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European Delivery
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  #1  
Old 05-12-2006, 08:22 AM
myfirstbmw myfirstbmw is offline
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ED Information In One Place—May 2006

I took ED of a 2006 325I on March 20, 2006. As helpful as these forums have been I wished I had the entire experience documented in one place so here is my best shot.

Overall thoughts
BMW has ED down to a science and it is a pleasant experience. My dealer did not have a clue but BMW got them through it. If you want zero front end hassle go with an experienced ED dealer; check this forum for advice. If you want to go to the guy down the street who does not have any ED experience (like my dealer) prepare for a bumpier yet most likely tolerable ride.

Arranging ED
The rule of thumb is no less than 3 months before your desired ED date. My dealer asked for a $1,000 deposit which was later applied to the purchase price. Be ready with your passport info and your ED date-make sure to check the BMW website so you don not plan for delivery on a German Holiday!

Tracking Production
My car was assigned a production number about 2 months before the ED date. I was able to enter it into the BMW owners circle website and track my car. The car was produced and ready at the ED center about 1 month before my ED date.

Advance ED materials from BMW
About 2 weeks before the trip you will receive an ED package from BMW. It includes:
-A business card size foldable map of the Munich area that gives you instructions how to get to the ED center and includes the full train/subway map and relevant road maps
-A voucher for food at the ED center
-A discounted Munich hotel offer (ours was from the Kings hotels)

About 1 week before the ED date you will receive a small gift (mine was a travel clock)

Planning your trip
Spend your ED savings to enjoy Europe. You will understand why BMW is the ultimate driving machine as you cruise the autobahn at 100 mph (100 mph max recommended during beak-in period). I suggest a minimum of 5 days. We chose a triangular route: Munich to Prague to Vienna and then back to Munich (with a quick stop in Salzburg). Be prepared for some very tight streets in the cities--especially Prague. If you are at all anal about getting a scratch do not go into the city!
Know in advance how you are going to get from point to point on every step of your trip.

Picking up the car
There is no direct train/subway route from the airport to the ED center in Freimann even though they are physically quite close to each other. If you arrive on your ED day I suggest a taxi or Rolf (search for his name in the ED forum). If you arrive the night before like I did I suggest staying in Munich near the central train station (Hauptbanhoff) which is easily accessible from the airport (S1 or S8 trains;10 Euros;45 minute ride). We used the BMW hotel offer and stayed at the Kings Center hotel for 100 Euro per night including all taxes and a full breakfast. It is a 5 minute walk from the Hauptbanhoff and very close to the must see part of Munich which is the city center (Marienplatz). The next morning take any of 6 trains from the Hauptbanhoff and transfer to the U6 to Freimann. From the Freimann stop walk (following BMWs directions) to the ED center;it is a short and doable walk through a residential area with some gravel paths and side street walking required. Make sure to wear good walking shoes--this is not Park Avenue in New York! You will see a sign on the gate which says European Delivery;push the button and someone will come out from the ED building and walk you across the parking lot. Once inside hand them your passport, go upstairs and eat and drink and wait for your delivery agent to come up and greet you and go over your paperwork consisting of the following:
-Your registration
-Your proof and terms of insurance (mine was no deductible and as good as what we get in the states)
-Directions to your drop-off point
-Roadside assistance instructions
The manuals will be in the glove boxthere is a general car manual and then separate manuals for the radio and the telephone functions
The European license plates will already be installed on the car;they are much thinner and longer than US plates and they fit the back of the car just fine but the fit is a little funny on the front. The front license plate bracket will be in the trunk.

Follow your delivery agent down to your car and ask a zillion questions before you drive off! Make sure to have him take a picture!
On our ED day they were doing 150 deliveries;only 10 of which were US EDs;the majority are intra-European;and these folks do not get the same attention from BMW;they call their name over the speaker system versus sending an agent to meet with you.
Our wait was about 45 minutes which we passed by reading their ample assortment of English newspapers and magazines

Go back upstairs to the cafe and have them pack you a lunch or late afternoon snack and get going!

Driving in Europe
Each country has unique traffic regulations and required documents. Use the internet to familiarize yourself with them ahead of time (the BMW ED website has some good info to start with) Austria and the Czech Republic require road toll stickers (which can be purchased at their borders); Germany does not. Austria also requires a safety vest (like construction workers wear) which can be purchased for 5 Euros at the border

Make sure to purchase an International driving license (IDL) before you go;there are only 2 companies that sell them legitimately despite what you might Google;we used AAA and they are $10 each presuming you have a spare passport photo. If you do not have them take your picture on the spot for a small fee.

