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View Full Version : E46 vs E90 comparison by KrisL


KrisL
01-30-2006, 03:24 PM
E46 vs E90 comparo

(You can click on any of the pictures in this thread for a larger version)


I was given the opportunity to drive an E90 for 4 days. I'd like to give bimmerfest a comparison of the two cars.

The cars:
E46: 2003 330i. Performance package, Navigation, Moonroof, Xenons, Leather
E90: 2006 330i. Sports package, premium package, steptronic, heated seats, assist


The majority of this review is going to cover the interior/ergonomics/design. I'm a driver and what I care about most
is how a car drives. If I were comparing an E46 and another make of car, I would probably be talking about how the cars
feel; however, with these two cars, the interior differences are much more significant than the driving feel differences.



Wherever you see two pictures together in this review, the E46 will be first and the E90 will be second.

Before anyone says anything, I know the interior of my E46 needs to be detailed bad. You think it's fairly clean until you start taking high res pictures :).



When you approach the E90 in the dark and press the unlock button, the first thing you notice is the LED lights that illuminate
from the bottom of all 4 door handles.
http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49880-4/IMG_8489.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8489.jpg.html)
Very cool. There are also lights that shine down from the bottom of each door.

Get in the car and turn on the lights and these are the instrument clusters that you will be staring at:

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50140-4/IMG_8638.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8638.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49876-4/IMG_8485.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8485.jpg.html)

The E46's instrument cluster is much wider and the gauges are slightly less cluttered. However, you can see more information on the E90's cluster display. Also, the cruise control 'notch' that rotates into position when you set cruise in the E90 is really trick. Slight edge to the E46 in my book.

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50136-4/IMG_8637.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8637.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49871-4/IMG_8484.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8484.jpg.html)

Can't really compare apples to apples here since the E90 was not equipped with idrive/nav. Lets focus on the climate control area:

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50148-4/IMG_8641.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8641.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49888-4/IMG_8493.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8493.jpg.html)

First of all, the E90 has dual zone climate control. The E30 didn't have it, the E36 did, the E46 didn't, and the E90 does. I suspect the next generation 3-series won't have it. :)
Secondly, the E90 has rotating dials for temperature. In my opinion, it's a huge advantage to be able to reach down to move the temp up or down a few degrees without having to fumble for buttons.
Other operations are very similar between the cars. The 'rest' button inside the passenger temp dial will blow air warmed by the still-warmed engine while the car is off, useful if you're just running into the store for a few minutes in the winter and you want to keep your cabin at a comfortable temperature.
Huge edge to the E90 for the dials.

My biggest complaint with the whole center console area is that it no longer tilts toward the driver. The center console has tilted toward the driver on all prior 3ers.


http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50156-4/IMG_8644.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8644.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49900-4/IMG_8496.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8496.jpg.html)

Here you see the center vents. The E90s are thinner since the horizontal line they follow are flatter. The E90's dash has a "hard line" that makes the top of the dash look like a shelf. The E46's dash, in comparison, is smoothly shaped up. You can see the E90 dash line better in the cup holder picture.
The E90's center vent temperature control is electronic vs the mechanical control of the E46 (the E46 control is hooked to a braided steel line that it pushes and pulls). This gives the E90's control a smoother operation. I do like the unlock and hazard buttons located on the center vents - it's a more intuitive position for someone jumping into the car for the first time.
However, I do not like the DSC button there. On the E46, it's on the button panel just above the ashtray. When my fiancee is in the car, I can subtly reach down and press the DSC button without her seeing me. In the E90, it'd be blatantly obvious that I was about to have some real fun.

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50152-4/IMG_8642.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8642.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49896-4/IMG_8495.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8495.jpg.html)

Key design: The E90 (without the comfort access option, which allows you to start the car with the key in your pocket) requires you to press the "stub" of the key (there is no metal shaft coming out of it) into the dash (which puts the car into accessory mode), depress the brake, then press the start/stop button. To shut the car off, you press the start/stop button again, then press the key in to take the car out of accessory mode and release the key. I'm somewhat torn on the new design. The new electronic key design may save money (electronics cheaper than a key tumbler?); however, I don't like having to move my hand/finger 2 inches up to press the start button.
Sounds ridiculous, I know, but I like to be able to start the car with one 'movement'. I would design it a little differently - I would require you to push the stub into the slot (with a small amount of force) to get the car into accessory mode... and simply press it harder to shut the car off. Same thing goes for shutting the car off - press they key in harder to shut the car off, then press it in softly to release the key. I think these motions could be performed faster than the existing design. Alternatively, you could press the key in for accessory mode and then *gasp* TURN IT to start the car. :)

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49936-4/IMG_8505.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8505.jpg.html)

Worst. Cupholders. EVER.
Sorry, I don't have pictures of the E46's cupholders. They look like two cup-shaped holes by the e-brake. :)


http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50160-4/IMG_8645.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8645.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49904-4/IMG_8497.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8497.jpg.html)

Headlight switch. E90s looks a little better.

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50168-4/IMG_8647.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8647.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49916-4/IMG_8500.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8500.jpg.html)

Turn signal design. The cylinder in the turn signal stalk on the E90 is for additional on board computer controls, allowing you to set the time, check the oil level, etc. The turn signal operation is the biggest difference between these two cars. For the E90 (and other bangle'd cars), BMW has re-engineered how turn signal stalks have operated for the past 40 years :). You can simply tap-and-release the stalk up or down and the turn signal will give you 3 blinks only - perfect for changing lanes. When you activate the turn signal (to actually make a turn), you push the stick up or down harder. Unlike what you're used to, the stalk immediately returns to its center position, it does not "stick" up or down until you've completed the turn. If you want to cancel the signal, you can tap it either direction (I believe). At first this really bugged me, thinking that BMW engineered it just to be different.. but after a day or two, I started really liking it.
As you can see, the cruise control is no longer on the steering wheel. More on this later.

