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2013 and earlier BMW 3-Series Prices Paid and Buying Experience



  • Either way it's a very different feeling from a RWD BMW. My sister has a feels like 3800 lbs it's rated at.
  • There's a 1260 rebate for any 2008 with automatic. Additionally, there's a $1500 rebate for anyone who chooses BMWFS. So consider a 2008 if you can find it...

    Also, there's a dealer who works through bimmerfest members and he's out of LA. He hooks people up left and right on that site.
  • jimbresjimbres Posts: 2,025
    But for cars that have a record of holding their value (honda, bmw), leasing is a great option and is often less expensive than if you had purchased (either with cash or with a loan)

    Makes sense if you're comparing a 3-year lease to buying a new car & then trading it in for another new car 3 years later. But I'd rather buy something I like & keep it for 8 to 10 years. This approach yields the lowest cost per mile.

    If you buy a new car & then get rid of it before its 8th birthday, you're missing out on the financial "sweet spot" of car ownership, which begins when the car is 4 years old. By that time, you should have paid off any car loan, which means that your interest expense is zero, & the steepest part of the depreciation curve is behind you. Although your car is no longer under warranty, your repair costs should be a small fraction of what depreciation would cost you if you bought or leased a new car. (As a car ages, rising repair costs are offset by falling depreciation costs.)

    A well cared-for 4 to 8 year old car that you own free & clear is just about the best transportation bargain available.

    I wouldn't keep a car much longer than 10 or 11 years. I kept one of our cars for over 13 years, & the last 2 years killed me. (At the time, work & family issues kept me too busy to shop for a replacement, so I just kept fixing it.)
  • I try to emphasize the point, it is not a requirement to have an awd to drive in the winter. Check out the Wheels and Tires Discussion.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,323
    why do you need an Xi (AWD) coupe in so cal?

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

  • Moving to Colorado this summer and my current lease is up in 3 weeks so I can't hold out until I get there. It is very hard to find this car here though.
  • I couldn't keep a car that long. I'd go crazy with boredom. Like food, jobs movies and well everything else, 2-3 years is about as long as I can put up with anything.

    I just did a spreadsheet today comparing a 2006 3 series with .9% financing to a 2008 328i lease. The lease, assuming my conservative repair/maintenance estimates are decent, came out 2k cheaper over the 3 year period.

    Yes if I were willing to buy a 2006 and keep it for 7-8 years it'd return cash like crazy. But I can't see holding onto a car that long.
  • jimbresjimbres Posts: 2,025
    Like food, jobs movies and well everything else, 2-3 years is about as long as I can put up with anything.

    Are you married? (Sorry - I couldn't resist.)

    As I said in an earlier post, I drove a new 328xi coupe last week & came away from it completely satisfied with my nearly 8-year-old 330i sedan. While the coupe had some neat features that weren't available on the 3 in 2001, it wasn't in any way a more entertaining ride than what I have now. If I bought it, I wouldn't have any more fun than I'm having now.

    In fairness to the coupe, it was an automatic, & I have a bone-deep prejudice against 3s with slushboxes.
  • Hi,

    We are looking at a base 2009 328i 4-door.

    The costco price quoted from dealer is $1,200 over cost. With cost being the invoice price of the vehicle + destination charge of $825 + MACO of $200 + Training & Service fee of $180.

    The dealer will pass on the $1,500 rebate from BMW if we purchase before that offer expires.

    Does this sound a fair price? Or we could negotiate on our own to get a better deal? We are in Oregon with few BMW dealers, and the dealer is pretty nice which makes our not-good neogitating skills even less effective.


  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 10,278
    I've kept my 3 Series for almost 14 years, my jeep 7, my X3 4, and my Speed Triple 5. I've only had my 1975 2002 for 3 months. The only car I've been ready to pitch after less than 2 years of ownership is my Mazdaspeed 3. 14 months after I took delivery I was more than ready to get rid of it. I still have it, unfortunately.

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport / 2014 M235i / 1999 Wrangler / 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2016 i3 REX/2009 Cooper Clubman Son's: 2009 328i

  • I have been reading the last few pages in this thread, and you posters have a lot of experience and knowledge on the BMW 3-series as well as buying them so I feel comfortable asking a question here.

