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3 Series / 4 Series
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  #1  
Old 05-27-2004, 04:29 PM
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fso_BamBam fso_BamBam is offline
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Mein Auto: '03 330ci
Talking I Test Drove An M3!!

Well, this one has been a long time coming. Only 6-7 months into getting my 330ci, I had begun thinking that I'd made a big mistake, and should've just gotten the M3 the first time.

I'd become good friends with the guy who sold me my car, so we started talking, and finally he had a car, our schedules worked out, and I went on Tue to test drive a 6-speed (I wanted SMG just to try) M3.

I think I'll keep my impressions short and sweet, because there's not much to say. Anyone who thinks the M3 is a 330ci on stereoids is wrong. The M3 is a completely different animal. In every aspect of driving, from cornering to handling, to acceleration and power, it made my 330 feel like an Accord or something. There's no comparison.

Although I've never driven an exotic (well, unless you count a Z06 and Viper), I think that's what it must be like to drive a Ferrari or Porsche. The M3 has it all. This car is truly incredible and I'm glad I took the test drive. I had imagined that since my 330ci is a such a great car, the M3 would maybe be marginally better, but boy I was wrong!

So now comes the question: The lease on my 330ci runs until Dec '06 (19 months left).
Barring some totally unforseen circumstance, this will be my next car. But, is there any way I can get out of the lease a bit early, say with 8 months left? So, I drive the 330 for another year, order the M3 around this time next year, and hopefully not pay any penalties? Or are the lease terms pretty much set in stone? I was so jacked up after the test drive, it didn't occur to me to sit down and talk to the salesperson.

Also, (this might a better question for the M3 folks) with gas prices on the rise, I'm a little concerned. How much of a gas mileage difference are we talking about between the M3 and the 330ci? I'm getting about 20-22mpg right now, how much worse is the M3, if any?

Can anyone give me any reason to keep the 330, and not get an M3? I can't think of anything, but it never hurts to ask the forum.

All I can say is, E46 M3 =
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  #2  
Old 05-27-2004, 04:33 PM
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JST JST is offline
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Location: U of ///M
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fso_BamBam
Well, this one has been a long time coming. Only 6-7 months into getting my 330ci, I had begun thinking that I'd made a big mistake, and should've just gotten the M3 the first time.

I'd become good friends with the guy who sold me my car, so we started talking, and finally he had a car, our schedules worked out, and I went on Tue to test drive a 6-speed (I wanted SMG just to try) M3.

I think I'll keep my impressions short and sweet, because there's not much to say. Anyone who thinks the M3 is a 330ci on stereoids is wrong. The M3 is a completely different animal. In every aspect of driving, from cornering to handling, to acceleration and power, it made my 330 feel like an Accord or something. There's no comparison.

Although I've never driven an exotic (well, unless you count a Z06 and Viper), I think that's what it must be like to drive a Ferrari or Porsche. The M3 has it all. This car is truly incredible and I'm glad I took the test drive. I had imagined that since my 330ci is a such a great car, the M3 would maybe be marginally better, but boy I was wrong!

So now comes the question: The lease on my 330ci runs until Dec '06 (19 months left).
Barring some totally unforseen circumstance, this will be my next car. But, is there any way I can get out of the lease a bit early, say with 8 months left? So, I drive the 330 for another year, order the M3 around this time next year, and hopefully not pay any penalties? Or are the lease terms pretty much set in stone? I was so jacked up after the test drive, it didn't occur to me to sit down and talk to the salesperson.

Also, (this might a better question for the M3 folks) with gas prices on the rise, I'm a little concerned. How much of a gas mileage difference are we talking about between the M3 and the 330ci? I'm getting about 20-22mpg right now, how much worse is the M3, if any?

Can anyone give me any reason to keep the 330, and not get an M3? I can't think of anything, but it never hurts to ask the forum.

All I can say is, E46 M3 =

2005 may be the last year for the E46 M3, depending on how the rollout of the E90 is carried out.
  #3  
Old 05-27-2004, 04:38 PM
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Chris90 Chris90 is offline
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The M3's motor is on par with most of the exotics, if not the rest of the car. If it were not so common, I think the look would rival some of the exotics, but now you see them so often, I don't really look (unless it's really being driven). With slightly used M3s going for low 40s, it's hard to argue that the 330 is worth the money, if you really crave performance.
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  #4  
Old 05-27-2004, 05:11 PM
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doeboy doeboy is offline
DHP pwns ZHP :p
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fso_BamBam
Can anyone give me any reason to keep the 330, and not get an M3? I can't think of anything, but it never hurts to ask the forum.