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50172-4/IMG_8648.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8648.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49912-4/IMG_8499.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8499.jpg.html)

Wiper control stalk: Only a slight change - the addition of a button for auto rain sensing wipers. The E46 (with premium package) still had auto-sensing wipers, they were just activated by putting the stalk in the 'intermittent' position.


http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50164-4/IMG_8646.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8646.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49908-4/IMG_8498.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8498.jpg.html)


Steering wheels. Here, you can see that the E46 actually has more steering wheel buttons.
E46 Left: Volume up/down, cd track or radio preset up/down, phone dial, and phone book display.
E46 Right: Cruise control speed up/down, cruise power on, cruise speed resume.

E90 Left: Volume up/down, phone dial, voice acivation trigger
E90 Right: Radio mode, recirculation (toggles between auto recirc and recirc on), track up/down.

If you order the E90 with iDrive, the recirc button is replaced with a diamond shaped button that is programmable to the function that you choose. It seems that BMW picked a random control for this button on the non-idrive cars. Recirculation? How often do you press that button? More often than me, apparently. Having the mode function is very helpful, however, I don't like that the track buttons are on the right and the volume controls are on the left. I'd prefer all of the radio's controls to be on one side.
Another complaint about the buttons is the size of the volume control buttons. They're small and in the position they are in, you must press them with the tip of your thumb. On the E46, the buttons are bigger and better contoured to the shape of the steering wheel, allowing you to simply rest your entire thumb over them and "rock" your thumb up or down.
I think I like the cruise control on the steering wheel better as well.

One comment on the operation of the radio: There are 12 presets. The E46 has FM1 and FM2, each with 6 presets. The difference here is that you can scroll through all 12 presets with the steering wheel buttons on the E90. On the E46, you have to press the FM button on the radio/nav to get to the second set of 6 presets. Annoying.

Edit: I have since learned that E46s can go through all 12 presets from 2004 on.

KrisL
01-30-2006, 03:24 PM
http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50176-4/IMG_8649.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8649.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50180-4/IMG_8650.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8650.JPG.html)


http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49920-4/IMG_8501.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8501.jpg.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49924-4/IMG_8502.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8502.jpg.html)

Doors: E46 is at the top, E90 is below. Notice something about the E90's doors? They're not symmetrical! The passenger has a nice big "oh $hit!" handle, but the driver doesn't. BMW's marketing department on the E90 seemed to go something like this:

Guy #1: "Hanz, I know zee window switches have always been next to zee shifter in zee 3er cars, but I think ve should move them to zee door!"
Guy #2: "But zee doors are already designed and ve do not have time to re-design them!"
Guy #1: "Just make it verk or you will be verking over at VW!"

Check this out:
http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49928-4/IMG_8503.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8503.jpg.html)

You actually have to lean up and reach for the switches! Ridiculous. Move them back to the center console please.

Speaking of center consoles:

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50184-4/IMG_8651.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8651.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49932-4/IMG_8504.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8504.jpg.html)

Ignore my awesome LeatherZ gauge panel :). I simply prefer the E46 design here.

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50188-4/IMG_8652.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8652.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49940-4/IMG_8506.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8506.jpg.html)

Here's the sunroof panel thing. On the E46, it's covered in the nice felt-like material that covers the rest of the headliner. The lights are mirrored inside. The E90's panel is plastic and the lights look cheaper. The entire E90 headliner is covered
with a cheaper feeling cloth. Also, the ambiance lights on the E46 are recessed and hidden. On the E90, they're obvious and in one of the black plastic pieces. They could at least make the pieces match the headliner color.

For those that don't know what the ambiance lights are, they're small orange LEDs in the sunroof panel that shine down to dimly illuminate the shifter console area when the headlights are on. Here's a picture of them on in the E90:

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49952-4/IMG_8510.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8510.jpg.html)


http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50192-4/IMG_8653.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8653.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49944-4/IMG_8508.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8508.jpg.html)

The rear console of the E90 looks much better. I'd love to have some vents for the back seat. The E46 does have floor vents for the rear seat (most E46 owners probably haven't noticed these under their seat!)... I didn't look, but I assume the E90 has the same.

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50196-4/IMG_8655.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8655.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49948-4/IMG_8509.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8509.jpg.html)

Here are the map lights for the rear seat. The E90's map light console area suffers from the same cheaper look as the front sunroof panel, however, I do like this central location much better than the E46's c-pillar mounted lights. Rear seat passengers never notice that they have a light in the E46, and then they have to turn around to turn it on.

It's also fair to note that I wish my E46 had the extra few inches of leg room that the E90 has.


http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50204-4/IMG_8657.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8657.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49964-4/IMG_8514.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8514.jpg.html)

(man, this pic makes my car just look gross. I'm going to go clean that area immediately after posting this message)

The E90 (sport) seats are simply awesome. They have adjustable kidney bolsters (on the sport pkg seats) just like the ones optional in the M3. I've always felt like I'm too thin (5'9 190lbs!) for the E46 seats- I slide around quite a bit. The E90 (sport) seats really hug you in place. The E46 has 3 memory positions and the E90 has 2 - odd.

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50200-4/IMG_8656.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8656.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49960-4/IMG_8513.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8513.jpg.html)

The door sills in the E90 remind you what kind of car you're getting in to while the ones in the E46 are chrome to show you how luxurious it is. (did my sarcasm come off there?)


http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50212-4/IMG_8659.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8659.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49976-4/IMG_8517.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8517.jpg.html)

The E46's uper trunk space is slightly obscured by the harmon kardon "subwoofers." while the E90s is not.

