2003 BMW 3 Series Review | Edmunds.com

2003 BMW 3 Series

BMW 3 Series Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.5 L Inline 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Rear Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 184 hp @ 6000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 17/24 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2003 BMW 3 Series

  • If you've got the bucks, this is unequivocally the best car in the entry-luxury category.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Luxurious, powerful, exceptional road manners, available all-wheel drive for sedan and wagon.

  • Cons

    Pricey for its market segment, limited rear-seat space and cargo capacity.

  • What's New for 2003

    For 2003, BMW will finally offer a DVD-based navigation system -- meaning that you won't have to give up an in-dash CD player if you opt for the nav system. Other changes include a standard front armrest for all 325 models, as well as a rear center headrest for all sedans and wagons. Additionally, all wagons will come with a moonroof. In terms of options, the Premium Package for all 325s now includes automatic headlights and rain-sensing wipers, and the Sport Package for the 330xi includes double-spoke alloy wheels and run-flat tires.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (24 total reviews)  |  Write a Review


Horrible gas mileage: convertible -

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Vehicle: 2003 BMW 3 Series 325Ci Rwd 2dr Convertible (2.5L 6cyl 5M)

I did all my research before buying the 2003 a few months back. I thought it would give me good gas mileage; but it is the worse I have ever had. I average 14.3-15.3 mpg. I thought it would be at least 20, 21. I would not have bought if I knew it would be this bad. I have new tires, tune-up, oil change, runs good. So there should be no reason why I'm getting such bad mileage. I like the way the car looks and drives, but sits kind of low to the ground. A bit hard to get in and out of. The convertible top works perfectly and I use often. It costs me $80 to fill up ($4.25 gallon); I work from home and just drive near home to get groceries, bank and take my dog to the park.




Ultimate tanning machine (update)!

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Vehicle: 2003 BMW 3 Series 325Ci Rwd 2dr Convertible (2.5L 6cyl 5M)

I’ve had it for 1.5 years now and obsession doesn’t stop (just ask my wife). Now that I am approaching my 40's (whew!) and have a wife, couple of kids, etc. I decided to buy a car of my dreams, a BMW 3-ser convertible. So, when the time was right I went ahead and purchased a beautiful E46 325Ci Convertible with sport package, premium package, cold weather package, and 5-speed. It does everything very well. It is a joy to drive and I still wake up in the morning with the thought that I am going to drive it and leave work looking forward to hugging corners on the way home.




Amazing car!

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Vehicle: 2003 BMW 3 Series 325Ci Rwd 2dr Convertible (2.5L 6cyl 5M)

I've been driving sporty Japanese cars all my life through my 20's and 30's. Now that I am approaching my 40's (whew!) and have a wife, a couple of kids, etc. I decided to buy a car of my dreams, a BMW 3-series convertible. So, when the time was right I went ahead and purchased a beautiful E46 325Ci Convertible with sport package, premium package, cold weather package, and 5- speed. I’ve had it for over a year now and obsession doesn’t stop (just ask my wife). It does everything very well. It is a pure joy to drive and I still wake up in the morning with the thought that I am going to drive it and leave work looking forward to hugging corners on the way home. It is an amazing car!




Ultimate tanning machine!

by on
Vehicle: 2003 BMW 3 Series 325Ci Rwd 2dr Convertible (2.5L 6cyl 5M)

Great Car! The car is 6 years old and still turns heads. It certainly turns mine every time I walk away from it. The car offers great balance of performance and luxury. The fact that it is a convertible is an icing on the cake. It is very quiet with the top up and offers great insulation (even during WI winter).




Still fun, but expensive

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Vehicle: 2003 BMW 3 Series 325Ci Rwd 2dr Convertible (2.5L 6cyl 5M)

One of the car's best features was BMW's all inclusive warranty (I also was able to buy a second year coverage). While I didn't have any major complaints the first year, BMW paid for thousands of dollars in parts and labor (mostly electronic). Fun to drive, very expensive to fix. Worn parts like springs, bushings & brakes should have lasted much longer. Based on my first two years experience I purchased a third party warranty to cover the next 37,000 miles. Don't buy a BMW without a BMW warranty. None the less the car is fun to drive, performance is excellent and you can feel the assuredness that is built into the car. Put on the Ray Bans, find an open road, drop the top and crank up the stereo.




Fun to drive; very difficult

by on
Vehicle: 2003 BMW 3 Series 325Ci Rwd 2dr Convertible (2.5L 6cyl 5M)

Let me say that I love my car when it is not in the shop. And that is not to say it has a lot of problems, it just takes 4-5 times to get each item fixed, and the dealer 4 out of 5 times breaks something else that takes 2 visits to get fixed. When my all window button and seat frame broke (I weigh 165 lbs) at 23K, I decided I've had enough. Great looking car and fun to drive, just a headache!! If you are planning on buying one, make sure you are close to a reputable dealer.



Full 2003 BMW 3 Series Review

What's New for 2003

For 2003, BMW will finally offer a DVD-based navigation system -- meaning that you won't have to give up an in-dash CD player if you opt for the nav system. Other changes include a standard front armrest for all 325 models, as well as a rear center headrest for all sedans and wagons. Additionally, all wagons will come with a moonroof. In terms of options, the Premium Package for all 325s now includes automatic headlights and rain-sensing wipers, and the Sport Package for the 330xi includes double-spoke alloy wheels and run-flat tires.

Talk About The 2003 3 Series

Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 17
  • cty
/
  • 24
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs