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BMW 3-Series 2005 and earlier



  • ccotenjccotenj Posts: 610
    road trip!!! :)

    josh - i use the lexol products too.

  • vkwheelsvkwheels Posts: 218
    Just water and a soft cloth on the wood seems to work best for me too.
  • Do not forget the depreciation that exists on a 2002 now that 2003 is here. A $600 difference is meaningless considering the additional year of full service and the additional depreciation that must be considered on any car that is purchased this late in the model year. Go with 2003.

    That said, there may not yet be any discount on a 2003. Here in Houston, most people have to pay MSRP to get the car now. It may be different in other places.
  • dl7265dl7265 Posts: 1,381
    thats scary about the brakes. Btw maybe ill send you my brochure collection soon..its starting to take over. lol

    A word on the lexol my brother tried it on a leather chair in his home and it was removing the dye, the chair was burgandy and supposedly of high quality, i guess id keep the lexol to the cars..

  • seivwrigseivwrig Posts: 388
    My brochure collection has to be organized. I still have the bulk of my collection in Miami. My personal favorites are my Aston Martin and Lotus brochures. I have been collecting since '78. The biggest part of my collection are BMW, Porsche and GM brochures. I used to live near a BMW dealer in England and Porsche dealership in Syracuse, NY. My collection started because a photo of a M-B C111 prototype. As a child, we collected trading cards of sports cars and prototypes.
  • mg330cimg330ci Posts: 162

    Actually, I bet that in our notoruosly litigious country, If anybody damages its BMW engine due to a low oil level, he could sue BMW for BIG BUCKS, as their instructions for measuring the oil level do not match the actual car.

    Quick poll

    1.How may people in this board have actually read the instruction manual.
    2. How may people in this board have actually measured their oil level.
    3.How may people in this board have actually noticed this discrepancy.
  • 1pierce1pierce Posts: 284
    mg330ci poll: Won't have my Bimmer until Thurs. As with all of my new cars, I will read the manual cover-to-cover, with excruciating attention to detail, the first week, and then won't look at it again until I need to know something.

    A4 and Brakes: I test drove 4 different 2002 A4's, with various engine/drivetrain combos. The one thing they all had in common was brakes that were noticeably inferior to the BMW's I drove. That factor, along with the subjective "feel" and intangible rush of the Bimmer, was a major part of my decision to go with the 325i over the A4.

    More Brakes: Neither my '99 Nissan Maxima, nor my mother's 2001 Nissan Altima, has what I would describe as a "touchy" brake feel compared to my Caravan or pick-up. I did not notice this sensation with the BMW (I may just be used to it?).

    vkwheels: My personalized plate (now, you're going to be disappointed - it's not creative, it's pretentious) is "PIERCE 1". I've had it on various cars since 1990. I tried in vain to get "PIERCE 2" and "PIERCE 3" for my other car and truck, but they have both been taken in PA for over 15 years. Go figure? I had to settle for "2 Pierce" on my Van. Given the status of "P...2" and "P...3", I consider my personalized plate to be priceless. I once threatened to walk out during a lease signing, when the dealer said I might not be able to transfer my plate.

    I may be e-mailing you on the exterior car care issue after I get the Bimmer. Electric Red will glow like the sun, and I'd kind of like to keep it that way.
  • erickplerickpl Posts: 2,735
    I was looking for a teen defensive driving school for my daughter who is 16 and found this: It is held at Willow Springs Raceway north of LA.

    They also have some driving schools. The pro there has experience in BMW's (according to the web site). Maybe we should look into doing something like that with this school. Would it be better to try to coordinate something here or deal with the BMWCCA groups around here (Fresno and LA)? Anybody here be interested in doing that with their 3er?

  • tenet1tenet1 Posts: 354
    1) Yes
    2) Yes
    3) Yes. My service manager said to use the 2 notches as the markers to measure the oil level.
  • brave1heartbrave1heart Posts: 2,698
    1. I read the manual cover-to-cover but it took me over a year. I'd made it my bedtime reading so I may not remember much from it, though :o) Then again, that's the only way I could have read it all.
    2. I measure the oil but not nearly as often as I should.
    3. Because I didn't remember what the manual said, I did not notice the discrepancy and used the 2 notches as the markers.
  • Does anyone have experience or a recommendation for the appropriate tire "traction device" (i.e., chains, cables or "Spider Spikes") for a 2002 325i sedan with 17-inch wheels? I understand that BMW does not make them and that there can be wheel well clearance problems with the larger sport package wheels. "Spider Spikes" look like a great idea, but at $300, pretty costly (although cheaper than buying two BMW wheels and fitting them with snow tires!). I don't live in the Midwest where I'd be driving in snow for months--I simply want to drive from the San Francisco Bay Area to the Sierra Nevada a couple of times this winter!
  • postoakpostoak Posts: 537
    I don't use anything to clean my dash and other vinyl areas. (I don't have kids to get these areas dirty.) They DO get dusty, though, and for removing dust I've found Swiffer Sweeps (electrostatically charged dusting cloths) to work really well.
  • bimmer3ibimmer3i Posts: 48
    The 2003 330i I ordered has an scheduled production on Sept 20, 2002. Does anybody knows (in your experience) the approximate number of weeks it will be delivered? I'll be returning the car I leased on Oct 27.
  • bimmer3ibimmer3i Posts: 48
    I had added the SP in my order in addition to PP. I live in NJ, do I need to purchase winter tires or the perf tires are AS tires?
  • bimmer3ibimmer3i Posts: 48
    I appreciate any comments on dealer install alarm or Lojack. Do you have any of these system installed in your 3 series or the manufactured installed anti theft system is good enough?
  • nerdnerd Posts: 203
    I answer "yes" to all three questions.

