Six-speed manual transmission as standard
The sporty six-speed manual transmission in the new BMW 3-Series boasts an easy and precise shifting action and optimal ratio spacing. The lightweight, compact format and innovative, low-friction design help to further enhance driving enjoyment and efficiency. The transmissions used on the BMW 335i, BMW 320d and BMW 320d EfficientDynamics Edition models are equipped with dry sump lubrication for significantly improved efficiency and shifting quality, due to reduced drag losses. At the same time, noticeably more comfortable shifting is achieved by the use of innovative carbon friction linings in the synchromesh units. The transmission in the new BMW 328i features an optimised transmission precisely matched to the performance characteristics of the new turbo engine. The ratio spacing makes for powerful sprinting performance and fast mid-range acceleration, all combined with a reduction in fuel consumption.
Innovative eight-speed automatic transmission for petrol and diesel models: efficient power transmission and optimal ratios
Optionally, the new BMW 3-Series can be supplied with a high-performance eight-speed automatic transmission, which can be combined with any of the engines being presented. The additional ratios allow this transmission - which is an option not currently offered by any competitors in the compact sports sedan segment - to combine unprecedented standards of comfortable shifting, sporty performance and efficiency. With all this going for it, the automatic transmission is fully in keeping with the overall sporty temperament of the new BMW 3-Series Sedan.
In terms of size and weight, this eight-speed unit is comparable with the six-speed automatic transmission used in the past. A range of innovative technical features and exceptionally high internal efficiency allow this higher-performance unit, too, to combine powerful acceleration, nifty mid-range sprinting and further reduced fuel consumption. For performance-minded drivers this transmission also has lots to offer, particularly since the driver can choose to play a more active role by changing gear manually, thereby releasing even more of this sporty sedan's potential.
With its optimised control technology, the eight-speed transmission boasts extremely fast shift and reaction times and direct downshift capability. The electronic transmission controller can also alter the shift characteristics as required, to cater either for a more sporty or for a more relaxed, fuel-saving driving style. Despite a larger overall spread, eight ratios mean that the spacing between them is smaller, so that the optimal ratio is available in virtually all situations. The close ratios deliver refined and powerful acceleration as well as smooth and fuel-efficient low-rpm operation. Altogether, then, as well as providing dynamic acceleration and smooth shifting, the new eight-speed automatic also allows drivers to maintain a very economical driving style. The upshot is that, when fitted with the eight-speed automatic transmission, the new BMW 3-Series achieves virtually identical - or in the case of the BMW 335i, BMW 328i and BMW 320d even lower - fuel consumption and emissions than models equipped with the six-speed manual transmission.
A sports version of the new eight-speed automatic transmission is available as a further option for the new BMW 3-Series Sedan. This unit offers even sportier shift characteristics, and the option of changing gear manually using the paddle shifts on the steering wheel. Alternatively, on the petrol models it is also possible to use the electronic Quickshift selector lever on the centre console. To switch between Normal and Sport modes, the Driving Experience Control switch is used. This allows the sports automatic to deliver both dynamic driving enjoyment and top-level comfort.
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