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F30 / F31 / F32 / F33 (2012 - current)
The sixth generation 3 series, chassis code F30. 2013 model year 328i and 335i sedans now in production. Read the F30 frequently asked question thread for all your basic question and dive into all the details in the ultimate F30 information thread.

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  #1  
Old 09-28-2012, 06:18 AM
O2Drift O2Drift is offline
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Configuring F30 to share with spouse advice sought

Hi folks, I am currently faced with the pleasant task of configuring an F30 that I will share with my wife. I enjoying driving for sport...the wife not so much. She is an able driver, just not inclined to push it. I would like to configure a car that we can both enjoy. I am presently leaning toward a Luxury Line, premium pkg, lighting pkg, premiun sound, heated front seats and the dynamic handling package. I am especially interested in thoghts concerning the addition of the dynamic handling package. I hope that with this addition I will have a car that will provide both a comfortable ride and at the touch of a button become a sporting machine that will be fun to toss around local back roads. Dealer choices in the area are limited. I have not found a car with this set up to test drive. My hope is that the adaptive suspension will accomplish this transformation. Having said that I am a little leery of the variable ratio steering. I have read comments that it can cause problems at speed as steering input may be met with an unexpected amount of lock. Has this been a general experience? If so is this someting that only occurs when going at a considerable clip or does it also occur in routine daily driving? I would greatly appreciate any feedback. Thanks for indulging me in reading this somewhat lengthy post. Marc.
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  #2  
Old 09-28-2012, 06:38 AM
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CE750Jockey CE750Jockey is offline
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I went through this very thing. The only thing the wife will care about is heated seats and nav. Count on it. So give her those two things, you choose the rest of the options you want, and it's a done deal.
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  #3  
Old 09-28-2012, 06:43 AM
Chief Brody Chief Brody is offline
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Swap for the Sport Line with Sport-Seats. I'm sure your wife will love them as well. And yes - take the dhp. Its per default in Comfort-Mode with softer dampening, just right for your wife. You press it to sport and enjoy the ride.
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Old 09-28-2012, 06:48 AM
O2Drift O2Drift is offline
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CE750Jockey and Chief Brody, thanks very much for the input. I appreciate it.
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  #5  
Old 09-28-2012, 07:44 AM
jlukja jlukja is offline
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No worries on the variable ratio steering. Its really only two ratios, one for general driving and another for tight turns when steering angle exceeds 100-deg. Vehicle speed has nothing to do with it. I was a little worried when I first tried it but its very easy to get used to and is helpful in tight quarters or in hairpin turns. The transition from one ratio to the other is fairly seamless, at least it felt that way to me. The DHP will do exactly what you hope for.

My wife didn't care about navigation. She did insist on sunroof and seat heaters. She also wanted the day-night mirror and garage door buttons both of which became standard equipment on the 2013 model.
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Old 09-28-2012, 08:29 AM
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we test drove the sportline without the DHP and my wife did not like the drive. So we ordered with the DHP and its a huge difference. Also when I need to have the sporty feel, the sport+ mode is the best one to be in and you can configure the drivetrain and chasis to suit your driving style.
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Old 09-28-2012, 09:15 AM
rclarke rclarke is offline
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Went though the same process with my wife. My advice? Take her to a dealer and let her drive the sport-line. The sport-seats, which are only available in that line, sold my wife instantly.
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:22 AM
O2Drift O2Drift is offline
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Thanks jlukja,bmwf30 and rclarke. I appreciate your comments. Glad to hear that the variable ratio steering does not appear to pose a problem. I will definitely add DHP to the eventual build.
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:29 AM
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To the OP. For sure get the SportLine for the seats and the DHP for both of your needs. The DHP really give you the best of all worlds, including a way to customize your setup. For example when I get my car I will probably always keep it on sport but in the I-drive i am going to configure the suspension to comfort. So you get the sharp steering and response without the stiffer ride. You can do that only if you have the DHP. Also since your configuration is very similar to mine (minus the premium package) see if the 335i is not something you like more. The price difference between the two is not great when you add the lighting package and moonroof to the 328i. just a thought.

But definetly the DHP is a must.
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Old 09-28-2012, 03:49 PM
O2Drift O2Drift is offline
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Thanks windsor027. Happy to find there is a consensus regarding DHP. I will definitely add it to the build. Now to have the wife try out a Sport Line.
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  #11  
Old 09-28-2012, 08:11 PM
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Originally Posted by O2Drift View Post
Thanks windsor027. Happy to find there is a consensus regarding DHP. I will definitely add it to the build. Now to have the wife try out a Sport Line.
I have a 335i M Sport with Sport Automatic. I was going to get DHP and am glad I didn't spend the extra money. I am coming from an E36 M3, and I am very satisfied as is. Frankly, I don't really understand why I would even have considered getting the DHP... The steering/road feel is fantastic, and I have Sport plus. For those who bought the DHP, please try to describe why you feel it is better. Is it so that you can have a softer car?

