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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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  #51  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:00 PM
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The numbers are what the numbers are. BMW 3 Series sales were down in a month where overall car sales were up. The question is whether this is an anomaly or is it the beginning of a long term trend. There is also the possibility that the previous period had unusually high sales figures and the figures we are seeing now are relatively normal. Unless you are looking at relatively long term data these figures don't really tell you much.

My gut feeling is that except for the possibility of sticker shock (and tturedraider had a thread that showed that 3 Series price has stayed constant when you adjust for inflation, and BJ is paying less for his lease on a more expensive car), whatever the perceived deficiencies in the F30 are relative to the E90 would probably not concern the majority of the buyers.

IMO, roundel or not, BMW would loose customers if the general public perceived that the quality of the new model was significantly reduced but that does not seem to be the case.


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Last edited by captainaudio; 10-03-2012 at 02:02 PM.
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  #52  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted by justinnum1 View Post
Same people who will be driving an f30 soon. Can you imagine getting a 40k car months before the new body style comes out?
Maybe they'd already seen the new model?

I paid $33k for my 2004 back in 2005, after I saw what the E90 was going to look like.
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  #53  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:04 PM
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Why is it that everyone who didn't wait for the new bodystyle and got a 2011 instead feels like they need to come in here and take a sh-t on our cars? Aren't they treated like baller rock stars by the used car tweens in the E9X forum?

BJ
You need to let this go. It happens every seven years. This will continue for at least another year no matter how often or loudly you scream. It's probably going to get worse, 'cause now the E46-hangers-on are at a point they have to start considering a replacement.
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  #54  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:07 PM
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You need to let this go. It happens every seven years. This will continue for at least another year no matter how often or loudly you scream. It's probably going to get worse, 'cause now the E46-hangers-on are at a point they have to start considering a replacement.
IT could be worse, since nationally, more and more people are keeping cars longer.

My E36 when it was 8 years old felt kinda jiggly and tired. My E46 feels brand new. I think BMWs are holding up better than they used to.
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  #55  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:10 PM
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2000 and 2005.
The competition has made changes and advancements in the last seven years. Lexus has just recently publicly acknowledged they've gone too soft and are at this very moment changing direction to become more BMW-like. In those seven years Infiniti made a decision to abandon FWD and focus on RWD in order to better compete with BMW.

btw - that last sentence reminded me of something. No one is changing their focus to AWD to better compete with Audi. In fact, no one is gunning for Audi or Mercedes. As we all agree competition is good. BMW has been dedicated to this sport sedan thing longer than anyone and done it better than anyone. Does anyone really think they'll make a fatal misstep now?
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Last edited by tturedraider; 10-03-2012 at 02:16 PM.
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  #56  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by boltjaM3s View Post
Bingo!

There are no "enthusiasts" as far as BMW is concerned. And if there were, they've been taking it up the *** for 20 years, not going to stop, compromising themselves in the E90 and F30 which are the antithesis of smaller, tighter, sportier rides. BMW makes a series if accessories and derivative models for that small group, but the platform is a bigger, wider, luxurious, soft car.

It amazes me how far from reality some folks truly are. BMW hasn't forgotten you. You're just not the target audience and what that audience wants isn't an E46. It's an E39.

BJ
There absolutely are enthusiast as far as BMW is concerned. They are very aware of that market, understand that that is the demographic that built the brand and they are very concerned with loosing them.

That being said BMW realizes that that market is interested in performance but also expects a certain amount of creature comforts and luxury features. The issue that I had with my 335i with the stock suspension and the RFTs was that it was a Sports/Luxury car that had serious deficiencies in both categories,

As I have stated here numerous times a good handling car does not have to have a rock hard suspension that shakes the fillings out of your teeth and damages the car when a poor surface is encountered.

If BMW goes too far in either direction (not enough performance in the name of comfort or not enough comfort in name of performance) they are going to loose sales. It is a delicate balance and the brand that pulls it off the best will sell very well.

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  #57  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by tturedraider View Post
The competition has made changes and advancements in the last seven years. Lexus has just recently publicly acknowledged they've gone too soft and are at this very moment changing direction to become more BMW-like.
It's all marketing BS as far as I'm concerned.

Lexus had the IS300 back then, it's way more sporty and BMW-like than today's IS350. It didn't sell.

Cadillac says it's targeting the E46. Give me a break.
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  #58  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:18 PM
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IT could be worse, since nationally, more and more people are keeping cars longer.

My E36 when it was 8 years old felt kinda jiggly and tired. My E46 feels brand new. I think BMWs are holding up better than they used to.
I've been looking at your threads and posts. You have a very low mileage E46.

The people who are keeping their cars longer are doing so because they can't afford a new car. Not because the love the one they have. Those people wouldn't be shopping BMW even if they were in the new car market.
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  #59  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by tturedraider View Post
The competition has made changes and advancements in the last seven years. Lexus has just recently publicly acknowledged they've gone too soft and are at this very moment changing direction to become more BMW-like.
That is absolutely true. A while back I had lunch with the Lexus New York Area Technical Support/Service Support Manager. He was driving an LFA and is an avid vintage racer. He told me that Lexus is very aware that their image had deteriorated and that are not being perceived as a car that appeals to people who enjoy driving. Lexus is aware that this is hurting sales and they are orking to release models that will change that perception.

