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E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006 - 2013)
The E9X is the 4th evolution of the BMW 3 series including a highly tuned twin turbo 335i variant pushing out 300hp and 300 ft. lbs. of torque. BMW continues to show that it sets the bar for true driving performance! -- View the E9X Wiki

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  #1  
Old 08-03-2013, 12:36 AM
snstigers snstigers is offline
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Location: VA/DC
 
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Mein Auto: 2011 BMW 328i xdrive
New member/clueless E90 owner (also any girls on here or is this male dominated?)

After spending the past 3 months diligently researching Audi A4's, I finally decided to buy one, and my only criteria was:
- Black on black AWD
- Used - (I'm moving overseas for work and the new car warranty wouldn't apply so I wanted to save some $$)
- Not a gas guzzler b/c gas runs $10-14 dollars/gallon.

So while Audi shopping last wk, I came across a 2011 BMW 328i Xdrive, it was black/black and a beauty, so I decided within 5 min to buy it. Impulse buy.

The problem is that I know nothing about BMW's (well my ex taught me how to drive stick on his M3 but that doesn't count).

Now AFTER buying it and driving it home, I learned the following:
1. That it's 6 cyl 3.0 and will cost a lot more $$ in gasoline compared to the A4.
2. The steering is really stiff! I guess that's normal. Is there such a thing as "too stiff"?
3. It makes me want to drive really, really fast.

My questions:
1. I realize it's going to cost a lot more to maintain, from gas to new run-flat tires in the future... I hope I made the right choice over Audi?? Anyone have experience driving both?

2. It has 30k miles so is still under warranty. I'd like a BMW service center to do any possible covered maintenance on it so that it's in tip-top condition before I ship it and give up on the remaining warranty. Has anyone gotten BMW to do oil change/brake pad replacement etc even if it doesn't technically need it yet? Or is the included maintenance done at specific mileage intervals?

3. It has normal yellow lights. I searched the forums and see discussions about angel eyes and HIDs and Xenon but none of it makes sense to me. I'd like "white" lights - what would be a low-cost, low-maintenance option to change them?

4. How do I insert a pic in here, rather than as an attachment?

Here's my car after I clayed/waxed her based on info I found on the forums here (thank you).

Last edited by snstigers; 08-04-2013 at 12:20 AM.
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  #2  
Old 08-03-2013, 12:43 AM
Darryl79 Darryl79 is offline
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Mein Auto: 2010 BMW 335i Coupe
Welcome!

1. Gas usage is all relative to how much you put your foot into it. Since you have a 328i, you have a 4 cylinder, but an efficient one. You can get away with mid grade if you had to, but always best to feed it the good stuff to keep the car at maximum spec.
2. From what I've been reading here, if the car tells you to get the maintenance done, go take it in. If the shop determines it's not ready for the maintenance, they can and will turn you away. It just depends on what it needs and what it had been done previously. Do you have a carfax or any vehicle history like service records? That will help point you in the right direction.
3. It APPEARS from your picture like you have the Xenon option, so there ARE many choices on this forum for good LED lights. BMS, E92-lightning, and random e-bay (not recommended) choices. Do your research with the search option as these topics are covered virtually everyday ad-nausem.

She's a beauty after the wash and wax. Is it sapphire black or Jet black or what?

Again, welcome to the 'fest and happy reading!

Last edited by Darryl79; 08-03-2013 at 12:45 AM. Reason: Typo
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  #3  
Old 08-03-2013, 12:55 AM
snstigers snstigers is offline
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Mein Auto: 2011 BMW 328i xdrive
Darryl - Oh I thought it was 6-cyl. Also, no xenons because they are very yellow - but I will definitely try the searches. I didn't look at the carfax, I guess I will.
Also, the color - not sure which black it is - Good question! Thanks for your reply!
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  #4  
Old 08-03-2013, 01:00 AM
Darryl79 Darryl79 is offline
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You know, I was thinking of the 320i for some reason. You have the 6 cyl.

