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F30 / F31 / F32 / F33 / F36 (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 01-19-2013, 01:47 PM
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  #52  
Old 01-19-2013, 02:00 PM
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silver, you are lucky to have those choices.
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  #53  
Old 01-19-2013, 02:50 PM
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I test drive a new 328 with XDrive yesterday. I live in Syracuse and would like the MT and XDrive. Today I went back to drive it again and the CA told me to wait until April and then I can order it with MT and XDrive. I would like to confirm this before I wait 3 months only to find out its untrue. He's trying to get me confirmation in writing from BMWna.
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  #54  
Old 01-19-2013, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by brkf View Post
silver, you are lucky to have those choices.
Indeed, if the M135i landed on our shores, I'd be at the dealer toot sweet snatching one up. Looks like a great DD.
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  #55  
Old 01-19-2013, 04:55 PM
fabiani fabiani is offline
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Great responses, all

First, thanks to everyone (well, except maybe the couple of condescending respondents) for the incredible insights. As the OP, maybe a few final thoughts so you know where my head is.

1. Is Auto better/faster/more efficient/etc? Maybe. But for me the point is that I like to be fully (as possible) engaged in the act of driving. Sure for me it's fun. But more importantly, it's engaging. Being forced to stay attentive to the engine, transmission, steering and the other drivers is as much a mental exercise as it is physical. I drive best when I'm responsible for the whole car. I'm sure some of you can pick this apart, calling out that we no longer crank our cars started or roll down our own windows... but the sentiment is mine. Your mileage may vary.

1a. It would be to BMWs advantage to encourage this thinking in their base of buyers. Seems completely consistent with the BMW ethos.

2. To those who pointed out that people don't buy sticks, I'm a person and I do. I'm in a minority, for sure, in the US - but worldwide the ratios are flipped and the data bears that out.

3. BMW most certainly does make sports cars. They may be well rounded and family suitable, but they are as enthusiast-centric as they could be. Anyone who argues to the contrary should tell that to BMW.

4. Having a stick/x-drive isn't a deal breaker. Just a preference given that I live in the north. I can certainly deal with a RWD.

Thanks again for all the great responses!

Steve
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  #56  
Old 01-19-2013, 05:23 PM
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Nice summation.

Two points in particular caught my eye:
Quote:
Originally Posted by fabiani View Post
1a. It would be to BMWs advantage to encourage this thinking in their base of buyers. Seems completely consistent with the BMW ethos.

2. To those who pointed out that people don't buy sticks, I'm a person and I do. I'm in a minority, for sure, in the US - but worldwide the ratios are flipped and the data bears that out.
This past week I was at dinner with a small group from the CCA, including a recently retired BMW executive in a position to know about the state and fate of manuals. I recall two remarks from him that directly address those points:
1a. BMW AG is, by and large, baffled by US enthusiasts' continuing adoration of the manual transmission. They have kept sending them to us because they have been selling but think we're a bit off our collective rocker for snubbing SMGs, DCTs and modern automatics. (I've heard him, and others, say this before, for several years now.)

2. I am another manual-buying person, but as for Europe: BMW's sales of manuals are falling and falling fast. Reason? Europeans adore diesels, a diesel with a manual is about as much fun as a truck and thus diesels mated to automatics are selling in huge numbers. I admit this statement caught me quite by surprise.
Whether we like it our not, the manual transmission in this class of car is on life support. Based on these remarks, the miniscule sales and the high cost of EPA certification (another hot topic of conversation), my personal opinion is that the F30 will be the last (non-M) 3 Series to arrive on these shores with a manual transmission.

I would love to believe otherwise but the writing is on the wall. The only thing that will erase it is sales.
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Last edited by Zeichen311; 01-19-2013 at 05:38 PM.
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  #57  
Old 01-19-2013, 05:32 PM
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  #58  
Old 01-20-2013, 07:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeichen311 View Post
I would love to believe otherwise but the writing is on the wall. The only thing that will erase it is sales.
Well, if everything else stays the same, then yes. But betting that everything is going to stay the same is a bit foolish (on BMW exec's side, not yours).

Here's the thing ... what if we finally get a younger person as a Secretary of transportation who actually drove the cars outside of North America? Regardless, sooner or later they will have to confront the numbers and just admit that whatever they have been doing to make traffic safer for last 20+ years didn't make it safer at all.

Maybe, just maybe, they will realize it is high time to tear down traffic lights wherever possible and replace them with roundabouts. Now, add INCENTIVE (like for hybrids) to purchase MT and you will have traffic situation where it is almost (I said almost) impossible to drive while doing anything else in the car. I just did that as a passenger two times couple of weeks ago - the coworker drove me to his house from the HQ in Italy and in 22 km of the road and a dozen intersections, there were ZERO traffic lights. I believe he never shifted into first gear, if I remember correctly. VERY hard to fumble with your phone when you have to constantly pay attention and shift if you don't want to stall the car.

Now, even if our lawmakers continue to be completely oblivious to what happens outside of US, I don't think Europeans will go for it when they see (and they INEVITABLY will see) higher amounts of accidents as the number of ATs grows - then they just might put and incentive/penalty for MT/AT choice. They did it with SUVs quite immediately when realizing the worst aspect to traffic safety of those vehicles (blocking the vision of everybody else) and banned them from city centers of quite a few cities on old continent.

So, to your BMW exec friend ... I think MT has a lot more life left in it than they believe. I certainly HOPE so, if nothing else
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Last edited by Mark K; 01-20-2013 at 08:07 AM.
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