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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 02-17-2012, 05:58 AM
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justinnum1 justinnum1 is offline
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Originally Posted by johnc_22 View Post
My comments are based on the feel of the E90 and the fact that it's already too large to really be tossable. Yes, on paper driven by a professional the F30 may be even faster around a track, but most of us don't drive 9/10th on the way to work or headed out on a road trip, and for daily driving I find the E90 to already drive "too big". IMO, of course. It's why I think a 1 Series sedan, built around the same size of the current coupe but with a higher quality interior would be a no-brainer for me. I have not driven an F30 yet so I'll need to do that soon but plan to keep on driving my E90 for at least another year (I have an extended warranty to 100K).
Stop right there. Why are you even considering a 4 door sedan if your looking for something tossable?

1 sereis is for you.

Last edited by justinnum1; 02-17-2012 at 05:59 AM.
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  #52  
Old 02-17-2012, 06:13 AM
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Originally Posted by justinnum1 View Post
Stop right there. Why are you even considering a 4 door sedan if your looking for something tossable?

1 sereis is for you.
The 3 Series used to be that car and it's not about 4 vs 2 doors, it's about size and weight. It's not like any modern car with some conveniences is all that lightweight any more. I'm not unhappy with my E90, and I may find the size of the 1'er too jittery on city streets, but when the time comes for a replacement I'll definitely check it out. I figure if the N20 makes the F30 fun to drive it should shine even more on a smaller car.
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  #53  
Old 02-17-2012, 06:22 AM
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Originally Posted by johnc_22 View Post
The 3 Series used to be that car and it's not about 4 vs 2 doors, it's about size and weight.
wheelbase is an even bigger factor than size or weight. It's why the GTI or Golf R feels tossable even though it's porky at 3400 lbs (for the R) - the wheelbase is even shorter than the 1 series.
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  #54  
Old 02-17-2012, 06:23 AM
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Originally Posted by johnc_22 View Post
The 3 Series used to be that car and it's not about 4 vs 2 doors, it's about size and weight. It's not like any modern car with some conveniences is all that lightweight any more. I'm not unhappy with my E90, and I may find the size of the 1'er too jittery on city streets, but when the time comes for a replacement I'll definitely check it out. I figure if the N20 makes the F30 fun to drive it should shine even more on a smaller car.
328 is a hell of a car, you must test drive, but make sure you test a sportline
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  #55  
Old 02-17-2012, 06:37 AM
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Originally Posted by justinnum1 View Post
328 is a hell of a car, you must test drive, but make sure you test a sportline
Wouldn't have it any other way.
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  #56  
Old 02-17-2012, 06:59 AM
Michael Schott Michael Schott is offline
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Originally Posted by johnc_22 View Post
My comments are based on the feel of the E90 and the fact that it's already too large to really be tossable. Yes, on paper driven by a professional the F30 may be even faster around a track, but most of us don't drive 9/10th on the way to work or headed out on a road trip, and for daily driving I find the E90 to already drive "too big". IMO, of course. It's why I think a 1 Series sedan, built around the same size of the current coupe but with a higher quality interior would be a no-brainer for me. I have not driven an F30 yet so I'll need to do that soon but plan to keep on driving my E90 for at least another year (I have an extended warranty to 100K).
That's fine but you made comparisons to Lexus and Mercedes which are a real reach. The 3 series is still the sportiest and most dynamic vehicle in its class and is certainly not striving to be a Lexus.
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  #57  
Old 02-17-2012, 07:08 AM
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3 sereis is still the benchmark
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  #58  
Old 02-17-2012, 07:18 AM
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That's fine but you made comparisons to Lexus and Mercedes which are a real reach. The 3 series is still the sportiest and most dynamic vehicle in its class and is certainly not striving to be a Lexus.
I never compared the 3 Series to Lexus and MB vehicles - I said that they had upsized and added more luxury (softer) feel to the 3 Series to attract drivers of those vehicles. I would agree the 3 series is not trying to be a Lexus but BMW is trying to offer the things Lexus drivers like about their Lexii.
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  #59  
Old 02-17-2012, 07:56 AM
Michael Schott Michael Schott is offline
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Originally Posted by johnc_22 View Post
I never compared the 3 Series to Lexus and MB vehicles - I said that they had upsized and added more luxury (softer) feel to the 3 Series to attract drivers of those vehicles. I would agree the 3 series is not trying to be a Lexus but BMW is trying to offer the things Lexus drivers like about their Lexii.
When I read the term "softer" I think of suspension settings and driving dynamics. BMW is most definitely not going in this direction with the F30. I agree about the features but they do this to be more competitive in the market and don't see anything wrong with this.
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  #60  
Old 02-17-2012, 08:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Michael Schott View Post
When I read the term "softer" I think of suspension settings and driving dynamics. BMW is most definitely not going in this direction with the F30. I agree about the features but they do this to be more competitive in the market and don't see anything wrong with this.
I test drove a new 328i, and think it is a lot closer to a Lexus now.

