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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.

View Poll Results: Does the 4-cylinder turbo make it more or less likely you will buy a 328i?
The 4-cylinder makes it more likely I will buy a 328i 59 39.33%
The 4-cylinder makes it less likely I will buy a 328i 62 41.33%
I'm not sure 29 19.33%
Voters: 150. You may not vote on this poll

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  #26  
Old 08-21-2011, 05:00 AM
pony_trekker pony_trekker is offline
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2 words:

lease buyout.

If not that, two other words:

Toyota Camry.
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  #27  
Old 08-24-2011, 08:17 AM
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The idea of a much more powerful 4 cyl. FI motor is interesting. If I had my way (not the CAFE induced government way) BMW would use the more powerful I6 (270 HP ?) that you can get else where in the x28 cars. I doubt the 4 cyl will be as smooth as the I6, but it may be fine if BMW uses some Bavarian magic on it. I am more concerned with the power numbers. I personally would not spend the kind of money we are talking about for a car with 230HP and 200 TQ. Especially the 200 TQ. I know some on the 'Fest say it is more than enough for them. Great for them. As for me, if I didn't/couldn't have gone 335 I would have gotten a G37. The new 4 cyl. FI numbers are IMHO in the ball park, so I might consider it. I guess that means I am in favor of the move. However, I would rather have the NA I6 that makes similar power numbers and lower mpg numbers. N4S
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  #28  
Old 08-24-2011, 01:57 PM
Robert A Robert A is offline
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I'll bet the average consumer is well aware of the number of cylinders. American buyers may not know much else about cars, but they place high value on the cylinder count.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Inline Sixer View Post
The sad thing is, most buyers outside the bimmerfest crowd wouldn't be able to tell the difference. Most wouldn't even be aware if it was changed to front wheel drive.

My username says it all.
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  #29  
Old 08-24-2011, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
I'll bet the average consumer is well aware of the number of cylinders. American buyers may not know much else about cars, but they place high value on the cylinder count.
Once cheaper cars start to use 3-cylinder engines, the 4-cylinder will become a status symbol.
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  #30  
Old 08-24-2011, 02:29 PM
Robert A Robert A is offline
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I can't see that ever happening. More than likely, automakers will move away from IC engines altogether.

Reading the reviews on the Z4, it's interesting to note that there is only 33 lbs of weight savings with the N20.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mr_clueless View Post
Once cheaper cars start to use 3-cylinder engines, the 4-cylinder will become a status symbol.
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  #31  
Old 08-24-2011, 03:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
I'll bet the average consumer is well aware of the number of cylinders. American buyers may not know much else about cars, but they place high value on the cylinder count.
Doubt it. They don't even know they have RWD:

http://rumors.automobilemag.com/bmw-...cars-3558.html
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  #32  
Old 08-24-2011, 03:38 PM
Robert A Robert A is offline
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I can understand not knowing about RWD/FWD/AWD, but everybody knows about cylinders.

American car buyers (from my generation) were brought up with the idea that everyone should have a V8 under the hood. V6s were for the baseline models. The Europeans, principally Mercedes and BMW convinced us that 6 cylinders are okay, but the stigma still remains. Madison Avenue and Detroit made certain that consumers knew this.
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  #33  
Old 08-24-2011, 05:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
I can understand not knowing about RWD/FWD/AWD, but everybody knows about cylinders.

American car buyers (from my generation) were brought up with the idea that everyone should have a V8 under the hood. V6s were for the baseline models. The Europeans, principally Mercedes and BMW convinced us that 6 cylinders are okay, but the stigma still remains. Madison Avenue and Detroit made certain that consumers knew this.
The new generation is different though. These kids are more into social networking, texting, and other stuff except driving -- according to the most recent surveys. Gone are the old days were some technical knowledge was required to own a car. Let's face it, to most people nowadays driving is a chore and a car is an appliance. This is why autonomous cars that drive themselves will grow into every politicians dream -- imagine less accidents, less need for new roads. Will there be place for a car like BMW in the future? With average folks detached from the chore of driving they can now focus on more interesting things on the way to work, like well, texting.
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  #34  
Old 08-24-2011, 05:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr_clueless View Post
Once cheaper cars start to use 3-cylinder engines, the 4-cylinder will become a status symbol.
+1
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  #35  
Old 08-24-2011, 08:06 PM
Robert A Robert A is offline
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I think you're totally correct. The question is how far up the income ladder that group has progressed -- to a 3 Series, maybe, but a 5 series, probably not. Further, if that generation views a car as an appliance, why buy a BMW at all?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Inline Sixer View Post
The new generation is different though. These kids are more into social networking, texting, and other stuff except driving -- according to the most recent surveys. Gone are the old days were some technical knowledge was required to own a car. Let's face it, to most people nowadays driving is a chore and a car is an appliance. This is why autonomous cars that drive themselves will grow into every politicians dream -- imagine less accidents, less need for new roads. Will there be place for a car like BMW in the future? With average folks detached from the chore of driving they can now focus on more interesting things on the way to work, like well, texting.
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  #36  
Old 08-24-2011, 08:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
Further, if that generation views a car as an appliance, why buy a BMW at all?
More expensive appliance = status symbol!