P.S. My wife loves the car too, and she says she would not change a thing...
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Old 09-28-2012, 08:20 PM
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Totally agree Jon. I have always enjoyed bmw sport suspensions. I think they are a great mix of comfort and sport.
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:49 PM
jlukja jlukja is offline
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Originally Posted by Jon Shafer View Post
... For those who bought the DHP, please try to describe why you feel it is better. Is it so that you can have a softer car?

P.S. My wife loves the car too, and she says she would not change a thing...
That's exactly right Jon. With the DHP option this car has two personalities; (a) the firm, aggressive one when I'm in the SoCal canyons or on PCH or other twisties, and (b) the plush, comfortable one, when I'm on the I-5 heading to San Francisco or the I-15 heading to Vegas. It proved its worth in Italy on old, broken up, roads and I expect it to be just as comfortable on the patched up old concrete streets around parts of Long Beach and LA. I spent the last 11 years with a firm sports suspension on my TSX and, although fun when called for, my wife and I could do without the firmness when not needed.
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  #14  
Old 09-29-2012, 12:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Jon Shafer View Post
For those who bought the DHP, please try to describe why you feel it is better. Is it so that you can have a softer car?
My wife and I tested a Luxury Line 328i and felt the steering was too light in comfort and better in sport. We'd want that steering all the time. But neither of us liked the aggressive auto transmission program and losing the top 2 gears for everyday driving, so we knew we would just end up leaving it in comfort all the time because you cannot configure sport mode without the adaptive suspension. I drove a 335i Sport Line and she eventually drove a 328i sport line and we both thought the steering/handling feel were much closer to what we expect from a BMW in sport mode. She also decided she could live with everest gray on the Sport Line and I was just happy to get sport seats. We weren't sure if the better steering feel was down to summer tires or something else, so we took a calculated gamble and ordered a 328i Sport with DHP.

Have only had the car a couple days but we're really happy with the driving characteristics so far. I do agree with Jon that the standard sport suspension feels just about perfect and we could easily live with that every day. If I ordered my own car with a manual I could skip DHP, but I'm really glad we got it because I can set sport mode to chassis only and use it all the time with normal transmission behavior. I haven't driven it enough to determine if the adaptive suspension is stiffer than the passive sport, but neither is as punishing over freeway expansion joints as my dad's E90 or my friends' 128i. Comfort is I guess nice for when your in-laws are in the car.

The VSS has also been great. Weighting even in sport mode seems slightly lighter than the 335i Sport that I tested, so maybe the heavier engine has something to do with that. But feedback is better than I expected, and the variable ratio doesn't feel unnatural. It's a gradual change and you only feel it when you make u-turns or tight turns.

In short I am glad we got it if only so we can customize the sport program. If you need to stick with the Luxury Lime then it's a no-brainer, best of both worlds.
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  #15  
Old 09-29-2012, 05:05 AM
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I am going thru the same thing and the only request from my wife is that it be an automatic instead of manual (which she can also drive)...she says my manual driving makes her dizzy (most of the time) so now I'm on the lookout for a 335i with M sport, navi, automatic, w/ or w/o DHP, etc. I just hope one will show up on the dealer's lot in my area.
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Old 09-29-2012, 05:22 AM
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Originally Posted by LarryboysUDM View Post
I am going thru the same thing and the only request from my wife is that it be an automatic instead of manual (which she can also drive)...she says my manual driving makes her dizzy (most of the time) so now I'm on the lookout for a 335i with M sport, navi, automatic, w/ or w/o DHP, etc. I just hope one will show up on the dealer's lot in my area.
Highly doubt it. Dealers are getting 1 or 2 335's a month and most are already spoken for. Order one now and in the meantime be on the lookout.
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Old 09-29-2012, 06:23 AM
O2Drift O2Drift is offline
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Very helpful discussion. I will line up a back to back comparison for my wife and myself with a Luxury Line and a Sport Line. I briefly drove a Sport Line on local streets and found the ride to be comfortable, definitely not jarring. Unfortunately a Luxury with adaptive suspension is not available to test. If we go with the Sport I will think carefully before checking the box for DHP. If Luxury seems the best choice (given a potential spousal compromise) I plan to add DHP. Thanks for the thoughtful discussion. Marc
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Old 09-29-2012, 11:12 AM
doc_maverick doc_maverick is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by O2Drift View Post
Very helpful discussion. I will line up a back to back comparison for my wife and myself with a Luxury Line and a Sport Line. I briefly drove a Sport Line on local streets and found the ride to be comfortable, definitely not jarring. Unfortunately a Luxury with adaptive suspension is not available to test. If we go with the Sport I will think carefully before checking the box for DHP. If Luxury seems the best choice (given a potential spousal compromise) I plan to add DHP. Thanks for the thoughtful discussion. Marc
i went through an identical scenario months ago when I put in my order for a 335i. Apart from wanting automatic, my wife insisted on getting saddle brown interior which was only available on the luxuryline.... it was either that or no Bimmer !