The engine noise was closer to the Lexus IS V6, revving close to 5000 you want to ease off not going further.

There was much less connection to the road, both through the suspension and the steering wheel feel, again more insulated like the Lexus.

The 8spd tranny was so smooth it felt like a CVT. The interior was more luxury, again closer to a Lexus. It is not to say it drove like a Lexus, but closer than the E90.

The rough edge of driving a BMW is almost gone. It takes off and goes around effortlessly. But for some of us a little effort is necessary, else we tend to sleep at the wheels.
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  #61  
Old 02-17-2012, 09:23 AM
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You sure it wasn't x-Drive? Cause they no longer put the X on the trunk. All the loaners up here are x-Drive, in fact I hardly ever see a rear drive new 3 series on the road up here. Pity.
I suppose it could have been, but jeez I hope I'm not that brain dead to not notice a sticker, badge or something on the interior... Is there such a thing?

And in ATL which sees snow maybe one day a year on average I dunno that they'd be putting x-Drives into loaner service.
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  #62  
Old 02-17-2012, 10:27 AM
Michael Schott Michael Schott is offline
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Originally Posted by dtc100 View Post
I test drove a new 328i, and think it is a lot closer to a Lexus now.

The engine noise was closer to the Lexus IS V6, revving close to 5000 you want to ease off not going further.

There was much less connection to the road, both through the suspension and the steering wheel feel, again more insulated like the Lexus.

The 8spd tranny was so smooth it felt like a CVT. The interior was more luxury, again closer to a Lexus. It is not to say it drove like a Lexus, but closer than the E90.

The rough edge of driving a BMW is almost gone. It takes off and goes around effortlessly. But for some of us a little effort is necessary, else we tend to sleep at the wheels.
I'm taking a test drive tomorrow so I'll know better than but I've seen the F30 at the NAIAS and did not feel the interior felt anything remotely like an IS. In fact, I looked at the Audi A4, Mercedes C class and Infiniti G37 and thought that the F30 had by far the sportiest interior and the interior is much sportier than in my e90. And I wouldn't think that BMW would go toward a harder edge feeling, that's not the direction the market wants. But if the feedback is there in hard driving and the capabilities are higher that's what really counts.

