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sijia10358
07-01-2005, 04:52 PM
Which M3 u like better the E36 or the E46?

I think the E36 exterior looks better then the E46...but the E46's interior features are way better!!!

Pinecone
07-01-2005, 05:22 PM
Yes. :)

Actually both are great cars. The E36 is more fun to drive, because it feels more like youa repushing hard. The E46 limits are so high that you can't explore them on teh street at any reasonable speed (never mind being close to LEGAL).

The E36 is a bit more boy racer, but not as much as the E30 M3. The E46 is more refined, more GT, but VERY fast.

As for looks and features, that is a personal choice, I deal with teh driving experience.

jrp
07-01-2005, 05:28 PM
Hands down, I prefer the E46. Although I miss my 99 Estoril coupe every now and then, getting behind the wheel of my current cars cures that almost instantly. However, there are two non-trivial things that were clearly better in the E36:

1. Steering feel was more connected to the road (heh..heh...the E46 will tell me when I drive over a cigarette, the E36 told me what brand).
2. Shifting was more precise.

In terms of appearance, the E36 does have a tidier/daintier/tighter butt...

...but the thrust and wail of the S54 engine as it approaches redline makes all that moot.

sijia10358
07-01-2005, 07:00 PM
whell... i like both cars..but the E36's clutch is too hard....if your in a traffic jam your foot is gonna hurt like S#!T haha

Lugnut
07-03-2005, 06:24 PM
Which M3 u like better the E36 or the E46?

I think the E36 exterior looks better then the E46...but the E46's interior features are way better!!!

I do really like the E36. It's a fun car, for its performance and versatility it's not really expensive to run. I think it looks brilliant, it's comfy and very practical. It just wasn't enough to get me out of my E30.

I went from my E30 M3 to the E46 M3. Everything about the E46 pulled me in: The different look over the 330, the amazing feeling in the steering and the engine response. It feels every bit like the successor to the E30. I love it so much that I sold my E30 and I'm down to the E46 as my only car.

My wife drives an E36 and she loves her car, but I think we both really prefer the E46. The question usually isn't whether the E46 is the better car, but is it worth all of the extra money over an E36? I would say that you can probably go faster for less money in an E36.

Personally, I prefer to make my commute to work and my drive to the track in the newer car. It just fits me better. :bigpimp:

SoloII///M
07-07-2005, 05:19 AM
whell... i like both cars..but the E36's clutch is too hard....if your in a traffic jam your foot is gonna hurt like S#!T haha

Sounds like yours needs a clutch. The clutch is very light in these cars.

I don't care for the E46 at all. E46 sycophants will say that's because I don't own one - but I've spent a lot of time driving them.

The steering sucks. It's very artificial. I do like the nice, fat steering wheel, though. (Caveat, the E36 M3 steering sucks, too, just not as badly). The car has very poor balance with the factory suspension and wheel / tire package. Whoever thought to put 225's up front on those narrow wheels must have been a drug addict. The car is the understeer channel. The car weighs a ton, and feels like it. Throwing around a stock E46 is very nautical feeling as a result. The engine sounds absolutely terrible, and even though it doesn't handle well, it has a poor ride in addition.

jrp
07-07-2005, 12:04 PM
Sounds like yours needs a clutch. The clutch is very light in these cars.

I don't care for the E46 at all. E46 sycophants will say that's because I don't own one - but I've spent a lot of time driving them.

The steering sucks. It's very artificial. I do like the nice, fat steering wheel, though. (Caveat, the E36 M3 steering sucks, too, just not as badly). The car has very poor balance with the factory suspension and wheel / tire package. Whoever thought to put 225's up front on those narrow wheels must have been a drug addict. The car is the understeer channel. The car weighs a ton, and feels like it. Throwing around a stock E46 is very nautical feeling as a result. The engine sounds absolutely terrible, and even though it doesn't handle well, it has a poor ride in addition.
:rolleyes: :rofl: :rofl:

SoloII///M
07-07-2005, 12:19 PM
:rolleyes: :rofl: :rofl:

:rofl: :rofl: :rolleyes:

SoloII///M
07-07-2005, 12:36 PM
Sorry, I should clarify.

If you like going fast in a straight line, hands down the E46 wins.

If you value steering feel, nimbleness, turn-in, ultimate grip, composure in transitions, and engine sound, the E36 wins hands down.

jrp
07-07-2005, 04:57 PM
Sorry, I should clarify.

If you like going fast in a straight line, hands down the E46 wins.

If you value steering feel, nimbleness, turn-in, ultimate grip, composure in transitions, and engine sound, the E36 wins hands down.
Steering feel and a general sense of nimbleness, I agree with you, the E36 wins. In terms of overall handling...the E46 may feel a little piggy at lower speeds but the limits are really that much greater than the E36.

As for sound...yes, there's a certain appeal to the snort and snarl of the E36 (I had nearly a decade to savor it). But the rasp/wail/banshee shriek of the E46 never fails to make me go schwing. :)

Pinecone
07-07-2005, 07:21 PM
I don't care for the E46 at all. E46 sycophants will say that's because I don't own one - but I've spent a lot of time driving them.

