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E90/E92/E93 M3 (2008 - 2014)
4th generation E90 M3 sedan, E92 M3 coupe and E93 M3 convertible. The last of the naturally aspirated M3s, powered by a 4.0 liter V8 making 414hp and 295 lb-ft of torque.

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  #1  
Old 04-25-2012, 05:25 PM
Moskau Moskau is offline
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Mein Auto: 2008 E92 M3
M3 or 335i?

I'm thinking about buying a 335i, always been fascinated by them and I love the look andd everything. I'm planning on buying used possiblyy 2010 or older and have set my budget to that price point. Only problem I have a pretty strict criteria that's hard to find pre-owned. Blue, 6MT, cold weather and NAV. My colour is always a bit flexible if I meet the rest. It's going to be my summer vehicle. But everytime I'm on kijiji or any other site I keep going to the letter M. I just want to know what things I should think about between a M3 and a 335i. I know maintence costs will be higher and insurance will be about a thousand more a year, which I'm not really worried about. I do have a hoist in my garage so I can do my own oil changes and minor stuff, but I'm in no way experienced with imports.

With the M3 my budget would only allow 2008 and with a 335i till about 2010 so I'm just wondering what you guys think.
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  #2  
Old 04-25-2012, 05:39 PM
XXX555 XXX555 is offline
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I have had both. 335 is a nice car. M3 is a great car.
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  #3  
Old 04-25-2012, 06:09 PM
Kawboy Kawboy is offline
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+1
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  #4  
Old 04-25-2012, 07:36 PM
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Kurt_OH Kurt_OH is offline
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Mein Auto: Me: M3; Her: 335i
I have both, right now. Both E90.

2008 335i. Jet Black, Premium, Sport, Cold Weather, Comfort Access.

2011 M3. Alpine White, Fox Red, Competition, DCT, Premium, Convenience.

For most driving/commuting/traveling, the 335i is FAR superior. More comfortable, more accessible speed, way better fuel economy, quieter, less expensive.

For driving at the limit, it isn't even close. One is a "regular car"; the other is a sports/race car with a license plate.

The M3 is noisy, rough, jerky, guzzles gas, is harsh in every way - driveline, suspension, noise. Plus, the M3 has to be revved to be even CLOSE to the acceleration available from cruise in a 335i.

At full effort, the M3 would not just beat, but humiliate the 335i. But that's really only available on a track. On the street, absent stupid, license revoking antics, the 335i is better.

I LOVE my M3, and would never consider trading it for my wife's 335i. But her car is a GREAT car. Great road feel through the wheel, great performance, great economy, good comfort. I'm just willing to tolerate all the compromises required, to get what the M3 offers. That V8 sound is incredible. The only cars that sound as incredible are 2x+ the price and only one has a V8 (Ferrari F430). The acceleration is excellent, the handling is excellent as well. The ride is fine, and I love that the car is so configurable (Throttle, Steering, Suspension, Transmission, DTC).

I thought I'd be overwhelmed with the differences from day 1. Not really so. It has grown on me over time. I think that's the mark of an enduring love of the differences. In fact, my wife asks more and more to drive it, vs her 335i. It's a fantastic car, IF you can accept that it's a gas guzzling pig, noisy, not as comfortable or smooth, and way more expensive.

