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BMW 3-Series 2005 and earlier



  • tomalexmtomalexm Posts: 6
    So today si bought a 2000 328ci with 20k mi on it from carmax. Some problems though, even with the "125 pt. inspection". One question I have is about the remote locking. My 528i, with the same security system, beeps when you lock or unlock it. Is the 328 supposed to beep? Also, the red security light under the mirror doesn't blink. Any ideas??? Thanks.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    I assume the 2000 328ci has the same security system as my old 1999 328i, and if so, there is no actual alarm, and as such, it does not beep or blink by default. Your two options are to add the alarm (and its requisite programming) or have the blinking and beeping programmed by your dealer. Option two may not be possible depending upon the vintage of your car. I know that mine couldn't be programmed and that the 2001s can be programmed, so yours is a definite maybe, ask your dealer.

    Best Regards,
  • jean7of9jean7of9 Posts: 192
    I am driving a 03 330xi since one year. With good winter tires it will drive you easy through the most unfavorable conditions. Last month, after a heavy snow storm , I drove 100km (60 miles) on icy country roads, not once I felt the car lost control. On wet or dry pavement the car is outstanding and fun to drive.
    I also have the NAV System. It works and is precise most of the time. While BMW Nav System is less sophisticated than MB, Lexus or Infinity, it is still efficient as long as you are within map coverage. And a nice gadget if you can afford it.
    Good Luck.
  • Can a dealer program the clown nose on an 03 330i to blink when the car is locked even though there is no alarm? I thought I remembered reading a post some time ago that said it was possible.

    Also, can the headlights be programed to blink when the doors are opened and locked using the remote?

    What is the cost for an alarm w/installation by a dealer?

  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    Yes, you can get the programmed.

    An alarm is only useful if its cost is outweighed by insurance savings. otherwise, an alarm safeguards nothing. it's all about the appearance of protection - the elctronic club that doesn't thwart any thief.
  • edhedh Posts: 246
    Consumer reports reliability charts show that the 3 takes hits on
    'power equipment" ,
    and in 96-98 "cooling'"
    (as far as these being problem areas).

    for those of you that have higher mileage 3's can you tell me what broke in these areas and how expensive to fix?
  • Thanks for your response to my question on programing the clown nose to blink even though I have no alarm. I called my dealer today to get an appointment to do this task and also to program the front signal lights to blink when locking and unlocking. He told me they could not do this programing unless I have the alarm! What gives? Don't they know how to do this task or is it a case of not wanting to do it? Anyone else out there who has had this done?
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 63,266
    It could be either one.. Maybe they don't know.. or maybe they think they can sell you an alarm if they say they can't do it.

    But, it can be done..... Unless 50 different people on this board and others are lying for no reason.



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  • sapessapes Posts: 3
    Has anyone tried to use a bluetooth enabled cell phone? Does any enabled phone work, and if so, is the sound quality (Rx/Tx) good? Any issues?
  • muzzy325imuzzy325i Posts: 19
    I have a 01 325i (5SP) with 70K on it. I have had one issue with the car, seat belt in the b-pillar was "clicking", they fixed it under warranty. Only standard mainentence was done on the car according to the service indicator (and a run in with a curb that required the passenger side front rim and control arms to be replaced, my fault not BMW's). I have an 04 330i (Sport, SMG, NAV) on order that just got off the boat in NYC. Should have it in a week or so, and I expect the same reliablity, although the SMG is a wildcard.
  • tenet1tenet1 Posts: 354
    Bluetooth is a standard, so yes, any enabled phone should work flawlessly with a handsfree Bluetooth kit. I have used BT with handsfree kits and to dial # from a Palm and love the technology. No transmit receive issues unless you venture too far from the phone because BT range is limited
  • memphis10memphis10 Posts: 161
    I went through the same issues with 2 dealerships in this area about the nose blink and the light flash during lock and unlock. I printed out the instructions from e46fanatics but the dealer refused to do it.
  • 307web307web Posts: 1,033
    Then a BMW speciality repair shop can do it if the dealer doesn't want to.
  • div2div2 Posts: 2,580
    "Then a BMW speciality repair shop can do it if the dealer doesn't want to."
    If you know an independent BMW shop that has a MODIC, please let me know.
  • seivwrigseivwrig Posts: 388
    I have had my 3 series for two years and my Ford Ranger for 5 years. Ranger has proven to be reliable with the exception of a speed sensor that I had to replace. The 3er has had the following sunroof cover clips replace twice, front windows seals replaced, power mirror module replaced, battery died, window regulators replaced, notchcy pedal fix. On the flip side, this is the most fun that I have had in a car. If church did not conflict with auto-x, I would be there. Most 3ers don't have all the problems that I have had. But I drive the car hard, most of the rattles probably are due to the poor Houston roads shaking the car done. I would recommend any 3er until the body style change. When that happens, then there will probably only be image drivers.
  • sapessapes Posts: 3
    Anybody try to use a Dell Jukebox? I am seeing many ways to interface this and like devices but it is not clear to me how much control you can have via the aux input? I assume volume, but what about new tracks, etc. I am also seeing folks use RF tuners and the cassette wiring. This at least assures total control but at the cost of elegance. I have seen a few folks offer the Phatnoise solution but that appears to be for a whole new system which would imply abandoning the old MP3. Given control vs clean lines, is the aux input a good option?
  • gordonwdgordonwd Posts: 337
    Has anyone ever seen a copy online of the setup sheet for the memory and key settings? I assume that my sales rep will go over this right before my car arrives so I can make my choices, but I'd like to see the list in advance so I don't have to make a bunch of quick decisions while sitting in his office.
  • I had the same concern, so I had my salesman fax the sheet to me a couple weeks out.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    iPod works with a BMW stereo and you can use your steering wheel controls to motivate the iPod. Dension makes a product called icelink that allows you to do all this, plus the ipod will be recharged at the same time. Very cool. If I were still using my BMW as a commuter the Icelink would be installed in my car.
  • erickplerickpl Posts: 2,735
    You got a URL for that thing? We bought a new iPod and would like to try that sometime.