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  #60  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:25 PM
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Originally Posted by tturedraider View Post
I've been looking at your threads and posts. You have a very low mileage E46.

The people who are keeping their cars longer are doing so because they can't afford a new car. Not because the love the one they have. Those people wouldn't be shopping BMW even if they were in the new car market.
I tend to keep my cars for a very long time (if I like them). I kept my Lexus SC300 from 1992 to 2007 (and put 120,000 milles on it) and then shopped for and bought a BMW when I was in the new car market.
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  #61  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:29 PM
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I've been looking at your threads and posts. You have a very low mileage E46.

The people who are keeping their cars longer are doing so because they can't afford a new car. Not because the love the one they have. Those people wouldn't be shopping BMW even if they were in the new car market.
It's got 92k miles, not that low. Of course I haven't track it like the E36 so that could be why it feels fresher.

I'm sure that's part of it (hard economic times) but I also read that modern cars are a lot more reliable than in the past.

It just seems to me like 3 series sales should be going up, not down. Hard to believe it's all just due to inventory issues.
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  #62  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:30 PM
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That is absolutely true. A while back I had lunch with the Lexus New York Area Technical Support/Service Support Manager. He was driving an LFA and is an avid vintage racer. He told me that Lexus is very aware that their image had deteriorated and that are not being perceived as a car that appeals to people who enjoy driving. Lexus is aware that this is hurting sales and they are orking to release models that will change that perception.

CA
That's all talk until we see something in the flesh. A $300,000 supercar doesn't count. The IS-F was a decent start though.
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  #63  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:33 PM
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Originally Posted by captainaudio View Post
There absolutely are enthusiast as far as BMW is concerned. They are very aware of that market, understand that that is the demographic that built the brand and they are very concerned with loosing them.

That being said BMW realizes that that market is interested in performance but also expects a certain amount of creature comforts and luxury features. The issue that I had with my 335i with the stock suspension and the RFTs was that it was a Sports/Luxury car that had serious deficiencies in both categories,

As I have stated here numerous times a good handling car does not have to have a rock hard suspension that shakes the fillings out of your teeth and damages the car when a poor surface is encountered.

If BMW goes too far in either direction (not enough performance in the name of comfort or not enough comfort in name of performance) they are going to loose sales. It is a delicate balance and the brand that pulls it off the best will sell very well.

CA
Thank you for this post.

I do want to point out your 335i sport package model is the most heavy-ass E9x 3er there is and exceedingly few complained as vehemently as you have. I have a sport package E90 and I am perfectly happy with its suspension. In fact, as a result of my experience attending my first BMW driving event for the introduction of the E90, the superior driving dynamics are exactly why I bought my '06 E90 330i, RFTs and all.
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  #64  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:34 PM
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That's all talk until we see something in the flesh. A $300,000 supercar doesn't count. The IS-F was a decent start though.
True, but it does appear that Lexus is aware that going too soft has hurt sales and they have also demonstated that they have the engineering resources to do something about it.

Only time will tell.

CA
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  #65  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:40 PM
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Originally Posted by tturedraider View Post
You need to let this go. It happens every seven years. This will continue for at least another year no matter how often or loudly you scream. It's probably going to get worse, 'cause now the E46-hangers-on are at a point they have to start considering a replacement.
I see your point but question why they choose to come here to make their positions known. Plenty of opportunity for F30 hate threads over in the E46 and E90 forums. Granted all the adults are here now, but that doesn't mean the negativity and put-downs are appropriate.

BJ
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  #66  
Old 10-03-2012, 02:41 PM
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Thank you for this post.

I do want to point out your 335i sport package model is the most heavy-ass E9x 3er there is and exceedingly few complained as vehemently as you have. I have a sport package E90 and I am perfectly happy with its suspension. In fact, as a result of my experience attending my first BMW driving event for the introduction of the E90, the superior driving dynamics are exactly why I bought my '06 E90 330i, RFTs and all.
Those are exactly the same reasons that I bought my 335i. Drove it against the competition and liked the way it drove. Bought one and still liked the way it drove. Then I moved it from Palm Beach to NYC. I hung on to it because I felt I could rectify the things I didn't like and did not want to give up the things I did like and was eventually able to accomplish exacly that.

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Old 10-03-2012, 02:42 PM
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In my opinion, the biggest issue with the 3-series is lack of prestige/status. In the past, the luxury car buyer would buy the 3-series for some sort "status" effect in addition to sport.

Now, the 3-series is too common to get much prestige and is associated as more of a fresh grad car. But with the F30, its no longer priced as a "fresh grad" car.
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Old 10-03-2012, 02:44 PM
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I tend to keep my cars for a very long time (if I like them). I kept my Lexus SC300 from 1992 to 2007 (and put 120,000 milles on it) and then shopped for and bought a BMW when I was in the new car market.
CA
Me, too. But we are the exception. 120,000 miles in 15 years. 8,000 miles per year. That also makes it easier to keep a car longterm.

