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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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  #26  
Old 01-17-2013, 10:32 AM
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chris328 chris328 is offline
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Originally Posted by Red Lined View Post

Yeah, you can get the car for $34k...only it won't have wood, sunroof, memory seats, leather, etc. What is the point?

you mean like an actual race car? no clue.
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  #27  
Old 01-17-2013, 10:38 AM
Michael Schott Michael Schott is offline
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Lets look at these 2 cars equipped differently. Leather, Sport, Metallic paint only. The 328i is $42,245.00 and the 320i is $36,645.00. Yes the 320 is missing power memory seats and fold down rear seats but not much else except 60 hp for $5600.00. That's the sweet spot.
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  #28  
Old 01-17-2013, 10:46 AM
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boltjaM3s boltjaM3s is offline
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Originally Posted by Michael Schott View Post
Lets look at these 2 cars equipped differently. Leather, Sport, Metallic paint only. The 328i is $42,245.00 and the 320i is $36,645.00. Yes the 320 is missing power memory seats and fold down rear seats but not much else except 60 hp for $5600.00. That's the sweet spot.
Trying to make an apples to apples comparison completely on the basis of an identical spec is the wrong way to look at this.

As in my mother's example, many people can be swayed very easily off of a feature in order to save money or get a more important feature.

My mom would trade the horsepower and the leather for a garage door opener and comfort access and in the process save $5000. She would be ecstatic. Because, to her, leather isn't that important and she doesn't drive in a spirited fashion.

Used to be that in order to get into a 3 Series BMW forced you to take an overkill engine and forced you to take leather just to get other basic options. By un-bundling the Premium package and creating a Performance Delete option, BMW has opened up a whole new world of opportunity for frustrated customers.

My mother must've been on a focus group or something. This is the exact situation she faced and the reason why she went to Acura.

BJ
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  #29  
Old 01-17-2013, 11:04 AM
namelessman namelessman is online now
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Originally Posted by boltjaM3s View Post
Trying to make an apples to apples comparison completely on the basis of an identical spec is the wrong way to look at this.
....
Used to be that in order to get into a 3 Series BMW forced you to take an overkill engine and forced you to take leather just to get other basic options. By un-bundling the Premium package and creating a Performance Delete option, BMW has opened up a whole new world of opportunity for frustrated customers.
BJ
In some countries(e.g. UK) every option is ala carte, it is more flexible but in general non-US pricing is more expensive than US. Looks like BMWNA is creating price points to lineup with competitors(e.g. Audi), including the 4yr/50k free maintenance, the base 320i is a better deal than the base A4.
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  #30  
Old 01-17-2013, 11:09 AM
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tturedraider tturedraider is offline
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Originally Posted by Red Lined View Post


Believe me, I understand that "badge whores" will be all over this...but really I can't see it putting a ton more sales in BMW portfolio. 180hp is not enough for this car. I have the same engine in my 528 and my mother has a 328 with the I4. In both cars it is barely enough with the added torque being the mitigating factor. This engine is going to suck, big time.


You never drove a BMW before yours or your mom's, did you?
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  #31  
Old 01-17-2013, 01:06 PM
Michael Schott Michael Schott is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boltjaM3s View Post
Trying to make an apples to apples comparison completely on the basis of an identical spec is the wrong way to look at this.

As in my mother's example, many people can be swayed very easily off of a feature in order to save money or get a more important feature.

My mom would trade the horsepower and the leather for a garage door opener and comfort access and in the process save $5000. She would be ecstatic. Because, to her, leather isn't that important and she doesn't drive in a spirited fashion.

Used to be that in order to get into a 3 Series BMW forced you to take an overkill engine and forced you to take leather just to get other basic options. By un-bundling the Premium package and creating a Performance Delete option, BMW has opened up a whole new world of opportunity for frustrated customers.

My mother must've been on a focus group or something. This is the exact situation she faced and the reason why she went to Acura.

