I agree with most of the comments regarding the feels of the new series 3 once you try it.
I just bought an e90 (328xi, 2010), and I am very happy with it. I had previously in Europe a 330d (230hp, 420 Nm [yes, more torque than the M3 at the time]) and I liked both cars much more than I like the new one.
I got a 328xi loaner, f30, in red.
I did like the interior, though, I like the shift nob (it was AT)... my wife found it weird though. I don't mind the screen... I actually like it... although if it could go down if you don't have Nav and want to use your own GPS would be really nice. It is a bit of waste of space... the trip computer has 3 lines in a screen that can fit... what... 8 lines easily??
What I did not like at all was the steering wheel... It felt dumb and too soft... not a BMW at all.
gas mileage was great though... even pressing the gas pedal to the floor quite a few times I got a good 24/25mpg... trust me with my new 328xi I was having 18/19 same kind of driving... now I am trying to see what can I do on easy driving, once I stop flying around the country for work...
I didn't specially like the 8 AT... but it did the trick. I didn't feel the engine could not deliver and gas mileage was really good.. easy to be on the +30mpg with easy driving.
(I got it with the levers at the steering wheel to shift gears, and I am not sure if the 4 suspension/driving modes (eco to sport plus) are standard or not).
I like the new levers more than the older, nicer, more elegant, easier for me... gear + on one side, - on the other... not pushing or pulling as I have in mine today... which I also love... (just like the new design more).