Last point: Many on this board have complained about what they perceive as the slightly harsh ride of the e9X series. I'm not one of them but you can see why BMW has made the suspension more sophisticated. Remember, the 3 series is not a sports car, it's a sports sedan used as a family car by most owners.
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  #63  
Old 02-17-2012, 12:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnc_22 View Post
My comments are based on the feel of the E90 and the fact that it's already too large to really be tossable. Yes, on paper driven by a professional the F30 may be even faster around a track, but most of us don't drive 9/10th on the way to work or headed out on a road trip, and for daily driving I find the E90 to already drive "too big". IMO, of course. It's why I think a 1 Series sedan, built around the same size of the current coupe but with a higher quality interior would be a no-brainer for me.
Amen. A 1 series sedan/hatch would be ideal for me. I have no need for a car as large as a 3 series is now.
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  #64  
Old 02-17-2012, 12:25 PM
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Amen. A 1 series sedan/hatch would be ideal for me. I have no need for a car as large as a 3 series is now.
F20 3 or 5 door would get me to the dealer in a hurry. I drove SAABs for 10 years before the 335i and there's no beating the utility of a hatchback. My cooler on wheels will not fit through the trunk opening on my E90. Not a big deal but makes me want another hatchback. I'll give the redesigned A3 a look if BMW insists on selling me an impractical car.
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  #65  
Old 02-17-2012, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by johnc_22 View Post
F20 3 or 5 door would get me to the dealer in a hurry. I drove SAABs for 10 years before the 335i and there's no beating the utility of a hatchback. My cooler on wheels will not fit through the trunk opening on my E90. Not a big deal but makes me want another hatchback. I'll give the redesigned A3 a look if BMW insists on selling me an impractical car.
The next gen A3 won't be a hatch either. It'll be a version of the MQB modular platform.
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  #66  
Old 02-18-2012, 06:36 AM
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It's wrong to say the N52 is "slow as hell". If the N20 does 0-60 in about 5.5 seconds according to Car and Driver and the N52 5.9 according to the same magazine, that's not a very large difference. I'm not commenting on the sportiness of the N20 but the difference is pretty small. And for sure the N52 is sporty. It eagerly roars to the redline and in the midrange gets on the cam and scoots.
+1

Also, please note that e90 325, 328 are same engine as e90 330.

I'd say 5 and 8 are intentionall de-tuned by bmw.

Recent engine tuning products bring 325 and 328 close to 330 power.
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  #67  
Old 02-18-2012, 09:31 AM
Michael Schott Michael Schott is offline
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+1

Also, please note that e90 325, 328 are same engine as e90 330.

I'd say 5 and 8 are intentionall de-tuned by bmw.

Recent engine tuning products bring 325 and 328 close to 330 power.
Not quite true. The 330 had a different intake system that provided more HP and torque. That is a physical change, not software related. And I know of no tuning products that make a significant difference in power on the N54. Even the BMW performance intake and exhaust which are very pricey only give about 10 HP, 15 less than the 330 had.

Remember, the 330 was the initial high performance version of the e90 and the 325 was the base model in 2006.
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  #68  
Old 02-18-2012, 02:15 PM
dtc100 dtc100 is offline
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Not quite true. The 330 had a different intake system that provided more HP and torque. That is a physical change, not software related. And I know of no tuning products that make a significant difference in power on the N54. Even the BMW performance intake and exhaust which are very pricey only give about 10 HP, 15 less than the 330 had.

Remember, the 330 was the initial high performance version of the e90 and the 325 was the base model in 2006.
Was he was saying was, the most recent N52 tunes can adjust the lifts, gain more power, and get to the 330i level. Still waiting to see the dynos to confirm.
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  #69  
Old 02-18-2012, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by dtc100 View Post
Was he was saying was, the most recent N52 tunes can adjust the lifts, gain more power, and get to the 330i level. Still waiting to see the dynos to confirm.
I doubt they can do that. The three stage induction system makes a pretty big difference. The 330i has a freer flowing exhaust as well.
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  #70  
Old 02-18-2012, 02:26 PM
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I test drove a new 328i, and think it is a lot closer to a Lexus now.

The engine noise was closer to the Lexus IS V6, revving close to 5000 you want to ease off not going further.
I'll tell you a little secret.