And the way BMW is building their cars shows that they intend to cater to that market.
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  #37  
Old 08-24-2011, 08:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
I think you're totally correct. The question is how far up the income ladder that group has progressed -- to a 3 Series, maybe, but a 5 series, probably not. Further, if that generation views a car as an appliance, why buy a BMW at all?
Gen X and below = cars are mostly appliances or even worse accessories. Badge whores don't really care which wheels drive the car. Or how many cylinders power it. They do care it has a badge with blue and white on the hood. Look around california parking lots and BMWs of all types are as common as Hondas.

Gen Y actually thinks Lexus is an independent brand and not just an offshoot of Toyota. I have employees who had no idea Lexus is only a little over 20 years old.
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  #38  
Old 08-25-2011, 05:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
I think you're totally correct. The question is how far up the income ladder that group has progressed -- to a 3 Series, maybe, but a 5 series, probably not. Further, if that generation views a car as an appliance, why buy a BMW at all?
Very true Robert. These are great back and forth conversations by the way. I'm in Gen X and that puts my grunge-rock-listening group at the age 30-45 range. We're in general, not as moneyed as the previous generation. With cars, the opposite happened to me, from being a total gadget geek who viewed cars as appliances to discovering the beauty of cars only after I bought a BMW just to see what the fuss was about. Lately I've been totally hooked into learning about all sorts of cars (through Motortrend, and er, google of course which is quite pathetic). Back then, if someone asked me if my Honda had a V6, and I would have said then that I didn't know (nor care) what was under the hood, and I never looked, for as long as it ran, required no technical maintenance know-how, and got me to where I wanted to go.

My dad though, when I was a kid, regularly checked the dipstick level, knew where the carburator was, knew basic engine parts, how things worked, etc... It's sadly a lost art, because doing these now are not necessary. The new models don't even have a dipstick.

"Why would the new generation buy a BMW at all?" That's a good question -- perhaps I see BMW now making it's best engineering moves focusing on status and brand image, not on actual performace (enthusiasts are a minority and don't matter anymore? ) -- thus the "joy of driving" campaign as opposed to the now obsolete "ultimate driving machine" marketing slogan. BMW isn't stupid and my guess is they will sell, and "sell out" big time, even if it is a 4-cyl -- most upcoming GenXs who will be in the 40-50s in ten years will not even know the difference, until they look things up in, well, Wikipedia.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blueguydotcom View Post
Gen X and below = cars are mostly appliances or even worse accessories. Badge whores don't really care which wheels drive the car. Or how many cylinders power it. They do care it has a badge with blue and white on the hood. Look around california parking lots and BMWs of all types are as common as Hondas.

Gen Y actually thinks Lexus is an independent brand and not just an offshoot of Toyota. I have employees who had no idea Lexus is only a little over 20 years old.
When my wife made the decision to buy the X5 -- it was all based on: "Oh, I like how it looks." "I love the color." "I see it has more than enough cup holders." "This leather color looks great with that particular wood trim." Once had a loaner X5 with the new N55 engine and she did not notice that there was a big difference in power from our naturally aspirated one, but did notice that this stripped loaner model did not have the panoramic moonroof.