    I am in the market for a 3-series, unfortunately I can't afford to buy a new one however I can afford a used vehicle. I was looking around the 2001-04 models which I have the cash now to buy out right but they have no warranty and who knows what repairs I might have to make in the future. So I went to check out a lease instead, low down payment, reasonable monthly payments, plus the free maintenance makes it pretty tempting. I went to two dealers, one give me an offer for a 09(I believe it was 09 as I went early January) 328i Xdrive, real leather, powerseats(basically the cold weather package) for 550/month, 2331 due on signing while another one afford basically the standard package 09' 328ix for 497/month, 3646.86 due upfront with a residual value at 22,390.50(the car's worth now is about36-38k).

    Now, the only reason I wanted a AWD was because I live in CT and we have had our share of bad snow storms over the years(especially this winter) but I have a Honda Pilot which is great in the snow however I not a big fan of SUVs. Maybe I should instead look at the RWD.

    So my question is do I buy a used 2001-04 BMW 3-series which I can afford to buy out right but doesn't have a warranty and is in the 50-80k miles or do I lease one with a warranty, 0$ maintenance fee but obviously I end up paying more in the end. Maybe i should look in the middle and finance a certified used from one of the dealers. What would be the best move?

    I have never owned a BMW and the main reason why I want one is for the aesthetics and reputation of the company. I'm not really into fancy luxury features, I just want to feel comfortable in the car(leg room, my butt not feeling sore after a long ride) and I want to feel confident about the car, that it won't let me down over the years of due to use. Hope you guys can help me.
  • With the exception of 2 cars (a 1996 Saab 9000 CS and a 1998 Suburban), I generally have leased and kept the cars for 2-3 years. The Saab was a great car, kept it for 10 years - pretty reliable, roomy, and unique. Also had a great local Saab mechanic when needed. Alas, GM's insular culture seems to have ruined Saab over the last several years. The Suburban was also a mainstay for 10 years, and although it made frequent (and expensive) trips to the service dept, it was an invaluable family hauler - whoever owns it next will probably find an entire buffet stuck between the three rows of seats! Beyond 10 years (and 100,000 miles), I generally find the cost and hassle of keeping the car maintained to be unacceptable. When I lease, I like to keep the lease term shorter or equal to the warranty period. I have leased acura, honda, audi, and most recently Infiniti M35. Infiniti was a great car - enough to make me consider buying it at end of 3 year lease terrm. However, real value was 6-7K less than stated residual in contract, and they wouldn't negotiate. So, I turned it in.........would like to find a good lease deal on a 3-series, but local dealer appears unwilling to negotiate much, and January BMWFS residuals went down and their money factors went UP. May have to wait until fall to get a good deal on a purchase.
  • I leased a 2006 325ci / graphite / sports + premium / xenon / HK and the lease is up at the end of March. A rep from BMW called me the other day to ask if I would be interested in buying the car for $21k - $3500 + plus I could finance at .9%. My monthly payments would be $338 if financed over 5 years. In other words, the cost of the car would be $19,783 (includes the sales tax).

    I don't mind the car. Its been well taken care of and all that jazz, but I did have my heart set on either a new 2009 Audi or a CPO 330ci with or w/o ZHP.

    So my question this deal good enough to jump on or should I shop around for another CPO or buy / lease a new car.

    FYI - not a huge fan of the newer BMW body styles. Loathe the interior.
  • if you only keep a car for a few years, and you get favorable lease terms (although its hard to predict the future). leasing would be preferable to buy new and trade but maybe not buy a used one. I am a subscriber of the belief that some cars are truly special and simply cannot be replaced by a newer model. You can find quite a few BMW's that simply can't be replaced. I have a E36 BMW which I believe to be just one of the greatest. I bought another 3 series, with the truly remarkeable 300 HP twin turbo engine which I think would be another one of the milestones in BMW history. I find it hard to part with things that work really well. I usually make good choices, but once I had an Ford Expedition with a 4.6 V8 to tow my camping trailer, I couldn't wait to get rid of it. I got that out of my stable in 3 years. Try to pick a car that you you full in love with over the years. It's cheaper than constantly making car payments your whole life. My '94 is still admired by many. It has aged gracefully. Sounds like a wife doesn't it.
  • goralgoral Posts: 138
    How about this for a deal?
    link title

