The F30 may not handle with the same level of feel as previous 3's... And I'm not arguing that, as I'm certainly no BMW expert. This is my first 3 (sportline), and I haven't spent enough time with previous 3's to really have an opinion one way or another.
However, let's remember what it's still far better than:
My previous car, a 2004 Mazda 6s, which by all accounts handles far better than any Honda Accord or Toyota Camry, the cars with which it competes... and the F30 kills the Mazda 6S in handling, of course... So the F30 is supposed to be a big step up from this class of car, and it sure as hell is.
It's also way better than my 99 A4 2.8 was, with the Sport Package. And my dad's 2011 Jetta Diesel. And my friend's 2010 G37 sedan, and my other friend's 2008 E300. And my ex's 2004 Volvo S50. Spanks all of them. I could go on and on.
So anyone who is looking to step up from lesser handling cars of a similar size, fear not. This ain't no Accord with a nicer badge.
If you're looking for it to handle as well as your old 3, perhaps not... but that doesn't mean it's "vague" or "disconnected"... it's still one hell of a nice handling car.
Just 2 cents from someone who isn't as expert is these car as you are, and apparently happier with the F30 as a result