I think that the 328i N52 engine noise was already too much Lexus-like. Not enough of the famous mid-range growl and visceral note that characterized my E46 M54 184HP, which I dearly loved. That's the reason why I went with the BMW PE, because I was missing something that my E46 had and it was upsetting me. What I said is not true for the 330i (and frankly I don't know about the 2006 325i). The N54/55 stock engine note is just fine to me.

After I first tested the N20, I was under shock by how much I appreciated my low power N52 when back in it. So even if I really don't like the stock N20's noise, a BMW PE will probably "save" it like it did for my N52. Problem is cost. With equipment, a 328i price is too-close-for-comfort compared to a 335i and there is no margin for a PE (which is like 1200$).

In the US, it is a no-brainer in favor of the 335i, IMO. Specially if you want Xenons.
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  #71  
Old 02-18-2012, 03:24 PM
Michael Schott Michael Schott is offline
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Originally Posted by dtc100 View Post
Was he was saying was, the most recent N52 tunes can adjust the lifts, gain more power, and get to the 330i level. Still waiting to see the dynos to confirm.
I know what he is saying. I'm saying I've seen zero proof that there is a tuning kit that does this.
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  #72  
Old 02-20-2012, 10:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Michael Schott View Post
Not quite true. The 330 had a different intake system that provided more HP and torque. That is a physical change, not software related. And I know of no tuning products that make a significant difference in power on the N54. Even the BMW performance intake and exhaust which are very pricey only give about 10 HP, 15 less than the 330 had.

Remember, the 330 was the initial high performance version of the e90 and the 325 was the base model in 2006.
I did not say the tune brings 328i to 330i levels. I said close to...

e90 328i 0-60 : 6.3 sec (bmw specs)
e90 330i 0-60 : 6.1 sec (bmw specs)

See the difference is 0.2 seconds, and I do not understand why people say 328i is slow. It's very very close to "initial high performance version of the e90". The rest of BMW owners must be buying their cars for dedicated track use if they can release and feel such a delta in performance.
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  #73  
Old 02-20-2012, 11:55 PM
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Originally Posted by dtc100 View Post
I test drove a new 328i, and think it is a lot closer to a Lexus now.

The engine noise was closer to the Lexus IS V6, revving close to 5000 you want to ease off not going further.

There was much less connection to the road, both through the suspension and the steering wheel feel, again more insulated like the Lexus.

The 8spd tranny was so smooth it felt like a CVT. The interior was more luxury, again closer to a Lexus. It is not to say it drove like a Lexus, but closer than the E90.

The rough edge of driving a BMW is almost gone. It takes off and goes around effortlessly. But for some of us a little effort is necessary, else we tend to sleep at the wheels.
Totally agree! Test drove one last weekend. I didn't feel like I was driving a BMW - Steeing is way too light, Engine sound was not pleasant and while it was eager to rev, it felt kind of harsh. Maybe I'm just too used to my N52 in my E92.
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  #74  
Old 02-21-2012, 06:45 AM
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I must be the only person who DOES NOT think the N52 sounded good. Had a 328 loaner once, and thought the engine sounded like a cheap 4 cylinder. Smooth, sure. Even thought the power was sufficient. But the sound? I don't understand why people like it so much.
I cross shopped e46 zhp and e90 n52. I liked e90 more in almost everything except i liked e46 design more. And zhp engine sound. N52 is ok when you rev it, but too plain in dd.
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  #75  
Old 02-21-2012, 06:56 AM
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I appreciate the smoothness of the N52. But every time I drove one, I was underwhelmed at the performance for daily use. It felt like I had to get it up above 4000 RPM for any inspiring performance, and I generally don't drive my car like I'm on a track. Nothing wrong with doing that if you like to though.

It sounds like the N20 is built for the wants of the larger automotive consumer group - more torque down low and better fuel economy at the expense of high-RPM performance. I'm sure it will be a hit.

I'm not thrilled with the interior color choices on the F30, though, in other news. I want an M-Tech car that's dark grey or black with a brown interior. That's a luxury line combo only, thus far.
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