BJ
Thanks BJ, that makes good sense. My scenario makes sense for the spirited driver who is OK with a slightly slower car. It may even make sense for me as my lease ends later this year and the F30 328 may be out of my price range. I'd need a test drive to see if the 320 is fast enough but all I need is heated seats, maybe metallic paint, leather and sport. I want a decently equipped car that has great driving dynamics and a MT.
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  #32  
Old 01-17-2013, 01:17 PM
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I want a decently equipped car that has great driving dynamics and a MT.
+1

Sometimes, it is much more fun to drive a slow car fast than it is to drive a fast car slow.
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  #33  
Old 01-17-2013, 02:12 PM
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+1

Sometimes, it is much more fun to drive a slow car fast than it is to drive a fast car slow.
Not sometimes, it's always more fun!
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  #34  
Old 01-17-2013, 02:17 PM
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You never drove a BMW before yours or your mom's, did you?
+1 - someone here never owned an e46 325i. Pure speed be damned.
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  #35  
Old 01-17-2013, 02:37 PM
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Yeah, you can get the car for $34k...only it won't have wood, sunroof, memory seats, leather, etc. What is the point?[/QUOTE]

It's still a BIMMER! That's the point!!

Is this less of a M3 just because it not loaded up? http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho....php?p=7310956
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  #36  
Old 01-17-2013, 05:30 PM
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+1

Sometimes, it is much more fun to drive a slow car fast than it is to drive a fast car slow.
+1

And 0-60 in 7.1 is not really a slow car is it???
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  #37  
Old 01-17-2013, 06:14 PM
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320i sport, lighting packs + sunroof + heated seats ---> 37195$
328i sportline, lighting pack + sunroof + heated seats ---> 42695$

5500$+txs+financing is enough to make think twice.
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  #38  
Old 01-17-2013, 06:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boltjaM3s View Post
Trying to make an apples to apples comparison completely on the basis of an identical spec is the wrong way to look at this.

As in my mother's example, many people can be swayed very easily off of a feature in order to save money or get a more important feature.

My mom would trade the horsepower and the leather for a garage door opener and comfort access and in the process save $5000. She would be ecstatic. Because, to her, leather isn't that important and she doesn't drive in a spirited fashion.

Used to be that in order to get into a 3 Series BMW forced you to take an overkill engine and forced you to take leather just to get other basic options. By un-bundling the Premium package and creating a Performance Delete option, BMW has opened up a whole new world of opportunity for frustrated customers.

My mother must've been on a focus group or something. This is the exact situation she faced and the reason why she went to Acura.

BJ
My sister-in-law too.

She is now in an Acura TL, and uses her own garage door opener.

She had a 328, but the Acura was cheaper this time around, and is still a (yuucch, really?) 'luxury' car that she can be seen driving in.

Prior to that it was a Lexus ES.

As long as she can say that she is in a late-model 'luxury' car, she doesn't care how it drives.

She would have been in a 320 in a minute.
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  #39  
Old 01-17-2013, 06:35 PM
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it is targeted towards certain type of buyer maybe why all the fuss if difference is so little, the question at the end will be does it worth getting 328 for that extra 50 hp. it all depends how good 180hp is.
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  #40  
Old 01-17-2013, 07:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Red Lined View Post

Yeah, you can get the car for $34k...only it won't have wood, sunroof, memory seats, leather, etc. What is the point?

Quote:
Originally Posted by chris328 View Post
you mean like an actual race car? no clue.

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  #41  
Old 01-17-2013, 07:25 PM
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So the 320i is the answer to the base Audi A4??

I just don't get the 320i. I think it just cheapens the 3 series line. The A4 has 211hp and 258 lb ft of torque, standard leather, 10 speaker stereo, sunroof. It starts at $32,500. The 328i and 335i make sense because they are rear wheel drive and have more horsepower than the competition. People will be driving their $55k loaded 335i around and have to explain to people that they have "the good one" instead of the 320i that looks just like it. The 328i is a very nice small step down. We don't need a third step down.






Quote:
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The question is if the premium package on the 320i is mistakenly not including leather. If it is, then the numbers are off by 1450. If it doesn't include leather, then you are right, pricing is very similar.
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  #42  
Old 01-17-2013, 07:31 PM
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If I was younger, and not so enjoying of comfortable amenities as I am now, I could easily get a very enjoyable 320 6MT for 40 thou.

I would love rowing the stick, cutting the curves, powering up hills, and doing everything else I do when I drive a car for pleasure. That it has fewer horses would make no difference if I weren't racing anyone, since it still has enough power to do everything it needs to do.

M-sport, xenons, and leather can be had for under 40K, and if needed, I could do without the leather, but, at that price point, it could still be easily done.

That gives you all the sporty bits you need for driving pleasure.
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  #43  
Old 01-17-2013, 07:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Kamdog View Post
My sister-in-law too.

She is now in an Acura TL, and uses her own garage door opener.

She had a 328, but the Acura was cheaper this time around, and is still a (yuucch, really?) 'luxury' car that she can be seen driving in.