After putting about 4k miles on the M3, I have to strongly advocate for the DCT, irrespective of your ability to drive a stick. I'm quite capable and willing to drive one, but this M3 engine is so willing, and so requiring, to rev, that you'll literally NEVER have your hand off the shifter or your left foot relaxed on the dead pedal unless it's a deserted road. I pop it down to 4th, then back up to 5, 6, 7 ... back down 6, 5, 4, 3 ... zip along until I cross my 80mph warning chime, then back up 4, 5, 6, 7 ... down to 5 and around a couple slowpokes. Back up 6, 7 ... throughout my 25min commute. What a PAIN that would be with a stick. Bottom line is, before long it just wouldn't happen and I'd putz along not getting all that fun in. Yuk. Bring on the flappy paddles and grins!
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I just love how a 4 year old car/design is STILL the benchmark which other automakers aspire to reach. Still winning comparisons . Still very much in the conversation. Is the E9x M3 a legend? You bet your @ss it is.
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  #5  
Old 04-26-2012, 05:20 AM
XXX555 XXX555 is offline
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I find my M3 at least as comfortable and quiet (unless I choose otherwise) as my 335i sedan was.
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  #6  
Old 04-26-2012, 04:40 PM
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Capobranco Capobranco is offline
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I owned an E93 335i 6MT with every option and I currently have a E92 M3 DCT ZCP.

I always thought my 335i was perhaps the perfect vert solid structure entertaining handling and enough speed and driver involvement to keep things interesting. A feeling of sensual connectivity could be felt at lower speeds and was accentuated by the fact the car was a vert. I used the car as a daily driver and I found even routine runs could engender a feeling of adventure and excitement and I could bring along my German shepherd and/or friends. I always thought the excellent 6MT, in tandem with the sports tuned suspension, was the critical element that made the car playful and awakened the sports car DNA in an otherwise very heavy car. I regretted the optional electric steering which endowed my 335i with cat like agility at low speeds but never properly communicated what the front tires were doing at higher speeds frequent small midcourse corrections at higher speeds were inevitable. I never found the car very economical,but I was guilty of frequently thrashing it. I have mixed emotions about driving a vert, but overall, I have very fond memories of my 335i.

My M3 is a sublime driving experience. I find it makes a great daily driver. Indeed, the suspension is more compliant than my 335i with runflats. Handling is sharper, steering is more communicative. Of course more horse power, less weight and a roof overhead makes for more solid secure handling. As nice as the engine note is in the 335i, the sound of the M3 is just other worldly. I find myself looking for opportunities to exercise the car just to hear its music. I rarely listen to the stereo. The M3 exterior styling modifications serve to sharpen the pleasing E90 design to suggest both speed and impart a bad ass attitude to the car that the 335i lacks. The interior M3 tweaks reinforce the special nature of the car. I equivocate at times about not purchasing the 6MT but when I hit an all too frequent DC Metro epic traffic jam, I am very pleased to be driving my DCT equipped M3. Overall, the M3 provides an exceptional driving experience and compares favorably to sports cars that cost considerably more.

The 335i is a wonderful car the M3 is great. If you purchase a 335i you will no doubt enjoy it, eventually trade it, and its memory will fade. If you get the M3, 20 years from now, you will still be telling your son about your M3 or perhaps you might let him drive yours. The M3 is a keeper.
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  #7  
Old 04-27-2012, 05:55 AM
ksoze ksoze is offline
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Nicely said!
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  #8  
Old 04-27-2012, 06:03 AM
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M3 was and remains my choice.
Curious whether the 335 HPFP & fuel injector problems have resolved.
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  #9  
Old 04-27-2012, 07:06 PM
yinlee yinlee is offline
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Currently have an M3 and previously owned a 335. Both are great but I'm sticking with the M3. This is reaffirmed as the M3 is at the dealer for a couple days and they gave me a 335 loaner. I was spoiled by the M3. The throttle response, chassis, and looks of it are phenomenal.
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  #10  
Old 04-28-2012, 11:59 PM
highyo highyo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capobranco View Post
I owned an E93 335i 6MT with every option and I currently have a E92 M3 DCT ZCP.