The steering sucks. It's very artificial. I do like the nice, fat steering wheel, though. (Caveat, the E36 M3 steering sucks, too, just not as badly). The car has very poor balance with the factory suspension and wheel / tire package. Whoever thought to put 225's up front on those narrow wheels must have been a drug addict. The car is the understeer channel. The car weighs a ton, and feels like it. Throwing around a stock E46 is very nautical feeling as a result. The engine sounds absolutely terrible, and even though it doesn't handle well, it has a poor ride in addition.

a) Trail brake

b) Go faster

Not all cars are tossable. And that is not necessarily bad.

SoloII///M
07-08-2005, 04:57 AM
a) Trail brake

b) Go faster

Not all cars are tossable. And that is not necessarily bad.

Terry,

I'm not sure what trail braking has to do with this discussion. The technique can be applied to both cars.

The only reason the limits of an E46 would be higher is because it comes from the factory with better tires than the E36 did. Put them both on a track, stock, with equal tires, and the E36 will generate just as much (or more) grip, and have much better balance to boot.

The E46 will certainly lap faster - it has gobs more power.

As for the engine note, the E46 only sounds good coming at a person. Going away, watch everyone cover their ears. :rofl:

jrp
07-08-2005, 11:52 AM
As for the engine note, the E46 only sounds good coming at a person. Going away, watch everyone cover their ears. :rofl:
Maybe so...but to the driver, it always sounds oh soooo goood...as in Meg Ryan at the deli good. :thumbup:

Enjoy your M3...I know that I'll always have fond memories of my '95 and '99. :)

SoloII///M
07-08-2005, 02:58 PM
Maybe so...but to the driver, it always sounds oh soooo goood...as in Meg Ryan at the deli good. :thumbup:

Enjoy your M3...I know that I'll always have fond memories of my '95 and '99. :)

If it's any consolation, as happy with this car as I am, I'll probably sell it within the next year.

But not for another BMW. I want something that handles well. :p

sijia10358
07-08-2005, 04:47 PM
If it's any consolation, as happy with this car as I am, I'll probably sell it within the next year.

But not for another BMW. I want something that handles well. :p

if u say handling....can a E46 drift like a nissan 240 or a AE86? :dunno:

SoloII///M
07-08-2005, 08:01 PM
WTF does drift have to do with this discussion? :confused:

Pinecone
07-09-2005, 05:39 AM
Wider track

Different rear suspension

SoloII///M
07-09-2005, 06:53 AM
Wider track

Different rear suspension

E46 and E36 have nearly identical suspension setups front and rear. :dunno:

Pinecone
07-10-2005, 05:25 AM
Not quite, close, but not exactly.

But it works better in the E46. :)

SoloII///M
07-11-2005, 05:22 AM
Not quite, close, but not exactly.

But it works better in the E46. :)

Not with all the extra friggin' weight it's carrying around. The E46 has aluminum bits in the suspension that the E36 did not and it's STILL heavier.

Pinecone
07-13-2005, 11:49 PM
Not that many Al bits.

And I still think the E46 is a better all around car. Not that the E36 is any slouch.

Last year a friend bought an E46 M3 to replace his 94 E36 M3. After the PC deilvery, he came up to visit. I let him drive the LTW. HE was very happy he drove that car AFTER he got his E46 since he stated he would not have been happy going back to his normal E36 after doing so. And yes, he prefers his E46 M3 to his E36 M3.

SoloII///M
07-14-2005, 05:38 AM
Not that many Al bits.

And I still think the E46 is a better all around car. Not that the E36 is any slouch.

Last year a friend bought an E46 M3 to replace his 94 E36 M3. After the PC deilvery, he came up to visit. I let him drive the LTW. HE was very happy he drove that car AFTER he got his E46 since he stated he would not have been happy going back to his normal E36 after doing so. And yes, he prefers his E46 M3 to his E36 M3.

Like I said, it all depends on what you want to do with it. Neither car is very good as an all out sports car, but I grant you that they're not meant to be.

The E46 has aluminum control arms up front. So did the E30. Big difference. The E36 arms are very heavy.

The biggest benefit to the E46 on the track is its increase in track (no pun intended) over the E36. Not so much of an advantage in autocrossing. And while the E36's brakes are more than sufficient given its weight and power, the E46s are barely (if at all) adequate when we're talking track work. The E46 suffers the same ills that plagued the E36 in competition use - weak rear trailing arm mounts in the floor and weak rear subframe. The E46 has a stiffer chassis, but I'd be hard pressed to say that the E36 is at all sloppy or loose.

I remember the first time I autocrossed Ken's E46 M3, which was set up pretty well. What a disappointment. BMW somehow managed to get the shock valving all wrong on that car. The lack of precision and feel in the steering made it very difficult to place, and the narrow front wheel / tire package and poor geometry up front (like an E36) killed it in sweepers. The big problem is the car is just too wide and fat to make up for it in slaloms like an E36 can. An E36 M3 will dance through slaloms. An E46 wallows. It's like driving a big German camaro. Understeer everywhere unless you prod the throttle to slide the tail. No fun at all.

