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

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  #1  
Old 07-25-2014, 01:42 PM
JSM7 JSM7 is offline
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Location: VA
 
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Mein Auto: 2006 Mustang
New member looking for advice

Hey I just made an account and am looking for some advice from you all. I know you probably get these kind of threads all the time but I was just wondering if it is a good idea for me to buy a BMW with my situation. I am 19 and am a college student. I have spent this past week researching the cost of ownership regarding maintenance and repairs. I came across the site "Bimmer DIY" and looked over the wealth of information regarding do-it-yourself maintenance. Along with this, I have watched YouTube videos showing how to fix problems common to the car I'm looking at.

I have no car diy repair background other than oil changes but I feel I would be competent to do these repairs myself to save money. I also know a few mechanics very well who would be able to help me in the event that I need help. On top of all this, I work a lot and have a steady cash flow and think I could afford to pay for parts and trips to the shop for repairs I don't feel comfortable performing.

Now I come to you to ask if there is anything I have overlooked regarding what its really like to own and maintain a BMW. If it wouldn't be a good idea for me to get one at this point in my life please comment below giving your reasoning and help guide me in this decision. I would be getting a non-m 3 series.
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  #2  
Old 07-25-2014, 01:52 PM
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ahull ahull is online now
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Mein Auto: ist schnell! (03 330i SC)
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSM7 View Post
Hey I just made an account and am looking for some advice from you all. I know you probably get these kind of threads all the time but I was just wondering if it is a good idea for me to buy a BMW with my situation. I am 19 and am a college student. I have spent this past week researching the cost of ownership regarding maintenance and repairs. I came across the site "Bimmer DIY" and looked over the wealth of information regarding do-it-yourself maintenance. Along with this, I have watched YouTube videos showing how to fix problems common to the car I'm looking at.

I have no car diy repair background other than oil changes but I feel I would be competent to do these repairs myself to save money. I also know a few mechanics very well who would be able to help me in the event that I need help. On top of all this, I work a lot and have a steady cash flow and think I could afford to pay for parts and trips to the shop for repairs I don't feel comfortable performing.

Now I come to you to ask if there is anything I have overlooked regarding what its really like to own and maintain a BMW. If it wouldn't be a good idea for me to get one at this point in my life please comment below giving your reasoning and help guide me in this decision. I would be getting a non-m 3 series.

Look through the recent threads. Someone did, in fact, ask this very question in the last few days (and it does get asked about once a week) and there's lots of great discussion there. You've come to the right place if you're serious about owning a BMW.

Sounds like you have the right attitude on repairs. The e46 is aged at this point and depending on what the previous owner did it could be reasonable or it could be almost a nightmare. It's not that hard to work on though.
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2003 330i TiAg Sport Pkg ~90k miles
DIY MODS: AA Stage I supercharger, Meyle HD FCAs w Powerflex CABs, Bilstein shocks, Meyle HD Rtabs, Angel Eyes, Clear Corners/Markers w/ LEDs, LED tails, ZHP rims, Akebono pads, AUX input
DIY E46 Merit Badges: Sunroof resurrection, CCV, OFHG, VCG w/ VANOS seals, DISA, Cooling Refresh I, steering giubo, window regs, Magnetic Infandibulator (see wiki)
DIY On deck: Rear Diff bushing. UUC SSK, clutch job eventually, Wavetrac LSD
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  #3  
Old 07-25-2014, 02:08 PM
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Fast Bob Fast Bob is offline
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Mein Auto: 2004 330Ci ZHP 3 pedals
You`ll find lots of useful information in the E46 Wiki
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  #4  
Old 07-26-2014, 08:51 AM
LX-biker LX-biker is offline
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Location: Ontario, Canada
 
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Mein Auto: 2004 325XI Sport pkg
Hi, I think e46 still looking attractive today if kept in good shape. Owning e46 helped me to become decent mechanics and few times I was fixing my car after real mechanic failed to fix properly or has being unable to diagnose a problem. I don't bother anymore going to the shop unless I cant access repair area or don't have a tools. Past 2 years I did nothing except oil changes, brake fluid bleeding and brakes cleaning, cabin air filter replacement and rust spots paint rapair. I don't count swapping summer/winter wheels and tires.
Working on e46 much more easy as for me, because of good car design compare some other cars.
Good luck with searching and buying!
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  #5  
Old 07-26-2014, 10:03 AM
Dreasdoku Dreasdoku is offline
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Location: Gresham, Oregon
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 19
Mein Auto: 2000 BMW 323i
I think you have a pretty good handle on the most important part of owning any car, especially an e46. First, you seem to have the right attitude because if you are not willing to do the research, the work, or eat the cost of repairs then an e46 is not the car for you. Since you are willing to deal with all of that I would say that you are on the right track to owning a car that you are going to love. I love mine and will do whatever it takes to keep it up and running.

You will find amazing amounts of information on this site and many others that will in most cases (in my experience) be much more valuable than anything a shop has told to me. They tend to say things like (we'll need to look it over first or it'll be $85 to diagnose it) Those are kind of useless to me personally. The guys here are much more helpful and it's generally free for advice or assistance.
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