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Roadshow Video Reviews
2009 BMW 335d sedanBMW wants its most popular car to change America's mind about diesels.
>> No it isn't just the great roadside restaurants and seemingly endless perfect highways, the Europeans are smug for another reason because they have so many great diesel cars another of which they're about to share with us, here it is the BMW 35D. ^M00:00:15 [ Music ] ^M00:00:21 >> Now of course the star of the show is right here the diesel engine 3 liter, inline 6, twin turbos, sequential turbos like on a 335I gasoline inline 6. Your numbers are what matters, 265 is the horsepower but the real story is the torque, 425 awe inspiring foot pounds just a joy when this thing spools up and the zero to 60 time on this car is a lot of fun as well, 6 seconds flat, mileage 23 city 36 highway, compare that to a 335I gas engine which is 17 city 26 highway. Now here behind this little door is part of the secret of how this diesel runs so clean you won't have to do this but just to tell you what's behind here I've got filler necks here for a diesel catalyst it's basically liquid Urea that works by being injected in the exhaust cycle down in the exhaust pipes and works at high speed to catalyze out lots of that dirty stuff that makes diesels so objectionable to some. By the way this advanced diesel is one of just 7 cars on the market that will qualify for an IRS Lean Burn Technology tax credit which amounts to as much as $900 for a 335D. [music] One transmission, a 6 speed automatic with a shiftable gate on the console but no boy racer paddles on the wheel. There is lag when you stab the throttle both diesel and turbo style but the torque payoff makes it worth is unless you're trying to do some dicey little ballet moves in traffic. Nobody has quite engineered out diesel rattle yet, close but not quite. The ride is drummy and kind of rumbly I don't recall that in the 335I. 45 Series tires don't help and the diesel car puts 230 more pounds on those tires than the gas engine variety. All the BMW tautness and poise is still there you still feel like you're driving a sporty car just sporty in a different way. [music] We have the new BMW iDrive system bonasera to the old one don't let the door hit you in the ass; this one is a lot more logical. First of all notice how they surfaced just about every major function at the top screen. We've got our CD drive in this case we have a 6 disk in here, the base rig is a single slot CD, music collection; this should give you your first indication that we have a hard drive in this vehicle and yes indeed we do, external devices if I go to that you see I can bring up my USB drive which lives right here in the USB jack in the car, it'll also interface with your iPod using a cable there's an optional Logic 7 surround sound upgrade that would give you some choices of synthetic surround and a little more ability to change the 13 speakers which include 2 subs when you option that package 1 each under each seat and because we have a hard drive as you can tell everything works pretty quickly on this vehicle. As you can also notice look at that wide screen BMW's always done wide screens well which gets really handy when you get to navigation. Notice you've got all kinds of interesting geographical details on this system now you can browse around a city and actually see a lot of the landmarks rather faithfully rendered. You've still got the knob where you can turn, push and tilt it around. What you also have now is the more elaborate array of buttons around the actual knob itself and allow you to do a little less digging on the screen with the controller and a lot more shortcutting to things you want to use. What is no longer in this controller is haptic feedback at least not on this car it always has the same feel of detents, the same kind of clicking, it doesn't change with haptics. Interestingly even if you get this car with the high-end head unit you still have to option Bluetooth hands-free ala carte, it's cheap but it's a separate line item on the option sheet. One thing it does really well is suck up all of your contacts as you can see I mean everything. Now one technology you're not gonna find in this car is a backup camera when I go to reverse I get instead a graphic on the screen, that's only because we have the optional park distance sensors you can turn them off here when that beeping gets way too annoying, but you get the indication on the screen nonetheless of where things are by red, green and yellow shading. Yup, I think it's a diesel even diesel hating Americans could love but at a price, $45,000 base for a 3 Series it's a little stout and you could easily add over $7,000 just getting all the tech toys I've talked about and that doesn't even include all the other packages like fancy leather and new tires and wheels and all those upgrades. So if you want to go essential consider that head unit with the navigation with the wide screen, hard drive based, room for your media and the new iDrive interface, that's $2,100. ^E00:05:13