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E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 10-02-2012, 11:26 AM
Bilstein Bilstein is offline
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Post E46 options for driving enthusiasts

Some of the long timers on the board will recall conversations about the post E46 decline of BMW as a driver’s car (not as a luxury car) that one could actually take a wrench to maintenance wise.

Dan Neil does auto reviews for magazines and newspapers and I think was even on the ridiculous “Top Gear” produced in the US. I think he’s a little precious, but that’s just an opinion.

Anyway, I came across a review of the new Cadillac ATS in this weekend’s paper and thought I’d share it with you guys for two reasons: 1) Cadillac has BMW directly in their crosshairs and a number of us are/were realistically looking at the CTS V as an option instead of a post E46 BMW, and 2) for what he reveals about the current BMW 3 series and the company’s marketing strategy.

I put it in PDF format for ease in posting.

Bilstein
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File Type: pdf Cadillac ATS.pdf (52.9 KB, 89 views)
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  #2  
Old 10-02-2012, 12:07 PM
SPDSKTR SPDSKTR is offline
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I heard differentials in the CTS-V are ticking time bombs.

To continue this, I've looked into Porsche Cayman S, CTS-V, 370Z, a newer Mustang GT, and toyed with the idea of a 335i or a newer E46 ///M3. I love the BMW community and would love to stick with it, but it just doesn't seem quite as practical anymore.

Last edited by SPDSKTR; 10-02-2012 at 12:12 PM.
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  #3  
Old 10-02-2012, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SPDSKTR View Post
I heard differentials in the CTS-V are ticking time bombs. .
Not the end of the world, you can have a bulletproof diff built for maybe $2-3000....like yourself, I`ve been examining a number of other possibilities, but haven`t come to any clear-cut conclusions yet.
We may have to face the fact that the era of "user-friendly/DIY friendly" cars is coming to a close. They seem to be morphing into "rolling computers" more and more with each succeeding generation....owning an out-of-warranty car ten years from now will probably eat up a lot of dough....
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  #4  
Old 10-02-2012, 02:25 PM
SPDSKTR SPDSKTR is offline
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Not the end of the world, you can have a bulletproof diff built for maybe $2-3000....like yourself, I`ve been examining a number of other possibilities, but haven`t come to any clear-cut conclusions yet.
We may have to face the fact that the era of "user-friendly/DIY friendly" cars is coming to a close. They seem to be morphing into "rolling computers" more and more with each succeeding generation....owning an out-of-warranty car ten years from now will probably eat up a lot of dough....
I refuse to buy an in-warranty Versa (since it will probably be the only thing I can afford). As smolck once said, "You must really have to hate yourself to drive a Versa."
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  #5  
Old 10-02-2012, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by SPDSKTR View Post
I refuse to buy an in-warranty Versa (since it will probably be the only thing I can afford). As smolck once said, "You must really have to hate yourself to drive a Versa."
I`d rather bait a crocodile with my manhood than drive that piece of sh!t....
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  #6  
Old 10-02-2012, 03:02 PM
SPDSKTR SPDSKTR is offline
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I`d rather bait a crocodile with my manhood than drive that piece of sh!t....


You and me both.
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  #7  
Old 10-03-2012, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SPDSKTR View Post
I heard differentials in the CTS-V are ticking time bombs.
Start watching at 5:45



Quote:
Originally Posted by tturedraider View Post
I'll be in my 330i for a long, long time. I love my naturally aspirated inline six.
Me too, but only because I can't afford anything else. When my 19 year old went to college, my dream of an M3 died.
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now, go burn your Man Card, and buy yourself a Camry....

Last edited by smolck; 10-03-2012 at 05:55 PM.
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  #8  
Old 10-04-2012, 06:48 AM
SPDSKTR SPDSKTR is offline
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Start watching at 5:45