I grant you the E46 is a very good street car. It's wicked fast in a straight line, has a nice comfy interior with much better materials than the E36 cars and it is relatively quiet if you short shift the transmission. But BMW just got so many things terribly wrong with the car (engine note, ride to handling compromise, weight, size, front suspension geometry, front wheel / tire package, steering, brakes, clutch (with that stupid delay valve)...) that I find the car way too antiseptic and ponderous, especially given the price. I remember reading a Grassroots Motorsports article a number of years ago (I still have the issue) where they tested an E30 M3, an E36 M3 and an E46 M3. Funny, they basically shared my sentiments. I'll try to remember to bring it to work to scan tomorrow.

E36 > E46 in the case of the M cars for a real driver.
E46 > E36 in the case of the 330 versus a 328, for competition OR daily use.

platypus
07-14-2005, 03:09 PM
I remember reading a Grassroots Motorsports article a number of years ago (I still have the issue) where they tested an E30 M3, an E36 M3 and an E46 M3. Funny, they basically shared my sentiments. I'll try to remember to bring it to work to scan tomorrow.

E36 > E46 in the case of the M cars for a real driver.
E46 > E36 in the case of the 330 versus a 328, for competition OR daily use.
Interesting... I remember a similar comparison in an issue of Roundel from about a year or so ago where they tested the E30 M3, E36 M3, and E46 M3. I think the article was titled something like, "Which is the Real M3?" Although there was no final scoring or ranking, through qualitative discussion, the article seemed to suggest that:

E46 > E30 > E36. :dunno:

SoloII///M
07-15-2005, 05:46 AM
They're all "real" M3s. Each of them has their benefits and downsides.

The slightly longer answer is that a significant portion of the Roundel staff is very old-school BMW (2002 and E30 M3) freaks. To them, the E30 was the pinnacle of BMW design and engineering. Roundel has and always will be biased in this regard.

Basically it comes down to what car you prefer. Pinecone and I are buds, so all of this is in good fun. :)

Besides all the reasons I've detailed as to why I don't like the E46, cost is definitely still a factor for me. The fact that an E46 M3 is difficult to get into for less than $40k opens up a lot of other options.

Pinecone
07-16-2005, 01:59 AM
Go back and read, I have said that the E46 is the best ALL AROUND CAR. For street, long distascne touring, track, and autocross, and going to the store. Factor in ALL uses, and hte E46 is a better car for ONE car.

Yes, the E36 is better in particular ways. I will elaborate on your other points later, got to run and do some shopping in the souk.

SoloII///M
07-17-2005, 08:00 AM
Go back and read, I have said that the E46 is the best ALL AROUND CAR.

And I disagree. :thumbup:

Pinecone
07-17-2005, 08:43 AM
You even say how good of a street car the E46 M3 is. :) And that is a big protion of beign a good all around car. And on the track the E46 M3 is awesome. Its downfall over the E36 is autocross, which is a small part of the whole world concept. :)

SoloII///M
07-17-2005, 12:43 PM
You even say how good of a street car the E46 M3 is. :) And that is a big protion of beign a good all around car. And on the track the E46 M3 is awesome. Its downfall over the E36 is autocross, which is a small part of the whole world concept. :)

It's a very good street car. Not a great street car.

The frustrating thing is they could have made it a great car from the factory. less compression damping and a lot more rebound, and wider front wheels would have transformed it. As it is... meh. e36 is better.

Pinecone
07-20-2005, 09:53 AM
Yes, it could have been better. But a set of shocks cures most of those ills, and considering the stock shocks lose 50% of their dampening in 10K miles, you need to do that anyway.

And since you can buy two more rears and run 265s all around ($200 each for the wheels off eBay), that is easy to fix.

Still, ALL AROUND, IMO, the E46 M3 is a better car. And I do love the E36 M3, and it has its strengths, but it also has its failings.

SoloII///M
07-21-2005, 05:41 AM
(shrug)

Nah.

:p

sijia10358
07-24-2005, 09:49 PM
how about the computers on both cars?

SoloII///M
07-25-2005, 05:33 AM
how about the computers on both cars?

How about them? :)

sijia10358
07-27-2005, 11:32 PM
How about them? :)

I THINK the E46's computer and the wiring is too much (too much technology) so it will break down faster :cry:

SoloII///M
07-28-2005, 09:01 AM
I THINK the E46's computer and the wiring is too much (too much technology) so it will break down faster :cry:

I don't know about that. I haven't heard a lot of grumbling from E46 owners regarding electrical / computer problems. I think they're pretty stout. :dunno:

sijia10358
07-30-2005, 03:44 AM
I don't know about that. I haven't heard a lot of grumbling from E46 owners regarding electrical / computer problems. I think they're pretty stout. :dunno:

ohh thats koo!! then i dont have to worry about fixing them very often :rofl: