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  #1  
Old 07-21-2002, 01:35 PM
ouzlizard ouzlizard is offline
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Location: Jacksonville, FL
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 8
Mein Auto: 2002 330i
E46 European Delivery Experience (long with photo links)

Picked up my 330i Sedan with PP, 5Spd, titanium silver, and grey leather on July 3, 2002. United had lost the biggest piece of luggage we had so we used the good instructions from BMW and took the SBahn (above ground train) and UBahn (underground) to the delivery center in Freimann. There is a little bit of walking involved so I would advise against it in bad weather or if you have more than one piece of luggage to carry per person.

While waiting for the car my wife and I filled up on coffee, mineral water, sandwiches, and pretzels all thanks to BMW. My baby looked great when I saw it for the first time sitting in the delivery room. I was given the low down on the car by the service advisor, took a couple of pictures and then we were off into Munich traffic. Since I owned a 1982 520i during the late 80s when I lived in Germany, using the clutch was like being reacquainted with an old friend. Unlike the 520i though the 330i is quick and wants to go fast as opposed to eventually getting up to 100mph like the 520i although the 520i was also rock solid above 100mph and maxed out at about 125mph.

I knew that we would be jet lagged so I had booked a hotel in Munich for the first night. Good decision. Here is the web site address if you are looking for a decent, clean place to stay with a good breakfast, English speaking staff, an underground garage, and that is not too far away from the BMW Kundenzentrum Freimann. Link to Hotel Leopold - Munich at bottom. We also stayed there for 2 nights before flying back out. Easy access to Munich's excellent public transportation as well since you probably do not want to drive around downtown Munich in your new car since parking is scarce and the driving can be big city stressful and you may be tempted to have some beer in Munich. I did manage to not follow the directions and got us temporarily lost but was only honked at once while trying to remember the right of way rules and get us back on track. I lived in Munich from 84-86 but did not own a car during that time - that is my excuse.

We were in Germany for 2 weeks and these were my observations of the car with some asides about the trip.
- Looks great, glad I did not get the sport package since that styling does not appeal to me and the 330i includes the sport brakes and suspension by default. The type 73 rims look good and the 205 width Continental tires are more than adequate in the rain, on hills, and around curves. Titanium silver with grey leather is a nice combo and the overall look is very satisfying and almost elegant. The PP leather seats are more than adequate and easily adjusted between my wife in the passenger seat and my 88 year old grandmother in the passenger seat. (Excercise in extreme patience because the grandmother really needs an upright car such as the Mercedes A class to easily enter and exit.)
- At 90mph in the rain on the Autobahn the car was rock solid. The wife looked over, discovered the speed and that was the end of that. I tried explaining that was what the car was built to do and that I was still being passed by other cars but to no avail.
- Somewhere after 750 miles I could not take it anymore and pushed up to 110mph and about 4200rpm for a short period of time. Still rock solid. Wished we could have driven more to get past the break in and take it up to 120mph. At the delivery center the guy told me not to go above 4000rpm during break in but the manual says 4500rpm so I split the difference. I only put 838 miles on the car during the trip since we stayed in Germany the whole time because I have relatives there and I really did not want to deal with any other countries on this trip. Although in retrospect the wife would have really liked downtown Salzburg, Austria, but there is only so much you can see in a two week trip.
- Discovered a scratch on the rear view mirror that was not apparent until night driving that I will have to write down for the dealer to fix before I pick it up. That was the only fault I could find.
- The Passenger-side exterior mirror tilt function unnerved me and I do not know if I will ever really get used to it. The rear view mirror automatic dimming feature was great as well as the rain sensor wipers.
- Engine sound was just right in the cabin and road feel was again just right. This is the best all around car I have ever driven.
- The HK audio works fine, after all the bad reviews I read my wife and I could not believe how good it sounded playing everything from German radio pop to Shubert to Rush to Stevie Ray Vaughn.
- The one bad event: I bottomed out in the parking lot of a castle overlooking the Rhein (Rhine). No damage done but I think my heart stopped at the sound of undercarriage touching flagstone.
- Was honked at twice in 2 weeks for poor driving and had to honk at someone else 1 time. Not bad considering how lazy I have become driving in the US with the allowed passing on the right on the highway and signs on every corner to guide you.
- If you can do ED, by all means go for it, best vacation I ever had. If you can get the 3.0i or better engine, go for that as well.

If you go to Rothenburg o.d. Tauber, scenic city north of Munich, there is is a good place to stay with their own parking places and garage spots called Goldener Hirsch. (Link is at bottom) It was not as fancy nor as expensive as their web site made it appear. We paid 95 Euros a night for a room with a view of the valley below the medieval city. The garage was another couple of Euros a night but well worth it considering how narrow the streets are and the lack of parking.

If you stay on the Rhein overnight, get a room facing away from the Rhein. You will miss out on the view but will gain quiet because there are trains that run along the Rhein throughout the night.

Dropped off the car at EH Harms Munich. Flight was at noon, and we were on our way to the airport via taxi at 8:35 after arriving at 8:05 and made the flight with time to spare. I highly suggest printing directions or doing a test run to the drop off location, whichever location you choose. I had printed directions from www.yahoo.de (German version of Yahoo) and they were adequate. The couple dropping off the 325xi wagon at the same time had done the dry run and I did not have the heart to ask if they also had auto transmission and how slow that must be. Cab fare including tip was 40 Euros in a Renault minivan and we split the fare with the other couple.

Now it is back to the Mighty Mitsubishi with its 92 unbridled and untamed horses until the Bimmer makes it way from Germany to NJ to Florida. In case you are wondering I bought the Mitsu right after I was finished paying off my student loans and could not bear the thought of a big car payment. And I still cannot bear the thought of a big car payment and so I chose the 330i and not the M3. (Although if there was still an M3 sedan or even an M3 wagon....)

