Are you thinking about getting in a BMW 3 Series?
Before you commit to the purchase, it’s important to consider one crucial factor: depreciation.
Everyone knows that cars tend to lose value over time – but exactly how much will an average BMW 3 Series depreciate each year?
If you’re curious and want to know more, then buckle up because we’re going on a data-driven mission into the depths of depreciation rates for this iconic car!
BMW 3 Series depreciation rates per year
We know you don’t want to think too hard about it, but having a good understanding of depreciation rates can really help to keep your wallet happy.
To find the depreciation rates of the BMW 3 Series, we compared the new price and current values of the BMW 3 Series from various model years listed on Auto Trader UK.
We based the study on one of the most popular BMW 3 Series models, the BMW 320i.
So, let’s not wait any longer. What is the conclusion?
On average, a BMW 3 Series will have depreciated by about 17.9% when it’s one year old. In the first three years, it will depreciate by about 38.5%. At five years old, the depreciation rate is 50.2%, and at ten years old, the depreciation rate is 69.1%.
Here is the depreciation table for the BMW 3 Series:
|Year||RRP*||Current Value||Average Mileage||Depreciation Rate||Depreciation cost|
Here is a list of the depreciation rates of a BMW 3 Series by year:
- One year old: 17.9% depreciation
- Two years old: 30.8% depreciation
- Three years old: 38.5% depreciation
- Four years old: 43.5% depreciation
- Five years old: 50.2% depreciation
- Six years old: 54.7% depreciation
- Seven years old: 58.5% depreciation
- Eight years old: 60.4% depreciation
- Nine years old: 66.0% depreciation
- Ten years old: 69.1% depreciation
- 11 years old: 72.9% depreciation
- 12 years old: 78.4% depreciation
- 13 years old: 84.3% depreciation
- 14 years old: 88.2% depreciation
- 15 years old: 90.2% depreciation
And for the visual learners, here is the same data in a BMW 3 Series depreciation curve:
Which second-hand BMW 3 Series has the best value?
When looking for a second-hand BMW 3 Series with the best value, it is not only essential to check for the BMW 3 Series’ most common problems, but you should also consider age, condition, and mileage.
While newer model years might have more features, older BMW 3 Series can be found in good condition for a much lower price, thus increasing the value.
So, for the best value, you should try to look for a BMW 3 Series that has depreciated as much as possible but is also as new as possible.
Considering the value of the BMW 3 Series lowers yearly, this will always be a balancing act.
However, from our research into the depreciation of the BMW 3 Series, we found that a 5-year-old BMW 3 Series may offer the best value. The price you will pay is about half of its Recommended Retail Price (RRP), but you still get the benefits of a relatively new car!
Besides second-hand price, another important factor to look at when getting a used BMW 3 Series is insurance costs. You can find a list of the cheapest BMW 3 Series to insure in this article!
Why different BMW 3 Series models may depreciate differently
Depreciation is a normal and expected part of owning a car, but it’s important to note that not all vehicles depreciate at the same rate.
The same goes for the BMW 3 Series, for which different models within the same car line can depreciate differently.
Factors such as the body style, trim level, and engine type can all affect how quickly a BMW 3 Series will lose value over time.
For example, the BMW 3 Series GT, which was introduced in 2013, may depreciate differently from the standard sedan model.
Similarly, the six-cylinder engine models of the 3 Series may offer better performance. Still, they may also depreciate more quickly than the four-cylinder engines due to their higher cost and fuel consumption.
The BMW 3 Series is available in several trim levels, including the Sport, Luxury, and M Sport, each with its unique features. The more premium the trim level, the higher the initial cost of the car, and the more it may depreciate over time!
However, sometimes, a particular trim level, like an M Sport package, can have a high demand on the second-hand market, reducing depreciation! (Fun fact, even though it’s called ‘M Sport,’ it doesn’t mean that the 3 Series should be viewed as a sports car.)
Lastly, if a BMW 3 Series is tuned, it may increase or decrease its depreciation, depending on the quality and reputation of its tuning parts.
Tip: Are you interested in all the pros and cons of a BMW 3 Series? If so, check out our article here!
How long does a BMW 3 Series last?
To find out how long a BMW 3 Series lasts, we used real-life data of how long people kept their BMW 3 Series.
Here is what we concluded:
The BMW 3 Series lasts at least 250,000 miles with regular maintenance. This is based on multiple high-mileage BMW 3 Series on sale in the US and UK for the four latest BMW 3 Series generations.
And you can find an overview of our main results in the table below:
|3 Series generation||Fuel type||Average of 5 highest-mileage cars on sale||Highest mileage|
|G20 (2019 – onwards)||Petrol||88,640 miles (142,650 km)||95,450 miles (153,610 km)|
|G20 (2019 – onwards)||Diesel||104,770 miles (168,610 km)||123,000 miles (197,950 km)|
|F30 (2012 – 2019)||Petrol||203,600 miles (327,660 km)||214,280 miles (344,850 km)|
|F30 (2012 – 2019)||Diesel||199,460 miles (321,000 km)||213,168 miles (343,060 km)|
|E90 (2005 – 2012)||Petrol||224,980 miles (362,070 km)||232,000 miles (373,370 km)|
|E90 (2005 – 2012)||Diesel||216,520 miles (348,450 km)||229,000 miles (368,540 km)|
|E46 (1998 – 2005)||Petrol||230,220 miles (370,503 km)||256,000 miles (411,990 km)|
|E46 (1998 – 2005)||Diesel||177,270 miles (285,280 km)||189,080 miles (304,290 km)|
If you want to learn more about these long-lasting BMW 3 Series and tips for making your 3 Series last longer, you can find our in-depth article here!
Lastly, if your BMW 3 Series doesn’t start anymore, don’t immediately panic thinking you need a replacement; one of these seven simple fixes might just solve it!
So, do BMW 3 Series models hold their value?
Well, of course, the answer is no, but how bad is it?
We can conclude that the most significant part of the depreciation of a BMW 3 Series happens within the first five years. On average, the BMW 3 Series will depreciate over half of its original value during this time!
Therefore, it will never make financial sense to buy a brand-new BMW 3 Series. For the best bang for your buck, look for a 5-year-old model with as few miles as possible.
At last, we can also conclude that the depreciation of the BMW 3 Series is much more closely tied to its age rather than its mileage.
For example, a 5-year-old BMW 3 Series with 80,000 miles will have a significantly higher value than a 9-year-old BMW 3 Series with the same mileage.
What did you think of this article? Let us know in the comments below, and have a great rest of your day!
Tip for your next read: 8 Mind-Blowing Tips For Your BMW 3 Series (Hidden Features)