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BMW 3-Series 2005 and earlier



  • jasonkureejiijasonkureejii Posts: 210
    I just called up BMWNA and they told me the that it is being manufactured in Regensberg, Germany. I think the VIN taken from the Owner's Circle (the BMWNA rep called it an e-VIN) is maybe a bit different from the normal VIN on the car....
  • brave1heartbrave1heart Posts: 2,698
    I have a lot of flexibility in my job and the quality of my work has not suffered a bit. However, I've started catching up on office work at home and even on two rare weekends to make up for the time I spend on the board. It's a tradeoff but I'm really enjoying the board and it's a price I'm willing to pay. In my business you get judged on what you can get done and how well you do it, not what you do by the minute during regular business hours. We are all mature adults and can bear responsibility for ourselves :o)
  • aaa330iaaa330i Posts: 63
    Whew! Was is still in 150?
  • blaketagblaketag Posts: 24
    Logged on to Owner's Circle today and noticed that the status of my ordered 330i (Steel Gray w/ Black 'ette and SP, CD, STEP, Xenons, Heated Seats, Sunroof) had changed to "Scheduled for Production". My Production # had also been updated to an actual VIN #. Called BMW NA and found that my car is scheduled to begin construction on 6/8 (Week 23). I was originally scheduled for Week 25 when I placed the order on 5/22. I assume I'm status 112 at present, as I forgot to get the status code when I was on the phone with BMW NA. I'm REALLY impressed with the BMW ordering process so far! I love how you can track the status of the car so closely. After driving Hondas/Acuras for the last 15 years, this is a pleasant change! Hope I can take delivery before 7/20 when my approval on the current 330i lease rates expires. If it looks like it will be tight I plan to re-apply at the end of June. The wait is killing me!

  • rmk17rmk17 Posts: 16
    Couldn't agree more. I think I read before that you're in software, as am I. Since I began reading this board, my productivity hasn't fallen off, it's just been getting harder to maintain a high level!
  • brave1heartbrave1heart Posts: 2,698
    Do any other manufacturers even offer anything like this? Audi and VW certainly don't. As a matter of fact, it's almost too good and it allows you to worry about the car on daily basis :o)
  • arojeckiarojecki Posts: 4
    Does anyone have any opinions about the difference between the two models? Is the $4,000 premium for the 330 worth it?

    Also, I'm thinking about ordering the WAD package because of BMW's reputation for poor traction in snow. Should that make a difference for engine choice?

    Thanks very much.
  • arojeckiarojecki Posts: 4
    That should be AWD, not WAD.
  • I called BMWNA (thx for the #). The rep told me that it went into 150 on May 23rd and will be finished on or before June 8th. Two weeks in production? Que pasa, man? Anyway, she also said that the transportation overseas takes anywhere from 2-3 weeks. I had hoped to receive my 325 by July 4th or so (according to the dealer), but it may end up being longer.
  • brave1heartbrave1heart Posts: 2,698
    No, none of us has opinions about the difference between the two models :o)

    I'd get AWD only if I did a lot of snow/ice driving. The 330 is a more powerful car - it's up to you whether you want to spend 4-5 grand extra on otherwise near-identical cars. It wasn't worth it for me but it is well worth it for a lot of other people. If I absolutely had to go with AWD, I'd get the 330xi, as the 325xi would be too slow for my taste. However, the 325 RWD offers plenty of fun and acceleration when equipped with a manual.

    PS: You can correct you messages for up to 30 min after originally posting them by hitting the Edit button next to your message.
  • jasonkureejiijasonkureejii Posts: 210
    I think it is still in 152 status, paint shop, until the 8th...where it will be production complete.....
  • denrightdenright Posts: 285
    The 330 v. 325 issue is a bit of a sore spot around here. That said, here's my take.

    After you get them comparably equiped, the 330 is about $4K or so more. For that price, you go from 184 HP and I think 170 ft/lb of torque to 225 HP and 214 ft/lb of torque. A few more things are standard (including the premium sound system) and you get a couple bells and whistles, but the core difference is the bigger more powerful engine.

    I knew all along I was going to order an "xi" AWD model. It was either going to be a 325xi or a 330xi.

    I drove a 325xi and I was frankly unimpressed with the acceleration. The handling was great, as you would expect, but it just didn't have the "oomph" off the line I wanted. The AWD system seemed to tax the smaller engine a bit.

    The 330xi is significantly, perhaps even dramatically faster than the 325xi, and it felt much zippier. Because I am buying this car for performance as much as luxury and style, I felt it was worth the extra cash for the extra zip.

    I think it all comes down to how important it is to you to be able to get off the line quickly. For me, driving in urban traffic and zipping in and out of lanes as much as I do, it is important enough to warrant a few grand extra.
  • erricksonerrickson Posts: 130
    I wouldn't lose all hope just yet, my friend. My ship departed Bremerhaven on May 18, and arrived in Charleston today (13 days!)

