Former M3 Owners. Why'd you buy an F30 335i?

by Bimmerfest.com Member - EddieB on October 29, 2012, 7:31 pm
When the first of the twin turbo 335i's came out it became apparent that the new engine really gave the S54 engine a run for its money. And it intrigued me. Good gas mileage, yet nice power and torque.

Looking at the E90 M3, I could not fathom it with a V8 along with its super crappy gas mileage. IMHO a 3er M needs to be an inline six. Plus I never got used to the E90 body style--even on the M. So E90 body style was a definite no-go for me: either an M or 335i . So I waited for the next body change.

When I decided on getting an F30 3er I debated waiting for the F30 M version which I'm glad reverts back to an I6. So I started pricing a 335i for the heck of it in the meantime.

A lot of new and great features--especially jumping from an E46. But as you add the bells and whistles you hit $60k MSRP very quickly. That was the sticker of my 2006 M3 pretty well loaded with everything but SMG, PDC and sunshade.

After debating in my mind what I wanted to drive for the next several years, I decided it would be a Sport Sedan with performance and luxury, not a street legal race car. That notwithstanding the diminishing returns of extra money spent on an M versus the increased performance (I don't track my cars), would not be worth it to me at this time in my life.

So I ordered the 335i from Munich. Am glad I experienced owning the M3--it was a fun 6 years. Looking forward now to my 335i....


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29 responses to Former M3 Owners. Why'd you buy an F30 335i?

SD Z4MR commented:
October 29, 2012, 8:01 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
When I decided on getting an F30 3er I debated waiting for the F30 M version which I'm glad reverts back to an I6. So I started pricing a 335i for the heck of it in the meantime.
I'm not sure what you mean by this statement. The E9x 335i model, with or without an M Sport Package, has always been an I6, the earlier models and the 335is with the N54 engine, later models with the N55 engine. The F30 335i has an i6 N55 engine, the same as the 2011 and 2012 E9x 335i. There is no "F30 M version" and since the E92 M3 is still available through 2013 with a NA V8 and the F80 M3 won't be available until 2014, there is no "M version" that has "reverted" to an I6. The new MY 20114 M3 and MY 2015/16 M4 will have an I6 again, but it will probably be 3.2L, it will probably have at least two turbos, and will probably put out 450+ HP.

Yes, the S54 engine is a great engine, it's probably going to be the last, great, naturally aspirated inline 6 BMW engine, at least for the foreseeable future. I don't know about the N54 and N55 engines giving it a "run for it's money". The N54 and N55 engine found in most 335i models put out 300 horsepower from 3.0 liters, but with the help of either twin turbos or a single twin-scroll turbo; the S54 3.2L naturally aspirated engine put out 333 horsepower in E46 M3 trim and 330 horsepower in the Z4 M Roadsters and Coupes.

My wife has a 335is Coupe with a twin-turbo 320 HP N54 engine, but my Z4 M Roadster is still faster.
EddieB commented:
October 29, 2012, 8:13 pm

No I meant the E90 M3 is an 8. I realize there is a M Sport package for the 335i as well.
golovko commented:
October 29, 2012, 8:39 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
When the first of the twin turbo 335i's came out it became apparent that the new engine really gave the S54 engine a run for its money. And it intrigued me. Good gas mileage, yet nice power and torque.

Looking at the E90 M3, I could not fathom it with a V8 along with its super crappy gas mileage. IMHO a 3er M needs to be an inline six. Plus I never got used to the E90 body style--even on the M. So E90 body style was a definite no-go for me: either an M or 335i . So I waited for the next body change.

When I decided on getting an F30 3er I debated waiting for the F30 M version which I'm glad reverts back to an I6. So I started pricing a 335i for the heck of it in the meantime.

A lot of new and great features--especially jumping from an E46. But as you add the bells and whistles you hit $60k MSRP very quickly. That was the sticker of my 2006 M3 pretty well loaded with everything but SMG, PDC and sunshade.

After debating in my mind what I wanted to drive for the next several years, I decided it would be a Sport Sedan with performance and luxury, not a street legal race car. That notwithstanding the diminishing returns of extra money spent on an M versus the increased performance (I don't track my cars), would not be worth it to me at this time in my life.

So I ordered the 335i from Munich. Am glad I experienced owning the M3--it was a fun 6 years. Looking forward now to my 335i....
I was pretty much in a smilar position but I was coming from an Evo IX MR which I tracked as well for the past 6 years. For the same reasons I thought it was time to drive a sport sedan that had great performance but also a hell of a lot of luxury to match. My Evo was all performance and no comfort unless you're behind the wheel, then it was just fantastic.

Now I'm just shopping around for an E36 M3 for a dedicated track car.
WJGreer commented:
October 30, 2012, 12:11 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
No I meant the E90 M3 is an 8. I realize there is a M Sport package for the 335i as well.
Actually the guy above you is on your case for not knowing that the next M3 will be an F80 rather than an F30. And being a bit of a jerk about it.
EddieB commented:
October 30, 2012, 12:17 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by WJGreer View Post
Actually the guy above you is on your case for not knowing that the next M3 will be an F80 rather than an F30. And being a bit of a jerk about it.
That's because he has a girly convertible. Sort of like a Miata.
enigma commented:
October 30, 2012, 4:20 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
When the first of the twin turbo 335i's came out it became apparent that the new engine really gave the S54 engine a run for its money. And it intrigued me. Good gas mileage, yet nice power and torque.

Looking at the E90 M3, I could not fathom it with a V8 along with its super crappy gas mileage. IMHO a 3er M needs to be an inline six. Plus I never got used to the E90 body style--even on the M. So E90 body style was a definite no-go for me: either an M or 335i . So I waited for the next body change.

When I decided on getting an F30 3er I debated waiting for the F30 M version which I'm glad reverts back to an I6. So I started pricing a 335i for the heck of it in the meantime.

A lot of new and great features--especially jumping from an E46. But as you add the bells and whistles you hit $60k MSRP very quickly. That was the sticker of my 2006 M3 pretty well loaded with everything but SMG, PDC and sunshade.

After debating in my mind what I wanted to drive for the next several years, I decided it would be a Sport Sedan with performance and luxury, not a street legal race car. That notwithstanding the diminishing returns of extra money spent on an M versus the increased performance (I don't track my cars), would not be worth it to me at this time in my life.

So I ordered the 335i from Munich. Am glad I experienced owning the M3--it was a fun 6 years. Looking forward now to my 335i....
I don't even know where to start with this one.

The MPG difference between the S54 (E46 M3) and the S65 (E9x M3) isn't much. I have both (S54 Z4MCoupe, S65 M3), and I can tell you driven similarly, the difference is about 2-3 MPG. So, you are telling me you didn't buy a 60+k car because you wanted to save a few bucks on gas?

And you'd rather have the I6 turbo over the V8 NA on an M car? Call me crazy, but what has defined the M in the past isn't the I6, but high-rev'ing NA engines, until they started turbo-charging everything with the X5M/X6M.

The 335i is a great car, but I don't think I follow your twisted logic.


Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
That's because he has a girly convertible. Sort of like a Miata.
OK, now this is a cheap shot.

By the way, the Miata is one of the funnest cars money can buy, and the Z4M Conv is one of the finest cars BMW has ever built with the S54 you seem so fond of. You sound like a superficial douche.

No offense.
johnbmw6 commented:
October 30, 2012, 4:55 am

I had the E90 M 3, now waiting for the 330D M Sport touring, reason.
Here in the UK the M3 never really got to "stretch it's legs" and that coupled with the price of fuel here, and speed cameras on every corner meant it would have to go. The 330D M Sport with brake upgrade and all the rest of the extras I have put on it make it a fast economical good looking car with loads of technology to boot.
EddieB commented:
October 30, 2012, 11:03 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by enigma View Post
OK, now this is a cheap shot.

By the way, the Miata is one of the funnest cars money can buy, and the Z4M Conv is one of the finest cars BMW has ever built with the S54 you seem so fond of. You sound like a superficial douche.

No offense.
None taken.
CALWATERBOY commented:
October 30, 2012, 11:22 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
That's because he has a girly convertible. Sort of like a Miata.

Yo! Girly, not necessarily....

Gonna mod your new ride? Lots o'room for improvement, but you have to wait for parts.

.
Lorenzzo commented:
October 30, 2012, 11:34 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
After debating in my mind what I wanted to drive for the next several years, I decided it would be a Sport Sedan with performance and luxury, not a street legal race car. That notwithstanding the diminishing returns of extra money spent on an M versus the increased performance (I don't track my cars), would not be worth it to me at this time in my life.

So I ordered the 335i from Munich. Am glad I experienced owning the M3--it was a fun 6 years. Looking forward now to my 335i....
I had an E46 M3 and currently drive an F30 328i Sport. I did test drive the F30 335i and realize it's a different car.

My plan was to drive the F30 for a year or two and then get the second model year of the next M3/4. Maybe when the time comes I'll still do it, but all things considered I'm not sure it would be much more fun than my F30 and probably a good deal less practical. So I seem to share your mindset and several months of ownership haven't so far given me future lust for the M3/4.

Don't know of course how I'll feel after a year or two of ownership, after we know what the M is like.
EddieB commented:
October 30, 2012, 12:37 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by CALWATERBOY View Post
Yo! Girly, not necessarily....

Gonna mod your new ride? Lots o'room for improvement, but you have to wait for parts.

.
Just a poke at the guy who was dissing me... But I stand by the Miata part.

What I don't get is the mentality that if you can afford a BMW you have no right to bitch about gas mileage. Yeah I knew my M3 was a gas guzzler but it really became apparent when I switched jobs to a location that was a surface street only commute in the morning. Thank goodness the return trip is on the freeway at pretty much at normal speeds.

And besides, when I road tripped to my buddy 415 miles away, I had to stop for gas whether I wanted to or not. Now I will have the option.

The chip mod sounds interesting for starters. I will wait awhile to see more feedback.
EddieB commented:
October 30, 2012, 12:40 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lorenzzo View Post
I had an E46 M3 and currently drive an F30 328i Sport. I did test drive the F30 335i and realize it's a different car.

My plan was to drive the F30 for a year or two and then get the second model year of the next M3/4. Maybe when the time comes I'll still do it, but all things considered I'm not sure it would be much more fun than my F30 and probably a good deal less practical. So I seem to share your mindset and several months of ownership haven't so far given me future lust for the M3/4.

Don't know of course how I'll feel after a year or two of ownership, after we know what the M is like.
On a lot of levels the F30 328i is a really compelling and practical alternative to the 335i as the new engine gives it very nice performance. Much better than the E90 328i for sure.
Lorenzzo commented:
October 30, 2012, 1:35 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
On a lot of levels the F30 328i is a really compelling and practical alternative to the 335i as the new engine gives it very nice performance. Much better than the E90 328i for sure.
I have to say I'm loving it and would have been really happy with the 335i for sure. The two things one has to accept with the 328i are the idle/low rev sounds and number 4.
knechtea commented:
October 30, 2012, 1:47 pm

I had a four door M3 and it was great. The gas mileage wasn't great, but also wasn't terrible since my commute was mostly highway. I genarally averaged 20 mpg so I am not complaining. However, since my lease ended and I wanted a new car (and needed a sedan) the F30 335i looked awesome especially in M-Sport guise. After driving it in Europe I am very happy with the choice. Maybe if the F80 M3 were available I might have gone down that road, but it wasn't and I can always jump back when my current lease is up in 3 years.

The gas mileage on the F30 335 is fantastic with tons of power to match. My 2008 M3 had a sticker of $67,000 with all options except 19in rims and DCT. My 2013 F30 had a sticker price of $58,995, but I suspect that the F80 with all the bells and whistles may top out in low to mid $70's.

In the end I am very happy with the tradeoff of better gas mileage and wicked fast performance.
SD Z4MR commented:
October 30, 2012, 2:00 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
That's because he has a girly convertible. Sort of like a Miata.
Yeah, also kind of like a Cobra. Now that's definitely a girly convertible. Like I said, my wife has a 335, but it's the 335is Coupe.

BTW, when the Z4 M Roadster was introduced, BMW recorded a faster Nurburgring lap time with it than the E46 M3. Maybe a girl was driving?
golovko commented:
October 30, 2012, 2:05 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by SD Z4MR View Post
Yeah, also kind of like a Cobra. Now that's definitely a girly convertible. Like I said, my wife has a 335, but it's the 335is Coupe.

BTW, when the Z4 M Roadster was introduced, BMW recorded a faster Nurburgring lap time with it than the E46 M3. Maybe a girl was driving?
I wouldn't doubt it if it was driven by Sabine Schmitz
Michael Schott commented:
October 30, 2012, 2:59 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
When the first of the twin turbo 335i's came out it became apparent that the new engine really gave the S54 engine a run for its money. And it intrigued me. Good gas mileage, yet nice power and torque.

Looking at the E90 M3, I could not fathom it with a V8 along with its super crappy gas mileage. IMHO a 3er M needs to be an inline six. Plus I never got used to the E90 body style--even on the M. So E90 body style was a definite no-go for me: either an M or 335i . So I waited for the next body change.

When I decided on getting an F30 3er I debated waiting for the F30 M version which I'm glad reverts back to an I6. So I started pricing a 335i for the heck of it in the meantime.

A lot of new and great features--especially jumping from an E46. But as you add the bells and whistles you hit $60k MSRP very quickly. That was the sticker of my 2006 M3 pretty well loaded with everything but SMG, PDC and sunshade.

After debating in my mind what I wanted to drive for the next several years, I decided it would be a Sport Sedan with performance and luxury, not a street legal race car. That notwithstanding the diminishing returns of extra money spent on an M versus the increased performance (I don't track my cars), would not be worth it to me at this time in my life.

So I ordered the 335i from Munich. Am glad I experienced owning the M3--it was a fun 6 years. Looking forward now to my 335i....
There are a few inconsistencies in your post IMO.

1) You like the F30 style yet dislike the E90. Most people say they are almost the same except the nose.

2) The E90 M3 is not a street legal race car. It's the ultimate 3 series and is equally adept on the road and the track. In that sense it's certainly not a race car.

3) Those who equate a 3 series with an I6 are seeing a snapshot not the big picture. It's reasonable to associate a 3 series with a 4 cylinder not the I6. The first 3 series, the E21 initially was offered only with 4 cylinder engines and outside of the US 4 cylinder models have been offered for a long time.

4) There is no need to load up a 335 to $60K. You can get one pretty well optioned for $10K less. And I'd guess that an F30 based M3 loaded the same as a $60K F30 will be about $80K.
EddieB commented:
October 30, 2012, 3:58 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Schott View Post
There are a few inconsistencies in your post IMO.

1) You like the F30 style yet dislike the E90. Most people say they are almost the same except the nose.

2) The E90 M3 is not a street legal race car. It's the ultimate 3 series and is equally adept on the road and the track. In that sense it's certainly not a race car.

3) Those who equate a 3 series with an I6 are seeing a snapshot not the big picture. It's reasonable to associate a 3 series with a 4 cylinder not the I6. The first 3 series, the E21 initially was offered only with 4 cylinder engines and outside of the US 4 cylinder models have been offered for a long time.

4) There is no need to load up a 335 to $60K. You can get one pretty well optioned for $10K less. And I'd guess that an F30 based M3 loaded the same as a $60K F30 will be about $80K.
1) I like the F30 rear end much better than the E90 and the front to me looks better as well. Should I like the E90 because people say it looks close?
2) There are mods you can do to the M3 no doubt, but it is track ready at drive off.
3) We'll agree to disagree. And BMW has seen fit to abandon the V8 on the next rendition of the M3
4)There's no "need" to buy an F30 at any price. But I chose options that put it just south of 60k and I couldn't see paying $80 for an M with the same stuff when the engine is so close to my S54 in performance.
golovko commented:
October 30, 2012, 4:14 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
1) I like the F30 rear end much better than the E90 and the front to me looks better as well. Should I like the E90 because people say it looks close?
2) There are mods you can do to the M3 no doubt, but it is track ready at drive off.
3) We'll agree to disagree. And BMW has seen fit to abandon the V8 on the next rendition of the M3
4)There's no "need" to buy an F30 at any price. But I chose options that put it just south of 60k and I couldn't see paying $80 for an M with the same stuff when the engine is so close to my S54 in performance.
The F30 and E90 look nothing alike, if you ask me. The rear end on the F30 is so much better. Has a more refined and less "civic" look to it. The front end is completely different, both look good in their own ways but they are different.
EddieB commented:
October 30, 2012, 4:29 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by golovko View Post
The F30 and E90 look nothing alike, if you ask me. The rear end on the F30 is so much better. Has a more refined and less "civic" look to it. The front end is completely different, both look good in their own ways but they are different.
So true. I just couldn't get into the look. Same as I couldn't with the E60 5er. The F10 I like.

My best buddy who is a BMW owner and aficionado loves the E60 to death.

The F10 is very similar to the F30 at casual glance. One day in a parking lot I walked up to one while not really focusing on the task and gave the kick to open the trunk and realized it wasn't my car.
WJGreer commented:
October 30, 2012, 4:44 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
So true. I just couldn't get into the look. Same as I couldn't with the E60 5er. The F10 I like.

My best buddy who is a BMW owner and aficionado loves the E60 to death.

The F10 is very similar to the F30 at casual glance. One day in a parking lot I walked up to one while not really focusing on the task and gave the kick to open the trunk and realized it wasn't my car.
I've got an E60, and while I think it is a phenomenal car, they didn't get the look quite right. It looks good with the right size wheels and tires, and from certain angles, but many E60s I see around town are just awkward.

The F10 is a beautiful car, a dramatic leap forward in design. It's big but the proportions are just right.

The F30 looks good, not better than the F10 and possibly not better than the E90. But good. They look better in person than in pictures.

All IMO.
LarryboysUDM commented:
October 30, 2012, 11:58 pm

Haven't been a previous M3 or BMW owner but the when the F30 335i M Sport came out, I had to buy one. I was wow'd by the engine, interior, exterior, ride, and drive.
enigma commented:
October 31, 2012, 3:17 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieB View Post
4)There's no "need" to buy an F30 at any price. But I chose options that put it just south of 60k and I couldn't see paying $80 for an M with the same stuff when the engine is so close to my S54 in performance.
Where do you get this stuff? The S54 isn't close to the S65 on paper, and it certainly isn't in real life (I own both). Even if I concede that both engines are close, do you judge a car solely by its engine?

By the way, a fully loaded E92 M3 6MT is around $74k (and MDCT is $77), not $80k.

Again, I think the F30 335i is a fantastic car, and it's the right car for many folks. I just don't follow your reasoning.
Michael Schott commented:
October 31, 2012, 10:10 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by golovko View Post
The F30 and E90 look nothing alike, if you ask me. The rear end on the F30 is so much better. Has a more refined and less "civic" look to it. The front end is completely different, both look good in their own ways but they are different.
Depends if you are looking at an LCI E90 (2009+) or the earlier (2006-2008) model. IMO, the F30 and LCI E90 rear ends look very similar.
Michael Schott commented:
October 31, 2012, 10:14 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by enigma View Post
Where do you get this stuff? The S54 isn't close to the S65 on paper, and it certainly isn't in real life (I own both). Even if I concede that both engines are close, do you judge a car solely by its engine?

By the way, a fully loaded E92 M3 6MT is around $74k (and MDCT is $77), not $80k.

Again, I think the F30 335i is a fantastic car, and it's the right car for many folks. I just don't follow your reasoning.
He is responding to my post where I suggest the next F30 based M3 will be in that price range, not the E9X M3.
suneil commented:
November 1, 2012, 8:14 pm

you can get a nicely optioned F30 for MUCH less than $60k.
Hell, I got mine for $47-48k OTD (in CT) with Tech/Cold Weather/Premium/M Perf Exhaust. And I get 32mpg on the highway.

The new M3 was WAY out of my cost - $69-80K starting expected starting price?!?!

(I come from an Evo VIII).
golovko commented:
November 1, 2012, 9:32 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by suneil View Post
you can get a nicely optioned F30 for MUCH less than $60k.
Hell, I got mine for $47-48k OTD (in CT) with Tech/Cold Weather/Premium/M Perf Exhaust. And I get 32mpg on the highway.

The new M3 was WAY out of my cost - $69-80K starting expected starting price?!?!

(I come from an Evo VIII).
How do you like it compared to the Evo VIII? I came from an Evo IX MR into a 335i Sport (had it for just over 6 years)
suneil commented:
November 1, 2012, 10:42 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by golovko View Post
How do you like it compared to the Evo VIII? I came from an Evo IX MR into a 335i Sport (had it for just over 6 years)
It's a mixed back...my VIII had GSC Cams, a Tune, WORKS FCBE, MBC, etc...Was putting down in the 325whp/345awtq (Sean Ivey dyno).

It'll take a Dinan S2 to get it to that level at the rear wheels...HOWEVER, speed aside, in its current form, the 335i is pretty damn fast, and the amenities are amazing.

Thankfully the N55 takes well to modifications, so I'll get the same power/speed WITH refinement.

You?
Needsdecaf commented:
November 2, 2012, 12:16 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Schott View Post
There are a few inconsistencies in your post IMO.

1) You like the F30 style yet dislike the E90. Most people say they are almost the same except the nose.
Most people have no idea what they're looking at.

Sure they look similar in pictures, but that doesn't mean that they look the same. Personally, I never cared for the E9X and love the F30. I find the differences to be significant.