Are both of your lights yellow, or just the inner ones? Sometimes you can tell by the light housing.
If you go to this site http://www.rubmw.ru/vincode/eng/ and input the last 7 of your vin, you can get your build out and all its installed options. It helps answer those types of questions.
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  #5  
Old 08-03-2013, 01:17 AM
ctuna ctuna is offline
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Its a 3 liter 6 cylinder

Its a 3 liter 6 cylinder

You don't have to use runflats and it has a timing chain not a belt.
So if you were considering an A4 its a 2 liter turbo and its one of the older ones have
a timing belt. So the 328 never needs a belt change which is one of the more
expensive maintenance items on most cars.

The 328 is pretty reliable for the most part.
If you are interested in optimum maintenance google Mike Miller BMW for the old
school maintenance schedule and BMW maintenance history.

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...50165853,d.cGE

Last edited by ctuna; 08-03-2013 at 02:46 AM.
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  #6  
Old 08-03-2013, 01:45 AM
snstigers snstigers is offline
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Wow, that's a lot of info! Looked up the VIN code which showed me all the installed options. Darryl - the color is SCHWARZ II - so it's just Jet Black.
CTuna - thanks for the manual! Will be very handy.
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  #7  
Old 08-03-2013, 01:51 AM
Darryl79 Darryl79 is offline
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Jet Black is awesome! That's what my 335i is as well. It's super difficult to keep clean, but very rewarding when clean!
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  #8  
Old 08-03-2013, 02:51 AM
ctuna ctuna is offline
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If you are still under warranty

If you are still under warranty
You are entitled to a once a year oil change see page 4 of the warranty manual.
They really don't do much more than that .
You might be able to get the brake fluid changed its due every 2 years.
Other than that read Mike Miller and use it as a guide.
Some where in between what Mike suggests and what BMW provides
is what most of people do here if they maintain the cars according
to typical long term care standards.
Be sure you get or check if the car has had the recall for the power connector on the fuse
box. Or any other recalls that are needed .
If Gas Costs 14 bucks a gallon where you are going I imagine the other fluids cost a lot to
so you might want to change out the lifetime fluids before you go.

Where and what is b/c

Last edited by ctuna; 08-03-2013 at 03:01 AM.
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  #9  
Old 08-03-2013, 04:59 AM
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lqaddict lqaddict is offline
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Re: New member/clueless E90 owner (also any girls on here or is this male dominated?)

First of all, welcome to the forums.
Now let's correct some misinformation you were fed here.
Your car has halogen lights not xenon as was previously inferred.
Research the halo replacement based on that.


To address the run flat tires question - you don't need to use them, your overall handling of the car might improve if you don't use them. A downside of course is the lack of spare. There are spare tire kits available - Google will help you to find more information on it.

Stiff steering wheel feel was one of the signatures of BMW cars of the past.
You will get used to it pretty fast.

And last but not least, there are a few girls on here including our moderator Nordic Kat



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Last edited by lqaddict; 08-03-2013 at 05:06 AM.
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  #10  
Old 08-03-2013, 05:49 AM
roadkillrob roadkillrob is offline
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Welcome to the world of BMW, I think you made the right decision!

It really isn't much difference in fuel than the A4 - the A4 is a turbo 4 with similar power and similar fuel economy, within 2 mpg and like others have said, if you keep your foot out of it, 328's can return amazing fuel economy!

BMW Steering is stiff and sporty and not overboosted like so many other cars - it is a little more work at low speeds but drives so much better at higher speeds - you will drive another non BMW in a few months and wonder why the steering is so bad!

Maintenance is about the same as Audi also (except for the extra expense of runflats - you don't have to have runflats, but you don't have a spare, so it is a tow if you get a flat without the runflats)

The car will tell you when it needs things, oil change, brakes, etc, BMW won't do them until the car tells you except for the oil change, which they will do annually if the car has not asked for it yet.