All I can say is, E46 M3 =
I had a chance to test drive (albeit a short one) an M3 6-spd too... I like...

Steering was like point and go.... the 330Ci feels good to me... but this was even moreso...

The seats offer much better lateral support than the SP seats in the 330.

Some things to take into consideration are slightly higher payment (but that can vray depending on how you acquire one), gas mileage, higher upkeep, and higher insurance.

But hey... it's an M3!

Did you try sport mode?
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  #5  
Old 05-27-2004, 05:48 PM
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fso_BamBam fso_BamBam is offline
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Location: West Coast
 
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Mein Auto: '03 330ci
Quote:
Originally Posted by JST
2005 may be the last year for the E46 M3, depending on how the rollout of the E90 is carried out.
That's all the more reason to hurry up and get one before they ruin it. I hope it stays until 2006.
  #6  
Old 05-27-2004, 05:52 PM
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SONET SONET is offline
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Location: HB, Calif.
 
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Mein Auto: 2011 335i, 2013 M3
Quote:
Originally Posted by fso_BamBam
That's all the more reason to hurry up and get one before they ruin it. I hope it stays until 2006.
I love the E46, but the spy shots of the E90 are actually looking really good IMHO.

--SONET
  #7  
Old 05-27-2004, 06:06 PM
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bren bren is offline
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Having recently taken delivery of an M3 and coming from a 325Ci I totally agree....the M has a much different feel (even beyond the power difference.)

My highway mileage per the OBC from Atlanta to Baltimore was around 24MPG. It has fallen a little bit now to 22MPG in around town driving. Oh, but I'm still in the break-in so I don't go over 5500RPM which I'm sure is doing wonders for my mileage.
  #8  
Old 05-27-2004, 06:39 PM
FUN2DRV FUN2DRV is offline
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Mein Auto: 2004 BMW M3
I had an '01 330Ci and thought the same thing about the M3. Just some more performance oriented handling... Well, 4 weeks ago I had my 330 in for some service and noticed a brand spanking new M3 in the lot. I went over and took a look... The next day came back to talk to my salesman and work out a deal. Right before I signed on the dotted line I asked him if I could drive the car since I was about to get into a new 6 year very expensive "marriage". I just have to say that I had to throw away my underwear when I got home!!! What a beast!!! I've had if for 4 weeks now and will be taking it for the 1200 mile service this coming week. I can't wait to really explore what the car can really do.

I do love the E46 style, so I'm sure that this new baby will be keeping me happy for a long time! My personal opinion about the upcoming M4 is that it will be too much to handle for most people. This one with 333 hp is bordering on being indicent so I think that it is all that I need for now!!!

Fo for the M3!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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  #9  
Old 05-27-2004, 06:54 PM
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glaws glaws is offline
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Mein Auto: 2002 M3 Coupe Topaz/Gray
"I think I'll keep my impressions short and sweet, because there's not much to say. Anyone who thinks the M3 is a 330ci on stereoids is wrong. The M3 is a completely different animal. In every aspect of driving, from cornering to handling, to acceleration and power, it made my 330 feel like an Accord or something. There's no comparison"


Yeah, we know - we just can't convince anybody of that. Even the ZHP is no comparison. I still read something like: "If I add (whatever) to my 3'er will it make it into an M3?" And, you know what? The extra 100 HP is the least of it.
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  #10  
Old 05-27-2004, 08:13 PM
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Andy Andy is offline
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Mein Auto: E30, M3, 540i
Quote:
Originally Posted by fso_BamBam
So now comes the question: The lease on my 330ci runs until Dec '06 (19 months left).
Barring some totally unforseen circumstance, this will be my next car. But, is there any way I can get out of the lease a bit early, say with 8 months left? So, I drive the 330 for another year, order the M3 around this time next year, and hopefully not pay any penalties? Or are the lease terms pretty much set in stone? I was so jacked up after the test drive, it didn't occur to me to sit down and talk to the salesperson.

http://www.swapalease.com


I had someone take over my lease on my 2001 330i within 30 days after test driving the 2003 330i ZHP.
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  #11  
Old 05-27-2004, 08:19 PM
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Mr. The Edge Mr. The Edge is offline
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I get about 16-17 mpg overall
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  #12  
Old 05-27-2004, 08:28 PM
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Nick325xiT 5spd Nick325xiT 5spd is offline
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Mein Auto: M3 & 323i/999 KP
My M3's OBC is currently indicating 12.6MPG.

