Consumer Reports Really Likes the 330i

by Bimmerfest.com Member - LMK5 on December 27, 2016, 10:14 am
Anyone see the first drive review for the 330i from CR? The tester seemed to think that BMW really improved the driving experience. 'The BMW 330i is back to being a focused, superbly fun sports sedan. The BMW 3 Series has once again made driving engagement standard equipment.'

Has anyone who has driven the 330i experienced the same thing? Does it drive noticeably better than the 328i?




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92 responses to Consumer Reports Really Likes the 330i

DavidSPumpkins commented:
December 27, 2016, 11:00 am

My 340i apparently is a step in the right direction. The car is a bit heavier than I am accustomed to, but very capable. I took a sweeper this weekend at 85mph with ease, and have taken that same sweeper with every other car I have owned in the past 15 years, and this one was the most composed. Surprised me a bit since the suspension still seems a tad floaty, but it carves the corners pretty well. No complaints for a DD.

I have not really addressed your question, since I have little point of reference. My last bimmer was the E46. I have heard the intial F30's were a disappointment. But it wouldn't surprise me the 330i is a step in the right direction as well.
Saintor commented:
December 27, 2016, 11:09 am

IMO it is not necessarily the 330i itself but the consequence of 2016+ LCI, with better body & suspension tweakings.
Kafkaesque328 commented:
December 27, 2016, 2:07 pm

^^ exactly. Engine is practically the same and actually track tested less favorably with c&d i.e. A little slower etc
Robert A commented:
December 27, 2016, 4:30 pm

He frames the 330i as a new generation vehicle that's improved over its soft predecessor. I've driven it and cannot tell much of a difference compared to last year's LCI 328i.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LMK5 View Post
Anyone see the first drive review for the 330i from CR? The tester seemed to think that BMW really improved the driving experience. Has anyone who has driven the 330i experienced the same thing? Does it drive noticeably better than the 328i?
https://youtu.be/D-o99R0RgD8
logicalscott commented:
December 27, 2016, 4:47 pm

They should stick to dishwashers and crock pots.
tturedraider commented:
December 27, 2016, 5:54 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
He frames the 330i as a new generation vehicle that's improved over its soft predecessor. I've driven it and cannot tell much of a difference compared to last year's LCI 328i.
+1 - it really shoots down his credibility.
namelessman commented:
December 27, 2016, 7:06 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
He frames the 330i as a new generation vehicle that's improved over its soft predecessor. I've driven it and cannot tell much of a difference compared to last year's LCI 328i.
LCI 328i and 330i are incremental improvement to F30, it does not change enough of the fundamentals.
pdxway commented:
December 27, 2016, 9:18 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by logicalscott View Post
They should stick to dishwashers and crock pots.
What other trustworthy publication would you suggest?
Kafkaesque328 commented:
December 27, 2016, 9:20 pm

Automotive mags arent any better and they all tend to follow the leader and admire the emperors new clothes. Its all BS
DBV commented:
December 28, 2016, 7:52 am

I think they do a good and fair job. Name another magazine that can do or even attempt to do a thorough job on such a wide variety of cars. There are none.

Quote:
Originally Posted by logicalscott View Post
They should stick to dishwashers and crock pots.
MrMarvin commented:
December 28, 2016, 8:59 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
^^ exactly. Engine is practically the same and actually track tested less favorably with c&d i.e. A little slower etc
If you're referring to 330i pre-lci this has a brand new four banger, no inline six in the 330i anymore!
anotheran commented:
December 28, 2016, 10:00 am

Last 3 series (non-M) that CR reviewed was the 2014 328d so it's their first time reviewing post-LCI. So like Saintor said, it's the LCI changes they're complimenting and not the B48.

But this review isn't as glowing as their review of the A4
tturedraider commented:
December 28, 2016, 10:28 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by anotheran View Post
Last 3 series (non-M) that CR reviewed was the 2014 328d so it's their first time reviewing post-LCI. So like Saintor said, it's the LCI changes they're complimenting and not the B48.

But this review isn't as glowing as their review of the A4
I'm generally a fan of CR, had a subscription for many years, but their favorite flavor is vanilla. They review cars with the same perspective they use to review toasters. The things about cars that we like are not the things about cars that they like. I take their car reviews and ratings with a grain of salt.
eazy commented:
December 28, 2016, 10:45 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by DBV View Post
I think they do a good and fair job. Name another magazine that can do or even attempt to do a thorough job on such a wide variety of cars. There are none.


+1 unlike the big four car magazines consumer reports will rip a car apart. For example look at their reviews on the IS and Q50. In addition consumer reports buy their cars. They will pay money to use a press car but they can not do a full road test.


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Der_Kommissar commented:
December 28, 2016, 11:24 am

BMW should have had the new 4 banger ready for the LCI to reduce this confusion. Now we have one 328i LCI year followed by a very similar 330 with a new engine.
anotheran commented:
December 28, 2016, 12:10 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Der_Kommissar View Post
BMW should have had the new 4 banger ready for the LCI to reduce this confusion. Now we have one 328i LCI year followed by a very similar 330 with a new engine.
Probably a glut of N26 lying around. The rest of the world had switched to the B48 when the LCI came out. I have a N26 engined LCI and don't regret it. More mods available for the N26 than the B48
LMK5 commented:
December 29, 2016, 10:42 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
^^ exactly. Engine is practically the same and actually track tested less favorably with c&d i.e. A little slower etc
Also, the 330i is rated at 34 mpg highway instead of 35 for the 2016 328i. Very unusual for a model's mileage to go down.
FaRKle! commented:
December 29, 2016, 11:00 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by LMK5 View Post
Also, the 330i is rated at 34 mpg highway instead of 35 for the 2016 328i. Very unusual for a model's mileage to go down.
IIRC that's because of the 2017 standards change. For instance, if you look at this page, it shows the old fuel economy numbers and the revised ones under the new standards.
LMK5 commented:
December 29, 2016, 11:02 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by FaRKle! View Post
IIRC that's because of the 2017 standards change. For instance, if you look at this page, it shows the old fuel economy numbers and the revised ones under the new standards.
I'm surprised it's the highway numbers that got adjusted. In my experience it's the city mpg that's usually the fantasy.
SteveinArizona commented:
December 29, 2016, 12:09 pm

I trust CR but they bias toward pricing bargains and safety so the car reviews are useful but if one is looking for a driver car not the best. Best bet, if looking for a driver car, is to look at the road test scores.

My biggest complaint is that they continue to review positively Audi cars (which is fine) but for a publication that claims to care about the environment, there is not even a mention of the fact that the company has deliberately and illegally fouled our air and has shown no real remorse over it. At a minimum, I would expect this to be mentioned in a CR review.
FaRKle! commented:
December 29, 2016, 12:10 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by LMK5 View Post
I'm surprised it's the highway numbers that got adjusted. In my experience it's the city mpg that's usually the fantasy.
The highway numbers dropped across the board for almost everybody from what I've seen.
Kafkaesque328 commented:
December 29, 2016, 12:51 pm

I will say that the 328 gets about 3 mpg less across the board vs what my 320 got but that defecit is largely city. Highway is very close but combined now I get about 24.5 - 25 with a mix of city and hwy, commuting. The 320 combined about 27 on the same grind. Figure lighter car and less boost
eazy commented:
December 29, 2016, 12:57 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveinArizona View Post
I trust CR but they bias toward pricing bargains and safety so the car reviews are useful but if one is looking for a driver car not the best. Best bet, if looking for a driver car, is to look at the road test scores.

My biggest complaint is that they continue to review positively Audi cars (which is fine) but for a publication that claims to care about the environment, there is not even a mention of the fact that the company has deliberately and illegally fouled our air and has shown no real remorse over it. At a minimum, I would expect this to be mentioned in a CR review.


Actually the car that has the highest overall score in the consumer report test is the 2 series. The model s has a higher road test score but it's reliability drags the overall number down. Also when Toyota had its problems a couple of years ago it lost its recommend rating for the cars involve. CR does not recommend the diesel cars involve with the Vw scandal.