KrisL
01-30-2006, 03:25 PM
http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49996-4/IMG_8524.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8524.jpg.html)

The E46's armrest storage space (sorry, not pictured) is just barely big enough to hold my FasTrak or iPod. The E90 has this much more canvernous space which has the aux input, a cigarette lighter, and an additional cup holder with a /drink cooler/. Move the switch to ON and cool air will blow on your drink. Probably more gimmicky than useful.




Before moving on, I must say that the Logic7 rocks.


Exterior design- I'm not going to take the same pictures that you can see of the two models everywhere else. Here are a few things I noticed..

First, this trainwreck angle on the E90:
http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49984-4/IMG_8519.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8519.jpg.html)


Next, the side mirror design:
http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50208-4/IMG_8658.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8658.JPG.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50144-4/IMG_8639.JPG (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8639.JPG.html)

http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49992-4/IMG_8522.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8522.jpg.html)http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49884-4/IMG_8490.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8490.jpg.html)

(E46 top, E90 bottom) Finally, BMW let the 3er sedan have rounded mirrors. They look much better than the square ears sticking out of the E46. The E90 also gets electric folding mirrors, a gadget that USA bound E46s never received.


http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/50238-2/cleanengine.jpghttp://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49972-4/IMG_8516.jpg (http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/PrivateGalleries/330i/e90comparo/IMG_8516.jpg.html)

Engine bay: I prefer the more monochromatic look of the E46 - using black plastic to cover everything. I guess BMW just wanted to use gray to make the E90's engine look more like... the color of an engine?


I realized when I was washing the E90 how much I really did not like it's lines and body panels. The car has many jagged edges - straight panels that meet harsh creases instead of smooth curves all around.





Fiiiinally, driving impressions:
Thank goodness, the E90 still drives like a BMW. I think the E46's engine sounds a little better. I also think the E46 is a little more 'raw.' It's exactly like I assumed it would be: similar to the E30 vs E36 or E36 vs E46 - it's an evolution of refinement... and when you get more refined, you lose a little bit of what many enthusiasts like. The steptronic was awesome (for an auto, of course)... in sport mode, it'd stay at 5000 RPM if I let off the gas completely for several seconds before it decided that I was done having some fun. I can feel the +20hp of the E90, despite the steptronic and weight difference. The runflats (stock tires on an E90) suck as expected. It's unfortunate that BMW "designed the suspension around runflats" because that means that it is "expecting" more unsprung weight than it will have if you swap out to non-runflats. The ///M tire repair kit + Pilot Sport PS2s would certianly do the car a lot of good.

avalys
01-30-2006, 03:44 PM
I actually really like the E90 interior, except for that horribly cheap looking ashtray cover. I really don't like how the edges are so rounded, and the gap is so wide...

Jeff_DML
01-30-2006, 03:48 PM
nice review. Isnt exhaust note on the ZHP is louder then a normal e46?

also how do you tell when the e90 engine is warmed up since no coolant gauge anymore? maybe a digital signal or rpm rings like the m3

KrisL
01-30-2006, 03:52 PM
also how do you tell when the e90 engine is warmed up since no coolant gauge anymore? maybe a digital signal or rpm rings like the m3

I think the ZHP is a little louder, yeah.

MY question is, how do you tell when the E46 engine is warmed up since there's no oil temp gauge?

The temp gauge in the E46 isn't much more than a 3 position idiot light. "Off" | "Car has been running for at least 2 minutes" | "Overheat"

Oil temp (or even pressure at idle) is the important thing to know... water warms up fast... it's the oil that lubricates your engine...

ktc
01-30-2006, 04:06 PM
Hey Kris,

Great write up. My 2005 330i has light(s) in the trunk though. Cuz now that I'm underground most of the time I couldn't see my groceries otherwise.

Why can't they build in some darn hooks for the grocery bags?

Maybe it's because I came over from the more cost-economical Japanese car world (Acura, Toyotas, and Nissans in my family), but the way that the switches are on the door, the headliner light, and radial switches in the center console just visually look similar to those in the Japanese cars. Part of the "switch to European style" for me was that all the buttons are no longer in the same place from car to car. I kinda like that.

ktc

Jeff_DML
01-30-2006, 04:11 PM
I think the ZHP is a little louder, yeah.

MY question is, how do you tell when the E46 engine is warmed up since there's no oil temp gauge?

The temp gauge in the E46 isn't much more than a 3 position idiot light. "Off" | "Car has been running for at least 2 minutes" | "Overheat"

Oil temp (or even pressure at idle) is the important thing to know... water warms up fast... it's the oil that lubricates your engine...


true but I will take a idiot light over nothing. So I assume that the e90 has nothing

KrisL
01-30-2006, 04:12 PM
Hey Kris,

Great write up. My 2005 330i has light(s) in the trunk though.


Oh yeah, guess my E46 does too - behind the tail lamps. Duh. (*edited*)

KrisL
01-30-2006, 04:12 PM
true but I will take a idiot light over nothing. So I assume that the e90 has nothing

No, you should assume that the E90 has an idiot light.

kobechrome
01-30-2006, 04:14 PM
Great review! It's cool to see the design elements side by side. I gave up my 01 325i 2 years ago so I forgot what alot of things looked like.

ffej
01-30-2006, 04:20 PM
Nicely done. I will miss that e90...a little bit. It's replacement is just too wicked for me to mourn.

The bolsters are part of the Sports Package, not premium package. And those seats are some of the most comfortable automobile (or otherwise) seats I've ever plopped myself into.

KrisL
01-30-2006, 04:28 PM
The bolsters are part of the Sports Package, not premium package.