I always thought my 335i was perhaps the perfect vert solid structure entertaining handling and enough speed and driver involvement to keep things interesting. A feeling of sensual connectivity could be felt at lower speeds and was accentuated by the fact the car was a vert. I used the car as a daily driver and I found even routine runs could engender a feeling of adventure and excitement and I could bring along my German shepherd and/or friends. I always thought the excellent 6MT, in tandem with the sports tuned suspension, was the critical element that made the car playful and awakened the sports car DNA in an otherwise very heavy car. I regretted the optional electric steering which endowed my 335i with cat like agility at low speeds but never properly communicated what the front tires were doing at higher speeds frequent small midcourse corrections at higher speeds were inevitable. I never found the car very economical,but I was guilty of frequently thrashing it. I have mixed emotions about driving a vert, but overall, I have very fond memories of my 335i.

My M3 is a sublime driving experience. I find it makes a great daily driver. Indeed, the suspension is more compliant than my 335i with runflats. Handling is sharper, steering is more communicative. Of course more horse power, less weight and a roof overhead makes for more solid secure handling. As nice as the engine note is in the 335i, the sound of the M3 is just other worldly. I find myself looking for opportunities to exercise the car just to hear its music. I rarely listen to the stereo. The M3 exterior styling modifications serve to sharpen the pleasing E90 design to suggest both speed and impart a bad ass attitude to the car that the 335i lacks. The interior M3 tweaks reinforce the special nature of the car. I equivocate at times about not purchasing the 6MT but when I hit an all too frequent DC Metro epic traffic jam, I am very pleased to be driving my DCT equipped M3. Overall, the M3 provides an exceptional driving experience and compares favorably to sports cars that cost considerably more.

The 335i is a wonderful car the M3 is great. If you purchase a 335i you will no doubt enjoy it, eventually trade it, and its memory will fade. If you get the M3, 20 years from now, you will still be telling your son about your M3 or perhaps you might let him drive yours. The M3 is a keeper.
you missed your calling, should have been a writer for Car and Driver.

may 25th...... days are dragging for real now.
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  #11  
Old 04-29-2012, 01:10 AM
solstice solstice is offline
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The 335i is an easy car to love. If you are the type that just want a fast and fun car to drive around in while thinking about work, family,hobbies or listening to music it's probably all you need. However if you are the type that connects to the car, feel it, listen to it and treasure the feeling of becoming one with it the M3 has infinitely more to offer. It has that direct mechanical feel that most modern cars is lacking, it has an incredible engine that is supremely linear, predictable, responsive with a huge range and a beautiful voice. It has an LSD that generates ridiculous grip that imo rivals awd in all but snow and ice and a suspension with more dynamic depth and capability. I have 18k miles on mine after a little over a year, it's my daily and I can honestly say that I have never wished it was a 335i or any other BMW currently on sale for that matter.

Last edited by solstice; 04-29-2012 at 01:20 AM.
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  #12  
Old 04-29-2012, 05:49 PM
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Capobranco Capobranco is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by highyo View Post
you missed your calling, should have been a writer for Car and Driver.

may 25th...... days are dragging for real now.
M-speechless!
Sew, Eye right four affect

patients is a vulture....

(sincerely, thank you for the very nice compliment - I understand your anticipation - I am also eager to learn your reaction when you first drive it!)


Quote:
Originally Posted by solstice View Post
... However if you are the type that connects to the car, feel it, listen to it and treasure the feeling of becoming one with it the M3 has infinitely more to offer. ..
- the heart of it - succinctly distilled! - IMO why the M3 owns the moniker "Sports Car".
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  #13  
Old 04-29-2012, 06:51 PM
highyo highyo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by solstice View Post
The 335i is an easy car to love. If you are the type that just want a fast and fun car to drive around in while thinking about work, family,hobbies or listening to music it's probably all you need. However if you are the type that connects to the car, feel it, listen to it and treasure the feeling of becoming one with it the M3 has infinitely more to offer. It has that direct mechanical feel that most modern cars is lacking, it has an incredible engine that is supremely linear, predictable, responsive with a huge range and a beautiful voice. It has an LSD that generates ridiculous grip that imo rivals awd in all but snow and ice and a suspension with more dynamic depth and capability. I have 18k miles on mine after a little over a year, it's my daily and I can honestly say that I have never wished it was a 335i or any other BMW currently on sale for that matter.
well said solstice, and in that short weekend i spent driving the M3 in it's natural environs, i can attest to that feeling of connection. i felt i knew exactly what was happening at all four corners of the car and with the engine/drivetrain. it was a remarkable experience. and i was hooked. we have duked it out many times on the F10 board re: M3 vs 550i (i still think that it's unfair to compare the two, different missions, different goals, etc) but i am bought in hook line and sinker.