Warning! On the autobahn Salzburg to Munich the Austrian/German border does not have a manned checkpoint but rather a brightly lit area where you are required to slow down. While it may not appear so you are being watched about 1 mile after entering Germany an unmarked 5 series flashing a blue light came in front of us and pulled us over. A US spec BMW with a temporary German tag apparently caught their attention so I had to give them my title, proof of insurance and my IDL. They had me pop my hood and matched my VIN. They also ran some checks via radio and cleared me to go. What excitement!

On the autobahn (Germany, Austria) please be careful. Certainly there will be other BMWs (and Audis and Benzs) flying past you at 120+ mph but they are not breaking in their engines;BMW wants you under 100 mph for the first 1,200 miles. And take the speed signs seriously; slow down; and experience that high-end torque once you are free of the speed restriction. Expect to fly for 10 miles and then slow down for construction, urban areas and traffic.

Parking in Europe
Always park near your hotel and hoof it or ride the public transportation to sightsee. You will soon understand why Europeans can eat so much but still be generally slender because they walk! I pigged out but still came home 2 pounds lighter since I was pounding the pavement.
Parking is very dependent on the city and your location. In general it will be more expensive and harder to find the nearer you get to the city center. If you are anal about the car put it in the hotel garage; many have them but they are small (think multi-point turns to get into your spot) and not cheap. Otherwise find a well lit street spot if you can; make sure there are similarly priced cars parked near you (as was always the case for me)

Must sees
Concentration camp. I saw Dachau which is just north of Munich and highly recommend it. Plan to spend 4 hours to really experience it.
Prague. The only city in the European WWII zone that did not suffer extensive bomb damage. A hilly city set on a river with beautiful architecture of many styles and sometimes all styles in 1 block!!

Dropping off the car and Munich
Make sure to check the BMW website so you do not plan for drop-off on a German Holiday. It is also advisable to contact your drop-off center to confirm they will be available
This is not as elegant as an experience as the pick-up but it works. I dropped at Harms in northern Munich. Your ED advisor will give you detailed directions. Harms is located in an industrial park. Drive all the way to the end of the road and go left up the ramp into the parking area. At the top of the ramp work your way left. Harms is located halfway down the building on the left on one of the upper floors and their offices face the parking area. It appears they watch the parking lot for EDr's since they waved at me out the window and directed me where to park. If they don't see you right away look for other shiny new BMWs with license plates like yours and park next to them. They will bring you to their office and have you help them fill out paperwork and they will take the master key. Before you leave do not forget to take the warning triangle, the first aid kit and your front license plate with you since they are not export compliant and will be removed before shipment (they need to keep the rear plate to get the car to the port).
I suggest having them call you a taxi first thing if you are going to the airport because the wait can be long--expect to wait 30-60 minutes--perhaps longer on Friday. Since I was not leaving until the next day and did not want to wait for a taxi I hoofed it to the U-Bahn station and took the U6 back to my hotel. Don't forget something to carry the first aid kit, warning triangle and license plate in! Warning: this is a long walk of approximately 2 miles (I could have walked 1/2 mile to a bus stop and taken the bus to the U-Bahn station but I was in need of some exercise).

Returning home
I did not have room in my suitcase for the warning triangle or first aid kit so I packed them in a carry-on. I don't suggest this--leave room in your suitcase for them as I was stopped at nearly every airline security checkpoint so that they could examine the scissors in the first aid kit (which are dull) and the long metal support arms on the warning triangle. Fortunately nothing was taken but it was a hassle.

Redelivery
Unfortunately you have to drive your old car for a while until your BMW arrives. One week after your drop-off contact Jessica Burroughs at Harms (410 837 7612 or mailto:jessicab@ehharms.com ) and ask her for the name of the shipping company and vessel your car is on as well as the port of call. Mine was the Elektra owned by Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics (W&W) and Port N.E.A.T. Jersey City,N.J. Should you be also using W&W you can see where your ship is (that is in a port or between ports but not the exact location) by entering your ship name on this website: http://schedule.2wglobal.com/AppSche...esselSearch.do These ships make multiple stops; I think mine had 6; and I was the 4th stop. The website will show you when to expect your ship at your port of call. My ship arrived as planned.