Thx - edited

bmw325
01-30-2006, 04:30 PM
Great comparison. The only thing I like better about the e90 interrior is the climate controls--dials are simply better. Also, the additional rear legroom and vents in the e90 are nice bonuses. If its true that the e90's seats are much more comfortable than the e46s (which I don't like much) that would be a real bonus for me. But, for everything else I think the e46 is better. On my e46, I still look around when I'm sitting in traffic or when I get in and think "What a nice interior" . With the e90, I'd just think "eh". (on the e60, I'd think "WTF!") And, some of the small but stupid changes in the e90 (window swithcs, cupholders, key design, etc) irk me when taken as a whole. Nearly all the changes seem to be about maing the car more mainstream, and cheaper to produce. I see little, if any, improvements from a consumer perspective.

Overall, I feel like i'd be losing more than gaining if I switced the e90. However, if I compare it to current non BMW offerings and were thinking of replacing my e46 just to get a newer car, I'd seriously consider it. The e46 design (inside and out), is nearly perfect to me, and its something that's always going to be hard for me to "get over". However, I do get the "new car" itch a lot, and I also don't think the e46 is a car I can keep forever. It would piss me off to keep replacing all the under-engineered parts that kept breaking. So, I end up in perpetual "waffling" state.

Stranglely, if I were going to get a new car gith now, I'd probably lease an e60. Its interior is even worse and less functional thatn the e90's, but atleast It'd be a lot more comofrtable and give ma lot more room (and the lease would be about the same as an e90 325i).

KrisL
01-30-2006, 04:38 PM
when I'm sitting in traffic or when I get in and think "What a nice interior" .

I agree with all your points, Rob. At this point, I've got so much invested in the E46 (mod wise, knowledge wise, etc) it'd have to take a significantly better car in more than one category (looks, performance, etc) to get me out of it... and the E90 is not a significantly better car in ANY category, in my opinion.


The electronics in the E90 that are built-in are definitely superior than those tacked on to the E46 during it's life cycle, of course. For example, bluetooth - it's much easier to pair and operate in general.

Penforhire
01-30-2006, 04:53 PM
Great visual comparison!

While it might be nicer to have the dials to adjust temperature my personal take is the e90's climate control doesn't actually do much when I dial 'em up or down, say, three degrees. Something is just wrong with the brains IMO (since MAX a/c does blow cold) but my dealer verified the system is working correctly.

ktc
01-30-2006, 05:32 PM
No, you should assume that the E90 has an idiot light.

So, with your leatherZ gauges, how long does it really take the oil to warm up?

KrisL
01-30-2006, 05:37 PM
So, with your leatherZ gauges, how long does it really take the oil to warm up?


Quite a while. My commute is approx 5 miles, speed limits are 40 and 50, potentially 6 or 7 stop lights. Usually takes me 10-15 minutes.

I didn't time how long it took this morning, but it wasn't fully warmed up until I pulled into the parking lot at work. I'm defining 'fully warmed' when the oil pressure is ~20PSI at idle. That was at approx 130-140 degrees F. Ambient temp was 52F.

ktc
01-30-2006, 06:53 PM
Quite a while. My commute is approx 5 miles, speed limits are 40 and 50, potentially 6 or 7 stop lights. Usually takes me 10-15 minutes.

I didn't time how long it took this morning, but it wasn't fully warmed up until I pulled into the parking lot at work. I'm defining 'fully warmed' when the oil pressure is ~20PSI at idle. That was at approx 130-140 degrees F. Ambient temp was 52F.

Wow. So I guess that means the BMW gauge is in the middle for something like 10 minutes before your oil gauge shows stability?

KrisL
01-30-2006, 07:00 PM
Wow. So I guess that means the BMW gauge is in the middle for something like 10 minutes before your oil gauge shows stability?

Yes.

Edit: I should also mention that it stays warm for a long time. I came out approx 1 hr later and it took about 30 seconds to reach what I defined as full warm.

alpinewhite325i
01-30-2006, 07:22 PM
Excellent write up; thanks for taking the time.

So, which one do you prefer? :dunno:

Nice TAG BTW ;)

KrisL
01-30-2006, 07:45 PM
Excellent write up; thanks for taking the time.

So, which one do you prefer? :dunno:

Nice TAG BTW ;)


See my sig :)

BmW745On19's
01-30-2006, 08:44 PM
Very Good Write Up!:thumbup: I like the E90 but it seems it's not as fun to drive since it feels a little bit heavier than the E46. Engine is a bit more responsive.

ffej
01-30-2006, 08:52 PM
Very Good Write Up!:thumbup: I like the E90 but it seems it's not as fun to drive since it feels a little bit heavier than the E46. Engine is a bit more responsive.
I think, having driven the e90 he reviwed (when the wife would let me) for the previous 7 months, think that if it were a manual, with the cdv removed, the car would have been much more fun to drive. As it is...it still has the best manual I've ever driven. Still not as fun as her new ride, though...

wwb4
01-30-2006, 08:54 PM
Great write-up and review. :thumbup:

Tangent
01-30-2006, 09:26 PM
Great write up!

Also, the cruise control 'notch' that rotates into position when you set cruise in the E90 is really trick.

Sounds interesting, could you please explain?

KrisL
01-30-2006, 09:30 PM
Sounds interesting, could you please explain?

Ok, picture this. There's another needle (that is longer) behind the face of the speedometer. There's a clear ring on the outer edge of the speedo.

When you set the speedo to 60mph, the back needle moves to 60mph and stays there. The only piece of it you can see is the tip of it through the clear ring. When you turn cruise off, the needle falls back down to the 6o'clock position, where it is completely hidden.

Ernö
01-30-2006, 10:31 PM
Nice work Kris!