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SteveinArizona commented:
December 30, 2016, 10:05 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by eazy View Post
Actually the car that has the highest overall score in the consumer report test is the 2 series. The model s has a higher road test score but it's reliability drags the overall number down. Also when Toyota had its problems a couple of years ago it lost its recommend rating for the cars involve. CR does not recommend the diesel cars involve with the Vw scandal.


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I like the 2 series. Wish the series had a PHEV but it doesn't. My complaint about VW is that the problem is not just the diesel cars...it is the attitude of the entire company that created the cheat. CR should at least be noting that the company that they are reviewing deliberately fouled our air. The fact that a particular car being reviewed is not a diesel doesn't change the fact that the company making the car chose to violate the law and has shown no remorse after being caught.
WilliCO commented:
December 30, 2016, 10:23 am

I think the take-away is that the pre-LCI F30 wasn't really that far off, but the press loves a hero fallen so it pounced on the imperfections.

I've driven a post-LCI F30 (F31 actually), and I think if BMW had released that car initially nobody would have had anything to complain about. But the differences are certainly incremental. The suspension in particular seems about 15% better sorted, which is maybe all it needed.

The F10 was a larger issue, IMO. From a chassis dynamics standpoint, the pre-LCI was really nothing like a BMW. Nice, but not a BMW. I thought the LCI took care of some of the problems, but it's nice to read that BMW is treating the G30 as a driver's car again.
eazy commented:
December 30, 2016, 11:36 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveinArizona View Post
I like the 2 series. Wish the series had a PHEV but it doesn't. My complaint about VW is that the problem is not just the diesel cars...it is the attitude of the entire company that created the cheat. CR should at least be noting that the company that they are reviewing deliberately fouled our air. The fact that a particular car being reviewed is not a diesel doesn't change the fact that the company making the car chose to violate the law and has shown no remorse after being caught.


They explain it here https://youtu.be/9bbN0vYCxUY. Let's be almost every car company has been caught cheating. CR did their due diligence in their recommendations with the diesels. The Eu basically allow car companies to cheat when it come to fuel economy and emissions test by taping up the car & removing the back seat. That why EU fuel economy figures are basically BS. On the other hand the EPA's fuel economy figures are more accurate and if a company is caught cheating they will be fined. I believe Hyundai got caught cheating with their fuel economy on their cars.


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SteveinArizona commented:
December 30, 2016, 12:55 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by eazy View Post
They explain it here https://youtu.be/9bbN0vYCxUY. Let's be almost every car company has been caught cheating. CR did their due diligence in their recommendations with the diesels. The Eu basically allow car companies to cheat when it come to fuel economy and emissions test by taping up the car & removing the back seat. That why EU fuel economy figures are basically BS. On the other hand the EPA's fuel economy figures are more accurate and if a company is caught cheating they will be fined. I believe Hyundai got caught cheating with their fuel economy on their cars.


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My problem with CR and VW is two fold. First, they should be noting this in their ratings. They put a big red diamond under MB for its autonymous driving issues. They could put a big red circle (square, whatever) under any VW corp product noting that this company deliberately cheated to foul the air. My other complaint is that the recording is BS...VW didn't go to "clean diesel" to combat the Prius; they went there to meet governmental regulations...and of course then cheated to meet them. There was at least one solution for clean diesel (urea traps) but VW didn't want to spend the money doing it.
gkr778 commented:
December 30, 2016, 12:57 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveinArizona View Post
My biggest complaint is that they continue to review positively Audi cars (which is fine) but for a publication that claims to care about the environment, there is not even a mention of the fact that the company has deliberately and illegally fouled our air and has shown no real remorse over it.
CR has written extensively about the VW Group diesel engine "scandal". Read the articles here: http://www.consumerreports.org/cars-...ssions-recall/
gkr778 commented:
December 30, 2016, 1:05 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by tturedraider View Post
The things about cars that we like are not the things about cars that they like.
Here's what CR likes about BMW F30 cars, quoted directly from their road test review:
  • Fun to drive, thanks to engaging handling and responsive powertrains
  • Fuel efficient with either the gasoline or diesel four-cylinder engines
  • Very comfortable and well-finished cabin
  • Good visibility
  • You can still get a manual transmission
  • Available as a wagon -- rare in this segment
  • Comprehensive infotainment system works well, after a learning curve
  • Wide variety of engine choices

Here's what I like about F30 cars:
  • Fun to drive, thanks to engaging handling and responsive powertrains
  • Fuel efficient with either the gasoline or diesel four-cylinder engines
  • Very comfortable and well-finished cabin
  • Good visibility
  • You can still get a manual transmission
  • Available as a wagon -- rare in this segment
  • Comprehensive infotainment system works well, after a learning curve
  • Wide variety of engine choices
Do other Bimmerfest members not like these things?
BobinIl commented:
December 30, 2016, 2:06 pm

This seems about right to me....
eazy commented:
December 30, 2016, 2:21 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveinArizona View Post
My problem with CR and VW is two fold. First, they should be noting this in their ratings. They put a big red diamond under MB for its autonymous driving issues. They could put a big red circle (square, whatever) under any VW corp product noting that this company deliberately cheated to foul the air. My other complaint is that the recording is BS...VW didn't go to "clean diesel" to combat the Prius; they went there to meet governmental regulations...and of course then cheated to meet them. There was at least one solution for clean diesel (urea traps) but VW didn't want to spend the money doing it.


Vw didnot have a hybrid to counter the Prius. They used diesel as an alternative to hybrids.


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colobrio commented:
December 30, 2016, 3:23 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by gkr778 View Post

Here's what I like about F30 cars:
  • Fun to drive, thanks to engaging handling and responsive powertrains
  • Fuel efficient with either the gasoline or diesel four-cylinder engines
  • Very comfortable and well-finished cabin
  • Good visibility
  • You can still get a manual transmission
  • Available as a wagon -- rare in this segment
  • Comprehensive infotainment system works well, after a learning curve
  • Wide variety of engine choices
Do other Bimmerfest members not like these things?
Well, yes! Or no, this one does not not like those things. Whatever. Most of those are the reasons I bought my F30 (an LCI 328i). Also, that there's enough headroom for my kids in back, unlike the growing number sedans with raked rooflines. That said, I did find the track pack necessary to get the "fun to drive" piece where I wanted.
Kafkaesque328 commented:
December 30, 2016, 4:27 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by gkr778 View Post
Here's what CR likes about BMW F30 cars, quoted directly from their road test review:
  • Fun to drive, thanks to engaging handling and responsive powertrains
  • Fuel efficient with either the gasoline or diesel four-cylinder engines
  • Very comfortable and well-finished cabin
  • Good visibility
  • You can still get a manual transmission
  • Available as a wagon -- rare in this segment
  • Comprehensive infotainment system works well, after a learning curve
  • Wide variety of engine choices

Here's what I like about F30 cars:
  • Fun to drive, thanks to engaging handling and responsive powertrains
  • Fuel efficient with either the gasoline or diesel four-cylinder engines
  • Very comfortable and well-finished cabin
  • Good visibility
  • You can still get a manual transmission
  • Available as a wagon -- rare in this segment
  • Comprehensive infotainment system works well, after a learning curve
  • Wide variety of engine choices
Do other Bimmerfest members not like these things?
I do not like those things.. I like only this. This is my opinion is the last BMW ever built.

eazy commented:
December 30, 2016, 4:31 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
Automotive mags arent any better and they all tend to follow the leader and admire the emperors new clothes. Its all BS


That is very true look at the Lexus IS when that car came out all the magazine were admiring it except for consumer reports who blasted the car. Now car and driver ranks the IS either 7 or 8 in the sport sedan category. Today the magazines are now admiring the Lincoln Continental. One magazine called it the best America sedan in 40 years. I thought that title Belongs to the CT6.


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SteveinArizona commented:
December 31, 2016, 8:00 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by eazy View Post
Vw didnot have a hybrid to counter the Prius. They used diesel as an alternative to hybrids.


