The BMW 325 was part of BMW’s very successful line of compact executive cars—the 3 Series. Since the time it was introduced, it has been one of the automaker’s best-selling models. Sales of the 3 Series, in fact, accounts for approximately 30% of BMW’s annual total automotive sales.
1984: The first 325 (325e – the first 3 Series fitted with catalytic converter)
It was in the second generation of 3-Series, 1984 to be exact, when the 325 model was introduced, along with the eta six-cylinder engine. With the 325e designation (e signifies efficiency), this 3-Series model was fitted with BMW’s new fuel-saving concept, making it not just powerful but also clean and economical. But what made this model more noteworthy is its being the first 3-Series variant to be outfitted with a catalytic converter.
That same year, BMW also launched the ultra-power 325i, with 325iX variant featuring a permanent four-wheel drive system. These variants derived power from the 2.5-liter version of the M20, which generated 169 hp and was fitted with Bosch Motronic fuel injection. Anti-lock braking system was also standard.
1990: The 325TD and 325TDS (the first four-cylinder turbo diesel under the 318 tds)
The third generation of the 3-Series was marked by the debut of the four-door sedan, which showed off unmatched elegance and modern technology. While coupe versions were released two years after, the sedan had already found its way to the people’s heart because it was significantly larger and, thus, more spacious. Other highlights of this generation were the unveiling of the new BMW M3 as well as the new convertible.
Two other newcomers in this generation were the new six-cylinder engines–the 2.5-litre, 85 kW/115 hp powertrain and the new six-cylinder engine featuring turbocharger and intercooler and was able to crank out 105 kW/143 hp. The former powertrain was fitted under the hood of the BMW 325td while the latter provided power to the BMW 325tds, which made it able to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in 10.4 seconds.
2005: The new 325i (better performance, respectable fuel economy)
The fifth generation of the 3-Series made its global premiere at the Geneva International Motor Show. This generation was marked by the path-breaking innovations received by the Series’ petrol and diesel engines. With power output of 160kW/218 hp, the 325i was able to offer BMW’s six-cylinder dynamics in two levels. It is also among the BMW models that offered a world first—the first magnesium-aluminum composite crankcase used in volume-production engines.
The BMW 325 variants released all through the fifth generation of 3-Series still delivered the universally-acclaimed ride and handling balance that seemed to be exclusive to the 3 Series. The 325i Sport package included a 17-inch wheels and tires, fatter steering wheel, stiffer suspension, as well as grippy front sport seats featuring thigh and bolster adjustments.