One comment on the operation of the radio: There are 12 presets. The E46 has FM1 and FM2, each with 6 presets. The difference here is that you can scroll through all 12 presets with the steering wheel buttons on the E90. On the E46, you have to press the FM button on the radio/nav to get to the second set of 6 presets. Annoying.

I've got the stock Business CD radio in my E46, and funnily, I can scroll through all 12 FM stations (FM1 -> FM2 -> back to FM1) cyclically using my steering wheel controls. You do have to press the FM button on the radio to switch from FMA channels to FM1 / FM2. I guess it's different between nav and non nav versions (mine doesn't have nav).

Ernö
01-30-2006, 10:32 PM
The E46 has 3 memory positions and the E90 has 2 - odd.

I believe that's even ;)

obmd1
01-30-2006, 10:54 PM
Ok, picture this. There's another needle (that is longer) behind the face of the speedometer. There's a clear ring on the outer edge of the speedo.

When you set the speedo to 60mph, the back needle moves to 60mph and stays there. The only piece of it you can see is the tip of it through the clear ring. When you turn cruise off, the needle falls back down to the 6o'clock position, where it is completely hidden.
and CC BRAKES for you when dropping speed on the e90.... large improvement over e46:thumbup:

Tangent
01-30-2006, 10:58 PM
Ok, picture this. There's another needle (that is longer) behind the face of the speedometer. There's a clear ring on the outer edge of the speedo.

When you set the speedo to 60mph, the back needle moves to 60mph and stays there. The only piece of it you can see is the tip of it through the clear ring. When you turn cruise off, the needle falls back down to the 6o'clock position, where it is completely hidden.

That is just the coolest thing EVAR! :yikes:

e60lover
01-30-2006, 11:34 PM
Wow! Great review. Alot of the things on the e46 are very near to my heart because of my former e36 which shares many of the same components.
Some of my old favorite BMW trademarks that are long gone- :cry:
-the old rear pasanger reading lights on the pillar.
-Window switches in the middle.
-central locking button in the middle. (still there)
-BMW four guages.


-e60lover

ktc
01-31-2006, 04:54 AM
Before anyone says anything, I know the interior of my E46 needs to be detailed bad. You think it's fairly clean until you start taking high res pictures :).


Hey Kris,

How come your Alcantara steering wheel looks so chewed up?? :rofl: :rofl:

teamdfl
01-31-2006, 05:53 AM
Dear BMW,
Please give this GM unistalk looking thing back to Chevy. They need it to keep their fleet of Cavaliers on the road.



http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49916-4/IMG_8500.jpg

KrisL
01-31-2006, 08:00 AM
Hey Kris,

How come your Alcantara steering wheel looks so chewed up?? :rofl: :rofl:

heh... that's what 42000mi of hard driving will do to it :mad: . I plan on buying a new one sometime soon...

gsjohn
01-31-2006, 08:52 AM
heh... that's what 42000mi of hard driving will do to it :mad: . I plan on buying a new one sometime soon...


love the zhp steering wheel, but how do you clean the alcantara steering wheel? soap and water?

KrisL
01-31-2006, 08:56 AM
love the zhp steering wheel, but how do you clean the alcantara steering wheel? soap and water?

Yeah. When I clean it, I have two large bowls of warm water, one with some "free and clear" type liquid laundry detergent in it. Dip in microfiber towel and get the wheel all wet, slightly agitating the wheel as you go around. Then switch to another microfiber towel, dip in the clean water, and work my way around the wheel with that a few times, rinsing the towel out in the clean water often. It's amazing how dirty the towels end up.

gsjohn
01-31-2006, 08:58 AM
Yeah. When I clean it, I have two large bowls of warm water, one with some "free and clear" type liquid laundry detergent in it. Dip in microfiber towel and get the wheel all wet, slightly agitating the wheel as you go around. Then switch to another microfiber towel, dip in the clean water, and work my way around the wheel with that a few times, rinsing the towel out in the clean water often. It's amazing how dirty the towels end up.


i wonder if any of it is dye coming off.

KrisL
01-31-2006, 09:00 AM
i wonder if any of it is dye coming off.


Perhaps. Most of it looked like dirt/oil though. I've only done it twice thus far.

TLudwig
01-31-2006, 09:13 AM
Dear BMW,
Please give this GM unistalk looking thing back to Chevy. They need it to keep their fleet of Cavaliers on the road.



http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49916-4/IMG_8500.jpg

:rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

leshik
01-31-2006, 09:15 AM
Why can't they build in some darn hooks for the grocery bags?


OP-- Great writeup!

They actually sell a grocery bag accessory that you can mount in the middle of your trunk. I believe I got mine at circle bmw. Search in their parts for practical extras part number 82260153359

TLudwig
01-31-2006, 09:22 AM
Kris, I noticed what seems like a couple of differences between your '03 ZHP and my '04:

1. I'm able to scroll through all of my FM presets (both FM1 and FM2) with the steering wheel controls.

2. I noticed on your headlight switch, you have no option for the automatic headlights. Is this a model year difference, an option difference, or something else?

Great writeup! :thumbup:

KrisL
01-31-2006, 09:25 AM
Kris, I noticed what seems like a couple of differences between your '03 ZHP and my '04:

1. I'm able to scroll through all of my FM presets (both FM1 and FM2) with the steering wheel controls.

2. I noticed on your headlight switch, you have no option for the automatic headlights. Is this a model year difference, an option difference, or something else?

Great writeup! :thumbup:


On #1, very interesting. Must be a 2004+ thing. I just updated the review with that information.
#2: I believe that was a model year difference....not sure..

BMWintoxication
01-31-2006, 09:37 AM
thanks for the post1

BmW745On19's
01-31-2006, 09:46 AM
Still not as fun as her new ride, though...