and i'm still on mile 0.
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Old 04-29-2012, 06:55 PM
highyo highyo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capobranco View Post
M-speechless!
Sew, Eye right four affect

patients is a vulture....

(sincerely, thank you for the very nice compliment - I understand your anticipation - I am also eager to learn your reaction when you first drive it!)




- the heart of it - succinctly distilled! - IMO why the M3 owns the moniker "Sports Car".
can't wait guys. 26 days. i'm already prepping my mods list. all cosmetic for now, but leaning to the dinan stage 1 tune. man i love dinan.
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  #15  
Old 05-05-2012, 10:18 AM
captbilly captbilly is offline
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I have driven a 335 loaner, as well as the 135 with the M package ( not an M1), and they were both very nice cars. I was particularly impressed with the 135 but after driving a M3 competition package for a year I really notice the important differences. The M3 simply allows for a level of control that the other BMWs don't have. I am a decent driver, but certainly not the Stig, yet I can drive the M3 right to the edge, with all four wheels slightly slipping, using power to carefully bring the rear out in a easily controlled oversteer. In the M equipped 135 it is much harder to control the power because the turbo lag means that there is a slight delay between pedal movement and power to the wheels. For the same reason it is also harder to control wheel spin in the 135/335, whereas the M3 has virtually instant throttle response. The handling on the M3 is also noticeably crisper (even compared to the 135 M package). There is just a bit more takeup in the suspension and chassis on the 335. I would say the 335 compares well to my Audi A6 turbo with sport suspension (and chip), they are sporty but not sports cars whereas the M3 is a true 4 seat sports car.
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Old 05-15-2012, 06:13 PM
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enigma enigma is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kurt_OH View Post
For driving at the limit, it isn't even close. One is a "regular car"; the other is a sports/race car with a license plate.

The M3 is noisy, rough, jerky, guzzles gas, is harsh in every way - driveline, suspension, noise. Plus, the M3 has to be revved to be even CLOSE to the acceleration available from cruise in a 335i.

At full effort, the M3 would not just beat, but humiliate the 335i. But that's really only available on a track. On the street, absent stupid, license revoking antics, the 335i is better.
I couldn't disagree with you more.

My M3 rides like a limo compared to my Z4M. The E9x M3 is the most refined M I've ever driven, and I use it as my daily commuter (6MT no less!).

Borrowing your analogy, even a Hyundai Genesis can easily keep up with the 335i or the M3 on the street. After all, doing a 0-60 drag drag race from one stop light to the next would easily qualify as "stupid, license revoking antics".
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:04 AM
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need4speed need4speed is online now
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I would agree with all that has been said here, the more you push your car to it's limits (track, etc) the more you want an M3. The only reasons to go with a 335 if $ are out of the equation (they were not for me) is if you do much city type commuting. The Tq. on the M3 is not as usable down low, or even as much in that situation. N4S
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Old 05-16-2012, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by need4speed View Post
I would agree with all that has been said here, the more you push your car to it's limits (track, etc) the more you want an M3. The only reasons to go with a 335 if $ are out of the equation (they were not for me) is if you do much city type commuting. The Tq. on the M3 is not as usable down low, or even as much in that situation. N4S
i keep on reading about the low end torque in this car as being inadequate but is that actually true? i've seen enough videos of stock m3s pulling really hard in the low portion of the rpm curve. anyone want to comment? i certainly didnt feel it when i drove the m3 for a few days at the perf center
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Old 05-16-2012, 10:51 AM
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Capobranco Capobranco is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by highyo View Post
i keep on reading about the low end torque in this car as being inadequate but is that actually true? i've seen enough videos of stock m3s pulling really hard in the low portion of the rpm curve. anyone want to comment? i certainly didnt feel it when i drove the m3 for a few days at the perf center
hmmm...might want to ask the driver of the Mercedes C 6.3 AMG that pulled up beside me on a lonely stretch late last night - all huffing and puffing going to blow my house down.....