I really don't think the M3 is hugely different from other E46es, frankly. It's still soft and floaty. Konis do seem to help the floatiness, though.
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  #13  
Old 05-28-2004, 06:08 AM
DevExpert DevExpert is offline
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Andy,

Did you give any incentive for lease take over? I am thinking about putting mine up and getting ZHP...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy
http://www.swapalease.com


I had someone take over my lease on my 2001 330i within 30 days after test driving the 2003 330i ZHP.
  #14  
Old 05-28-2004, 06:28 AM
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BahnBaum BahnBaum is offline
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Location: Havre de Grace, MD
 
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Mein Auto: 1 - 4.20hp, 1 - 420hp
My M3 is currently sitting at about 16.5 mpg.

Alex
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  #15  
Old 05-28-2004, 07:29 AM
Motown328 Motown328 is offline
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Mein Auto: '04 330i ZHP
Quote:
Originally Posted by BahnBaum
My M3 is currently sitting at about 16.5 mpg.

Alex
BMWNA states 16 mpg......city. I think 23 was highway. Not bad considering the 325 gets 20 in the city.
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  #16  
Old 05-28-2004, 01:54 PM
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fso_BamBam fso_BamBam is offline
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Posts: 181
Mein Auto: '03 330ci
Quote:
Originally Posted by DevExpert
Andy,

Did you give any incentive for lease take over? I am thinking about putting mine up and getting ZHP...
This looks like a very nice idea. The only problem I see is that my car is sort of unique, and I need to find someone who's an enthusiast like I am. I didn't get the moonroof, no premium package. Here's mine:

2003 330ci
Topaz Blue
Sport Package
Xenon Headlights
Black Leatherette
5-speed Manual

Only mods are two DIY items: M Sport Wheel and OEM Alarm. I figure the lack of a moonroof will be the biggest dealbreaker, most everyone wants one in these cars. But it won't hurt to at least try.
  #17  
Old 05-28-2004, 03:32 PM
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mtbscott mtbscott is offline
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I traded my 2003 ZHP back in for a 2003 M3 after 8 months. My only regret was not getting the M in the first place. As far as mileage, I am getting around 20-22 average too, got a little better in the 330. Insurance went up about $150 a year, tires wear out quicker. Other than that, I think it's worth it too. Since my car was financed, I was able to work an equitable deal, may be harder with your lease.
  #18  
Old 05-28-2004, 04:54 PM
flashinthepan flashinthepan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtbscott
I traded my 2003 ZHP back in for a 2003 M3 after 8 months. My only regret was not getting the M in the first place. As far as mileage, I am getting around 20-22 average too, got a little better in the 330. Insurance went up about $150 a year, tires wear out quicker. Other than that, I think it's worth it too. Since my car was financed, I was able to work an equitable deal, may be harder with your lease.

Sold my 04' 330Cic after a few month too, if you want an M3, do it !! I get appx. 18 mpg according to the OBC. When you crave power, the only thing that will satisfy you is....well...Power !!!
  #19  
Old 05-29-2004, 02:01 AM
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Fifty_Cent Fifty_Cent is offline
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Location: Nicosia, Cyprus
 
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Posts: 1,574
Mein Auto: 320CiC
You guys should be really happy that the tax policy in the US reagarding cars is driver - friendly.


Here in Cyprus, moving up to an M3 from a 320i is the same as moving up for a porsche 911 turbo.
Tax over 2.2l is stupidly high. Road tax, insurance costs etc as well, make taking the M3 route virtually impossible.

Also, gas prices are becoming stupidly high as well.

1 litre of super unleaded = 1 USD

So, i guess my 320i is the sensible choice now....
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  #20  
Old 05-29-2004, 12:36 PM
salvo salvo is offline
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Mein Auto: 2004 330ci
First...you probably should of NOT test driven the M3, because you KNOW already, that you REALLY want it! Hell who doesnt want a faster, meaner car? BUT...the problem is that after you have the M3 for a year, you want to test drive a porsche....this crap is addictive....(im just mad beacause i should of also got an M3!)
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  #21  
Old 05-29-2004, 05:27 PM
outpost22 outpost22 is offline
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Mein Auto: '04 M3, SMG
I just followed an '04 M3 today in the same color & interior as my '04 330CI. It was definitely a LOT better looking car.
Why buy an M3 and worry about mileage. You should be worried about tire wear
 

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