Quote:
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It's got 92k miles, not that low. Of course I haven't track it like the E36 so that could be why it feels fresher.

I'm sure that's part of it (hard economic times) but I also read that modern cars are a lot more reliable than in the past.

It just seems to me like 3 series sales should be going up, not down. Hard to believe it's all just due to inventory issues.
92,000 is fairly low for a 2004 model. It was low mileage when you bought it. Looks like you've done a little over 11k per year.

Did you see my post about X3 series sales this year v last year. F30 sales have barely begun.
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Old 10-03-2012, 02:44 PM
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In my opinion, the biggest issue with the 3-series is lack of prestige/status. In the past, the luxury car buyer would buy the 3-series for some sort "status" effect in addition to sport.

Now, the 3-series is too common to get much prestige and is associated as more of a fresh grad car. But with the F30, its no longer priced as a "fresh grad" car.
Blame the sales downturn on the Jersey Shore cast members who drive 3 Series BMWs. Nobody wants to be associated with those characters.
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Old 10-03-2012, 02:53 PM
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In my opinion, the biggest issue with the 3-series is lack of prestige/status. In the past, the luxury car buyer would buy the 3-series for some sort "status" effect in addition to sport.

Now, the 3-series is too common to get much prestige and is associated as more of a fresh grad car. But with the F30, its no longer priced as a "fresh grad" car.
Are you aware of the average age of those who buy a new 3 Series? Nowhere near "fresh grad" age. And I'll say it one more time. Unless you choose to buy all the new latest and greatest technology options that are now available on the F30, the F30 is no more expensive than a fully loaded E90 was.

The price issue is a red herring. Just as it was the many times it was brought up during the E9x model run; the most successful 3er ever.
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:08 PM
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Are you aware of the average age of those who buy a new 3 Series? Nowhere near "fresh grad" age. And I'll say it one more time. Unless you choose to buy all the new latest and greatest technology options that are now available on the F30, the F30 is no more expensive than a fully loaded E90 was.

The price issue is a red herring. Just as it was the many times it was brought up during the E9x model run; the most successful 3er ever.
I think the last "Fresh Grad" BMW may have been the 2002.
At this point in time the "enthusiast" market has aged. The Baby Boomers who were buying BMW 1600s and 2002s, and Camaro Z28s and Boss 302 Mustangs 40 years ago may be looking for something a bit more luxurious and comfortable but for the most part someone who owned a Z28 or a Boss 302 in 1969 is not interested in the 2012 version of a 1962 Coupe de Ville or Lincoln Continental. I attend a lot of automobile related events including track days, concours, car club meets, etc. and for the most part it is not a younger crowd.
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by tturedraider View Post
Are you aware of the average age of those who buy a new 3 Series? Nowhere near "fresh grad" age. And I'll say it one more time. Unless you choose to buy all the new latest and greatest technology options that are now available on the F30, the F30 is no more expensive than a fully loaded E90 was.

The price issue is a red herring. Just as it was the many times it was brought up during the E9x model run; the most successful 3er ever.
Arguing that the F30 is cheaper than E90 is meaningless, if the F30 is still much more expensive than the competitions. Take a look at how much one can lease a G37.

The X3 increase is not indictive of sales in this segment. Light crossover sales are all the rage now. As an example, the GLK350 outsold the X3 by a good margin last month,

Last edited by dtc100; 10-03-2012 at 03:21 PM.
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:18 PM
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captainaudio captainaudio is offline
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Arguing that the F30 is cheaper than E90 is meaningless, if the F30 is still much more expensive than the competitions. Take a look at how much one can lease a G37.
I believe the point is that the fact that 3 Series sales are down because of a price increase is not valid because when adjusted for inflation the price has in fact essentially remained the same. So if the F30 is more expensive than the competition then so was the E90.

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Old 10-03-2012, 03:25 PM
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I believe the point is that the fact that 3 Series sales are down because of a price increase is not valid because when adjusted for inflation the price has in fact essentially remained the same. So if the F30 is more expensive than the competition then so was the E90.

CA
Unless the competitions have gotten a lot cheaper, or many today do not think the 3 series should command such a higher cost than it used to.
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:38 PM
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Are you aware of the average age of those who buy a new 3 Series? Nowhere near "fresh grad" age. And I'll say it one more time. Unless you choose to buy all the new latest and greatest technology options that are now available on the F30, the F30 is no more expensive than a fully loaded E90 was.

The price issue is a red herring. Just as it was the many times it was brought up during the E9x model run; the most successful 3er ever.
MSRP is a bit different than what one can actually buy the car for. My wife was shopping for a car about 8 months ago, we test both the E90 and the F30. Similarly equipped, the F30 cost about $8000 more when all is said and done.

I am not a statistician, but if one look at the current trend, it sure looks like the 3 series is losing market share and will continue to do so unless some changes are made by BMW or the competition. Almost all newly redesign cars enjoy a upward trend in sales numbers, some times as high as a few hundres percent compare in a year ago. I think price certianly have something to do with the sales down trend, price is always a factor.
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