(BTW No way do I condone street racing but there are the rarest of times when faced with over whelming provocation that honor requires a response. )

Seriously, I have owned many performance cars, and I have never felt the M3 was a torqueless wonder. On the contrary, the engine revs so quickly, I find it easy to extract performance that leaves me breathless - muttering - "wow". I do think the M3 requires a little more skill and coordination than say a Mercedes where one just mashes the accelerator. 1/4 miles in the very low 4s speak for themselves. The car jus' puts a huge grin on my face everyday I drive it....

...might also check out this Roadfly review - directly addresses torque issue....

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Old 05-16-2012, 11:01 AM
ksoze ksoze is offline
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Although it's torque figure is "low" compared to some to other cars, it is flat and wide and available across the power band. Requiring some minor extra work to make full use of the power (aided by the sky high rev limit), what it gives up as a drag strip car it gives back with an engine that wants to run all the time, anywhere.
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Old 05-16-2012, 05:02 PM
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Kurt_OH Kurt_OH is offline
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Originally Posted by enigma View Post
I couldn't disagree with you more.

My M3 rides like a limo compared to my Z4M. The E9x M3 is the most refined M I've ever driven, and I use it as my daily commuter (6MT no less!).
I didn't compare it to a Z4M, nor to any other M car. I did say, and stand by it, that I would shift less, and have less fun with the car when commuting, if it had 6MT vs M-DCT. I also said it was less efficient, more noisy, more harsh and generally LESS comfy than my wife's 335i. I also stand by all of that - and note that you "couldn't disagree with me more", but didn't post ANY statement even challenging, much less contradicting any of my claims.


Quote:
Borrowing your analogy, even a Hyundai Genesis can easily keep up with the 335i or the M3 on the street. After all, doing a 0-60 drag drag race from one stop light to the next would easily qualify as "stupid, license revoking antics".
That's YOUR analogy, not mine. You might also be surprised to find how close 0-60 would be between a 335i and an M3, if you don't already know.



Anyway, I LOVE my M3.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhillyNate
I just love how a 4 year old car/design is STILL the benchmark which other automakers aspire to reach. Still winning comparisons . Still very much in the conversation. Is the E9x M3 a legend? You bet your @ss it is.
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Old 05-17-2012, 06:40 AM
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need4speed need4speed is online now
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i keep on reading about the low end torque in this car as being inadequate but is that actually true? i've seen enough videos of stock m3s pulling really hard in the low portion of the rpm curve. anyone want to comment? i certainly didnt feel it when i drove the m3 for a few days at the perf center
Not the word I would use. My point was that if money is not any kind of issue, the M3 is far better than a 335. However because it "only" makes 295Tq at 4000 rpm vs. 300 Tq at1300 rpm you have to keep it on the boil, so to speak to get at the power. This was a major pita in city/heavy suburb rush hour traffic. By the time you got the revs where you wanted them (smoothly) you were on top of someone and had to hit the brakes. So if it is a commuter car some people may find the 335 a better fit. If not go with the M3. N4S
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Old 05-17-2012, 09:41 AM
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Originally Posted by need4speed View Post
Not the word I would use. My point was that if money is not any kind of issue, the M3 is far better than a 335. However because it "only" makes 295Tq at 4000 rpm vs. 300 Tq at1300 rpm you have to keep it on the boil, so to speak to get at the power. This was a major pita in city/heavy suburb rush hour traffic. By the time you got the revs where you wanted them (smoothly) you were on top of someone and had to hit the brakes. So if it is a commuter car some people may find the 335 a better fit. If not go with the M3. N4S
yeah but this is so specialized. as in, who cares if you have all that torque on hand if you are in bumper to bumper traffic?
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  #24  
Old 05-17-2012, 10:02 AM
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Capobranco Capobranco is offline
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Location: Potomac, Maryland
 