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But...Audi certainly wasn't competing with a Prius. So I don't buy the idea that they felt forced to cheat and pollute to compete with the Prius. I think they cheated and polluted to maximize sales and profits.
eazy commented:
December 31, 2016, 9:32 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveinArizona View Post
But...Audi certainly wasn't competing with a Prius. So I don't buy the idea that they felt forced to cheat and pollute to compete with the Prius. I think they cheated and polluted to maximize sales and profits.


Audi needed an answer for the Lexus ct200. Also they cheated so they won't have to spend the money for an urea tank for their cars. CR did address these issues


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SteveinArizona commented:
December 31, 2016, 9:48 am

Nice try but the CT200 was first shown in auto shows in 2010 and debuted as an available car in 2011. Audi and VW were selling their default configured diesels in 2009. So, if anything, Lexus came out with the CT200 to compete with the Audi diesels. But I don't buy either and the diesels were a huge seller in the EC unrelated to the Toyota corp. hybrids. As I noted, and you noted, they simply didn't want to spend the money on the urea solution. And my beef with CR is that they should be noting the scandal every time they review a VW corp vehicle, not bury it in a hard to find video piece.
eazy commented:
December 31, 2016, 10:11 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveinArizona View Post
Nice try but the CT200 was first shown in auto shows in 2010 and debuted as an available car in 2011. Audi and VW were selling their default configured diesels in 2009. So, if anything, Lexus came out with the CT200 to compete with the Audi diesels. But I don't buy either and the diesels were a huge seller in the EC unrelated to the Toyota corp. hybrids. As I noted, and you noted, they simply didn't want to spend the money on the urea solution. And my beef with CR is that they should be noting the scandal every time they review a VW corp vehicle, not bury it in a hard to find video piece.


Vw is paying one of the largest fines for the crimes they committed. Like I said before CR does not recommend any Vw Diesel engines anymore. That just in the USA. The Ct was Lexus 2nd hybrid only model it replace the slow selling HC.


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BobinIl commented:
December 31, 2016, 10:26 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by eazy View Post
Audi needed an answer for the Lexus ct200. Also they cheated so they won't have to spend the money for an urea tank for their cars. CR did address these issues


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Yes, CR covered the issue and has mentioned it frequently. Looking at their 2016 Auto Issue it looks like for every VW and Audi model that is available with a diesel has "the diesel version is under investigation by the EPA for not complying with emission regulations" in the write up(the auto issue came out before the verdicts came down). Their coverage since then has been ongoing.
SteveinArizona commented:
December 31, 2016, 10:54 am

Don't get me wrong. I love CR. I am a subscriber to both the magazine and online version. But I think they should also note on the gasoline versions of VW and Audi that this is from a company that deliberately fouled our air. A footnote would be fine but I don't think they should treat the company's cars as if the company didn't deliberately foul the air. I think what VW did is way worse than MB or Tesla not fully emphasizing that drivers need to still pay attention to the road het CR puts an alert button on the new MB E series. All I am saying is that a similar button with a footnote stating that the company deliberately foulded the air and was caught.
DavidSPumpkins commented:
December 31, 2016, 11:10 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveinArizona View Post
Don't get me wrong. I love CR. I am a subscriber to both the magazine and online version. But I think they should also note on the gasoline versions of VW and Audi that this is from a company that deliberately fouled our air. A footnote would be fine but I don't think they should treat the company's cars as if the company didn't deliberately foul the air. I think what VW did is way worse than MB or Tesla not fully emphasizing that drivers need to still pay attention to the road het CR puts an alert button on the new MB E series. All I am saying is that a similar button with a footnote stating that the company deliberately foulded the air and was caught.
I hesitate to get into this debate, and I am not a VW fan boy, but no, VW did not say our purpose is to "foul the air". The objective is always the quickest path to profits for these organizations, and sometimes they simply do the wrong thing, including breaking the law. Fix the problem, pay the fines and move on. Maybe we should slap a moniker on every Wells Fargo bank account and product they continue to sell because senior management, that is now gone, promoted poor business practices? Not going to happen.
Kafkaesque328 commented:
December 31, 2016, 1:08 pm

VW made me so angry that I went out and leased my wife a Tiguan for $200 a month a few months after it happened. Took advantage of the scandal and got one for a song. Thats how much it bothered me
crayonbox commented:
December 31, 2016, 3:32 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
VW made me so angry that I went out and leased my wife a Tiguan for $200 a month a few months after it happened. Took advantage of the scandal and got one for a song. Thats how much it bothered me


I have to admit, it is very disheartening that VW did this and it does make me think less of the company. Earth is a pretty cool place and EPA regs are meant to at least offset harmful things like this.

Anyways, I do love my 2002 TDI and the VW news is really what sparked my interest in BMW again (as a company) My first manual car was a 1987 325es I purchased for $700 in my college days and that car was fantastic. I put only labor into it and drove it for years with 230K on its long time broken odometer.

Anyhow, new to the forum, my e46 wagon arrives tomorrow. I have already gathered plenty of useful info from here - Thank You! And I look forward to many years in my 325xi. Anybody in need of a 2002 Jetta TDI

-Korey




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Robert A commented:
December 31, 2016, 4:48 pm

Is your 2002 tdi even common rail?
Kafkaesque328 commented:
December 31, 2016, 7:12 pm

There are older TDI on the road with 200k miles on them and counting. The old TDI's were ****ing amazing. I have heard the newer ones were less reliable. Its really a shame VW did that to themselves because the Golf TDI was in some ways the perfect car in terms of a commuter and road tripper. Now its like they never existed. Tisk tisk, VW, tisk tisk.
eazy commented:
February 23, 2017, 7:08 pm

In the consumer report talking cars segment they were talking about the 330i and the A4 https://youtu.be/Q64S-N32LbE it starts at 14:10 in the video


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LMK5 commented:
February 24, 2017, 4:41 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by eazy View Post
In the consumer report talking cars segment they were talking about the 330i and the A4 https://youtu.be/Q64S-N32LbE it starts at 14:10 in the video


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Thanks for that. I enjoy seeing these segments because you get lots of tidbits on lots of cars.
ILD_757 commented:
February 24, 2017, 5:18 pm

I had a 2017 330i loaner while my 340i was in the shop, and it honestly had me questioning why I even got the 340. The engine has just as much power at anything less than full throttle, and it sounds great for a 4 cylinder. The 328d on the other hand...not so much.
LMK5 commented:
February 24, 2017, 7:00 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by ILD_757 View Post
I had a 2017 330i loaner while my 340i was in the shop, and it honestly had me questioning why I even got the 340. The engine has just as much power at anything less than full throttle, and it sounds great for a 4 cylinder. The 328d on the other hand...not so much.
I also had a 330i base loaner, and I also thought that it was an improved car over my MY2014 328i base. Better ride, crisper steering, and somewhat quieter. The new iDrive is, IMO, a step down though, and the lack of tinted glass, weak base audio, and sketchy A/C are still sore spots for me.

One WTF I noticed was there was a choice for how many blinks you get when you flick the turn signal stalk. Now, you'd think that they'd give us the original choice of 3 blinks, plus a choice for more, since most people feel that 4-6 is the optimum needed. But you know what the added choice was? One blink. Yes, someone at BMW thought that adding a choice of one blink would satisfy a need .
Kafkaesque328 commented:
February 24, 2017, 7:59 pm

What year 328i did CR originally review? What is kind of annoying is that the bulk of the improvements they talk about (steering programming, ride/suspension in base models and engine sound) all happened with the 2016 LCI 328, not the 330i and all these little improvements are carryovers from the '16 LCI. And based on C&D instrument tests, the 328 was a little faster than the 330 despite the 330 having like 5 more HP. Only advantage I can see is a hair better mpg and better crash tests. Otherwise, same car as the LCI, same upgraded LED headligts and drl design, same active engine sound, same everything. Slap a different badge on the back though and suddenly its touted as a different car. Now the 335 to the 340, that was different.

