sleek Aluminium Tetragon inserts to liven up the cabin. Drivers are treated to the sporty M Sport leather steering wheel, as well as BMW’s Live Cockpit Professional that comes with a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and a 10.25-inch touchscreen display. Utilising BMW’s latest Operating System 7, the 330e is equipped with BMW ConnectedDrive services and Apple CarPlay as standard, which is complemented with a 250W 10-speaker HiFi Loudspeaker system.
The 330e is fitted with the Driving Assistant Professional with steering and lane guide assistant. Besides, the Parking Assist features the reverse assistant that records the last 50 meters of travel below 35kph, which is to offer a better experience when reversing through narrow streets. The BMW Digital Key will also be made available as an added security and convenience feature.
With the sales tax exemption price for the locally-assembled BMW 330e is priced at RM264,613.13, which comes with an extended hybrid battery warranty of up to eight years/160,000 km. The price is valid up to 31 December 2020 due to the sales tax exemption, which makes it the best time to put money down for one. Equipped to the nines with premium features and an efficient yet powerful powertrain, the BMW 330e M Sport definitely makes a case for itself a a class leader.