Agreed, as I said in another post of yours, 3-Series < M3. :)

Cal
01-31-2006, 01:24 PM
Dear BMW,
Please give this GM unistalk looking thing back to Chevy. They need it to keep their fleet of Cavaliers on the road.



http://www.linquist.net/gallery2/d/49916-4/IMG_8500.jpg

I hate to admit this as you all will make fun of the e36, but those two stalks look very similar to the ones on my 98 e36 M3/4. Interesting to note that a couple of things from the e36 (cruise control stalk, dual climate controls) showed up again on the e90.
:dunno:

Penforhire
01-31-2006, 02:06 PM
Have to admit I don't like the cc stalk either. Seems to me these controls should be buttons directly on the wheel (give me more buttons!).

SpeedFreak!
01-31-2006, 02:15 PM
Brilliantly done... Kris! :thumbup: I love the side by side aspect of your write up... you're a freakin' pro, dude!

akhbhaat
01-31-2006, 04:10 PM
Impressive and thorough. Thank you for this detailed comparison of things that people rarely consider but should. The decision to move the window switches to the door is truly baffling. Why fix something that's not broken (to further compound my confusion, the Germans rarely do!)?

I'll be honest: I like the E90, but for some reason it doesn't have the same "Buy me!" appeal as the E46. It's probably because my automotive indulgences have been spoiled since I bought the E46... since then, I've been riding around in Porsches, M5's and SL-class Mercedes. The one reasonably affordable car that's REALLY on my mind right now is the Z4 coupe. It has the same fantastic appeal to me (for whatever reason!) that the E46 did all those years ago...

Interior aside, the E90 does numerous things better than the E46, but it's not enough of an improvement that I would really want to get rid of an E46 (especially a well equipped late model) for one. Only reason I'm even thinking about it is because my E46 is old and getting older. Don't get me wrong, I really like the car, but it's not WORLDS better than the E46.

That said, the only way I'm going to buy an E90 is if BMW puts more power into it and doesn't jack the price in the process. 335 or bust.

Chris90
01-31-2006, 04:41 PM
The temp gauge in the E46 isn't much more than a 3 position idiot light. "Off" | "Car has been running for at least 2 minutes" | "Overheat"


I strongly disagree. When my E36 had a stuck thermostat, I found the water temp gauge extremely useful as I was driving to the shop, to give me a rough idea of how close I was to overheating. Without it I would have had to park the car and get it towed. It also tells you how long it takes, giving you an idea of how cold the oil is. Totally not the same as an idiot light.

BMW should not be excused for giving us no gauge, simply by saying an oil gauge would be better.

akhbhaat
01-31-2006, 04:54 PM
I strongly disagree. When my E36 had a stuck thermostat, I found the water temp gauge extremely useful as I was driving to the shop, to give me a rough idea of how close I was to overheating. Without it I would have had to park the car and get it towed. It also tells you how long it takes, giving you an idea of how cold the oil is. Totally not the same as an idiot light.

BMW should not be excused for giving us no gauge, simply by saying an oil gauge would be better.I'm not quite sure what you're trying to say - the gauge in the E46 (and E39) is a placebo and the E90's gauge (had they included it) would undoubtedly have done the same thing. My friend's E39 had a water pump failure and he received no warning until the gauge suddenly shot up and the car stalled.

///M3lissa
01-31-2006, 10:03 PM
Perhaps. Most of it looked like dirt/oil though. I've only done it twice thus far.

Eeeeewwww. I feel the need to go wash my hands :eek:

FenPhen
02-01-2006, 12:01 AM
2. I noticed on your headlight switch, you have no option for the automatic headlights. Is this a model year difference, an option difference, or something else?Auto headlights and rain sensor became standard in '04 for the 330i. Otherwise, part of the Premium Package.

e60lover
02-01-2006, 12:17 AM
:) Wow I forgot how much I love BMW's orange backlighting! lol


-e60lover

Chris90
02-01-2006, 07:34 AM
I'm not quite sure what you're trying to say - the gauge in the E46 (and E39) is a placebo and the E90's gauge (had they included it) would undoubtedly have done the same thing. My friend's E39 had a water pump failure and he received no warning until the gauge suddenly shot up and the car stalled.

I'm saying when my thermostat failed, the water temp went up and down depending on what gear I was in, how fast i was moving etc - it was quite useful. A lot more useful than no gauge.

KrisL
02-01-2006, 08:03 AM
Eeeeewwww. I feel the need to go wash my hands :eek:


haha.. for what it's worth, after the 2nd time, I started carrying wet-naps with me to make sure my hands are clean before driving :).

I'll be doing that from day 1 with a new wheel... there's one on ebay now for $400, that's a little high...

swchang
02-01-2006, 08:34 AM
haha.. for what it's worth, after the 2nd time, I started carrying wet-naps with me to make sure my hands are clean before driving :).

I'll be doing that from day 1 with a new wheel... there's one on ebay now for $400, that's a little high...

Does it come with an airbag?

KrisL
02-01-2006, 08:37 AM
Does it come with an airbag?

no.

ktc
02-01-2006, 10:03 AM
haha.. for what it's worth, after the 2nd time, I started carrying wet-naps with me to make sure my hands are clean before driving :).

I'll be doing that from day 1 with a new wheel... there's one on ebay now for $400, that's a little high...

Remember how some 'festers managed to get the dealership to swap it out under "warranty"?

KrisL
02-01-2006, 10:21 AM
Remember how some 'festers managed to get the dealership to swap it out under "warranty"?


I may mention it to the dealer when I go in for my 45k oil change..

Cal
02-01-2006, 12:57 PM
I'm saying when my thermostat failed, the water temp went up and down depending on what gear I was in, how fast i was moving etc - it was quite useful. A lot more useful than no gauge.