All Im saying is slap a 330i badge on the back of an identically optioned 2016 328 and exactly .0001% of the normal or 'enthusiast' population wouldnt know the difference
Goody4 commented:
February 24, 2017, 9:19 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
What year 328i did CR originally review?
Their first F30 328i written review is in the August 2012 edition:



"The BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class sport sedans make up one of the auto world's great rivalries. And the results of this latest face-off couldn't be closer. Redesigned for 2012, the BMW 328i (far right) beat out the updated Mercedes C250 by only one point in our road-test scores: 86 vs. 85. Both are improved over the previous models we tested, but they still score below the Infiniti G37 in this category.

The 328i is quicker, handles better, and is more fun to drive than the Mercedes. And we recorded an impressive 28 mpg overall, easily the best fuel economy in the class. But the C250 is quieter and provides a more refined powertrain and simpler controls. Prices are $43,195 for the 328i and $40,705 for the C250. Since we don't yet have reliability data on this redesigned BMW or the Mercedes' new engine, we can't recommend either car.
Performance vs. refinement
The turbocharged 2.0-liter engine gets a class-leading 28 mpg overall.

The 328i's 240-hp, 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine and seamless eight-speed automatic transmission deliver impressive acceleration, but the engine emits a diesel-like clatter, especially at idle and low speeds. And the electronic shifter isn't intuitive. A new stop/start system, similar to that used in hybrids, cuts off the engine when the car comes to a stop and automatically restarts it when the driver lifts his foot off the brake pedal. This saves about 1 mpg in city driving, but the car shuddered each time the engine restarted. The system can be easily disengaged.

The C250's 201-hp, 1.8-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine, which is new for 2012, is mated to a slick seven-speed automatic. It's not as powerful as the 328i's and managed only 24 mpg, but it's the smoothest and most refined four-cylinder we've ever tested. Both cars require premium fuel.

Each car provides taut, agile handling, with little body lean and high cornering limits. Steering is well weighted and responsive in both, but the BMW's is less communicative than in the previous model. Both were impressive on our track, but the BMW really shines.

Expect a composed, quiet ride in either car, with the C250's cabin especially hushed. Both cars have a commendably absorbent ride that is rock steady on the highway.
Posh surroundings
A dual-panel sunroof brightens up the cabin.

As you would expect at this price, the cars have high-quality, well-equipped cabins. Our 328i's seats are plush leather, while the C250 uses a respectable imitation. The seats in both are firmly padded and supportive, with multiple power adjustments.

While the Mercedes has a slight edge in front-seat comfort, its rear seat is tight for adults. Two can fit comfortably in the 328i's improved rear.

Controls are complicated in both cars, but notably worse in the 328i. It has handy hard keys for some radio and climate functions, but you still have to use a multifunction controller to call up menus for many audio controls, which can be distracting. The C250 also has hard keys for some functions, but you have to pick through onscreen menus for some audio and navigation features.

The trunks are moderately sized, and folding the optional split rear seatbacks makes more cargo space."

NOTE: CR recorded a 0-60 time of 6.3 seconds with the 2012 328i. This is 0.6 seconds faster than their recently tested 2017 330i.
captainaudio commented:
February 24, 2017, 9:22 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by DBV View Post
I think they do a good and fair job. Name another magazine that can do or even attempt to do a thorough job on such a wide variety of cars. There are none.


CR has a state of the art auto testing facility in Connecticut.


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Kafkaesque328 commented:
February 24, 2017, 9:57 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Goody4 View Post
Their first F30 328i written review is in the August 2012 edition:



"The BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class sport sedans make up one of the auto world's great rivalries. And the results of this latest face-off couldn't be closer. Redesigned for 2012, the BMW 328i (far right) beat out the updated Mercedes C250 by only one point in our road-test scores: 86 vs. 85. Both are improved over the previous models we tested, but they still score below the Infiniti G37 in this category.

The 328i is quicker, handles better, and is more fun to drive than the Mercedes. And we recorded an impressive 28 mpg overall, easily the best fuel economy in the class. But the C250 is quieter and provides a more refined powertrain and simpler controls. Prices are $43,195 for the 328i and $40,705 for the C250. Since we don't yet have reliability data on this redesigned BMW or the Mercedes' new engine, we can't recommend either car.
Performance vs. refinement
The turbocharged 2.0-liter engine gets a class-leading 28 mpg overall.

The 328i's 240-hp, 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine and seamless eight-speed automatic transmission deliver impressive acceleration, but the engine emits a diesel-like clatter, especially at idle and low speeds. And the electronic shifter isn't intuitive. A new stop/start system, similar to that used in hybrids, cuts off the engine when the car comes to a stop and automatically restarts it when the driver lifts his foot off the brake pedal. This saves about 1 mpg in city driving, but the car shuddered each time the engine restarted. The system can be easily disengaged.

The C250's 201-hp, 1.8-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine, which is new for 2012, is mated to a slick seven-speed automatic. It's not as powerful as the 328i's and managed only 24 mpg, but it's the smoothest and most refined four-cylinder we've ever tested. Both cars require premium fuel.

Each car provides taut, agile handling, with little body lean and high cornering limits. Steering is well weighted and responsive in both, but the BMW's is less communicative than in the previous model. Both were impressive on our track, but the BMW really shines.

Expect a composed, quiet ride in either car, with the C250's cabin especially hushed. Both cars have a commendably absorbent ride that is rock steady on the highway.
Posh surroundings
A dual-panel sunroof brightens up the cabin.

As you would expect at this price, the cars have high-quality, well-equipped cabins. Our 328i's seats are plush leather, while the C250 uses a respectable imitation. The seats in both are firmly padded and supportive, with multiple power adjustments.

While the Mercedes has a slight edge in front-seat comfort, its rear seat is tight for adults. Two can fit comfortably in the 328i's improved rear.

Controls are complicated in both cars, but notably worse in the 328i. It has handy hard keys for some radio and climate functions, but you still have to use a multifunction controller to call up menus for many audio controls, which can be distracting. The C250 also has hard keys for some functions, but you have to pick through onscreen menus for some audio and navigation features.

The trunks are moderately sized, and folding the optional split rear seatbacks makes more cargo space."

The accompanying 328i video will give you the 0-60 time, if you're interested.

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/m...=1631863668001
Oh 2012, that explains it. I am just interested in accurate representations of things based on data and the 330 is being lauded as some big improvement when the reality is that the improvements were made well over a model year ago. Improvements with that engine seem largely subjective since tbere is no apparent performance gain. So is the G20 supposed to get yet another turbo 4 and the one in the 330 is just a placeholder for the rest of the f30 run or what?
ILD_757 commented:
February 25, 2017, 12:29 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by LMK5 View Post
I also had a 330i base loaner, and I also thought that it was an improved car over my MY2014 328i base. Better ride, crisper steering, and somewhat quieter. The new iDrive is, IMO, a step down though, and the lack of tinted glass, weak base audio, and sketchy A/C are still sore spots for me.

One WTF I noticed was there was a choice for how many blinks you get when you flick the turn signal stalk. Now, you'd think that they'd give us the original choice of 3 blinks, plus a choice for more, since most people feel that 4-6 is the optimum needed. But you know what the added choice was? One blink. Yes, someone at BMW thought that adding a choice of one blink would satisfy a need .
I agree on the old iDrive being better. Not necessarily in terms of features, just a better layout.

And yeah, one blink is useless lol
Tc_sting commented:
February 26, 2017, 8:34 pm

Not sure it matters what CR thinks. You have to drive the car, not them.

But certainly one would expect the next iteration of an item to improve over a prior model. I hear doing that helps continue sales volume.
eazy commented:
February 26, 2017, 11:35 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
What year 328i did CR originally review? What is kind of annoying is that the bulk of the improvements they talk about (steering programming, ride/suspension in base models and engine sound) all happened with the 2016 LCI 328, not the 330i and all these little improvements are carryovers from the '16 LCI. And based on C&D instrument tests, the 328 was a little faster than the 330 despite the 330 having like 5 more HP. Only advantage I can see is a hair better mpg and better crash tests. Otherwise, same car as the LCI, same upgraded LED headligts and drl design, same active engine sound, same everything. Slap a different badge on the back though and suddenly its touted as a different car. Now the 335 to the 340, that was different.