Prior to that it was a Lexus ES.

As long as she can say that she is in a late-model 'luxury' car, she doesn't care how it drives.

She would have been in a 320 in a minute.
BMW was stuck in a tough spot.

Create a brand new step-down car to address the value proposition or do something different enough with the F30 to make a less expensive car without interfering with the more expensive versions.

What they've done is create a car that most performance-oriented customers wouldn't want but the masses would. My mom doesn't need a firm suspension, big engine, or leather if it means that she can get under a $375 monthly lease payment comfortably as that's what her budget demands. She'll get a 320i when the TL is up, I can guarantee you of that. She always had 3's and 5's until BMW raised prices and couldn't compete on features. Now she can come back.

BJ
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  #44  
Old 01-17-2013, 07:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Kamdog View Post
If I was younger, and not so enjoying of comfortable amenities as I am now, I could easily get a very enjoyable 320 6MT for 40 thou.

I would love rowing the stick, cutting the curves, powering up hills, and doing everything else I do when I drive a car for pleasure. That it has fewer horses would make no difference if I weren't racing anyone, since it still has enough power to do everything it needs to do.

M-sport, xenons, and leather can be had for under 40K, and if needed, I could do without the leather, but, at that price point, it could still be easily done.

That gives you all the sporty bits you need for driving pleasure.
That's not what these guys want. They want a nice big blue and white Roundel for everyone to see and as much butt wiping technology that can possibly be stuffed into a car with the biggest wheels that will fit in the wheel wells without rubbing the rubber off the tires.
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  #45  
Old 01-17-2013, 07:55 PM
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boltjaM3s boltjaM3s is offline
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I just don't get the 320i. I think it just cheapens the 3 series line. The A4 has 211hp and 258 lb ft of torque, standard leather, 10 speaker stereo, sunroof. It starts at $32,500. The 328i and 335i make sense because they are rear wheel drive and have more horsepower than the competition. People will be driving their $55k loaded 335i around and have to explain to people that they have "the good one" instead of the 320i that looks just like it. The 328i is a very nice small step down. We don't need a third step down.
It's something BMW simply needed to do. When the E90 came out, Mercedes Benz wasn't serious about the C Class. It literally looked and drove like a car for librarians, a wife car, just a bland baby Benz. Flash forward to today and MB woke the hell up, woke up bigtime, and the C Class is a legitimate threat. Whether the CLA started it or the 320i started it, both the big boys in this segment want that $30,000/$299 customer and they're going to duke it out.

It also explains a few things, maybe answers how BMW is trying to differentiate the expensive 3's from the new 3:

1. "The Lines" - This makes sense now, the reason why there are so many demonstrative visual cues that make the more expensive models look different. Knowing that they were going to come out with a 320i at $299, those with Luxury/Sport/Modern cars have a decent amount of chrome and wheel variances to denote a 'well-optioned' car from a stripper. Also explains the fender badges that are in other countries but not the US.

2. The Softer Suspension - The lower the prices, the fewer the enthusiasts, the more the 'common folk' and they don't like particularly harsh rides where you can feel every road imperfection and your back snaps over every pothole. By softening the standard suspension it allowed the 320i to feel more comfortable for the average driver.

3. The Steering - It's a lot easier, a lot more effortless.

4. The Experience Modes - Use technology to differentiate the rides, make the car more specific yet appeal to a broader audience simultaneously.

5. The 4 Cylinder Engine - One can make the argument that the 320i begot the 328i and not the other way around. That BMW knew it was going to have a low HP engine for the $30,000 car and decided to beef it up and release it first in the $40,000 car, then let it loose in its natural, less-powerful form in the second year. Perhaps the 320i is why we lost the NA 6, not for more earth-friendly reasons.

I'm sure there are others. Point is, the 335i and 328i were conceived in concert with the 320i for release in America, the relationships and differences come into greater clarity when you look under the hood a bit.

BJ
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  #46  
Old 01-17-2013, 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by woodswatchco View Post
I just don't get the 320i. I think it just cheapens the 3 series line. The A4 has 211hp and 258 lb ft of torque, standard leather, 10 speaker stereo, sunroof. It starts at $32,500. The 328i and 335i make sense because they are rear wheel drive and have more horsepower than the competition. People will be driving their $55k loaded 335i around and have to explain to people that they have "the good one" instead of the 320i that looks just like it. The 328i is a very nice small step down. We don't need a third step down.
When I bought my 2007 335i Cabrio I checked virtually every option and them ordered a lot of dealer installed accessories like Aluminum Pedals, 196 Style Wheels, Aero Lip, Wind Deflector, etc. The cost was considerably more than a base 328 Cabrio that is for all practical purposes visually indistinguishable. I bought the car I wanted and it honestly does not bother me that it looks identical to cars that cost considerably less.