    Assuming the planets align correctly, I would say it is not totally out of the question for you to see it the 1st week of July (imho)!
  • brave1heartbrave1heart Posts: 2,698
    Believe it or not, I can't argue with anything you said about 325 vs. 330. Except the torque on the 325 is 175 but yeah, minor difference. OK, 4 grand differences it is, I yield this time. When I did the numbers for myself, the difference was over 5 grand but that's because I really didn't want some stuff that came as standard on the 330 and to me, it was worthless. Case in points: electric chairs, hmmm, I mean power seats. Those were about $900 and since I don't want them, I think I didn't subtract that amount from the total difference. They are standard on the 330, right? So you can put it this way: 4 grand difference for the engine on paper. In reality, 5 grand difference for the engine and power seats, other things equal. Sound 'bout right?
  • erricksonerrickson Posts: 130
    I just checked the website, and did a search for all the vessels heading from Bremerhaven to Charleston (VPC). I counted at least 6 ships that are currently scheduled to arrive in Charleston before the end of June! I suppose the operative word in there is "scheduled", but nonetheless, I think you may see you may still get your 5.9% !!!
  • denrightdenright Posts: 285
    While Braveheart voiced doubt about the need for AWD unless you "do a lot of snow/ice driving," I must disagree. In fact, Braveheart lives in Boston and he went RWD, so he's a FAR heartier soul than am I.

    I live in DC, and we get maybe 20 inches of snow a year, and a few ice storms on top of that. That was more than enough to make me get the AWD. RWD cars are notoriously bad in inclement weather, and I don't care what they say about Dynamic Traction Control, the problem persists even in modern cars. Check out this article and you'll see what I mean:

  • twoof1twoof1 Posts: 308
    The Dinan web site lists the power increase for the Z3 2.3 with the CAI, Software & Exhaust triad as +16hp @ 6,500 RPM & +16lb/ft torque @ 4,000 RPM. I agree that the Dinan exhaust is pretty pricey, however it is made from Stainless steel. You could probably achieve similiar results with some other brand of aftermarket high flow exhaust. IF the new Dinan gear for the 325 has about the same increase it would bring it up to 200hp & 191ft/lb torque. The difference for me on a comparably equipped 330 would have been approx. $5,000.00. Price per hp difference VS the 325 is $122.00. The Dinan upgrade price per hp is $125.00. It's not how I rationalize an upgrade but I thought it interesting.
    BTW if your looking to beat a Z28 (at least in a straight line!) you bought the wrong car!!
  • How can I say this? How 'bout "I'M LOSING MY MIND!!" Seriously, though, when I placed my order at the end of April, there were no cars that were slated for production that could be modified to my specs. My salesperson said that I'd have to wait until July to get the car. I thought, "Hey, no biggie. I can wait." I'm going out of my gourd now, waiting for Lena (my already named 325Ci--okay, so I'm an idiot). To boot, my Accord is in the shop for transmission repairs, so I'm forced to drive my friend's Mazda Protege. I don't want to sound like a car snob, but I feel like I'm driving a go-kart. I don't even like to wear sunglasses while I'm driving the Mazda b/c it feels like it's the same as wearing a leather jacket while riding a bicycle. Sheesh, I need help.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    I just went to the BMWUSA.COM site and built a 330i and a 325i in a fairly apples to apples comparison (according to my tastes) and came up with a difference of $3,675.00. Add in the lower money factor if you are leasing, and the difference gets even less.

    RWD vs AWD: In my case, I grew up in Michigan with rear wheel cars and felt that I could deal with a RWD car here in NJ. I have driven my 328i through the better part of three winters and no regrets.

    Power Seats vs Manual Seats: I valet park once or twice a week and I drive a manual transmission. Over the years I have had both power and manual seats on various cars. Prior to my 328i, I had a narrow preference for the power seats. Why? My previous car is a good example; in my 1995 Passat GLX 5-Speed, I found that one seat notch was a little too far forward and the next one was a little too far back. When I set a seat position on a car with a manual transmission, is set it so that the clutch is just right for my left leg, all other considerations are secondary to that. For me, I cannot work the clutch smoothly unless the seat is exactly where my left leg wants it (some have told me that this is a character flaw, so be it ;-)). Power seats allow very precise fine tuning of the seat position, hence my preference for them over manual seats. That brings me to the E46. When you get said position dialed in, you can save it. When the *EVIL* parking lot attendant brings your car back with the drivers seat all of the way back to the stops and all of the way down to the floor, you just hit the button and Presto-Chango, you have your seating position back to where you want it. For my money, the memory seats are why I now feel I NEED power/memory seats in any car I buy from here on out.

