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Emission
11-10-2003, 11:29 AM
He lives in Orange County, was the former owner of a E46, and is a current owner of his (second) E39. He was invited to a private focus group to check out the newest BMW (and paid $$ to do so).

The car was there in person. He sat in it, played with the switches, but never drove it.

He said it looks good. Aggressive.

Not nearly as radical as the 7-series, or even the 5-series. It looks clean, and is easily identified as a 3-series (good thing).

He didn't like the interior. No iDrive in the vehicle he looked at. No specifics as why he didn't like it - he just said it was different - too different.

ObD
11-10-2003, 11:34 AM
E90 in 2006? I'm surprised that BMW would be changing the E46 so late in the production run if it was a 2005 :dunno:

bmw325
11-10-2003, 11:39 AM
****. I'm guessing that means that they've cheapened and "flattened" the dash in e60/65-esque ways.

I'm jealous of your friend btw--getting paid to spend a few hours looking at critquing a new design sounds like a lot of fun to me. Hell, I'd do it for free and spend a few days doing it. But, BMW probably wouldn't like my comments very much. :D

The Roadstergal
11-10-2003, 11:59 AM
How do you get that gig? :mad:

I'm not worried about the looks as much as the size.

Alex Baumann
11-10-2003, 12:33 PM
sat in it ? :confused:

I can't imagine that the interior is finished so that they put it in a prototype.

Maybe it was the 1 Series prototype ? :dunno:

aardvark
11-10-2003, 12:39 PM
How do you get that gig?

They usually select people who have purchased a new vehicle within the last 1-2 years. Also, from what I understand, these things are disproportionately held in California, so living there increases your odds of being invited.

Emission
11-10-2003, 12:40 PM
sat in it ? :confused:

I can't imagine that the interior is finished so that they put it in a prototype.

Maybe it was the 1 Series prototype ? :dunno:

They told him it was the new 3-series (I asked him twice).

He is 6'2", and they had him sit in the front and rear of the car (he was not allowed to adjust the seats) to check how well he fit, and if he was comfortable reaching the dash.

AF
11-10-2003, 12:46 PM
Why don't I get to do cool things like this :cry:


Thanks for filling us in, did he say it looks anything like some of the pictures floating around the net . . . (hopefully like the car below)

http://www.ilpistone.com/yabbse/attachments/ChB_serie_3_-_2.jpg

Mr Paddle.Shift
11-10-2003, 01:30 PM
Probably a prototype from Designworks.

I received an email from a fellow SAE member who asked if I wanted to attend and I can't believe I totally forgot about it, until you posted this today.

Kaz
11-10-2003, 01:34 PM
I got a call about one of these evaluation things a while back. I had a conflicting event (a TechSession, I think), but it was paying a couple hundred bucks. But during the phone interview, I would refuse to say that I liked SUVs so they dropped me from participating. :p

Emission
11-10-2003, 04:51 PM
Why don't I get to do cool things like this :cry:


Thanks for filling us in, did he say it looks anything like some of the pictures floating around the net . . . (hopefully like the car below)

http://www.ilpistone.com/yabbse/attachments/ChB_serie_3_-_2.jpg

I just sent him that pic. Let's see what he says...

operknockity
11-10-2003, 05:26 PM
Thanks for filling us in, did he say it looks anything like some of the pictures floating around the net . . . (hopefully like the car below)

http://www.ilpistone.com/yabbse/attachments/ChB_serie_3_-_2.jpg

If that is anything close to what it is going to look like, I'd be very happy. In that pic it doesn't look like it at has any of the more offensive features of the new 5/6/7s (eyebrows, slanted tail lights, bangle butt, etc.). Still have to see front, rear and interior views, though.

Kaz
11-10-2003, 05:31 PM
If that is anything close to what it is going to look like, I'd be very happy. In that pic it doesn't look like it at has any of the more offensive features of the new 5/6/7s (eyebrows, slanted tail lights, bangle butt, etc.). Still have to see front, rear and interior views, though.

Yea, because it's pretty obvious that this is a E46 PS job. Off a pre-facelift car, even.

rost12
11-10-2003, 06:50 PM
Yea, because it's pretty obvious that this is a E46 PS job. Off a pre-facelift car, even.

I see an E60 there, but E46? :dunno:

AF
11-10-2003, 06:53 PM
I see an E60 there, but E46? :dunno:

the side windows really do look like they are the same shape as the E46 now that Kaz mentions it . . .