"When I drove it, it didn't explode!"
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  #9  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:45 PM
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Quote:
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I`d rather bait a crocodile with my manhood than drive that piece of sh!t....
I'd rather just drive the Versa.
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  #10  
Old 10-03-2012, 06:03 PM
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I'd rather just drive the Versa.
Currently in a rental Nissan Versa, it's very practical for a daily driver; lots of room inside for such a small car outside. The engine does suck, highly anemic 4 banger for accelerating and requires winding up quite a bit to get anything out of it. Driving dynamics is pretty descent for an econobox. Definitely better road feel and body roll compared to a Corolla.
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  #11  
Old 10-03-2012, 06:03 PM
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I'd rather just drive the Versa.
I heard you traded your manhood for a Campy 9-speed titanium freewheel....
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  #12  
Old 10-04-2012, 08:35 AM
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I heard you traded your manhood for a Campy 9-speed titanium freewheel....
No, I'm still using it so a 9 speed Ti cassette just isn't a good trade. Now if you're offering an entire Super Record EPS Grouppo, then maybe...
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  #13  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:47 PM
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I'd rather just drive the Versa.
I know a great psychiatrist...

Sent from the Bamavarian Nexus.
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  #14  
Old 10-03-2012, 04:14 PM
Bilstein Bilstein is offline
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tturedraider, I just put this out there as a public service, and because it's fun to think about other options. Your response seems biased to me, but literally I couldn't give less of a sh1t what you drive, and I don't mean that in a bad way, just an honest way. You seem geared toward BMW for reasons other than actual performance, maybe status or luxury, which isn't "bad", just not focused solely on performance.

Good luck bro, with whatever you decide on.
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  #15  
Old 10-03-2012, 05:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bilstein View Post
tturedraider, I just put this out there as a public service, and because it's fun to think about other options. Your response seems biased to me, but literally I couldn't give less of a sh1t what you drive, and I don't mean that in a bad way, just an honest way. You seem geared toward BMW for reasons other than actual performance, maybe status or luxury, which isn't "bad", just not focused solely on performance.

Good luck bro, with whatever you decide on.
And I posted to give a real world, real person, real experience perspective. I drive BMW for the driving dynamics. And I'm not deciding on anything. I'll be in my 330i for a long, long time. I love my naturally aspirated inline six.
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Last edited by tturedraider; 10-03-2012 at 05:19 PM.
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  #16  
Old 10-03-2012, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by tturedraider View Post
And I posted to give a real world, real person, real experience perspective. I drive BMW for the driving dynamics. And I'm not deciding on anything. I'll be in my 330i for a long, long time. I love my naturally aspirated inline six.
I think it's a shame that motor disappeared so quickly - I'm sure the 3.0L turbo is great, but I wish the 265 hp 3.0L had hung around longer.
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  #17  
Old 10-03-2012, 09:36 PM
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I think it's a shame that motor disappeared so quickly - I'm sure the 3.0L turbo is great, but I wish the 265 hp 3.0L had hung around longer.
Me, too.
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  #18  
Old 10-03-2012, 10:25 PM
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I think it's a shame that motor disappeared so quickly - I'm sure the 3.0L turbo is great, but I wish the 265 hp 3.0L had hung around longer.
Agreed, I loved it in my 06 330i sedan... Don't know why I sold that car.

The motor was around longer in the X3 adn X5 and it lived on in Europe in the 3.
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  #19  
Old 10-04-2012, 10:35 AM
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I am seriously thinking that my next car will be a 2014 (or later) Golf TDI. Great gas mileage, fun to drive, just the right size for a single gal. And it will fit my Shimano Ultegra just fine. Either that or a 2006 e46
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  #20  
Old 10-04-2012, 10:37 AM
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I am seriously thinking that my next car will be a 2014 (or later) Golf TDI. Great gas mileage, fun to drive, just the right size for a single gal. And it will fit my Shimano Ultegra just fine. Either that or a 2006 e46
If VW could manage to tighten up their QC a bit, they could be a serious player. They need a sporting RWD model in the lineup as well....
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  #21  
Old 10-04-2012, 10:48 AM
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If VW could manage to tighten up their QC a bit, they could be a serious player. They need a sporting RWD model in the lineup as well....
.

So true. I had a MKIV Golf that liked to 'spiff up' the cabin with eau de coolant. That was the main reason why I overlooked the current Golf and turned to BMW. I'm glad I did for the short term...but there is not 1 car (except maybe the WRX) that I would consider right as a direct replacement for my touring. And even with the WRX, I know I am taking a step backwards in luxury but they are dang fun to drive
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:02 PM
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I debated for years what to get to compliment my well flogged 330 and finally chose a lightly optioned 535 (hoping to ward off electronic gremlins post year 7). I'll be the test monkey for long term ownership most likely as nearly everyone in the F10 forum is on a "3 year lease and turn it in plan" it appears (between shopping for $30k watches and debating 1st class/Business class flights).