All Im saying is slap a 330i badge on the back of an identically optioned 2016 328 and exactly .0001% of the normal or 'enthusiast' population wouldnt know the difference


Here Is the original video review https://youtu.be/aGNksGvuLMQ


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eazy commented:
February 26, 2017, 11:49 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by LMK5 View Post
Thanks for that. I enjoy seeing these segments because you get lots of tidbits on lots of cars.


The 2 editors in the video that prefer the 3 series over the A4 thought that A4 was one of the top new cars they drove for 2016. both cars are very good and prefer both of them over the c class. I like the A4 with the base suspension over the 328 with the base suspension. I have not driven the new 330i so I can not make a judgement. The m adaptive suspension is my favorite option on my car.

I recently drove the new gulia q4 ti. Definitely the sportiest car in its class and it has very quick steering. In addition it the best Italian sedan on the market. But I would take both the A4 and 328i over it lacks execution. I would give up some sporty for some room, infotainment, fit & finish, ride comfort, & reliability.


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Saintor commented:
February 27, 2017, 8:15 am

If CR likes it, MT isn' so sure.

http://www.motortrend.com/cars/bmw/3...t-test-review/

Quote:
Expected in 2019, the seventh-generation (G20) 3 Series can't come soon enough.
Kafkaesque328 commented:
February 27, 2017, 11:34 am

"...now focuses on powertrain sophistication and model/trim diversity in an effort to please all of the people all of the time. Well, not all of the people; only those who haven't driven a 3 Series from a previous generation. These people, our people, are driving enthusiasts who care about the subjective qualities and are not merely brand-conscious automotive consumers looking for an innocuous luxury sedan as a daily driver. Parking a new BMW 3 Series in the driveway might suggest to some of your neighbors that you're an enthusiast. Theyve seen the ads. But real enthusiasts know that its only a tagline now."

Uh, was this article written by a 22 year old in an Evo? They printed this? Sounds like a little boy racer whining on the GtI forums abot a car he cant afford...

What pretentious bull****. As if everyone with an f30 has never had or driven a previous model and just doesnt know what theyre missing. Hahaha, meanwhile IN THE REAL WORLD, there are likely a great deal of long time brand loyal drivers who are in their 3rd or 4th or 7th bmw and they are enjoying the current gen just fine.

Dear car magazines, exactly .00001% of people who buy cars give a **** about what you are saying. This 'enthusiast' has had plenty of seat time in an e90 328i with bone crushing sport suspension and brick heavy steering and Ill take this generation any day, thank you.

Also, their complaints about damping, stopping and so on would have been solved by testing a car with the 704 suspension and summer tires. Please
LMK5 commented:
February 27, 2017, 2:58 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by eazy View Post
The 2 editors in the video that prefer the 3 series over the A4 thought that A4 was one of the top new cars they drove for 2016. both cars are very good and prefer both of them over the c class. I like the A4 with the base suspension over the 328 with the base suspension. I have not driven the new 330i so I can not make a judgement. The m adaptive suspension is my favorite option on my car.

I recently drove the new gulia q4 ti. Definitely the sportiest car in its class and it has very quick steering. In addition it the best Italian sedan on the market. But I would take both the A4 and 328i over it lacks execution. I would give up some sporty for some room, infotainment, fit & finish, ride comfort, & reliability.


Sent from my iPhone using Bimmerfest mobile app
About the adaptive suspension: How is comfort mode when compared to the base suspension? How is sport mode when compared to the static 704 suspension?
pflau commented:
February 27, 2017, 11:45 pm

Just so happened that I also got a base 330i loaner today while my '14 328i is in the shop. Here's what I think. The exterior and interior appointment is a step up. Now matte chrome trim around windows, interior door panels, and front facia are standard. New 17" standard wheels are also very nice. In sport setting, the suspension is very similar to my adaptive M suspension. The standard steering is heavier comparing to my variable sport steering. And it has a wider turn circle. I definitely prefer my steering. As far as steering feel is concerned, it does seem more communicative, but I'm not sure if it's because it is heavier - less power assist. But it's the steering I miss the most when I was driving the car. Pedal shift is also standard. This is one new feature I like the most. You can up shift or down shift without putting the shifter to manual mode first. The car happens to have Apple CarPlay, which is totally rocking, as the old iDrive interoperability with iOS is totally crappy. The engine sound has a barely noticeable peculiar hum that I found mildly annoying. I wonder where that's from. The shifter is stiffer, more notchy, and less round and thus less ergonomic, which I did not like.

To sum up, comparing to my '14 328i with Dynamic Handling Package:

What I like : paddle shifter, suspension, upgraded exterior and interior and wheels

What I don't like : steering, shifter

I guess I am not trading up any time soon.
eazy commented:
February 28, 2017, 7:55 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by LMK5 View Post
About the adaptive suspension: How is comfort mode when compared to the base suspension? How is sport mode when compared to the static 704 suspension?


In comfort mode how is handles the nj infested pothole roads is incredible. With the base suspension you can feel the suspension crashing with the m adaptive suspension the car is a lot smoother. When you compare the m adaptive to the 704 it no contest which one is smoother. Below is another reviewer who recommends the m adaptive suspension. https://youtu.be/ajeCEr-SRac


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LegendsNeverDie commented:
February 28, 2017, 8:56 am

MT just did a first drive review....It is NOT good.

http://www.motortrend.com/cars/bmw/3...t-test-review/
gkr778 commented:
February 28, 2017, 10:58 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by LegendsNeverDie View Post
MT just did a first drive review....It is NOT good.

http://www.motortrend.com/cars/bmw/3...t-test-review/
Isn't this the same review that Saintor mentioned in post #59?
eazy commented:
February 28, 2017, 11:02 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by gkr778 View Post
Isn't this the same review that Saintor mentioned in post #59?


Saintor and legends never die always post articles that criticize the f30. Saintor is upset that CR trashes the TLX


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LegendsNeverDie commented:
February 28, 2017, 11:49 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by eazy View Post
Saintor and legends never die always post articles that criticize the f30. Saintor is upset that CR trashes the TLX


Sent from my iPhone using Bimmerfest mobile app
It is constructive criticism. I mean come on, review after review mention the same issues, yet that just don't want to fix them. Straight from the MT article, please don't shoot the messenger:

"Prior 3 Series sedans didn't require such a package to feel special, to feel like a BMW all the time. All of our driving impressions led to the same conclusion. "This chassis no longer strikes me as the best handling set up," Markus said. "It's time to kill the 'Ultimate Driving Machine' association with this brand." Ouch."


http://www.motortrend.com/cars/bmw/3...t-test-review/
eazy commented:
February 28, 2017, 12:11 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by LegendsNeverDie View Post
It is constructive criticism. I mean come on, review after review mention the same issues, yet that just don't want to fix them. Straight from the MT article, please don't shoot the messenger:

"Prior 3 Series sedans didn't require such a package to feel special, to feel like a BMW all the time. All of our driving impressions led to the same conclusion. "This chassis no longer strikes me as the best handling set up," Markus said. "It's time to kill the 'Ultimate Driving Machine' association with this brand." Ouch."


http://www.motortrend.com/cars/bmw/3...t-test-review/


Motor trend criticize the 3 way before the f30 came out. When the 2nd gen Infiniti G coupe came out motor trend had a cover where it said the king is dead long live the king. MT likes praising the newest kid on the block. CR test drove the most popular equip version of the 330i and gave it high praise. The test car that CR used did not have any special packages. The Lexus IS and Cadillac ATS are 2 cars that the 4 auto magazines gave high praise yet those 2 cars along with the Q50 have the lowest customer satisfaction scores in its class according to latest CR survey



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Kafkaesque328 commented:
February 28, 2017, 12:25 pm

Again, bmw is in the business of selling cars. The 22 year old with a Cobalt they let write his first article for MT seems to miss the point that BMW now has options for people who want a cushier ride on the way to work each day when they arent doing "track days". For people who want tighter suspension and better handling, there is the m sport and adaptive options. The 330 base is also perfectly capable and what exactly are the alternatives? Even the much praised audi a4 is criticized for numb steering. I love too how Mt starts by praising the drivetrain in the 330i and how the marriage between engine and trans is a match made in heaven. Yet what, there is something better available?