The car goes next to the BMW vehicle processing center (VPC) which in my case was right there in Jersey City, N.J. At some point thereafter your dealer will know when the car will ship from there and the estimated arrival day at your dealer. Do not rely on the Owners Circle for information; mine still says "in final processing center" and I have been driving it 2 weeks! Mine arrived 1 day earlier than my dealer predicted. Before you drive off compare the mileage on the car odometer to the mileage on the paperwork Harms gave you--there shouldn't be much of a difference--mine was 11 miles.

The entire process from European drop to U.S. pick-up was exactly 6 weeks:
1 week from drop point to ship departure
3 weeks ship on water
2 weeks final processing and delivery to dealer
And I was surprised to find the German rear license plate in the trunk so now I have them both!

Have a great experience and good luck!

Edits:
1. Corrected name of port and location of VPC. Thanks vern! (5/12/06)
2. Added that you can take a bus from the Munich drop-off to the U-Bahn station (thanks texbmw22!) and expanded the particulars of the drop-off location and process (5/12/06)

Last edited by myfirstbmw; 05-12-2006 at 01:11 PM.
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  #2  
Old 05-12-2006, 08:36 AM
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Old 05-12-2006, 09:05 AM
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Old 05-12-2006, 09:24 AM
vern vern is offline
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That had to be IMO the best and complete informative ED write up that I have read about
One thing you might want to change,the port is Port N.E.A.T. Jersey City,N.J. and the VPC is also Jersey City,N.J. not Newark
Thank you ,again great write up.
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Last edited by vern; 05-12-2006 at 12:04 PM.
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Old 05-12-2006, 10:19 AM
texbmw22 texbmw22 is offline
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couple of suggestions

Great potential sticky

Some comments



1) There is a bus on the main road within a short walking distance from Harms that takes you right to the ubahn subway. I believe that the bus ticket can be used for the subway as well. Better yet, if you get a metro pass it will over all transportation.

2) It would be great if someone could post a master list of all email and telephone contacts in one thread - Rolf, Sigrid, Harms, BMW delivery in Munich, BMWusa - eurodelivery. Also a master direction and transport overview - for example directions from airport to delivery (bus, metro, driving); directions from airport to downtown etc. I know all of this is in various threads, but to have it in one location would be invaluable.
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Old 05-12-2006, 10:21 AM
Chadowe Chadowe is offline
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AWSOME write up. Thank you so very much for taking the time to share all that info.

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Old 05-12-2006, 10:27 AM
smokeminside smokeminside is offline
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Excellent!
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Old 05-12-2006, 10:28 AM
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[/QUOTE]Make sure to purchase an International driving license (IDL) before you go—there are only 2 companies that sell them legitimately despite what you might Google—we used AAA and they are $10 each presuming you have a spare passport photo. If you don’t have them take your picture on the spot for a small fee.[/QUOTE]


Great thorough post!!!

I was wondering about other's experiences with this particular part - won't a valid US DL work fine in Europe. Do you really need an IDL?
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Old 05-12-2006, 10:31 AM
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You will need the IDL if you get pulled over in at least Austria, but it is recommended in all the EU countries where English isn't the primary language.
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Old 05-12-2006, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eyedoc
I was wondering about other's experiences with this particular part - won't a valid US DL work fine in Europe. Do you really need an IDL?
Yes, you should have one...life will be easier should you get pulled over.
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Old 05-12-2006, 11:25 AM
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X3 Skier X3 Skier is offline
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Great Post

Thanks. About the only thing I would add is to realize you will be walking through a housing development to get ot the Delivery Center so don't panic (Like I almost did). I also liked the idea of picking up a mega buck car by pressing a bell on the fence in a parking lot.
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Old 05-12-2006, 11:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ågent99
Yes, you should have one...life will be easier should you get pulled over.
For $17.00 with photo at AAA .While you wait and not being a member. Well worth it.
cheers
vern
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Old 05-12-2006, 12:10 PM
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I was wondering about other's experiences with this particular part - won't a valid US DL work fine in Europe. Do you really need an IDL?[/QUOTE]

Austria is the only country that require an International Driver's License. Your US DL will work fine just about everywhere else. Unlike here in the US, your average policeman in Western Europe is quite educated and I think you would be hard pressed to find one that didn't speak some English.
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Old 05-12-2006, 12:36 PM
smokeminside smokeminside is offline
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IDL= peace of mind. Worth the 17 bucks I think...
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Old 05-12-2006, 01:28 PM
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Great concise write up....this would be great for SAs to give to their prospective ED customers for an "on the ground" experience overview.
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Old 05-12-2006, 02:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by X3 Skier
I also liked the idea of picking up a mega buck car by pressing a bell on the fence in a parking lot.
just think, in a few months BMW Welt will come online, and we'll have only foggy, but fond, memories, of unmarked, non-functioning gates placed between you and the promised land.
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Old 05-12-2006, 02:44 PM
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Great write-up!! i just have one comment thou...