  • gordonwdgordonwd Posts: 337
    On a 325i without an alarm installed, is there a visual confirmation (i.e., lights flash) when locking the car with the remote? I remember seeing something about having to have a special setting made in order to have this happen. What are the details of this? What should I tell my sales rep?
  • erickplerickpl Posts: 2,735
    My 325xi has the flashing corner lights and the blinking clown nose. It has no alarm.

    it had to be coded at the dealer, but they did it w/o complaint.

  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    For those of you with later E46 3ers (since 2001 model year, and maybe even some of the later 2000s), you CAN have your lights and clown nose programmed even though you don't have the alarm package, contrary to what many dealers may tell you. If you "Go To" message 15225 posted by jluftig on 24-May-2002 you will find a post that explains how the dealer should do the programming.

    Best Regards,
  • 307web307web Posts: 1,033
    I the point was that his dealer just doesn't "want" to do it. They prefer to get the money for doing a complete alarm install and refused to just activate the lights.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    In every case where a dealership has been unwilling to do the programming that I am aware of, it has simply been because they didn't believe that it could be done, and they are half right. Initially, the E46 required the alarm before it would recieve the programming without throwing errors. My 1999 328i was just such a car, unless I was willing to spring for the alarm, the programming wouldn't work.

    In the case of brislance1 and his new 330i, his dealer happily reprogrammed his car when he showed them post 15225. They were delightfully surprised that the programming worked and thanked him for the information.

    Best Regards,
  • wjc12345wjc12345 Posts: 10
    And I Can't wait!!

    One question about security - the car as it stands does not have any formal alarm system (at least I didn't order one from the dealer. Aside from "driveaway protection" (which I'm assuming is all about the chip in the key - are there any other standard security features? I'm giving serious consideration to the "Autolock" - a device that is similar to the Club - but is secured under the brake-pad. I've heard good things about this device - - any suggestions/advice??

  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    When I first got my 328i I was surprised when my insurance company told me that my policy actually got about $100 cheaper per year compared to my previous car, a 1995 5-Speed Passat GLX. When I asked why she told me that the anti theft features on BMWs were preventing thefts by all but the most professional of thieves. That was in January of 1999.

    Since then I have only heard of a single BMW being stolen, and that one was put on a flat-bed and gone within something like a five minute flat. The owner suspected that his house had been staked out and that they were waiting for him to come home.

    In essence, I have a difficult time justifying any anti-theft devices for my BMW, except maybe the alarm system. I say maybe because the guy who had his BMW flat-bedded had the alarm and he never heard it go off, right in front of his house.

    Best Regards,
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    Exactly. Short of towing it'd take a hardcore pro time to steal your bimmer.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    Does anyone know if it hurts the performance? We just ordered a 325i auto w/ it. Let me know if it's a bad idea, so we can go change the order. 'cause we like to protect the environment by keeping the car as smog-free as possible. The system is mainly a stronger-filtration catalyst or something like that. I assume it hurts the rpm-drop speed on lift-off for manual shift, which isn't available w/ SULEV anyway. BMW took care of the slow rpm drop when they switched from the 323/328 to 325/330 for '01.
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