You want an old bmw, go buy one. You prefer the experience of throwing a vhs tape in a vcr, i think they still sell those on craigslist. This whole lamenting over yesteryear theme is really tiresome. You can do that about every product and every thing, ever - 'the good ol days'.

The funniest part is, how much you wanna bet that the Vast majority of people who bought older bmw when they were new were NOT 'enthusiasts' and couldnt care less about what MT is talking about? Most were 'badge whores' and most still are. Articles like these are essentially meaningless. The general public is going to pay a whole lot more attention to what CR has to say about the 330 than MT.

Wanna talk about how great the CTS is? Seems like for every 100 3 series I see on the road, I see some loan guy in a cadillac CTS. Neat. Cool story, bro!

Last, people need to try and move on from this because BMw aint never, ever putting out another E46. Never, ever again
LegendsNeverDie commented:
February 28, 2017, 12:51 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
Again, bmw is in the business of selling cars. The 22 year old with a Cobalt they let write his first article for MT seems to miss the point that BMW now has options for people who want a cushier ride on the way to work each day when they arent doing "track days". For people who want tighter suspension and better handling, there is the m sport and adaptive options. The 330 base is also perfectly capable and what exactly are the alternatives? Even the much praised audi a4 is criticized for numb steering. I love too how Mt starts by praising the drivetrain in the 330i and how the marriage between engine and trans is a match made in heaven. Yet what, there is something better available?

You want an old bmw, go buy one. You prefer the experience of throwing a vhs tape in a vcr, i think they still sell those on craigslist. This whole lamenting over yesteryear theme is really tiresome. You can do that about every product and every thing, ever - 'the good ol days'.

The funniest part is, how much you wanna bet that the. Ast majority of people who bought older bmw when they were new were NOT 'enthusiasts' and couldnt care less about what MT is talking about? Most were 'badge whores' and most still are. Articles like these are essentially meaningless. The general public is going to pay a whole lot more attention to what CR has to say about the 330 than MT.

Wanna talk about how great the CTS is? Seems like for every 100 3 series I see on the road, I see some loan guy in a cadillac CTS. Neat. Cool story, bro!

Last, people need to try and move on from this because BMw aint never, ever putting out another E46. Never, ever again
So as BMW enthusiasts we should sit back and accept mediocrity? They are in the business of selling cars and I think they sold a lot of the F30's BECAUSE of the reputation built on the previous generations. However, now the hype is slowly fading and customers are catching on. I think the statement in that MT review in reference to the UDM marketing slogan is sadly spot on.
namelessman commented:
February 28, 2017, 1:19 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by LegendsNeverDie View Post
So as BMW enthusiasts we should sit back and accept mediocrity? They are in the business of selling cars and I think they sold a lot of the F30's BECAUSE of the reputation built on the previous generations. However, now the hype is slowly fading and customers are catching on. I think the statement in that MT review in reference to the UDM marketing slogan is sadly spot on.
Maybe the nature of car enthusiasm also is changing, e.g. from razor sharp handling to self driving?

E.g. some friends are hanging on their E46/E39, as they feel the current crop of BMW's don't seem to be at the forefront of tech. The disclaimer is that these people are working on self-driving tech themselves.
Kafkaesque328 commented:
February 28, 2017, 1:31 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by LegendsNeverDie View Post
So as BMW enthusiasts we should sit back and accept mediocrity? They are in the business of selling cars and I think they sold a lot of the F30's BECAUSE of the reputation built on the previous generations. However, now the hype is slowly fading and customers are catching on. I think the statement in that MT review in reference to the UDM marketing slogan is sadly spot on.
Dude if you can go and drive an f30 328, 330 or 335/40 with m sport suspension and a good set of tires and not be happy with the the powertrain and suspension/handling and how totally solid the car feels at triple digit speeds, then I don't know what the hell you want. This 'enthusiast' label is and always has been ridiculous. If a guy loves his car and isnt satisfied with a Camry and finds excuses to go and buy milk because the car is enjoyable and engaging to drive then he is an enthusiast. Do you think youre in some little club or something?

Its like yeah, we get it, the 3 series aint what she used to be or rather, other automakers are also make sport sedans now. Big deal. Is bmw supposed to be the only one or something? Fact is, in the price point, the car that ol-man enthusiast is groaning about the passing of doesnt ****ing exist anymore. I mean seriously we are going to start talking about the Dodge Charger now and how great it is? That thing is a boat meant to haul meatheads.

Meanwhile, all the guys in f30s who have been driving f30s since 2012 and enjoying them are supposed to what, be like, "yeah I guess I was imagining how much I like driving this car, youre right, it sucks, point me to the nearest Dodge dealer." ?? And again, BMW has the highest brand loyalty retention rate of any brand. 70% retention rate even above Honda. This means that scores of guys in f30's used to have an e90 and also used ro have an e46. Are they staying with bmw against their will??

The whole thing is ridiculous. Same ol story every new generation of car. When I had a mk6 GTI all the dudes in mk5's whined about how soft the new gti had gotten and now that the mexi mk7 is out, its the best GTI ever. Snooozefest
namelessman commented:
February 28, 2017, 1:52 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
Meanwhile, all the guys in f30s who have been driving f30s since 2012 and enjoying them are supposed to what, be like, "yeah I guess I was imagining how much I like driving this car, youre right, it sucks, point me to the nearest Dodge dealer." ?? And again, BMW has the highest brand loyalty retention rate of any brand. 70% retention rate even above Honda. This means that scores of guys in f30's used to have an e90 and also used ro have an e46. Are they staying with bmw against their will??
My current MY13 328i has 43k miles and 4.5 years since fall 2012, my verdict is that it is a worthy successor of my old E39, and will be a keeper at least to 10 years/100k.
LegendsNeverDie commented:
February 28, 2017, 1:52 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
Dude if you can go and drive an f30 328, 330 or 335/40 with m sport suspension and a good set of tires and not be happy with the the powertrain and suspension/handling and how totally solid the car feels at triple digit speeds, then I don't know what the hell you want. This 'enthusiast' label is and always has been ridiculous. If a guy loves his car and isnt satisfied with a Camry and finds excuses to go and buy milk because the car is enjoyable and engaging to drive then he is an enthusiast. Do you think youre in some little club or something?

Its like yeah, we get it, the 3 series aint what she used to be or rather, other automakers are also make sport sedans now. Big deal. Is bmw supposed to be the only one or something? Fact is, in the price point, the car that ol-man enthusiast is groaning about the passing of doesnt ****ing exist anymore. I mean seriously we are going to start talking about the Dodge Charger now and how great it is? That thing is a boat meant to haul meatheads.

Meanwhile, all the guys in f30s who have been driving f30s since 2012 and enjoying them are supposed to what, be like, "yeah I guess I was imagining how much I like driving this car, youre right, it sucks, point me to the nearest Dodge dealer." ?? And again, BMW has the highest brand loyalty retention rate of any brand. 70% retention rate even above Honda. This means that scores of guys in f30's used to have an e90 and also used ro have an e46. Are they staying with bmw against their will??