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Mein Auto: M3 ZCP, X3 35i M Sport
Quote:
Originally Posted by need4speed View Post
Not the word I would use. My point was that if money is not any kind of issue, the M3 is far better than a 335. However because it "only" makes 295Tq at 4000 rpm vs. 300 Tq at1300 rpm you have to keep it on the boil, so to speak to get at the power. This was a major pita in city/heavy suburb rush hour traffic. By the time you got the revs where you wanted them (smoothly) you were on top of someone and had to hit the brakes. So if it is a commuter car some people may find the 335 a better fit. If not go with the M3. N4S
I owned a 335i and used it as a daily driver, commuting 20 miles into DC - sometimes facing truly brutal DC Metro traffic. Today I task my M3 with this chore. Your experience is not mine. When I bought my M3, I anticipated that I might reserve the car for weekend warrior pursuits. However, I soon learned that the M3 is a true decathlon champ, and takes on the rigors of commuting without breaking a sweat. There is an initial learning curve but once one gains a modicum of proficiency, the M3 rewards a deft hand with superior responsiveness and alacrity. Yes, the DCT is slightly jerkier than a 335i, but the superior nimbleness and overall eagerness of the M3 more than compensates. Moreover can we say "runflats" - nope no need to - those abhorrent words are purged from a M3 driver's lexicon. I enjoyed my time with my E93 335i, but I approach my daily commute with my M3 with keenness knowing my M3 transforms a boring, mundane necessity into a cool adventure.
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Last edited by Capobranco; 05-17-2012 at 12:50 PM.
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  #25  
Old 05-17-2012, 11:14 AM
335i 335i is offline
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Location: Kansas
 
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Mein Auto: '11 E90 AW M3/ '11 AW X5d
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kurt_OH View Post
I didn't compare it to a Z4M, nor to any other M car. I did say, and stand by it, that I would shift less, and have less fun with the car when commuting, if it had 6MT vs M-DCT. I also said it was less efficient, more noisy, more harsh and generally LESS comfy than my wife's 335i. I also stand by all of that - and note that you "couldn't disagree with me more", but didn't post ANY statement even challenging, much less contradicting any of my claims.


That's YOUR analogy, not mine. You might also be surprised to find how close 0-60 would be between a 335i and an M3, if you don't already know.

Anyway, I LOVE my M3.
Have you driven a 335i with run flats? I would disagree that, stock for stock, an M3 is more harsh and less comfy. Put the M3 in comfort mode (on EDC) and I find it at LEAST as comfy as my old 335i. As far as efficiency, the M3 is less fuel efficient - this is inversely proportional to performance, though - performance comes at a cost.

Having owned a 335i for 3 years, I find it dull around the edges compared to the M3. Response, handling, overall driving characteristics, etc. All dull when you go back to a 335i from an M3. The engine in the 335i is no slouch - both the N54 and N55 (and S65) have won engine of the year multiple times for a reason - but the 335i is more of a utilitarian "kitchen knife" rather than "fillet knife", with less defined purpose than the M3. The S65 is designed solely around performance, not fuel economy or ease of use. You can get an array of BMW's with the N55 - but only 1 with the S65. The M3 has a much more defined and specific purpose.

I would argue that the M3 is one of VERY FEW cars in that price range that performs and engages the driver the way it does. I don't consider the 335i to be one of those cars, regardless of 0-60 time.
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