A whole 3 weeks and 500 miles later I haven't regretted it. I can fit at least 5 bodies in the trunk, has plenty of power, is comfy as hell (especially coming from a tweaked out E46), handles great, the stereo/iDrive/integration stuff is fantastic, and it gets nearly 30mpg on the highway. Plus, my 64 year old mother can ride in it and not get carsick within 30 seconds and start complaining. That being said I'm still adding springs and an exhaust soon!

If budget allows the 330 will be replaced with an E46 M3 in about a year.

Also: Dan Neil was on that short lived Adam Corolla "The Car Show" not TGUSA, unless he was involved in the test pilot incarnations that Corolla was part of.
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Last edited by Keyser Soze; 10-04-2012 at 02:52 PM.
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  #23  
Old 10-04-2012, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keyser Soze View Post
I debated for years what to get to complement my well flogged 330 and finally chose a lightly optioned 535 (hoping to ward off electronic gremlins post year 7). I'll be the test monkey for long term ownership most likely as nearly everyone in the F10 forum is on a "3 year lease and turn it in plan" it appears (between shopping for $30k watches and debating 1st class/Business class flights).

A whole 3 weeks and 500 miles later I haven't regretted it. I can fit at least 5 bodies in the trunk, has plenty of power, is comfy as hell (especially coming from a tweaked out E46), handles great, the stereo/iDrive/integration stuff is fantastic, and it gets nearly 30mpg on the highway. Plus, my 64 year old mother can ride in it and not get carsick within 30 seconds and start complaining. That being said I'm still adding springs and an exhaust soon!

If budget allows the 330 will be replaced with an E46 M3 in about a year.

Also: Dan Neill was on that short lived Adam Corolla "The Car Show" not TGUSA, unless he was involved in the test pilot incarnations that Corolla was part of.
With the newer models, it`s a real tightrope act between buying used (and letting the PO take a huge depreciation hit) and taking your chances on possible repairs, and selling your left testicle to purchase/lease something new. A couple years back, I was casually pricing out the cost of building a fairly-well-optioned 535i Touring, (just for ha has), and almost puked when I saw the MSRP had jumped the $70,000 mark (!). Definitely have to re-think the logic on that one....
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  #24  
Old 10-04-2012, 03:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fast Bob View Post
With the newer models, it`s a real tightrope act between buying used (and letting the PO take a huge depreciation hit) and taking your chances on possible repairs, and selling your left testicle to purchase/lease something new. A couple years back, I was casually pricing out the cost of building a fairly-well-optioned 535i Touring, (just for ha has), and almost puked when I saw the MSRP had jumped the $70,000 mark (!). Definitely have to re-think the logic on that one....
MSRP is way overstated (knock off at least 8%) but I totally get you, the amount/costs of options you can pile onto these cars is staggering. Ventilated seats, ceramic controls, heads up display, NIGHT vision, adaptive drive, active steering, active cruise control, parking distance control, cameras, NAV, Bang and Olufsen stereo, self closing doors/trunk, etc etc etc is all fine but all stuff I won't miss since I've never had a car with any extra tech except an ipod port.

I basically had to order since I was getting only a few options (M-sport/DDC/Premium Stereo/Heated Seats) and a 6 speed MT, plus I wanted to wait till year 3 of production. Also, going back to Santa Barbara and getting another car from Jon Shafer 12 years after getting the first new one was fun too!
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Last edited by Keyser Soze; 10-04-2012 at 04:12 PM.
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  #25  
Old 10-04-2012, 05:43 PM
Chauntalei Chauntalei is offline
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I love my 325i, and I still drive it fairly frequently, but since I'm not gonna be getting an M3 or anything like a CTS-V now or ever, I went with the Subaru BRZ as my 'fun' car. It's not 'fast' by any means (200hp/151tq/6.2s 0-60 w/6spd) but it's light and the handling is superb. On city roads/freeways, it doesn't feel like much, but as soon as you hit the twisties, it becomes an entirely different animal. I feel like I understand what it feels like to drive a ZHP now, and I love it. Definitely a car I recommend to people who are looking for that fun factor again.
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