The whole thing is ridiculous. Same ol story every new generation of car. When I had a mk6 GTI all the dudes in mk5's whined about how soft the new gti had gotten and now that the mexi mk7 is out, its the best GTI ever. Snooozefest
That is simply not true (bold part), and Subaru would blow them out of the water in that aspect. As far as the F30, nobody is asking for a new chassis, just something to give it the razor sharp edge and character over the competition, like in the past. Meanwhile it is seems like a step backwards from the E90 330i, well over 10 years later and isn't even faster, yet more sloppy.
Kafkaesque328 commented:
February 28, 2017, 5:59 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by LegendsNeverDie View Post
That is simply not true (bold part), and Subaru would blow them out of the water in that aspect. As far as the F30, nobody is asking for a new chassis, just something to give it the razor sharp edge and character over the competition, like in the past. Meanwhile it is seems like a step backwards from the E90 330i, well over 10 years later and isn't even faster, yet more sloppy.
Incorrect partially, sloppier yes, slower no. 330i did the dash in 5.6 sec. The f30 is more refined than any e90 I have driven and some people want a little refinement with their performance. But yeah the 330i of yesteryear is the drivers car but what can you do? Times change. I spend half my time sitting in traffic and cruising around the city and couldnt care less that the 10 year old 330 feels better around a road course
Spagolli94 commented:
February 28, 2017, 6:12 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by eazy View Post
In comfort mode how is handles the nj infested pothole roads is incredible. With the base suspension you can feel the suspension crashing with the m adaptive suspension the car is a lot smoother. When you compare the m adaptive to the 704 it no contest which one is smoother. Below is another reviewer who recommends the m adaptive suspension. https://youtu.be/ajeCEr-SRac


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I live next door in Philly and can confirm this... The M-Adaptive suspension is amazing. Even with 19" rims and RFTs, the ride is smooth and quiet. In Sport mode, the ride is firmer, but still pretty quiet and not crash at all. I can only imagine how nice this car would be with non-RFTs, but honestly it's fine now so I don't feel any need to switch to non-RFTs. I'm perfectly happy as is.

I recently got to drive a 911 out in San Diego for a few days (Turo.com is awesome). First, I expected their roads to be like FL. Wrong. I was shocked to see that their roads were just as bad, if not worse then the crap we have here in the Northeast. Wow. Is our entire country crumbling?

Regardless, that 911 was HARSH. It was even harsher than my old E90 with RFTs. Granted it was brilliant when I took it up to the canyon roads. But the rest of the time I was driving around San Diego, I found myself thinking how happy I was that it was not my car and not my daily driver. It was fun for sure, but after awhile it's not fun having the crap beat out of you. I was shocked out how much road noise, banging and crashing made it into the cabin. I was also surprised by how many rattles were in the interior.

BMW is trying to sell the 3 series to thousands of people that want a sporty, but comfortable ride. To me, the M Adaptive suspension hits the sweet spot. For those of you who want a harsh track day car, I don't think that BMW cares much about .0001% of their target market.

My only gripe with the 3 is the size. I definitely miss the size of the E90 as the F30 is too big.
Kafkaesque328 commented:
February 28, 2017, 6:35 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spagolli94 View Post

BMW is trying to sell the 3 series to thousands of people that want a sporty, but comfortable ride. To me, the M Adaptive suspension hits the sweet spot. For those of you who want a harsh track day car, I don't think that BMW cares much about .0001% of their target market.
This exactly. Spot on. The .0001% can go buy a used e90 328i and stop whining.

1. I wish I had M adaptive. The stagnant 704 suspension is pretty good and generally comfortable but

2. Yes the roads are horrid out here, horrid. So m adaptive would be nice to have.
LMK5 commented:
March 1, 2017, 5:55 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
Again, bmw is in the business of selling cars. The 22 year old with a Cobalt they let write his first article for MT seems to miss the point that BMW now has options for people who want a cushier ride on the way to work each day when they arent doing "track days". For people who want tighter suspension and better handling, there is the m sport and adaptive options. The 330 base is also perfectly capable and what exactly are the alternatives? Even the much praised audi a4 is criticized for numb steering. I love too how Mt starts by praising the drivetrain in the 330i and how the marriage between engine and trans is a match made in heaven. Yet what, there is something better available?

You want an old bmw, go buy one. You prefer the experience of throwing a vhs tape in a vcr, i think they still sell those on craigslist. This whole lamenting over yesteryear theme is really tiresome. You can do that about every product and every thing, ever - 'the good ol days'.

The funniest part is, how much you wanna bet that the Vast majority of people who bought older bmw when they were new were NOT 'enthusiasts' and couldnt care less about what MT is talking about? Most were 'badge whores' and most still are. Articles like these are essentially meaningless. The general public is going to pay a whole lot more attention to what CR has to say about the 330 than MT.

Wanna talk about how great the CTS is? Seems like for every 100 3 series I see on the road, I see some loan guy in a cadillac CTS. Neat. Cool story, bro!

Last, people need to try and move on from this because BMw aint never, ever putting out another E46. Never, ever again
Kafka, you have to admit that there was a certain pleasure in the tactile feel of the VCR sucking the tape from your hands and hearing the smooth engagement of the motor's gears. I don't feel the same user-to-machine connection when operating my DVR with a remote control.

On a more serious note, BMW built a reputation for cars that drove better, and that's what brought the masses to the brand. They've tried to capitalize on this by trying to find ways to keep you there, by offering every model type imaginable. But there's that risk of spreading yourself too thin. Sometimes companies find they have to divest and go back to their "core competencies." Dance with who "brung" ya. Whether BMW finds itself in this situation remains to be seen, but it just seems risky to depend on a past brand image to hold and gain buyers when so many other automakers are going after your customers. When you don't have that tangible differentiator, it seems to me you are vulnerable.

I've had my MY2014 328i base for almost 3 years, and will need to return it in June. I would've liked nothing more than to feel that this present car is so pleasing that I'm not even going to bother going through the hassle of testing out other brands and dealing with salespeople. I'd love to just head right back to Crevier and grab another car, and make my best deal. But when I feel a mild sun pinching my arm through the untinted windows; feel the car bobbing and weaving over a mildly imperfect road; find myself turning down the temperature dial to 64 on a hot summer day after starting off at 70; or cranking up the audio to 50% to hear it reasonably over the road noise, I tell myself that for the money, there's got to be something out there that does more things more competently than this car. That may or may not be true, but I'm in the position that I need to find that out.
Kafkaesque328 commented:
March 1, 2017, 8:45 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by LMK5 View Post
Kafka, you have to admit that there was a certain pleasure in the tactile feel of the VCR sucking the tape from your hands and hearing the smooth engagement of the motor's gears. I don't feel the same user-to-machine connection when operating my DVR with a remote control.

On a more serious note, BMW built a reputation for cars that drove better, and that's what brought the masses to the brand. They've tried to capitalize on this by trying to find ways to keep you there, by offering every model type imaginable. But there's that risk of spreading yourself too thin. Sometimes companies find they have to divest and go back to their "core competencies." Dance with who "brung" ya. Whether BMW finds itself in this situation remains to be seen, but it just seems risky to depend on a past brand image to hold and gain buyers when so many other automakers are going after your customers. When you don't have that tangible differentiator, it seems to me you are vulnerable.

I've had my MY2014 328i base for almost 3 years, and will need to return it in June. I would've liked nothing more than to feel that this present car is so pleasing that I'm not even going to bother going through the hassle of testing out other brands and dealing with salespeople. I'd love to just head right back to Crevier and grab another car, and make my best deal. But when I feel a mild sun pinching my arm through the untinted windows; feel the car bobbing and weaving over a mildly imperfect road; find myself turning down the temperature dial to 64 on a hot summer day after starting off at 70; or cranking up the audio to 50% to hear it reasonably over the road noise, I tell myself that for the money, there's got to be something out there that does more things more competently than this car. That may or may not be true, but I'm in the position that I need to find that out.
I understand.

First of all, why not tint the windows? I have been rolling in CA/Los angeles with tinted windows for years. More than half the cars locally and regionally are tinted. I returned my 320 with tinted windows, limo in rear, 35 up front, wife's cars the same, I had this 328 for a week and tinted the windows. It is night and day better and more comfortable, not to mention, cosmetically way better. With kids, god, forget about it. Nothing like having your kid NOT bake in the sun for the 5 hour trip up the 5 to the bay area, thanks to the limo tint in the rear. Not to mention privacy.