If you are going to keep it for a while, I would recommend changing the oil every 7500 miles (the car will ask for 15k mile oil change intervals, but for not a lot of money over the life of the car, a few extra oil changes can only help longevity). I would also change the automatic transmission fluid at 50-60k miles if you are keeping the car past 100k miles (BMW recommends 100k change now, but it is still too long).

Reliability wise, it is a reliable car, possibly more so than the turbo Audi as turbo's are something that will wear out and is quite expensive to replace.

As for your lights, the cheapest way to get white lights is just just buy replacement bulbs with a white color temperature, usually something in the 600k to 7500k range will be white light - a couple ways to search are xenon match bulbs or gp thunders will get you the white color bulbs and it is jus the bulbs, so it is cheap. Next option is to replace the headlights with aftermarket if you want the angle eyes (the BMW ring around your headlights), this can be several hundred a light and will still need white bulbs to put in them! HID's and Xenons are just better light bulbs essentially, they are brighter and whiter but are expensive to install - usually 200-300 for a set and require some wiring and mounting of external components to the lights themselves.

Good luck with the new car, it is beautiful!

As for other women - there are a few active ones around here - I am sure Kat will chime in once she wakes up Texas time!
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  #11  
Old 08-03-2013, 05:58 AM
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DSXMachina DSXMachina is offline
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"New member/clueless E90 owner (also any girls on here or is this male dominated?)"

Most of us are very attractive 20-something chicks. We only pretend to be lonely, overweight, balding men living with our parents so that we get some internet cred.
Nordic_Kat, our moderator, was 'outed' as a woman when she was selected for the job. Before that the website owners thought she was a guy. Had they known she was an attractive young lady she never would have been selected.

Last edited by DSXMachina; 08-03-2013 at 06:03 AM.
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  #12  
Old 08-03-2013, 06:55 AM
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bocabimmer bocabimmer is offline
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New member/clueless E90 owner (also any girls on here or is this male dominated

Further advice on question #3: Your headlights are halogen, not xenon. You can replace the corona ring bulb with an LED bulb to get a whiter color. As for the low beams, you can try things like blue tint bulbs or HID kits, but you'll probably find the light output too dim or too blinding to traffic respectively.


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  #13  
Old 08-03-2013, 07:15 AM
ericgl ericgl is offline
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Congrats on the car! Black is my favorite.

While I am somewhat more of an Audi guy, I prefer my e92 to the B7 A4 I owned for a few months. At the end of last year I test drove a B8 S4 and it exhibited many of the issues I had with my B7. Specifically I prefer the driving position, seats (my BMW has the sport seats) and I feel more connected to the road with the BMW.

I disliked ride the run-flats provided on the BMW but that was solved with changing the tires.
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Old 08-03-2013, 08:30 AM
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Bemo Bemo is offline
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Congrats on your wise purchase and welcome aboard. The car looks stunning!!
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  #15  
Old 08-03-2013, 08:34 AM
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GarySL GarySL is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snstigers View Post

4. How do I insert a pic in here, rather than as an attachment?

Here's my car after I clayed/waxed her based on info I found on the forums here (thank you).


Photobucket is one way.
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  #16  
Old 08-03-2013, 09:21 AM
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Nordic_Kat Nordic_Kat is offline
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Congrats and Welcome! Your car is absolutely beautiful.

With regard to the lights, check out the LUX Angel Eyes website.

http://luxangeleyes.com/

I've used their lights for a couple of years now and I'm very happy with the quality of their product and their customer service. They are very good about getting back to you if you have questions, and while not the cheapest, this is definitely a 'get what you pay for' product.

Good luck with your move abroad!
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  #17  
Old 08-03-2013, 09:40 AM
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floydarogers floydarogers is offline
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Mileage: Yeah, it's a 6-cylinder, but it will get almost as good mileage cruising on the highway as a 4-cylinder. You won't get as good mileage in city driving. Remember to buy the right gas - most of the world uses a different octane rating (our 87, 89, 93 is equivalent to EU's 91, 95, 98).

Fluids: I think you're doing the right thing to try to get all fluids (coolant, front/rear diffs, center diff, brakes) changed before going "over there". Everything is more expensive and harder to get most places in the world than the US/CA.

Tires: I don't know what your security situation will be. RFT's are expensive, and are going to be hard to find anywhere else but the US/CA (and it's sometimes hard here). However, they can't be shot out, which could be useful if you need to exit bad places (let's hope you're not in a place where that could happen.) On balance, you might well want to purchase a spare (donut style) and jack, and switch to goflats, which will be easier to find. Given all that, a new set of non-high-performance tires with 300 or better treadwear rating should last 3-5 years/30K-50K miles.

Even in many parts of the EU, access to modern diagnostic computers (GT1) is limited. Might be worth buying a BavTechnic code reader - then you can just have someone order parts... however a 30K mile car isn't going to need much other than oil changes for several years.
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  #18  
Old 08-03-2013, 09:54 AM
SuperTerp SuperTerp is offline
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  #19  
Old 08-03-2013, 10:09 AM
Pilgrim Pilgrim is offline
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Mein Auto: 2009 328iX Coupe
I've driven both BMW and Audi over the past 20 years, and here's my read:

They both are wonderful cars to drive! They are very German, meaning they don't feel like cars built anywhere else. As far as "feel", it depends on the individual car and model. You might like a particular Audi better than you like a particular BMW, or vice versa. VERY close in terms of driving experience.

BMW has generally been more reliable for me in terms of the peripheral stuff like switches, electrical accessories, blower fans, etc.

Each car model from each manufacturer has its individual strengths and weaknesses. The 328 series is a good one from BMW.

You won't spend more for BMW service than for Audi service. It's about even. In both cases, find a good independent shop that can help you, because they will be less expensive than a dealer.

I think you'll be very happy with the 328, and my wife agrees with you - she recently bought a 2009 328ix, selling her beloved 1994 325i, which replaced an Audi 90 Quattro V6.

Enjoy!
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  #20  
Old 08-03-2013, 10:41 AM
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-=Hot|Ice=- -=Hot|Ice=- is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darryl79 View Post
Welcome!

1. Gas usage is all relative to how much you put your foot into it. Since you have a 328i, you have a 4 cylinder, but an efficient one. You can get away with mid grade if you had to, but always best to feed it the good stuff to keep the car at maximum spec.
2. From what I've been reading here, if the car tells you to get the maintenance done, go take it in. If the shop determines it's not ready for the maintenance, they can and will turn you away. It just depends on what it needs and what it had been done previously. Do you have a carfax or any vehicle history like service records? That will help point you in the right direction.
3. It APPEARS from your picture like you have the Xenon option, so there ARE many choices on this forum for good LED lights. BMS, E92-lightning, and random e-bay (not recommended) choices. Do your research with the search option as these topics are covered virtually everyday ad-nausem.

She's a beauty after the wash and wax. Is it sapphire black or Jet black or what?

Again, welcome to the 'fest and happy reading!
The F30 has a 4 cylinder. The E90 has a 6.
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  #21  
Old 08-03-2013, 07:32 PM
snstigers snstigers is offline
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Oops didn't mention - I'm taking it to Europe (Istanbul, Turkey). Surprisingly, the 3-series and even 5-series there are 4-cylinders so will try to race and beat them on the road at every opportunity.

Thanks for the warm welcome! That sure is a ton of info. Will definitely take in all of your great suggestions.

Ctuna - Ok did a little research. Gas may only be $10-11 (*whew* a lot better than $14). Will make sure to feed it premium, don't want to skimp on that.

Roadkillrob, Lqaddict - great info about the maintenance/tires/lights etc thanks! Drove it around today at high speeds - you're right about the stiff steering. It feels a lot better when going fast. Doesn't make me want to slow down. Then drove my civic coupe right afterwards and have a much better appreciation of the BMW steering.

DSXMachina - Hah! Well, I'm more of a lonely, overweight (but not balding) 20-something chick who bought this car b/c I'm going through a very early mid-life crisis. I think I'll fit right in.

