2022 BMW 330e Long-Term Update | Cupholder deep dive

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We Americans have a reputation for cupholders in cars. We love them, and we complain if they aren’t there. I admit to the first part, and I’m sure I’ve unconsciously muttered “Where the hell are the damn cupholders?” in a car once or twice. I tend to maintain a number of beverages at any single moment. Flat water, soda water, tea, coffee, cola — I like to have options (Autoblog Editor-in-Chief Greg Migliore can attest to the multitude of cups and bottles on my desk. Little secret: he’s a multi-bev man, too.)

European cars aren’t exactly known for their drink accommodations, but you’ve got to live with what you’ve got. And Autoblog currently has a 2022 BMW 330e xDrive in its long-term garage. So how does it fare for me and my tendency to have various beverages on hand and in reserve?

Let’s start where I sit. Here’s what I’ve got available to me in the driver’s seat. There are two front cupholders below the center stack. They're not particularly big, but more than enough for a standard water bottle or soda can. They have springy pieces of plastic that loosely hold items in place. Note that if you have drinks in them, it renders the cubby behind it inaccessible. That's a problem since that's where the wireless charger is.

A 32-ounce Nalgene does not fit, sadly. That's not unusual.

There are also wells in the door panels that can accommodate a drink. Soda cans and regular water bottles fit loosely. It could hold the big Corksicle cup snugly, but at an angle that could lead to leakage. Again, no-go on the Nalgene.

How about the rear passengers? Will they go thirsty in the 3 Series? As long as nobody is sitting in the middle, the outboard passengers can enjoy a pair of cupholders center armrest. Press a button and the cupholder-covering doors pop up to become the cupholders themselves. Instead of spring-loaded pieces of plastic, it has rubber flaps that help, a little, to keep your drinks from flopping around in there. It can even hold the big Corksicle cup alongside a regular water bottle.

No dice on the Nalgene.

The rear doors also have molded wells that can hold a smaller drink. The larger Corksicle won't fit, nor will the Nalgene. The little slot behind the cupholder is too small to store a spare can of cola.

Finally, for a little extra storage, you can pop a couple 12-ounce beverages in each of the cargo-net-style seatback pockets.

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