    Best Regards,
  • alpine325ialpine325i Posts: 209
    I can't believe the price of a performance muffler for a BMW. I paid $145 for each Flowmaster muffler that I bolted on my Corvette. That's $290 for TWO high performance mufflers! The muffler makes a big difference, but a 325i or a 330i even with the triad mod is in no way going to come close to those 325HP LS1 motors that are in the Camaro SS or the Trans Am WS6. I like both of those muscle cars, BUT, I am so happy that my 325i will NOT become a rattle trap or lose half of it's value in a short time. Those 2 cars have nice big motors, but I still refer to them as SQUEAKS, CREAKS, AND LEAKS! :o)
  • brave1heartbrave1heart Posts: 2,698
    I think we all had that discussion a couple of weeks ago or so and we all (incl. C&D) agreed that winter tires help more in ice/snow than an AWD system?!? Even if you wanted to stay with the same setup year-round, why sacrifice performance 95% of the time (95% x 365 days = 347 a year, or assuming 18 days of snow/ice) for the 20 inches of total snow and ice that you will get?!? Even with the added AWD curb weight, an AWD may be OK if it transferred torque from side to side like the Quattro but from what I've read, the X system only transfers torque back and forth. The only disadvantage of RWD over AWD is accelerating in snow/ice. It still brakes better (it is lighter) on ANY surface with equivalent tires. So RWD accelerates and handles better 95% of the time and brakes better ALL the time. I would never pay money to buy acceleration for 5% of the time while giving up on acceleration, handling ,and braking 95% of the time. And if I'm not comfortable driving in snow/ice, I'd get snow tires, it's that simple really.
  • brave1heartbrave1heart Posts: 2,698
    I read the article that your linked to and all I can say is that it amazes me how some automotive writers can make a living with their poor knowledge, experience, and style of writing. I get the feling that most of us on this board would do a better job putting together an article like that. As I've said in the past, stick to C&D, Automobile, and European Car - those are VERY good magazines with knowledgeable writers most of whom have had extensive racing experience.

    "You'll find it difficult to rock the car sufficiently to free it because it takes too much time to manually shift between reverse and first gear. I found this out on the three different occasions that I got stuck in my driveway and had to go get help." ==> LOL, it's never crossed my mind to even put the car in reverse while rocking it to get out of snow. You just step on the gas lightly and then let the car roll back a little, then do the same till you get good grip and get out. What a clown, no wonder this guy got stuck three times. And how is it that using auto allows you to put it in reverse faster? What, he can't find his left foot??

    "What's worse than having a rear-wheel-drive vehicle in snowy conditions, is having one with a manual transmission. There's no room for error. One wrong turn of the wheel, or too little speed, while backing the 330i out of a snow-filled driveway can get you stuck." Manual WORSE than RWD???????? Zero credibility. Everyone knows that manual gives you better control over the car, especially in snow. If this guy has never driven manual before, well...

    "Snow, slush and their accompanying ice are not the surfaces for the almost instant increase in wheel spin of gear shifting. " Well, autos have to change gears too - not sure how that would be so different. Unless he doesn't have a clue about appropriate engine speed while shifting, in which case he's better off with an auto, yes. Taking the bus might even be better for this guy, we'd be safer that way too.

    "Neither is a slippery road the place for the almost instance braking of downshifting. Depending on your speed, a downshift in a 330i can throw you into a controllable or uncontrollable skid. Luckily, I discovered this trait at a low speed. " Sigh of relief from the other drivers :0)
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    I read that little piece of moronic trash. If AACBG.COM wants to maintain any journalistic integrity it will fire Mr. Washington right now. It is beyond my comprehension to understand how an automotive journalist cannot know how to "rock a car" with a manual transmission (here is a hint, power on, power off, power on, etc. -- think Mr. Miyagi). I would have a tough time understanding it if "Women's Wear Daily" ran such an article, but this idiot works for an outfit that *CLAIMS* to be the "Leading provider of streaming automotive content including interviews, press events, product launches and more." Give me a break.

    Best Regards,
  • denrightdenright Posts: 285
    I guess it's a matter of experience and preferences, but this past couple years, commuting home in ice storms and such during rush hour, I saw PLENTY of cars slipping and sliding around trying to go up Wisconsin Avenue's hills. My own FWD car (a '97 Pontiac Sunfire GT) had significant difficulties a couple times, and got stuck/snowed in a couple times.

    I simply want the sure-footedness that AWD offers not just in snow, but on ice, on wet blacktop and in the rain, and on gravel and loose sand.

    As far as braking distance on the AWD vs. the RWD versions of the 325 and 330, I suspect the braking distance difference is de minimis. I know the 330xi goes 60-0 in 103 feet. Pretty darn good.