Bocabimmer, Ericgl, Bemo, Garysl, Nordic kat, Pilgrim - thanks!!

Floydarogers - I'll be living in Istanbul so it's 95/98 RON gasoline - will stick to the good stuff. Hopefully I won't be shot at while there- but I did watch the high speed chases in Istanbul at the beginning of Bond's Skyfall movie and in Taken 2 (in a BMW), so you never know!

SuperTerp - Anytime! Love M3s. I'm a DMV chick.
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  #22  
Old 08-03-2013, 07:49 PM
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pointandgo pointandgo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snstigers View Post
After spending the past 3 months diligently researching Audi A4's, I finally decided to buy one, and my only criteria was:
- Black on black AWD
- Used - (I'm moving overseas for work and the new car warranty wouldn't apply so I wanted to save some $$)
- Not a gas guzzler b/c gas runs $10-14 dollars/gallon.

So while Audi shopping last wk, I came across a 2011 BMW 328i Xdrive, it was black/black and a beauty, so I decided within 5 min to buy it. Impulse buy.

The problem is that I know nothing about BMW's (well my ex taught me how to drive stick on his M3 but that doesn't count).

Now AFTER buying it and driving it home, I learned the following:
1. That it's 6 cyl 3.0 and will cost a lot more $$ in gasoline compared to the A4.
2. The steering is really stiff! I guess that's normal. Is there such a thing as "too stiff"?
3. It makes me want to drive really, really fast.

My questions:
1. I realize it's going to cost a lot more to maintain, from gas to new run-flat tires in the future... I hope I made the right choice over Audi?? Anyone have experience driving both?

2. It has 30k miles so is still under warranty. I'd like a BMW service center to do any possible covered maintenance on it so that it's in tip-top condition before I ship it and give up on the remaining warranty. Has anyone gotten BMW to do oil change/brake pad replacement etc even if it doesn't technically need it yet? Or is the included maintenance done at specific mileage intervals?

3. It has normal yellow lights. I searched the forums and see discussions about angel eyes and HIDs and Xenon but none of it makes sense to me. I'd like "white" lights - what would be a low-cost, low-maintenance option to change them?

4. How do I insert a pic in here, rather than as an attachment?

Here's my car after I clayed/waxed her based on info I found on the forums here (thank you).
Quote:
"Has anyone gotten BMW to do oil change/brake pad replacement etc even if it doesn't technically need it yet? Or is the included maintenance done at specific mileage intervals?"

Welcome to the forum!

While under warranty, BMW will replace your oil under its CBS, or "condition based service" (computer calculated), or at least one year. If you're not sure when your oil was changed last, your (key) fob should hold a record of it (your local dealership can download the service record from your "key").

And...although Audi might charge $120+ for this...it's FREE with you new BMW!
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  #23  
Old 08-03-2013, 10:24 PM
marosmith marosmith is offline
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Ditch the run flats, best thing I ever did.

The 3 series is better than the A4 and I'm a VW/ Audi guy. You made the right choice.

Sweet talk the dealer, explain your situation and see what sort of deal they will give you since you are leaving and won't be ale to use the service plan.
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  #24  
Old 08-03-2013, 10:49 PM
Darryl79 Darryl79 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bocabimmer View Post
Further advice on question #3: Your headlights are halogen, not xenon. You can replace the corona ring bulb with an LED bulb to get a whiter color. As for the low beams, you can try things like blue tint bulbs or HID kits, but you'll probably find the light output too dim or too blinding to traffic respectively.


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Thanks for the clarification on that. I have difficulty telling the difference in housing sometimes.
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  #25  
Old 08-04-2013, 01:43 AM
SuperTerp SuperTerp is offline
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Mein Auto: m4now M5M3 550 760 335RIP
Getting the m359's put on my car this week so should look something like this

http://i74.photobucket.com/albums/i2...Bimmerfest.jpg

Last edited by SuperTerp; 08-04-2013 at 01:48 AM.
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