This new BMW 3 Series is the best 3er in a long time. It’s sharp, engaging to drive, comfortable and very high-tech. In fact, it might have the best combination of those traits in its class. But it does have some great competition at the moment, in cars like the Audi A4 and Jaguar XE. Auto Express put the three together to find out.
In this test, all three cars use four-cylinder diesel engines, automatic gearboxes and all-wheel drive. So, on paper at least, they’re all evenly matched. However, on the road,their differences start to really crop up.
The newest car in the test is the new G20-gen BMW 3 Series and it seems to feel it. It’s the most dynamic of the three cars, with the sharpest steering and the best agility. It rides a bit stiffer than the Jaguar XE but it handles just as well and is more impressive than the Audi A4. It also has the best technology and the most practicality. So the new 3 Series takes the win.
While the Jaguar XE has the best overall driving ability, thanks to its handling that’s just as sharp as the 3 Series but with a better ride. But its subpar infotainment system and weak engine keep it from taking first place.
That leaves the Audi A4 in last place. Overall, the A4 is a good car, with a comfortable ride, decent handling, a great interior and great cabin technology. However, its powertrain isn’t quite as good as the BMW’s, nor is its handling/ride combination. Despite being a good car overall, though, it’s just not a standout in the segment anymore, especially with such excellent competition.
Thankfully, Audi is currently working on a new A4 that will continue to be built on a longitudinal MLB architecture. So we can expect a better, more exciting A4 to be debuting in a couple of years.