So i put off the decision for a few months as I would not compromise on the driving charecteristics and my wife would not budge from the saddle brown.... Thinking it was a lost cause , I gave up on the idea and relegated myself to driving my faithful Midsize sedan ( that shall not be named . Then one of the CA's I was in touch with calledto let me know that they had a 335i luxury line with DHP and insisted I come down for a TD. The DHP makes a world of a difference .... the suspension is lowered by 10 mm ( identical to the sportsline and M sport ) and you get sport + ( again identical to the sportline ) and you have the option of a comfort mode( for all of us that are not as fortunate to have silk roads like our brothers on the west coast ) and ....... you have a much wider range of options to choose from (thanks to BMW's retrictive ideologies car options....sheesh ) . Yes you do loose out on the really nice sport seats and the sport transmission but that for me was a fair compromise.

So in effect I ended up ordering a car that both of us were happy with..... and I should mention that i'm not someone who would buy a bimmer just to see the roundel in my garage , I was a profesional go kart driver for 12 years and train newbie / wannabe car enthusiasts on track days. I would never never settle on a car that was less then perfect..... you'll understand if you're a car enthusiast and If I told you that my other option was A BRZ and the car I test drove narrowly lost out to the BRZ in terms of handling and fun to drive quotient ( which itself was ranked 4th in a recent motor trend best drivers car shootout amongst cars that cost atleast 5 times as much )


Hope this helps !

Last edited by doc_maverick; 09-29-2012 at 11:13 AM.
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Old 09-29-2012, 11:30 AM
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boltjaM3s boltjaM3s is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by O2Drift View Post
Very helpful discussion. I will line up a back to back comparison for my wife and myself with a Luxury Line and a Sport Line. I briefly drove a Sport Line on local streets and found the ride to be comfortable, definitely not jarring. Unfortunately a Luxury with adaptive suspension is not available to test. If we go with the Sport I will think carefully before checking the box for DHP. If Luxury seems the best choice (given a potential spousal compromise) I plan to add DHP. Thanks for the thoughtful discussion. Marc
Just to put your mind at further ease, the Luxury suspension is no slouch. I'm coming off 3 years in an E90 M-Sport, so I'm used to being able to take turns quickly with a sticky result and the Luxury suspension is only a hair less cooperative in sharp curves. I'd say we're talking about a 5-7% difference in handling here. It's fractional, not substantial.

Think about the realistic mix of roads and circumstances you'll be driving on and make your decision based on this. Mine looks something like this:

49% commuting to work in traffic on highway.
30% taking kids to/from travel sports programs on busy town roads.
20% straight-line highway cruising to summer home 4 hours north.
1% spirited driving on severely fun roads an enthusiast would appreciate.

Point being, in my case, that while it sounds cool to have Sport this and Sport+ that and Adaptive this and Damper that, in reality I just didn't find myself in enough circumstances to take advantage of the tightest BMW suspension. I allowed my reading of this forum to cloud my judgement and it put me in an M-Sport that was a miserable driving experience. Felt every pothole, blasted off every red light, took turns too quickly. Just made my wife and kids nauseous half the time, they never enjoyed taking a ride in dad's car as a result. The happiest automotive day of my life was August 7 when I got out of the E90 M-Sport and into the F30 Luxury.

If you're not going to find yourself on the track, doing autocross, or in a really rural area with unmonitored twisty back roads at least 20% of the time, the Luxury line is what you want. Plenty sporty, tons of fun for the 99% of the time you aren't in an enthusiastic situation. Don't dwell on the suspension to the point of missing out on the great options you'll use every day like the Lighting Package, Technology Package, Premium Package, etc.

BJ
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Last edited by boltjaM3s; 09-29-2012 at 11:32 AM.
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Old 09-29-2012, 12:08 PM
O2Drift O2Drift is offline
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Very glad that I sought advice from this forum. doc_maverick and boltjaM3s those are two very informative posts and go to the crux of my decision. I very much appreciate the valuable input. This is a very nice problem to have. Learning more about the available options is very interesting. I appreciate the breadth of choices allowing one to tailor the F30 to one's wants/needs. Thanks, Marc
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Old 09-29-2012, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by O2Drift View Post
Very glad that I sought advice from this forum. doc_maverick and boltjaM3s those are two very informative posts and go to the crux of my decision. I very much appreciate the valuable input. This is a very nice problem to have. Learning more about the available options is very interesting. I appreciate the breadth of choices allowing one to tailor the F30 to one's wants/needs. Thanks, Marc
And that is precisely the point a lot of people that own a E90 or older 3-series models are missing. Today's F30 can be configured to be different cars, always however with a BMW heart and sole close by. That is why I don't get the Audi is better, Cadillac ATS is better etc. I learned this lesson the hard way when I got out of the E90 and into a Mercedes C350.