    I'm quite tempted, but can't get myself to get rid of my '02 330i manual...
    By far, the best car I've owned! After purchasing it 4 years ago (as a CPO w/ 40K miles), I've managed to put 75K of absolutely trouble-free miles on it! In this timeframe, the only thing that I actually had to do to it is change the oil and air filter (by myself) every 15K miles and replace couple bulbs...
  • So if I were to buy a used 3-series, is there anything i should look for? Sort of a bug-a-boo that some 3-series are cursed with.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 10,278
    So if I were to buy a used 3-series, is there anything i should look for? Sort of a bug-a-boo that some 3-series are cursed with.

    The 2001-2004 3ers have a pretty decent reliability record. At @60,000 miles you'll probably need a water pump, but that is no big deal. Older cars had problems with window regulators but the newer cars(and replacement regulators) have an improved design. The real key is to find a car that has been maintained by the book, as BMW's do not tolerate neglect. Find a decent dealer and/or a good indie BMW tech and you'll be good to go. I'd say that maintenance and repairs for a 3er of that vintage should amount to no more than $900 per year.

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport / 2014 M235i / 1999 Wrangler / 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2016 i3 REX/2009 Cooper Clubman Son's: 2009 328i

  • chungchung Posts: 7
    I called today but they said the program ended yesterday. I was so ready to grab that deal.. oh well I guess I will have to wait for another one..
  • I just got a new lease for '08 335i and am trying to figure out how to work the STEPTRONIC on that. As far as I understand its the DS mode and you use it manually change the gears with higher numbers like M5/ M6 used for faster speed. So on the highway I swtich from D to DS and then accelerate and switch up till I reach M6 and drive on that (over 65-70 mph). On slowing or exiting the highway I just shift back to D - is this the right way to use it or am i missing something?
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 64,692
    D is for drive... You can put it there and drive it like any automatic..

    When you push the lever to the left.. you are in Sport mode... That is still fully automatic, but with more aggressive shift points (higher revs before shifting, quicker downshifts when slowing down).

    Once you are in Sport mode, you can then shift manually by tipping the lever forward and backward to upshift or downshift...

    Nothing you are doing is going to hurt the transmission, but it's totally unnecessary, especially on the freeway. In fact, by shifting over to Sport mode, you are probably going to use way more fuel than just leaving it in D (which is where it belongs for highway use).



    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • Thanks for the message. I did like the feel off the sports mode and manually changing the gears on the highway - i think its more responsive than just on '"D". But I see your point on leaving it on D if not overtaking or making a move. Does anyone else use this ? I think its a very cool think considering the pickup and response you get from the engine - what i am unsure off is when do use it ? for taking overtaking, for driving fast, or when exiting from the highway or in the city? any thoughts ?
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 64,692
    Everyone plays with it, when they first get it... I find that Sport mode is a lot more fun around town, even in fully automatic mode... But, you'll find that it makes a big difference in fuel consumption... After a few weeks/months, you'll probably tire of it...

    Out on the highway, if you need maximum power, just floor it... There is no difference with your foot on the floor.. :)

    Also.. once you are in manual mode, you have to move the lever back to "D" to get back in automatic... If you then want the Sport mode in automatic, just push it back to the left..


    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • - what i am unsure off is when do use it ? -

    For psychological reasons. It's there to massage the psyche.
  • Did BMWFS make the offer, or the dealer? I called BMFS to try to negotiate the unrealistically high end of lease (April) purchase price on my 2006 330i, and they wouldn't give me the time of day...
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 64,692
    It's too early... Wait for them to call you... probably around 30 days before the end..


    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • goralgoral Posts: 138
    That's bull!!! I think I got the email the same day I posted the message!
  • Can anyone tell me if BMW has announced new incentives for the 3-series for February?
  • they have. they're horrible right now.

    In essence: 0.9% for 60 months and first two payments made by bmw. That's for anyone.

    On leases there's no rebate (beyond auto trans rebates on 08s) for normal buyers. If you currently have a lease or loan with BMW FS or ended one in the last 6 months, you can get 1k off a lease and a reduction on the money factor.

    BMW apparently wants to encourage purchasing of their cars instead of leasing. Hopefully they'll modify their offers by the end of the month (like the end of January).
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