Kaz
11-10-2003, 07:37 PM
I see an E60 there, but E46? :dunno:

Look at the A/B/C pillar shapes, door/glass shapes, handle locations/shape, mirror, front/rear kickup angles, etc.

Either BMW decided to keep those dimensions (let's hope) or someone did a 'If They Mated' between 80% E46 and 10% each E60 and 10% X3(?)

Emission
11-10-2003, 07:47 PM
If that is anything close to what it is going to look like, I'd be very happy. In that pic it doesn't look like it at has any of the more offensive features of the new 5/6/7s (eyebrows, slanted tail lights, bangle butt, etc.). Still have to see front, rear and interior views, though.

Direct quote from my friend:

"Thatís pretty darn close."

Kaz
11-10-2003, 07:52 PM
Direct quote from my friend:

"Thatís pretty darn close."

No E65 headlights.
No Bangle Butt
No Z4 slash
No CS1 door cutline
Hard to tell but the grille looks like it's at a reasonable height, not dragging on the ground (Z4)

BMW may have just saved themselves with this one. :thumbup:
Let's hope the interior is halfway reasonable.

AF
11-10-2003, 08:18 PM
Direct quote from my friend:

"Thatís pretty darn close."


Cool :thumbup::thumbup:

aardvark
11-10-2003, 08:42 PM
They told him it was the new 3-series (I asked him twice).
Well, they do lie at those things. A lot of disinformation was employed at the SUV thing I went to.

It's fairly common to de-badge vehicles at these surveys/focus groups. Sometimes, they even re-badge vehicles using a competitor's brand. I remember reading in the Wall Street Journal some year ago that GM took one of its cars (an Olds Aurora, I think) and put Lexus badges on it for a focus group. The focus group loved the car. For another focus group, the Lexus badges were replaced with Oldsmobile badges. The second focus group was far less enthusiastic about the car.

pony_trekker
11-10-2003, 08:52 PM
I just sent him that pic. Let's see what he says...
Thinking of this with a 4.5 8 cyl. :thumbup:

rost12
11-10-2003, 09:48 PM
Look at the A/B/C pillar shapes, door/glass shapes, handle locations/shape, mirror, front/rear kickup angles, etc.

Either BMW decided to keep those dimensions (let's hope) or someone did a 'If They Mated' between 80% E46 and 10% each E60 and 10% X3(?)

Side windows actually look like E65's to me. At best E60's. They are definitely not E46's, see those sun-shade nooks in rear quarter windows?

Anyhow, I think the basic shape looks quite sporty and yummy. Don't like the trunk profile or the large-ish headlamps, but otherwise...
:thumbup:

rost12
11-10-2003, 09:52 PM
Thinking of this with a 4.5 8 cyl. :thumbup:

4.4 :p

I think it'd be too heavy, though :( I miss an I6.

TeamM3
11-11-2003, 12:46 AM
4.4 :p

I think it'd be too heavy, though :( I miss an I6.

lately the same engines are offered in the 3er and 5er, so a 4.4L Valvetronic option is not so far fetched, but if the 3er gets 325hp then the M3 must be 400+ :thumbup:

I'm not sure why you made the weight statement, Hartge stuffed a 5.0L E39M5 V8 in the Z4 and the weight didn't go up that much, at least not relative to the power increase

operknockity
11-11-2003, 01:00 AM
There is a three-quarter front shot that is "computer enhanced" of the new 3 in this month's Roundel. It looks very much like this picture. Except for the normal looking headlight assembly, it is has the same kidney grill hood-line treatment as the new 5.
(If only I had a scanner).

Artslinger
11-11-2003, 07:31 AM
I kind of like the side picture of that enhanced photo. The only negative besides the head lamps is that the front and rear looks to much like a Audi.

Cadd
11-11-2003, 11:01 AM
Wow, it looks better than what I had in mind! The only other picture I saw was on Edmunds.com. Oh yeah! I'm holding off on the ED 2004 330i....I'm gonna wait for this one. So, will it be available as a '05 or '06????

Thx.

postoak
11-11-2003, 11:26 AM
Cadd - that question is being discussed in THIS thread:

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=45275

Cadd
11-11-2003, 02:41 PM
Thx postoak. I saw that thread after replying here. Actually TedW just confirmed that MY05 will be the E90 in this thread.

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=44271

Maverick
11-11-2003, 02:47 PM
Thx postoak. I saw that thread after replying here. Actually TedW just confirmed that MY05 will be the E90 in this thread.