The C350 was actually a luxury car that handled well with a very vague steering and a slow reacting 7-speed AT. For those that wanted luxury it was perfect. For me it lacked that something that BMW has.

The F30 is the best of all things 95% of the time. That is the main question here. Can any other sport sedan be as good as that to all people?
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Old 09-29-2012, 03:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doc_maverick View Post
i went through an identical scenario months ago when I put in my order for a 335i. Apart from wanting automatic, my wife insisted on getting saddle brown interior which was only available on the luxuryline.... it was either that or no Bimmer !

So i put off the decision for a few months as I would not compromise on the driving charecteristics and my wife would not budge from the saddle brown.... Thinking it was a lost cause , I gave up on the idea and relegated myself to driving my faithful Midsize sedan ( that shall not be named . Then one of the CA's I was in touch with calledto let me know that they had a 335i luxury line with DHP and insisted I come down for a TD. The DHP makes a world of a difference .... the suspension is lowered by 10 mm ( identical to the sportsline and M sport ) and you get sport + ( again identical to the sportline ) and you have the option of a comfort mode( for all of us that are not as fortunate to have silk roads like our brothers on the west coast ) and ....... you have a much wider range of options to choose from (thanks to BMW's retrictive ideologies car options....sheesh ) . Yes you do loose out on the really nice sport seats and the sport transmission but that for me was a fair compromise.

So in effect I ended up ordering a car that both of us were happy with..... and I should mention that i'm not someone who would buy a bimmer just to see the roundel in my garage , I was a profesional go kart driver for 12 years and train newbie / wannabe car enthusiasts on track days. I would never never settle on a car that was less then perfect..... you'll understand if you're a car enthusiast and If I told you that my other option was A BRZ and the car I test drove narrowly lost out to the BRZ in terms of handling and fun to drive quotient ( which itself was ranked 4th in a recent motor trend best drivers car shootout amongst cars that cost atleast 5 times as much )


Hope this helps !
Great info!! Thanks for posting. I'm glad to hear some confirmation about the lowered suspension. I would also get the ZDH even in a Sport or M Sport line car to be able to choose the various settings independently.

I concur regarding the seats. Especially the new seats in the F30. They are a significant improvement over previous non-sport seats. OP, if the Luxury or Modern line makes your wife happy don't let the seats be a deterrent.
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Old 09-29-2012, 03:16 PM
ronnyb29 ronnyb29 is offline
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  #24  
Old 09-29-2012, 10:31 PM
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Visited the BMW dealer today. CA was very helpful and they looked in their database for what's on their lot, region, US, in-bound/being produced but none had my specs.
They had three 335i sedans on their lot (2 modern, 1 M sport; 1 modern was 2012, 1 modern was 2013, the M Sport was estoril blue but was just sold).
Test drove the 2012 335i modern...steering was lighter than I thought it would be, excellent handling, interior was plush, hp and torque were strong...overall I was very impressed. Neither moderns had the stuff I needed/wanted and I would have to go 3rd string compromise to drive one off the lot but I just could not pull the trigger. I knew it was a long shot but I was looking for 335i, Alpine White, M Sport, Sport Auto, Germany Not SA made, Tech, Premium, HK...if there was one on the lot, the only ones I could compromise on would be the Metallic White and Sport Line. As already mentioned, there is very limited stock/availability of 335i so more than likely I have to put in a special order and endure the long wait.
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Old 09-29-2012, 11:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LarryboysUDM View Post
Visited the BMW dealer today. CA was very helpful and they looked in their database for what's on their lot, region, US, in-bound/being produced but none had my specs.
They had three 335i sedans on their lot (2 modern, 1 M sport; 1 modern was 2012, 1 modern was 2013, the M Sport was estoril blue but was just sold).
Test drove the 2012 335i modern...steering was lighter than I thought it would be, excellent handling, interior was plush, hp and torque were strong...overall I was very impressed. Neither moderns had the stuff I needed/wanted and I would have to go 3rd string compromise to drive one off the lot but I just could not pull the trigger. I knew it was a long shot but I was looking for 335i, Alpine White, M Sport, Sport Auto, Germany Not SA made, Tech, Premium, HK...if there was one on the lot, the only ones I could compromise on would be the Metallic White and Sport Line. As already mentioned, there is very limited stock/availability of 335i so more than likely I have to put in a special order and endure the long wait.
The wait is really not that bad...
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