CA
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  #47  
Old 01-17-2013, 08:16 PM
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The 320i clearly is not some thing BMW just "created" for the US market. They could have brought it here long ago but they did not. To say it is to compete with the CLA and A3 is a stretch.

The other thing to consider, 320i is sold all over the world except US, a lot of them were built for the European market. Now Europe is in the tank, where do you find the market for a model that could not sell there? Well bring it to a hot market that never had it.
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  #48  
Old 01-17-2013, 08:24 PM
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I bought the car I wanted and it honestly does not bother me that it looks identical to cars that cost considerably less.

CA
+1

For those who want a little bit of attention and enjoy the pat on the back the roundel brings, nothing changes. I've been driving 3 Series since 2006 and I've yet to run into anyone remotely close to the type of 'performance enthusiast' persona we've got going on here. No one I've ever run into or come across could look at my cars and differentiate them from any other E93, E90, or F30 on the road.

To the inside world, we know the difference between a $55,000 335i and a $30,000 320i.

To the outside world, we're all painted with the same brush, we're all driving $60,000 yuppie status symbols.

I don't care either way, I just love my F30, I've got no skin in the game, but that's real-world perception.

BJ
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  #49  
Old 01-17-2013, 08:30 PM
dtc100 dtc100 is offline
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Originally Posted by boltjaM3s View Post
+1

For those who want a little bit of attention and enjoy the pat on the back the roundel brings, nothing changes. I've been driving 3 Series since 2006 and I've yet to run into anyone remotely close to the type of 'performance enthusiast' persona we've got going on here. No one I've ever run into or come across could look at my cars and differentiate them from any other E93, E90, or F30 on the road.

To the inside world, we know the difference between a $55,000 335i and a $30,000 320i.

To the outside world, we're all painted with the same brush, we're all driving $60,000 yuppie status symbols.

I don't care either way, I just love my F30, I've got no skin in the game, but that's real-world perception.

BJ
There is a difference, in an E90 or prior gen 3, people see a college kid at the driver's seat, in an F30, people see old people driving. BMW does not want that to get out of hand and end up being equated to Cadillac, so they bring us 320i, now college kids can start driving the F30.

Last edited by dtc100; 01-17-2013 at 08:32 PM.
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  #50  
Old 01-17-2013, 08:39 PM
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There is a difference, in an E90 or prior gen 3, people see a college kid at the driver's seat, in an F30, people see old people driving. BMW does not want that to get out of the hand and end up being equated to Cadillac, so they bring us 320i, now college kids can start driving the F30.
You know, I used to love to talk about the stereotypes and the stigmas, but guess what: You're wrong.

I live in the BMW 3 Series capital of the world, Bergen County New Jersey, only 12 minutes from BMW USA Corporate Headquarters in Park Ridge. And I can tell you, without exaggeration, I must see 30 E90's and F30's a day. And that's if I drive 30 minutes. If I drive an hour or two, forget it, I can't even count how many I see.

When I drive by these other cars, I look straight through the windshield to see who's driving them. You know, maybe get an enthusiast to give me the look, maybe get an admirer to give me the ol' thumbs up. They never do. What I see through those scores of 3 Series windshields are mostly women, mostly 46 years old, all hauling kids around town at 28 MPH.

I'm not sure what college town you live in, but there aren't any college kids that I see on the roads around here. I'd say 1 out of every 100 E90's I see on the road are driven by 18-22 year olds, and almost all of them are in dad's car.

I'm sure that at BMW HQ some marketers do modeling around age demography, but what they've done to the F30 doesn't support your "get younger" theory. The car is bigger, softer, and more luxurious. The lower price helps, but this isn't a Civic, never will be.

BMW lowered the price to go after more-of-same. Plenty of 50-somethings out there who want a BMW and can afford a BMW but were tired of having to live with a firm suspension and powerful engine they didn't want and eschew features like a garage door opener or nav that they did want in the process. BMW forced you to pay for more engine and more suspension than you really needed; now they've corrected it, now you can delete that performance and put the $4,300 to goodies instead. It's as simple as that.

BJ
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