Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Laura Walker graduated college with a BS in Criminal Justice with a minor in Political Science. She married her husband and began working in the family insurance business in 2005. She became a licensed agent and wrote P&C business focusing on personal lines insurance. Laura serviced existing business and wrote new business. She now uses her insurance background to help educate drivers about...

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Reviewed by Laura Walker
Licensed Agent for 10 Years

UPDATED: Jul 23, 2019

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The BMW 3 Series is one of the world’s top upscale midsize car. The auto press appreciates the 2011 3 Series’ versatility and performance, but acknowledges that this sport-oriented vehicle doesn’t offer a cushy, luxury-oriented ride.

Consumers can choose from among various body types for the BMW 3 Series, including a convertible, a sedan, a wagon, and a coupe. There’s also a choice of all-wheel drive or rear-wheel drive, and 230, 300 and 320 horsepower engines.

U.S. News cautions that the 2011 BMW 3 Series’ performance-oriented suspension might be too stiff for some consumers, and suggests the Lexus ES and the Hyundai Genesis as alternatives. Potential owners who crave a luxurious cabin should also take a look at the Audi A4 or A5.

Keep reading to learn about average auto insurance rates for upscale midsize sedans like the BMW 3 Series convertible or take a minute to enter your zip code and compare auto insurance rates.

BMW 3 Series Convertible Auto Insurance

Edmunds reports that at around $1,700 per year, or $142 per month, the 2011 3 Series convertible’s auto insurance rates are comparable to those of the Volkswagen Eos convertible and the Audi A5.

Expected auto insurance rates for the Volvo C70 convertible are also nearly identical to those of the 3 Series.

If you opt for a Mercedes Benz C Class convertible or an Infiniti G, you’ll pay about $100 more per year for auto insurance, and Cadillac CTS drivers can expect to pay nearly $2,000 annually.

Repair Costs for the 3 Series Convertible

U.S. News points out that the BMW 3 Series convertible is under warranty for the first 50,000 miles or four years that it’s on the road, so owners generally don’t begin paying for repairs out of pocket until the third or fourth year of ownership.

Edmunds projects 5-year repair costs of around $2,611, which is comparable to what Mercedes Benz C Class owners will have to pay. Anticipated 5-year repair costs for the Audi A5 are just $2,333 and expected repair costs for the Cadillac CTS are less than $2,000.

Volvo C70 drivers will pay about $1,915 for repairs, Edmunds predicts. Infiniti G and Eos convertible owners can anticipate repair bills of around $1,000, which is less than half of what 3 Series owners will typically pay.

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BMW 3 Series Maintenance Costs

The 3 Series convertible is covered under BMW’s limited warranty, which includes roadside assistance and scheduled maintenance. This means that most drivers won’t pay extra to maintain their vehicles until they’ve owned them for three to four years. This results in relatively low 5-year maintenance costs of $3,782 for the 3 Series convertible.

Edmunds reports that while Cadillac CTS and Volkswagen Eos drivers have average 5-year maintenance bills of just $3,300 or so, Mercedes C Class and Infiniti G drivers will both pay around $6,000 to maintain their vehicles for five years. Maintenance costs for the Volvo C70 are lower than the 3 Series’, at just $2,365 for five years.

BMW 3 Series Safety Ratings

While many upscale luxury vehicles are not safety-tested due to limited production numbers, this is not the case with BMW’s popular 3 Series. In the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s crash tests, the 3 Series earned the highest available “Good” rating for its performance in rear, side, and head-on collisions.

The 3 Series sedan’s roof strength score was only “Average,” though. Convertibles are not typically tested for roof strength.

Although the federal government hasn’t issued test results for the 2011 3 Series model, it rated the vehicle’s performance in side-impact collisions a five out of five stars. The 3 Series’ performance in front-impact collisions was rated a four out of five stars.

If you’re looking for a midsize upscale sedan with higher safety ratings, consider one of the vehicles that made the Insurance Institute’s list of Top Safety Picks for 2011. Though not many vehicles in this category made the list, safety-conscious consumers can choose from the Audi A4, the Volvo S60, the Volkswagen CC, or the Lincoln MKZ.

The Mercedes C Class is also a “Top Safety Pick” for 2011.

Safety Features for the BMW 3 Series

The 3 Series is equipped with standard safety features like anti-lock brakes, stability control, and traction control. There’s also standard brake drying, which automatically wipes the brakes clean when the 3 Series’ windshield wipers are activated.

Electronic brake force distribution works with the stability control system to correct under- and over-steering by the driver, and brake assist primes the brakes for action when an impeding collision is detected.

This function reduces stopping distance, which can prevent or reduce the severity of crashes.

The 3 Series also incorporates a post-collision safety system that cuts power to the engine and notifies emergency response teams when a severe crash occurs. There are also active head restraints that protect the driver and front passenger against whiplash in rear collisions.

The tire pressure monitoring system notifies drivers of dangerously low pressure.

BMW 3 Series Reliability

The 2011 BMW 3 Series earned a total of 6.0 points on J.D. Power and Associates’ 10-point reliability scale. Compared to the ratings for its competitors, this score is unimpressive. Seven vehicles in this category, including the Lexus IS and HS, the Lincoln MKZ, and the MKZ Hybrid, all earned 9.0s.

The Mercedes Benz C Class scored an 8.0. The Volvo S60 and C70 both scored 7.0s, as did the Audi A4 and A5. Other vehicles earning 6.0s included the Chevrolet Volt, Nissan Maxima and Saab 9-5

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