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Old 05-15-2006, 09:36 AM
jmg1 jmg1 is offline
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2007 550 pricing

We did European delivery on a Mercedes Benz and had a great experience. We want to do the same with BMW but would like to negotiate price (which we assumed we could not do when ordering the MB). From forum I realize price is negotiable but am trying to find link to 2007 priciing. Can anyone help? thanks.
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Old 05-15-2006, 09:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmg1
We did European delivery on a Mercedes Benz and had a great experience. We want to do the same with BMW but would like to negotiate price (which we assumed we could not do when ordering the MB). From forum I realize price is negotiable but am trying to find link to 2007 priciing. Can anyone help? thanks.
Go to the E60 Model Discussion forum and look for the sixth sticky from the top titled something like MY07 E60 Pricing Details. Once you download that document, look for "Confidential Wholesale Prices" for Munich Delivery. The important point is that you work UP from the ED wholesale number. A good ballpark figure for dealer margin is $1,000, but that will vary some depending on your local market and the model you want. Good luck and welcome to the 'Fest, by the way.

P.S.: I assume you are looking for a 5-series since that is the only series currently running as a model year 2007. Otherwise, keep an eye on the "Ask a dealer" forum...
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Munich Pick Up: 6/22/06 -- Dingolfing: 6/23/06 -- Drop Off: 7/12/06 -- Aboard M/V "Green Point" with ETA Port Hueneme 8/16/06 - Redelivery: 9/1/06 - De-badged 1/1/07

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Last edited by DBU; 05-15-2006 at 10:00 AM.
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Old 05-15-2006, 10:21 AM
jmg1 jmg1 is offline
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Very helpful. Thanks. One other question--does destination and handling have to be included?
Also, this is probably heresy but is there a similar site for Mercedes as my wife wants to get an MB wagon?
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Old 05-15-2006, 10:32 AM
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Yes, destination is still included. Don't know if MB has a similar site, are MB fans as fanatical as BMW fans?
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Old 05-15-2006, 10:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmg1
Very helpful. Thanks. One other question--does destination and handling have to be included?
Also, this is probably heresy but is there a similar site for Mercedes as my wife wants to get an MB wagon?
Try www.MBWorld.org - but probably a bunch of stuck-up guys with no senses of humor...
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Old 05-15-2006, 11:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmg1
Very helpful. Thanks. One other question--does destination and handling have to be included?
Also, this is probably heresy but is there a similar site for Mercedes as my wife wants to get an MB wagon?
Yes, the $695 Destination fee still applies. Please note that your dealer should NOT charge MACO (regional advertising) nor Training Fees on your ED car. Only other fee would be a minor "Documentation Fee." The ED process is straight forward, however, I would make sure you deal with a guy who has experience with ED. One of the 'Fest Board sponsors is in Decatur, GA. Look him up if that is convenient for you.
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Ordered: 4/12/06 -- Production Number: 4/17/06 -- VIN/Start of Production: 5/15/06 -- Completed: 5/20/06
Munich Pick Up: 6/22/06 -- Dingolfing: 6/23/06 -- Drop Off: 7/12/06 -- Aboard M/V "Green Point" with ETA Port Hueneme 8/16/06 - Redelivery: 9/1/06 - De-badged 1/1/07

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Old 05-15-2006, 11:36 PM
fdkevin fdkevin is offline
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Nice write up.
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2006 550i, silver grey black interior, steptronic, nav, sports package, active steering, premium sound, fold down rear seats, comfort access, heated front seats, M aero kit & rear spoiler, ED March 24
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  #25  
Old 05-22-2006, 07:10 PM
ubp ubp is offline
2 Times ED'er
Location: Atlanta
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 117
Mein Auto: 2006 BMW 330i
It's Adrian with Nalley BMW. I guess he's the PRO in ED.

All I can say is, he excels what he's doing
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