    As far as the RWD v. AWD acceleration goes, well we argued that to death yesterday, but I will include this link for those who didn't see it before:

  • peter80peter80 Posts: 11
    I'm a new poster to the BMW 3-series board. I'm buying a new car to celebrate a recent promotion and I'm considering the 3-series, the Audi A4 and the Lexus IS300. I have some questions about the BMW that I hope you can answer.

    First, some parameters. The car has to have an automatic transmission and leather upholstery. (I know, I know, a true enthusiast would get a manual transmission and the leatherette is very leather-like and more durable. I agree. But the car has to have an automatic transmission and leather upholstery!). The car does not need to be muscular (don't need to go from 0-60 in 6 seconds) but it does need to be agile (do need to twist and shout). The car needs to have a decent sound system with both a cassette player and a CD player, but I don't need to share my music with the neighbors. (I'm happy with the stock system in my Toyota Sienna). Lastly, the car has to have a reasonably comfortable ride (I'm not looking for a Miata).

    Now the questions. 325xi vs 325i? Money's not an issue here but I'm not willing to sacrifice any driving pleasure. I know that recent posts suggest you don't get much for AWD, but what do you lose? Is the 325xi slower off the line and more lethargic cornering and braking (heavier) or faster off the line and more assured around the corners (AWD)? Or is it a wash? How 'bout maintenance? Will the xi have more problems since it has more complicated engineering? Why am I interested? My wife prefers AWD and I'd like her to be comfortable with the car, as long as we're not giving up too much in performance.

    Brave1heart: would your 325i vs 330i opinion change if you had to get an automatic transmission? Or would you still feel the extra oomph isn't worth it?

    I've test driven the IS300, a 1999 328i, a 2001 325i and a 2001 330i. The IS300 and the 328i were both pure fun; the 2001's where more composed. Too composed in fact. I'm assuming I'm noticing the 'new' steering that I've heard about in the 2001 BMWs. Are there any other performance-related differences between a 1999 3-series, a 2000 3-series and a 2001 3-series? I'd rather buy new; but I'm don't mind buying used if that's the only way a can get the driving experience I'm looking for (i.e. what I experienced with the 1999 328i).

    Can anybody point me to a website or NJ dealership where I can get a good look at Topaz Blue versus Steel Blue? I've been to the BMW USA website and played around with the 'build you own' feature. I find the colors there misleading. Orient Blue is much darker in person and as far as I can tell Topaz Blue and Steel Blue are the same color on the website.

    The HK stereo upgrade. Is it worth it for someone who is not an audiophile?

    The BMW steering wheel seems big. Is it me? Is there a good reason?

    Thanks for any help you can offer!
  • motorcity3motorcity3 Posts: 72

    In one of your postings yesterday when you were replying to me you mentioned taking "your favorite turn". Where exactly is that? I lived in the Boston Metro area for 17 years and I was wondering where that turn was.
  • brave1heartbrave1heart Posts: 2,698
    93 So merges with rt 3, I think it's 128 So at that point. In a couple of miles you take the exit for 95 So - it's a two-lane ramp that starts as an S-curve and then tightens up to the left. Done it at 75 with Shtroumpf Muscle and there was room for, guessing, another 10 safely. Another favorite of mine is the Rt 30 exit of the Mass Pike West going towards the Natick mall. I'm sure you'd know it if you lived in Newton. That one's holding up at about the same speed :O)
  • brave1heartbrave1heart Posts: 2,698
    Thank you, Thank you, Thank you !!!!!!!!!!

    i just checked dinan's web site again and they have actually updated their data now that the freeflow is available for the 325 and 330. this is very different from what i had read there last time. in short, you get 7 hp gain for the stage 2 and cai and another 12 (TWELVE!!) from the freeflow. that's a total of 19 and is ALL i've ever needed for about, calculating, $1,850-1,900. yiou pay $100 a pony and you get expanded rpms, engine breathing, and even better sound. i think i'm in, i just have to decide WHEN.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    I will attempt to speak for both Brave1heart and myself for a moment. I do not think that by being outraged (at least in my case) by that stupid article (or should I say that article written by somebody who would make a better journalist on the subject of macrame socks during depression era Detroit) on the 330xi, we were not in anyway questioning your decision (or anybody else's for that matter) to get AWD on your E46. I think that we all find the option intriguing, and were it offered when I bought my 328i, I would have at least considered it. Given your criteria, I am sure you made the right decision, and I am fairly sure that Brave1heart feels the same. ;-)

    Best Regards,
  • trejos28trejos28 Posts: 93
    Hey everyone.

    I've seen several posts about checking the status of a bmw order. Where does one go to check? bmwusa? if so, what section?

    Thanks for your help.
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