Links to photos at the bottom.

Hotel Leopold - Munich
Hotel Goldener Hirsch - Rothenburg o.d. Tauber
Photo: First Impression
Photo: A mini in the parking spot next to mine in the customer center. My wife really wants one and wishes they had European delivery for these little guys.
Photo: BMW ED birthing area
Photo: Outside the customer center
Photo: Outside the hotel - Munich
Photo: Outside the hotel - Rothenburg
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2005 325iT, PP, Step, Jet Black, Sand Leather, Xenon Headlights

Last edited by ouzlizard; 07-21-2002 at 01:54 PM.
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  #2  
Old 07-21-2002, 05:22 PM
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Cruzer Cruzer is offline
aka Chi-chi
Location: Seattle
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 199
Mein Auto: 1992 325iC Calypso Red
Congratulations! Great review...

Let me warn you now, the wait is a pain in the arse. I have been waiting 5 weeks, and expect delivery this coming weekend. It is amazing how bimmers just want to go faster and faster...and staying below 4000 rpm was almost impossible. At least you had a great vacation. I stayed only 2 days, because of work. Good luck!
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  #3  
Old 07-21-2002, 05:30 PM
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beauport beauport is offline
Color blind photographer
Location: Northern Virginia
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 1,730
Mein Auto: 2010 X3 MT Space Gray
ouzlizard, thanks for a very detailed and interesting account of your ED experience. Since I'll be picking up my car in September I was looking for a hotel that was reasonably close to the BMW pick up location. I looked at the hotel web site and it looks very nice. Can you give me some idea of the room rates as I didn't see any listed?
Yes, it must be hard waiting now that you've had the experience of driving your new car.
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  #4  
Old 07-22-2002, 03:21 PM
ouzlizard ouzlizard is offline
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Location: Jacksonville, FL
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 8
Mein Auto: 2002 330i
The Hotel Leopold was Euro 115 a night for a double with full bath and breakfast. I believe the garage was an extra 5 Euros a night.

I suspect their rates might increase in September during Oktoberfest.
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2005 325iT, PP, Step, Jet Black, Sand Leather, Xenon Headlights
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  #5  
Old 07-23-2002, 10:16 AM
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beauport beauport is offline
Color blind photographer
Location: Northern Virginia
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 1,730
Mein Auto: 2010 X3 MT Space Gray
Quote:
Originally posted by ouzlizard
The Hotel Leopold was Euro 115 a night for a double with full bath and breakfast. I believe the garage was an extra 5 Euros a night.

I suspect their rates might increase in September during Oktoberfest.
Not having been to Germany in the fall, does OCTOBERfest begin as early as September?

Thanks for the hotel information/rates.
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  #6  
Old 07-23-2002, 10:21 AM
uter's Avatar
uter uter is online now
Z4 M coupe, F07 550i GT
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 1,055
Mein Auto: Z4MCoupe, 550 GT, 840Ci
Quote:
Originally posted by beauport


Not having been to Germany in the fall, does OCTOBERfest begin as early as September?

Thanks for the hotel information/rates.
According to the Frommer's guide, it does.
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  #7  
Old 07-23-2002, 05:37 PM
ouzlizard ouzlizard is offline
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Location: Jacksonville, FL
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 8
Mein Auto: 2002 330i
Oktoberfest starts on Sep. 21 this year. They would like to wait until October but then it just gets too cold.
Oktoberfest web site
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2005 325iT, PP, Step, Jet Black, Sand Leather, Xenon Headlights
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  #8  
Old 07-28-2002, 06:04 PM
postoak postoak is offline
Tree Stalker
Location: The Woodlands Township, Texas
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 1,754
Mein Auto: 2007 Hyundai Santa Fe
ouzlizard -- thanks for the ED write up -- I always enjoy these. We just got back from ours a couple of weeks ago. We were able to go for 23 days and so got past the break-in period. Here are some pics:

http://www.picturetrail.com/gallery/...5226&members=1

BTW, a lot of EDers stay at the Hotel Uhland. A double-room there with full bath and breakfast was $82/night, I believe.

http://www.hotel-uhland.de/uhlandpi.html
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  #9  
Old 08-01-2002, 10:36 AM
AlisaKay AlisaKay is offline
Bimmer Gal
Location: Texas
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 90
Mein Auto: '03 Electric Red 330Ci
If you will be staying in Munich solely for the purpose of picking up your BMW (in other words, if you don't care to visit the city center), you might try bidding for a hotel through Priceline. I believe that the "City Centre North" zone is close to the delivery center. I've seen where people have gotten the 4* Marriott and the 3* Renaissance, both in Schwabing (which is in the City Centre North zone) for less than $50/night. Check out the Bidding for Travel message board for help.
BiddingforTravel.com Message Board

Of course, there is no guarantee you will get these exact hotels, but it might be worth considering. I realize that these hotels do not offer much in the way of European atmosphere, but after an overnight flight it might be a nice transition into Europe. My husband & I probably will give it a try for our ED later this year, since we've already done all the touristy Munich things on a previous trip.
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  #10  
Old 08-02-2002, 06:34 PM
hts hts is offline
I'm a Mac
Location: Phoenix
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 17,626
Mein Auto: 03 540iA sport
Very cool, congrats! Isn't Rothenberg the neatest little medieval city? I'm sure more sophisticated world travelers than I will say it's just another tourist trap, but I say 'screw 'em'--we really dug Rothenberg. Had a blast on one of the evening tours of the town by one of the town criers.

Did you have a chance to partake in one of their world-famous schneeballens?

;-)
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