    I had the dealer's service manager show me the full mark on the 2.5L engine. He showed me that "full" is at the upper end of the short (about 1/4" long) plastic section between the two teardrop-shaped plastic sections. That's where the level has stayed since my wife took delivery of the car 4K miles ago.
  • mschukarmschukar Posts: 351
    Your tires are most likely summer tires and would be quite dangerous in more than a dusting of snow.

    Go to (I can see the link just to the left of your message). You should be able to get a set of wheels and tires for around $600.

  • twoof1twoof1 Posts: 308
    I had the throttle pedal repair done today and the results so far are great. The pedal has never felt this smooth.
    It feels like butta'!!
    If anyone is suffering from the "sticky pedal" syndrome, I highly recommend you contact your dealer for the fix. My receipt shows 2 parts as follows (this is for a step equipped car not sure if it is the same for a stick)
    35-40-6-762-480 Pedal Module
    35-40-6-756-720 Adaptor Plate

    BTW: Does anyone know why they switched the shift pattern on the step tranny from '01 to '02?
    On my '01 325 you push forward (up) to upshift and backward (down) to downshift. For some reason they reversed it on the '02's. I had a 325ia loaner today and darn near killed myself.
    It is so counterintuitive to push up to downshift and down to upshift.
    Any ideas as to why?
  • locke2clocke2c Posts: 5,038
    to me it seems intuitive to pull back to shift up-- at least, it made sense to me when I was installing reverse shift pattern, full manual valvebodies in musclecars I've owned. under hard acceleration pulling back makes a lot of sense.

    but yes, a normal automatic goes forward to shift up so I can see how the rest of the Normal World would be confused by what you describe.

  • daswolfdaswolf Posts: 43
    to match that of the SMG option on the M3. This way the procedure for shifting is the same across all E46 non-manual transmissions.
  • dl7265dl7265 Posts: 1,381
    The Lojack as you might know is a theft recovery system. You should save on insurance and its monitored by the Police. Shop around for pricing , it varies.

    Now most might say a Bimmer is unlikely to get stolen, would have to be towed ect... i did see a 2002 Infiniti that somone coded a key for somehow my guess is worked for a dealer. mayb more likely a carjacking situation, basically it gives a good chance for the thief to get caught and also most cars are stripped at later time and might save your car.

    If i ever bought another Honda or GM product id get one for sure. The alarm adds motion detection and a siren is all i think ? anyone ?

    good luck
  • div2div2 Posts: 2,580
    I believe that someone on one of the Roadfly boards discussed swapping switches and/or harnesses in order to restore the "old" Step shift pattern. I think it may have been the E39 board, but the E46 probably uses a similar setup.
  • erickplerickpl Posts: 2,735
    I am getting ready to take my car in in a couple of months for my 15000 service (picked up the car in March!). How do you know of the pedal is the sticky type? My 325xi has a notchy feeling, almost like little stops when I am lightly changing speeds/correcting or if I move my foot very slowly. It doesn't seem to stick on one location, but the depression of the pedal isn't smooth.

  • A dealer told me they will loan me a car each time I do the services. Is this a standard programm national wild? Since 2003 model provide four years maintainance program, does that mean within the first four years I can get this free loaner program?

    I am in negotiation with some dealer for a 2003 325i. They told me there is a Group Dealer Advertising fee for $200 on each car. I never heard about that and I told the dealer that the advertising fee should have nothing to do with my special order. Anyone has such experience?
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    Loaner programs vary by dealer. It probably means that you will get a loaner car every time you bring your car there for service, not just scheduled maintenance.

    The $200 MACO advertising fee is kosher and many here on the board living in larger metropolitan areas have paid it. It is actually listed on the dealer invoice.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • kp40mkp40m Posts: 19
    I was originally planning to buy a 325xi, PP, CWP, Xenon’s, (white, 5 speed, black leatherette).

    I'm trying to control my costs. I want the all wheel drive and CWP because I live in the NE. We don't get a ton of snow, but this will be my only car and I drive 45 miles each way to work.

    I’m thinking about not getting the PP. I plan to keep the car for at least 100,000 miles. Will I regret not getting the power seats and the sunroof? I am not concerned about the loss of most of the other PP items, e.g., rain sensing wipers, auto mirror, wood trim, auto headlights, computer, etc.

    I have never had a car with a sunroof or power seats, so I don’t think I’ll miss these. I’m not as concerned about the lower resale value as I plan to keep this car for 5 to 6 years.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    what you're asking for can be done. You'll have to special order the car with no PP and especially no sunroof. The dealer will probably ask you for a sizeable deposit as he'd have a very hard time selling your car if you back out of the deal.

    If you're really trying to keep your costs in line, might I suggest getting a 325i (sans the X)? You'll save yourself the $1750 they charge for AWD and get yourself a set of winter tires & wheels that will get you anywhere you want to go any day of the week. Just a suggestion.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • brave1heartbrave1heart Posts: 2,698
    ... holding the unlock button is supposed to automatically open all windows and the sunroof. It does not work in my '01 325i. Was this something that came with the premium package? The car manual does not limit it to particular models and options, so I am thinking it should work on my car too... I have the automatic door lock (locks all doors at speed > 10 mph) turned on, could this be realted?
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    while I have no experience with BMWs, I know that VWs, Audis, & MBs need to have the key (in the door) turned all the way towards the lock or unlock position in order to open or close all the windows & the sunroof. This feature on the aforementioned cars DOES NOT work from the remotes.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • rpoperpope Posts: 4
    Are you talking about while driving, lowering all the windows? I know that I'm able to open all of my windows using the unlock button on my key, so that on a hot day it's a little cooler by the time i make it to my car. BTW it's a 325i without premium package.
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