I guess that with the e90 you won't know that until the car won't run any more.

Hey Chris, nice ZHP! Glad to see you finally got one.

Rowag
02-01-2006, 08:45 PM
Why did BMW add these graduated lines here? (see attached pic)

And my wife hates the E90 steering wheel.... "It looks like a uterus!" :eek:

ktc
02-02-2006, 04:14 AM
Why did BMW add these graduated lines here? (see attached pic)

:rofl: :rofl:

And my wife hates the E90 steering wheel.... "It looks like a uterus!" :eek:

:rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

Thanks man. I'll never look at my dash the same way ever again.

akhbhaat
02-02-2006, 05:29 AM
I'm saying when my thermostat failed, the water temp went up and down depending on what gear I was in, how fast i was moving etc - it was quite useful. A lot more useful than no gauge.I don't know about the E36 gauge, but the E46 gauge is programmed to center completely under normal operating temperatures...point being, as soon as it exceeds those limitations, the needle will climb quickly with little to no warning. The amount of time it affords you is minimal, and it certainly isn't going to be of any use if you're trying to limp the car along (since you really have no idea how close you are to the limits of the engine's "safe" zone). Friend of mine drives a manual 528 (you can see his car in my signature) and suffered a water pump failure this past summer. I asked him about the water temp gauge (which is programmed the same way as that of the E46) and he told me that it was fine one minute and then "red" the next...shortly thereafter the car overheated and stalled.

This being known, I would have to figure that the E90's gauge (if it had gotten one) would have been little more than a placebo, as the E46 gauge is.

ObD
02-02-2006, 10:49 AM
Why did BMW add these graduated lines here? (see attached pic)


For the same reason they offered the ZHP option. :stickpoke An illusion.

missing23
02-02-2006, 01:09 PM
I agree with all your points, Rob. At this point, I've got so much invested in the E46 (mod wise, knowledge wise, etc) it'd have to take a significantly better car in more than one category (looks, performance, etc) to get me out of it... and the E90 is not a significantly better car in ANY category, in my opinion.


The electronics in the E90 that are built-in are definitely superior than those tacked on to the E46 during it's life cycle, of course. For example, bluetooth - it's much easier to pair and operate in general.

I agree with a lot of things you guys are saying...the big E90 'issues' with me are:

-Ugly flat dash with no driver cockpit feel
-Huge stick size compared to my ZHP
-No real performance increase compared to my ZHP

The 335 might get me to change but I really like the cockpit feel of the E46...the E90 feels too 'disconnected'...almost like the driver's car is being changed to the 'everbody in the cabin' car...

Chris90
02-02-2006, 01:13 PM
I don't know about the E36 gauge, but the E46 gauge is programmed to center completely under normal operating temperatures...point being, as soon as it exceeds those limitations, the needle will climb quickly with little to no warning. The amount of time it affords you is minimal, and it certainly isn't going to be of any use if you're trying to limp the car along (since you really have no idea how close you are to the limits of the engine's "safe" zone). Friend of mine drives a manual 528 (you can see his car in my signature) and suffered a water pump failure this past summer. I asked him about the water temp gauge (which is programmed the same way as that of the E46) and he told me that it was fine one minute and then "red" the next...shortly thereafter the car overheated and stalled.

This being known, I would have to figure that the E90's gauge (if it had gotten one) would have been little more than a placebo, as the E46 gauge is.

Sounds like they changed it for the E46. On my E36, it would gradually go up from normal to red over like 10 minutes of driving, and if I put it in neutral and coasted, or cranked the heat to max, it would start to go down. It was clearly a direct readout of coolant temp. It's a bummer if the E46 is not that way. But the E36 was more involving and more communicative in many ways, this is just one more I guess.

Cal
02-02-2006, 02:19 PM
Sounds like they changed it for the E46. On my E36, it would gradually go up from normal to red over like 10 minutes of driving, and if I put it in neutral and coasted, or cranked the heat to max, it would start to go down. It was clearly a direct readout of coolant temp. It's a bummer if the E46 is not that way. But the E36 was more involving and more communicative in many ways, this is just one more I guess.

I agree with the above. On the e36, it is more a readout of coolant temp, which is what it should be. I didn't own my previous e46 long enough (got rid of it at 60K miles) to really notice any variation in the temp gauge, but I would assume it would be the same (I guess it isn't then after reading this thread). In any case, akhbhaat, your friend should have probably turned off his car immediately once the needle had hit the red zone. The point still remains that with the lack of this gauge as in the e90 and in the event of something like a water pump failure, the driver would have no clue what's wrong, try to keep running the car no matter what (if it still can), and cause further damage. If it really is just an idiot light on the e46, then why not IMPROVE it to be more of a true coolant/water temp gauge on the e90?

In any case, idiot light or not, it's no excuse not to have it, considering the fact that a temp gauge is present in 99.9% of cars from Honda Civics to S-class benzes, you name it.

Motown328
02-03-2006, 08:31 AM
But the E36 was more involving and more communicative in many ways, this is just one more I guess.

Yeah, like in the steering....:cry:

Rowag
02-04-2006, 06:27 PM
For the same reason they offered the ZHP option. :stickpoke An illusion.

:tsk:

KevinJ_2k1325ci
02-11-2006, 07:52 AM
I remember seeing grocery bag hooks in a accessory book. I was thinking of ordering them for my car.

Hey Kris,

Great write up. My 2005 330i has light(s) in the trunk though. Cuz now that I'm underground most of the time I couldn't see my groceries otherwise.

Why can't they build in some darn hooks for the grocery bags?

