BMW 3 Series Depreciation

A BMW 3 Series will depreciate 61% after 5 years and have a 5 year resale value of $16,563.

Once driven off the new car lot, the BMW 3-series loses value quickly, as do most BMWs. For new purchases, after four years, your 3-series will be worth less than half of its original sticker price. However, if you want to let someone else get the new car smell, and you want to save a bunch of money, consider one that is a few years old, and still falls within BMW's "certified pre-owned program", also known as a CPO car. Some good deals can be found here, and given that their looks don't change much, no one will know that it's not a brand new car.

The chart below shows the expected depreciation for the next 10 years. These results are for vehicles in good condition, averaging 13,500 miles per, and assumes a purchase price of $41,964 when new. Key in your purchase price, expected ownership period and estimated annual miles driven into our depreciation calculator, and we'll predict an expected resale value just for you.

BMW 3 Series Depreciation

Years Old Depreciation Residual Value Resale Value Mileage Resale Year
1 $6,643 84.17% $35,321 13,500 2021
2 $13,445 67.96% $28,519 27,000 2022
3 $18,519 55.87% $23,445 40,500 2023
4 $22,119 47.29% $19,845 54,000 2024
5 $25,401 39.47% $16,563 67,500 2025
6 $28,225 32.74% $13,739 81,000 2026
7 $28,871 31.20% $13,093 94,500 2027
8 $30,399 27.56% $11,565 108,000 2028
9 $32,929 21.53% $9,035 121,500 2029
10 $34,360 18.12% $7,604 135,000 2030
Years Old Depreciation Residual Value Resale Value
1 $6,643 84.17% $35,321
2 $13,445 67.96% $28,519
3 $18,519 55.87% $23,445
4 $22,119 47.29% $19,845
5 $25,401 39.47% $16,563
6 $28,225 32.74% $13,739
7 $28,871 31.20% $13,093
8 $30,399 27.56% $11,565
9 $32,929 21.53% $9,035
10 $34,360 18.12% $7,604

BMW 3 Series Depreciation Calculator

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If you purchase a used BMW 3 Series that is 2 years old, then you could save $13,445 compared to buying new, and still have a relatively new model with plenty of useful life remaining. If you plan to keep this vehicle for 3 years then your total cost of depreciation would be $11,956. Try other age and ownership length combinations, or different vehicles to see if you can find depreciation sweetspots where this cost is the lowest. Hint: Try vehicles between 2 and 4 years old, as brand new vehicles depreciate quickly. Also, if this is a recently released model and buying a few years old isn't possible, consider another vehicle, or perhaps wait until more used 3 Series models become available.

The Best Model Years to Buy a BMW 3 Series

The 2016 BMW 3 Series is our top pick for the best model year value for the 3 Series. With the 2016, you would only pay, on average, 47% of the price as new, with 67% of the vehicle's useful life remaining. The 2017 and 2015 model years are also attractive years for the 3 Series, and provide a relatively good value. Our rankings consider multiple factors, including the 3 Series's price as new, current price, maintenance costs and remaining years of overall predictabe expenses. Our top ranked model year represents the most car for the money of the BMW 3 Series models.

BMW 3 Series Historical Depreciation

Year New Price Current Price Maintenance $ Decline % Decline % Paid Value Rating
2020 $41,964 $41,964 $362 $0 0% 100%
2019 $40,216 $34,284 $435 $7,680 18.3% 84.17%
2018 $41,673 $28,894 $572 $5,390 15.72% 67.96% Good
2017 $39,467 $22,829 $779 $6,065 20.99% 55.87% Better
2016 $38,779 $19,255 $915 $3,574 15.66% 47.29% Best
2015 $38,139 $16,246 $1,192 $3,009 15.63% 39.47% Better
2014 $37,967 $14,126 $1,696 $2,120 13.05% 32.74% Good
2013 $36,952 $13,463 $1,935 $663 4.69% 31.2%
2012 $36,937 $12,274 $2,094 $1,189 8.83% 27.56%
2011 $36,240 $10,212 $2,410 $2,062 16.8% 21.53%
2010 $36,489 $9,090 $2,479 $1,122 10.99% 18.12%
2009 $36,464 $8,421 $2,858 $669 7.36% 15.26%
2008 $40,873 $8,517 $3,396 +$96 -1.14% 12.53%
Year Price % Paid Value Rank
2020 $41,964 100%
2019 $34,284 84.17%
2018 $28,894 67.96% Good
2017 $22,829 55.87% Better
2016 $19,255 47.29% Best
2015 $16,246 39.47% Better
2014 $14,126 32.74% Good
2013 $13,463 31.2%
2012 $12,274 27.56%
2011 $10,212 21.53%
2010 $9,090 18.12%
2009 $8,421 15.26%
2008 $8,517 12.53%
Our Favorite BMW 3 Series Photo

About Our Data and "Useful Lifespan"

We aggregate and analyze millions of automotive data points from a variety of sources, including some of the industry's leading data providers. The historical depreciation tables, charts, values and overall rankings are conducted on a semi-annual basis, with our most recent update published in April 2020.

While the "Useful Lifespan" of a vehicle will vary greatly from one model to the next, and even one owner to the next, we have determined that twelve years is the most appropriate timeframe which will yield us good, usable data - and that any data beyond that timeframe becomes more dispersed, and ultimately less reliable. Moreover, maintenance costs beyond that timeframe become significantly more varied, as a vehicle owner's care of a particular vehicle will greatly impact its value, and ongoing maintenance costs. We are very much hopeful, however, that your car or truck will last well beyond twelve years, and that it gets you to where you want to go.

If you would like to know more about our data and process, check out our FAQ here.