But even to the most hardcore BMW lovers out there: once must admit deep down that status is a factor in your purchase, whoever says no is in denial. There's a good thread in the F10 section on: "Would you purchase a Hyundai if they came up with a car with IDENTICAL performance and comfort/luxury as the F10?" Truth be told, the poll results reveal that this "car enthusiast" crowd is made mostly badge whores. "Not me" of course, LOL.
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  #39  
Old 08-25-2011, 05:33 AM
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I share the same sentiments as many in this thread. To me, as someone in the U.S., BMW has always been known for their smooth and refined Inline-6 engines. They have so much character, and yes they do ooze refinment and class, and they're very engaging to drive. I don't think that taking that away is a good thing. A huge selling point for me is the Inline-6 engine. Yes, if I wanted a turbo 4-banger I could buy from just about anyone these days. It's also regrettable that they're taking away the naturally aspirated Inline-6 engines completely, at least in the U.S. I do prefer NA engines. Love their shorter gearing, and the crisper throttle response, and better reliability. I did go for the 335i, but only because of buying the heaviest possible E93 with an automatic. Didn't think the 230hp/200tq spec N52 engine was up to the job, but the higher spec ones not offered in the U.S. would have been.

It's not done here, but other countries regulate and tax to death especially on displacements above 2.0L, so I understand why this engine exists, so that BMW can continue to be competitive in those markets. But it's a raw deal that they eliminate something so fine in favor of this N20, a "spec machine" regulatory approved and tax ducking engine.

A lot of people are also completely misquoting and misrepresenting what BMW said about the N20 engine in the F10 528i, including Roundel I'm afraid. BMW said "up to" 15% better mileage, *not* 15% better overall, and not 15% better on the highway. I can pretty much guarantee you that that "up to" 15% better mileage is going to be mostly in the city, and mostly due to the new start-stop feature, and that there will be little if any improvement on the highway. Maybe 1mpg better, 2 tops. The current N52 powered 528i gets 22 city / 32 highway which is very good. So with the 4-cylinder you'd maybe get 24/25 mpg city and at most 33 mpg highway. BMW is more than happy to have people misrepresent what they say and do 32 mpg highway x 1.15 and start quoting 37 mpg, but it's simply notgonnahappen.com. Just watch.

I'm a little shocked, but also not surprised that 80% of 1er owners don't know their cars are RWD. People want the badge so buy the cheapest one, but have absolutely no clue about what's even in it. I've said it before and I'll say it again. I bet BMW also knows that a very high percentage of their car buyers have absolutely no clue what's under the hood either, what the difference between 4 and 6 cylinders are, or even what the difference between an Inline-6 and a V-6 engine is. Hence dropping them or making them more scarce, because they know their customers for the most part have no idea and don't care. As long as a car looks good and drives and performs well and gets good mileage, people won't care and will keep buying the brand, even FWD cars... Plus in the "car scene", all the kids have been going nuts modding their WRXs, STIs, EVOs, 1.8T VWs, etc. for the past 10 years. They're used to the racket and vibration, and like being able to "chip" a car and get more power out of them easily. Turbo is good, naturally aspirated is bad. If they're looking for more refinement even with a 4-cylinder, it can still be done. It's very difficult if not impossible to make an Inline-4 engine sound good to my subjective ears, so you just mute the hell out of the intake and exhaust. It's also very difficult to make an Inline-4 engine run smoothly, so you just isolate the hell out of it with fancy active motor mounts and everything. Then you gear it down to hold the average RPM lower to prevent it from making too much racket and rely on the torque rather than RPMs like an NA engine. What do you need an Inline-6 for, especially a naturally aspirated one? Because they sound and feel so good and are so engaging to drive and are a big part of what has made BMWs BMWs for the past 30 years in this country are likely to get you blank stares and glazed over eyes in this new-generation crowd.
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Last edited by SteVTEC; 08-25-2011 at 05:34 AM.
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  #40  
Old 08-25-2011, 09:56 AM
Robert A Robert A is offline
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This also happened when BMW claimed that the Valvetronic engines got 15% better fuel economy than their predecessors.

My 2007 530i gets absolutely awful mileage in the city -- averaging about 15 mpg. My previous car, a 2001 530i, which didn't have Valvetronic, did the same or probably better.