Maybe it's because I came over from the more cost-economical Japanese car world (Acura, Toyotas, and Nissans in my family), but the way that the switches are on the door, the headliner light, and radial switches in the center console just visually look similar to those in the Japanese cars. Part of the "switch to European style" for me was that all the buttons are no longer in the same place from car to car. I kinda like that.

ktc

CSBM5
02-11-2006, 08:04 AM
The 335 might get me to change but I really like the cockpit feel of the E46...the E90 feels too 'disconnected'...almost like the driver's car is being changed to the 'everbody in the cabin' car...

By disconnected, I think you are referring to the interior design? I agree with that somewhat. In terms of driving dynamics, the E90 330i sport package is outstanding, in my opinion, for a totally stock car. I am so far very impressed with the car. I also have a stock E46 330i ZHP and a 2001 M5 (Dinan springs/Konis/rear bar/Ground Control camber plates/9.5" and 275's all around) that the E90 joined in the garage, so it entered a somewhat hostile environment.:rofl: So far, it has held its head up nicely. I've been driving BMW's now for 31 years, and I think they hit the nail close to the head with the 330i sport package.

missing23
02-11-2006, 08:14 AM
By disconnected, I think you are referring to the interior design? I agree with that somewhat. In terms of driving dynamics, the E90 330i sport package is outstanding, in my opinion, for a totally stock car. I am so far very impressed with the car. I also have a stock E46 330i ZHP and a 2001 M5 (Dinan springs/Konis/rear bar/Ground Control camber plates/9.5" and 275's all around) that the E90 joined in the garage, so it entered a somewhat hostile environment.:rofl: So far, it has held its head up nicely. I've been driving BMW's now for 31 years, and I think they hit the nail close to the head with the 330i sport package.

Yeah, I mean the interior design...the E90 road feel is good...when I step in my E46 it feels like a cockpit and the car is 'mine'...I just didn't get that with the E90...:dunno:

akhbhaat
02-11-2006, 08:19 AM
The E46 interior does fit like a glove once everything is in place. It's like I can "feel" precisely where every wheel and corner of the car is when I'm in the driver's seat.

The E90 is larger and bulkier on the outside and it doesn't have the same cocooning feeling that the E46 cabin has. It really feels a lot like my buddy's E39. However, I do feel physically more secure in the E90, seeing as it has far better seats...

Moderato
02-12-2006, 08:10 PM
Thanks for the write up, I really enjoyed that. I always thought that the E46 was a huge improvement over the E36 speaking stricktly in terms of the fit and finish of the car both inside and out. However, when comparing the E46 to the E90, I don't get that same feeling. It's almost as if the E90 isn't any better then the E46 but rather just "different." So why am I waiting for an E92? Well even though I'm not expecting the car to be any "nicer" then the E46 coupe I am looking forward to just a little more interior room but mostly I'm looking foward to much improved performance. I think ultimitately this is where the E92 will really trump the E46, not in fit & finish but performance. If my calculations are correct the 335Ci and the E92 M3 will make huge improvements over the E46 and convert the last of the diehard E46 enthusiasts.

bmw325
02-17-2006, 06:38 AM
I keep hearing about how the e90's seats are such an improvement over the e46. This intrigues me, because I find the e46 seats to be uncomfortable (both sport and regular). What specifically do you like about the e90 seats? Is it just the adjustable side bolsters on the sport seats, or is it more than that?

The E46 interior does fit like a glove once everything is in place. It's like I can "feel" precisely where every wheel and corner of the car is when I'm in the driver's seat.

The E90 is larger and bulkier on the outside and it doesn't have the same cocooning feeling that the E46 cabin has. It really feels a lot like my buddy's E39. However, I do feel physically more secure in the E90, seeing as it has far better seats...

Chris90
02-17-2006, 11:46 AM
I keep hearing about how the e90's seats are such an improvement over the e46. This intrigues me, because I find the e46 seats to be uncomfortable (both sport and regular). What specifically do you like about the e90 seats? Is it just the adjustable side bolsters on the sport seats, or is it more than that?

I also thought the E90 seats were fantastic, but it's difficult to quantify, it just fits me like a glove. The E46 sports seats are decent, but not on par with the best seats in cars like the E90, EVO, or an aftermarket Recaro sport (not racing) seat.

acitydweller
02-17-2006, 12:45 PM
Kudos to you for taking the time and care for crafting this.

Excellent write up.

I like the e90 and i expect the rest of the world will in time. What i will never buy into at this point in my life is the massive initial year of depreciation in addition to the habitual problems that come inherently with the launch of a new model. More than likely my family will wait a year or three before considering this car but for now, its all fun to read about.

Best,
AC

kyle5574
02-17-2006, 02:21 PM
An E90 Sparkling Graphite Metallic 330i sport parked next to my E46 328i while I was in Best Buy. Show off! That's the first time I've REALLY liked the way they look. My car looked 10 years old (and its only 7 ;) ) next to his. The 18's with 255's looked massive.

If I could get the E90 exterior with the E46 interior, I'd be sold.

KrisL
02-17-2006, 04:38 PM
The 18's with 255's looked massive.


The performance package e46 has 255s on 18s :).

CSBM5
02-17-2006, 05:27 PM
The performance package e46 has 255s on 18s :).

On the rear. The E46 ZHP and the sport pkg E90 330i have the same tire and wheel sizes: front 8" with 225/40-18 and rear 8.5" with 255/35-18.

teamdfl
03-21-2006, 09:20 AM
I hate to admit this as you all will make fun of the e36, but those two stalks look very similar to the ones on my 98 e36 M3/4. Interesting to note that a couple of things from the e36 (cruise control stalk, dual climate controls) showed up again on the e90.
:dunno:


Power by BMW, trim by General Motors

akhbhaat
03-21-2006, 10:44 AM
Power by BMW, trim by General MotorsGenerous.