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=44271

It seems there has been more and more indications that the E90 would be MY2005. With all the marketing, testing and spy photos, it would seem the above is correct. I'm guessing slated for Fall 2004 release?

aardvark
11-12-2003, 12:45 AM
Wow. For the last few years, the word was MY2006 for the E90. Now, though, all indications seem to suggest MY2005. I'm somewhat surprised at this since they'll be launching the 1-series sedan at the same time.

Of course, maybe it's not that suprising. There has always been some concern that the 1-series sedan might cannibalize some sales from the 3-series. Trying to convince a buyer who comes into the showroom for the 1-series to upgrade to an E46 might be challenging not only because the E46 would be more expensive but also because the design would be six years old. But if the E90 is launched at the same time, the cannibalization thing becomes less likely. The choice is no longer between a new 1-series and an old 3-series, but rather between two brand-new vehicles.

Technic
11-12-2003, 04:36 AM
Wow. For the last few years, the word was MY2006 for the E90. Now, though, all indications seem to suggest MY2005. I'm somewhat surprised at this since they'll be launching the 1-series sedan at the same time.

Of course, maybe it's not that suprising. There has always been some concern that the 1-series sedan might cannibalize some sales from the 3-series. Trying to convince a buyer who comes into the showroom for the 1-series to upgrade to an E46 might be challenging not only because the E46 would be more expensive but also because the design would be six years old. But if the E90 is launched at the same time, the cannibalization thing becomes less likely. The choice is no longer between a new 1-series and an old 3-series, but rather between two brand-new vehicles.

The 1 Series is slated for Europe introduction in MY2005, US introduction is for MY2006 IAW Autoweek:

The European model, to go on sale in late 2004, will be a five-door hatchback designed to look like a sedan.

Buyers in the U.S., where the 1 Series is due in 2005, will be offered as a traditional four-door sedan.

aardvark
11-12-2003, 04:43 AM
The 1 Series is slated for Europe introduction in MY2005, US introduction is for MY2006 IAW Autoweek:

To say that the 1-series "is due in 2005" is not necessarily the equivalent of saying that it will be the 2006 model year. It could mean January or February 2005.

Lomag
11-12-2003, 06:40 AM
I've been following the E39 -> E60 transistion very closely. We started getting E60 news in mid-late 2001 and at that point we were all thinking it would come earlier than expected and be a 2003 model. As you know it turned out to be a 2004 model.

My point is not to get your hopes up or make any plans based on early rumours. I think BMW is introducing way too many new models this year and next year and I doubt the new 3 will also be one of them. They need a chance to sort everything out with these new models before they introduce the new 3 -- their biggest volume seller.

Now its mid-late 2003 and we're getting new 3 info.. based on whats happened with the E60 i'd say the new 3 will be a 2006 model.

Chris90
11-12-2003, 07:19 AM
I think it's Autoweek this week said the 1 series was coming to the US 18 months after it hits Europe. Which means spring 2006. As in 2 and a half freaking years.

To say that the 1-series "is due in 2005" is not necessarily the equivalent of saying that it will be the 2006 model year. It could mean January or February 2005.

Maverick
11-12-2003, 12:19 PM
I think it's Autoweek this week said the 1 series was coming to the US 18 months after it hits Europe. Which means spring 2006. As in 2 and a half freaking years.

This also means that there would be no conflict with 3 series in the US. I'm guessing that would be one of the 3er's biggest markets. Maybe 1er has been pushed out to accommodate 3er release?

Motown328
11-21-2003, 04:35 PM
4.4 :p

I think it'd be too heavy, though :( I miss an I6.


You bloody whingin' mutt! Driving an M5 and all.......hahahaha.... :rofl:

Cadd
11-21-2003, 10:11 PM
Can you take pics at these focus group things? Prob not right?

alee
11-21-2003, 10:17 PM
Can you take pics at these focus group things? Prob not right?
No... these things are always secured events. A pre-release photo is very dangerous, which is also why they heavily camoflauge the test mules.

racerdave
11-21-2003, 10:26 PM
Can anyone say, "Camera phone?" :)

Small enough to conceal, inconspicuous enough to get a shot or two off without anyone noticing.

:D

Now, I'm sure BMW is hip to the camera phones, but it'll just this board's little secret, huh?

:thumbup:

Cadd
11-21-2003, 10:29 PM
you can PM someone and they'll post it up. lol

Cadd
11-21-2003, 10:35 PM
D'oh!