2021 BMW 330e M Sport PHEV (car review)

THE 2021 BMW 330e M Sport PHEV is, in our opinion, one of the most luxurious vehicles currently available on the market. This plug-in hybrid excites your senses as a sports sedan, while providing a refined and elegant experience as a hybrid.

From the interior and exterior design, to the performance, connectivity and driving assistance systems, this is a sophisticated vehicle.

The exterior is striking, with Dark Shadow diffusers creating a sporty aesthetic. We adore the design of the headlights, especially at night, and the blue headlight accents add additional sportiness.

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Inside, we were drawn to the adjustable ambient lighting inside the front and rear doors, in the front footwells and around the dashboard area, which create a great atmosphere. Heated front and rear seats provide exceptional comfort as well.

We took a two hour overnight trip up the coast and used the BMW Personal CoPilot along the way. It’s a semi-autonomous driving assistant, which allows you to set up active cruise control through the steering wheel, and engage steering and lane control assist.

The system works by pairing BMW’s night vision with steering and lane control assistant, traffic jam assistant, lane change warning and speed limit assist, for the car to almost drive itself. You still have to hold the steering wheel, but it’ll do much of the work for you.

It’s an innovative system we first experienced in the X5 xDrive45e M Sport PHEV, and one we really enjoyed utilising. Additional safety features on the 330e include parking assistant plus, a lateral parking aid and reversing assistant.

There are a multitude of drive modes available on BMW’s PHEV sedan, including Electric, Hybrid, Adaptive and Sport, as well as XtraBoost, which adds an additional 30kW of power to Sport mode. The latter two provide enhanced driving dynamics.

As you might expect, Sport mode is extremely engaging, with Hybrid mode offering ultra-plush, comfortable driving. Adaptive has a good crack at being somewhere in between, but it really isn’t genuinely in between.

What we wanted was a comfort/normal type mode that provided light and responsive suspension settings with comfortable power delivery. It’s the kind of driving mode that would perfectly suit suburban traffic in Sydney.

We tried to find it in the 330e PHEV, but each drive option was either a little too aggressive or a little too comfortable, and didn’t quite provide the responsive power, if that makes sense.

The 2021 BMW 330e M Sport PHEV is powered by a 2.0-litre turbocharged 4-cylinder petrol engine, paired with an electric motor. The combination delivers 215kW of power and 300Nm of torque. Fuel efficiency is quoted as 1.9-litres/100km.

It has a top speed of 230km/h and can sprint to 100km/h in 5.9 seconds. The pure electric range is 57km. The performance driving modes are an absolute hoot load of fun to use too, and will certainly make you smile if you’re chasing some speed.

The 330e PHEV is a rear-wheel-drive sports automatic, with 8-speed Steptronic transmission. It’s fitted with an M sport differential, which provides exceptional traction and stability, particularly at high speeds.

It gives you the confidence you need when accelerating out of corners, with the car’s stability control package ensuring the rear wheels work together to stick to the road like glue. Other M Sport goodies include alloy wheels and blue brake callipers.

The front end is pulled up with four-piston fixed units, while a single-piston floating set brings the rear to a stop. The Portimao Blue Metallic exterior paint scheme is magic, as is the Vernasca leather cognac interior, with aluminium tetragon trim.

Our test vehicle was fitted with the BMW Visibility package, which adds a slide and tilt sunroof and integrated wind deflector, ambient lighting, and projection door lighting. Optional BMW Laserlight headlights were included on our 330e PHEV as well.

Likewise, it was also bundled with the Harman/Kardon surround sound system, which provides crystal clear audio, and superb bass. As tested, the complete package is priced at $101,463 drive away.

BMW offer a 3-year unlimited kilometre warranty, which is packaged with 5-years or 80,000km scheduled servicing, and 5-years BMW roadside assistance.

Our test vehicle was provided by BMW Australia. To find out more about the 2021 BMW 330e PHEV M Sport, contact your local BMW dealer.


Driving experience
Exterior styling
Interior look and feel
Technology and connectivity
Family friendliness
Value for money


Pros - sports performance; stylish design; BMW Personal CoPilot.
Cons - everyday driveability; driving modes.
Scott Gravolin
Scott Gravolin
Scott Gravolin is an aspiring photographer and automotive reviewer, with a passion for performance cars and sports motorcycles. Scott loves riding his Kawasaki Ninja 1000, Scott has an absolute appreciation for Porsche with two of his all time favorites being the Porsche 911 GT3 RS and Porsche 918 Spyder. However he just can not leave out the old rally focussed Ford Escort RS Cosworth.


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<strong>Pros -</strong> sports performance; stylish design; BMW Personal CoPilot.<br> <strong>Cons -</strong> everyday driveability; driving modes.2021 BMW 330e M Sport PHEV (car review)