[QUOTE=SteVTEC;6277876]

A lot of people are also completely misquoting and misrepresenting what BMW said about the N20 engine in the F10 528i, including Roundel I'm afraid. BMW said "up to" 15% better mileage, *not* 15% better overall, and not 15% better on the highway. notgonnahappen.com.
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  #41  
Old 08-25-2011, 09:57 AM
Lifted07duramax Lifted07duramax is offline
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No becaues if they can't do the 335i right why would I buy their 4cyl turbo
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  #42  
Old 08-25-2011, 10:02 AM
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Quote:
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No becaues if they can't do the 335i right why would I buy their 4cyl turbo
I thought the N55 fixed all of that. Did it not?
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  #43  
Old 08-25-2011, 10:16 AM
Robert A Robert A is offline
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As per the BMW UK website, on the 5 Series, it appears as though they're now using the 4 cyl engine for everything below the normally aspirated 530i. Thus, the smaller/lower powered sixes are all gone. And I suspect this is the direction that BMW will follow throughout their model range, in all regions of the world.

Moreover, as per the UK website, imperial mpg for the 241 hp 4 cyl. 528i is 39.8 vs. 36.2 for the 268 hp 530i representing a 9.94% increase
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  #44  
Old 08-25-2011, 11:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
Moreover, as per the UK website, imperial mpg for the 241 hp 4 cyl. 528i is 39.8 vs. 36.2 for the 268 hp 530i representing a 9.94% increase
Is that for manual transmission or auto? We need an auto number to make a comparison with the US I-6 528i. It is rated at 32 mpg with auto. If I divide your number by 1.2 (to adjust for the smaller gallon), we get 33 mpg.
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  #45  
Old 08-25-2011, 11:12 AM
Robert A Robert A is offline
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I think it's manual. My purpose, however was just to show the approx. mileage delta of the two engines.
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  #46  
Old 08-25-2011, 11:19 AM
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Quote:
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I think it's manual. My purpose, however was just to show the approx. mileage delta of the two engines.
For the comparison to be fair, it has to be to the engine that it is replacing. (At least if we're going to say that it offers a savings of x% over an engine.)

We don't have a 530 in the US so I'm not familiar with that engine.
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  #47  
Old 08-25-2011, 11:22 AM
Robert A Robert A is offline
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True, but it's the best I've found. FWIW, the comparison is meaningful with respect to the Z4 since the N20 motor is replacing a 3.0 255 hp engine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mr_clueless View Post
For the comparison to be fair, it has to be to the engine that it is replacing. (At least if we're going to say that it offers a savings of x% over an engine.)

We don't have a 530 in the US so I'm not familiar with that engine.
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  #48  
Old 08-25-2011, 11:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
This also happened when BMW claimed that the Valvetronic engines got 15% better fuel economy than their predecessors.

My 2007 530i gets absolutely awful mileage in the city -- averaging about 15 mpg. My previous car, a 2001 530i, which didn't have Valvetronic, did the same or probably better.
This is why you always have to be very very careful in how you interpret these little nuggets from the manufacturers, because they can often be extremely misleading, on purpose. In the case of the Valvetronic engines, they are indeed "up to" 15% or whatever more efficient than the older engines, but pretty much only at idle because the engine is no longer wasting power having to suck a tiny little bit of air past a completely closed throttle plate. Once you're accelerating and under load, the efficiency gains drop down into the single digit percentages and often below 5%. I have an old SAE white paper that BMW published on its Valvetronic engine first deployed in the 7er way back when, and it had a map in there of exactly what the efficiency improvements were and where. City driving is more than just idling though, and the E60 itself was a larger and heavier car than the E39, so by the time you factor all of that in you end up with approximately the same observed fuel mileage as you were getting before.
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  #49  
Old 08-25-2011, 03:04 PM
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NO!

Therefore I just leased a E90 328i and finished driving it on the autobahn.
After two/three years, hopefully they bring back a NA inline 6.

I refuse to ever purchase a modern BMW with turbo inline 4. I even refuse to purchase anything turbo petrol engine.

To each their own..

I would like, however, a turbo diesel simply for the outstanding fuel savings and torque.

Andy
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  #50  
Old 08-27-2011, 06:33 AM
jva211 jva211 is offline
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Not down with the 4cyl replacing the NA I6. You can rationalize anything, but IF they had come out with a lighter, more efficient I6 with power in line with other NA engines from lexus and infinity and MB, there would be no debate, it would be a huge win, a category killer. They took the cheap route with the turbo 4, to cater to the green crowd. I have no problem with a FI 4 as an entry-level engine, closer to $30k, but give us a real NA I6 comparable to other engines in its class, and save the turbo's for 350hp + perf models.
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