Re: the rest of it, yeah, I hear you. Key factor you said is "For the money". Key words. In my world, so far anywhere, where I lease BMWs, there is nothing better for the money. BMWs lease incredibly well if you are willing to do what I do and suffer the true hardship of getting a car off the lot that they want to move vs. special ordering your cherry, soon to be covered in dirt and dead bugs like everyone elses car, brand new BMW off the boat. Even special ordering, the deals are good. You keep leasing BMW's and they just get cheaper. I am already experiencing this and I know many long time BMW lease customers (it being L.A. and all) that are on their 3rd, 4th, 5th BMW and they definitely reward the loyalty, esp if you stick with the same dealer.

There is no comparably equipped Audi A4 that I could get for $366 a month and a grand out of pocket at signing. I know people spending that kind of money to lease Jettas, Camry and Accords. Guy at my work leases a Chevy Cruz for like $239 a month and paid a few grand at signing. He is basically paying as much or more than my 328 for an airport rental special Cruz.

But yeah, if you are buying these cars, for cash, like rolling to the dealer and plopping down $50000 in cash, then no, they are not worth it and not even remotely that good. If I paid $50000 cash for this car, I would feel like a total sucker. This is a $30k car with decent tech, good handling and a great engine/trans combo with, in my opinion, stellar looks and the badge, pretending to be an expensive car. One only has to sit in an F30 for a while, see all the areas where they cut corners to save money by using Scion esque hard plastics, or how the trim by the HVAC creaks like a bag of potato chips if you push on it or all the various little squeaks and creaks and rattles to realize that you are paying about double what the car is worth. You are paying dearly for the badge, for some engineering that is slightly better than the rest (maybe) and mainly for the myth.
namelessman commented:
March 1, 2017, 9:11 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
But yeah, if you are buying these cars, for cash, like rolling to the dealer and plopping down $50000 in cash, then no, they are not worth it and not even remotely that good. If I paid $50000 cash for this car, I would feel like a total sucker. This is a $30k car with decent tech, good handling and a great engine/trans combo with, in my opinion, stellar looks and the badge, pretending to be an expensive car. One only has to sit in an F30 for a while, see all the areas where they cut corners to save money by using Scion esque hard plastics, or how the trim by the HVAC creaks like a bag of potato chips if you push on it or all the various little squeaks and creaks and rattles to realize that you are paying about double what the car is worth. You are paying dearly for the badge, for some engineering that is slightly better than the rest (maybe) and mainly for the myth.
The number in my head is that BMW is 35% price premium for 15% added "value"(e.g. ZF 8AT + engine, 50/50 chassis) over the competitors, esp. the top trims of economic brands. E.g. BMW charges $40000(dynamic prices) for a car that is 15% better than a $30000 competitor. So the extra 15% should cost $4500 extra, and BMW charges additional $5500 premium on top.

The BMW engineering does have some value over the rest, e.g. just a 2mph accident avoidance speed delta of F30 versus Accord provides an extra 3 feet in that split second. It is true there are many factors can contribute to accident avoidance(or otherwise), but paying $5500 extra for additional margin maybe worth it to some.
Kafkaesque328 commented:
March 1, 2017, 9:38 pm

what I will say, being on my 2nd F30 and having had some seat time in previous 3 series is that BMW possesses some intangibles that I can't put my finger on but generally speaking make them more enjoyable to drive, for me anyway, than many other cars Ive driven. I think they pay insane attention to detail and the ergonomics are good and that they go out of their way to make a very driver focused cockpit. When I am cruising along at home at night doing about 75mph and am totally comfortable in the sport seats and the side bolsters are hugging me and holding me in place, my hand rests on whatever the hell that amazing leather is that they wrap the m sport wheel on, my other hand rests perfectly on the shifter and I feel like the interior is fitting me like a glove and the 704 suspension makes the car feel glued to the road and there is a soft glow from the classic orange gauges and the nav display looks nice and the there is the subtle led backlighting beneath the centerstack hvac area and the little LED lights pop on under the door handles and all that attention to detail and that it is so incredibly easy to drive this car fast; that is why I drive a BMW because I have yet to find another car that has that overall feeling. Maybe I haven't driven enough cars, who knows. I am eager to drive the new A4. Really want to check out that car. So much has been said about it. I have driven the C300 and while it is nice, I found the transmission to be inferior to the ZF8, and 4 cyl turbo to have a harsher sound at full tilt and there to be significant dead throttle at tip in. Overall, felt a little mushy compared to my car although it was a friend's car that I wasn't pushing. Again, seat time in the IS200t. Surprisingly good car but some fatal flaws
gkr778 commented:
March 2, 2017, 12:12 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spagolli94 View Post
I recently got to drive a 911 out in San Diego for a few days (Turo.com is awesome). First, I expected their roads to be like FL. Wrong. I was shocked to see that their roads were just as bad, if not worse then the crap we have here in the Northeast. Wow.
That's not a shock to Californians, who have known for many years that roads and highways throughout the state are poorly maintained. According to FHWA data compiled by The Road Information Program, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Jose had the highest proportions of roads and highways in poor condition among all large urban areas (500k+ population) in the U.S.

San Diego roads are better than those three areas, but still bad (nearly half in poor condition and worse than Chicago, New York/Newark, Philadelphia, or Boston):

Kafkaesque328 commented:
March 2, 2017, 1:24 am

60% poor roads, yup, live it every day.
namelessman commented:
March 2, 2017, 2:23 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by gkr778 View Post
That's not a shock to Californians, who have known for many years that roads and highways throughout the state are poorly maintained. According to FHWA data compiled by The Road Information Program, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Jose had the highest proportions of roads and highways in poor condition among all large urban areas (500k+ population) in the U.S.
The local roads on #1 and #3 are further hammered by the recent storms. E.g. my daily routes basically open up like pimples bursting, leaving potholes of various depths and severity. The light EPS and standard suspension and 17-inch rims are quite useful to navigate through and soak up the minefields.
FCBayern///M4 commented:
March 2, 2017, 2:54 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by tturedraider View Post
I'm generally a fan of CR, had a subscription for many years, but their favorite flavor is vanilla. They review cars with the same perspective they use to review toasters. The things about cars that we like are not the things about cars that they like. I take their car reviews and ratings with a grain of salt.
I prefer their vanilla data based assessments. Although I'm not sure they weigh complaints the same when applying them to their reliability metrics.

As far as the subjective 'driving dynamics,' I think I'd look elsewhere for a more performance oriented review.
Kafkaesque328 commented:
March 2, 2017, 3:42 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by namelessman View Post
The local roads on #1 and #3 are further hammered by the recent storms. E.g. my daily routes basically open up like pimples bursting, leaving potholes of various depths and severity. The light EPS and standard suspension and 17-inch rims are quite useful to navigate through and soak up the minefields.
You arent an enthusiast unless your teeth rattle when going over road imperfections. You need to FEEL those terrible roads.
namelessman commented:
March 2, 2017, 12:03 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
You arent an enthusiast unless your teeth rattle when going over road imperfections. You need to FEEL those terrible roads.
That is true that enhanced road feel does embrace good and bad roads alike. It is unclear to me if adaptive suspension can soak up the potholes well enough or not. My impression is that BMW's valve actuated design is not as good as magnetic ride from Caddy, but there is not enough experience on either to tell.
LMK5 commented:
March 2, 2017, 12:24 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by namelessman View Post
That is true that enhanced road feel does embrace good and bad roads alike. It is unclear to me if adaptive suspension can soak up the potholes well enough or not. My impression is that BMW's valve actuated design is not as good as magnetic ride from Caddy, but there is not enough experience on either to tell.
From what I hear, the the optional Airmatic suspension on the C300 is supposed to be very good also.
FCBayern///M4 commented:
March 2, 2017, 1:32 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
You arent an enthusiast unless your teeth rattle when going over road imperfections. You need to FEEL those terrible roads.


Did someone say "enthusiast?" [emoji23][emoji23]




Sent from my iPhone 7+ using Tapatalk
Kafkaesque328 commented:
March 2, 2017, 2:03 pm

If BMW doesn't come out with a roll up window option on the next generation 3 series, I am DONE
LMK5 commented:
March 2, 2017, 2:19 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafkaesque328 View Post
If BMW doesn't come out with a roll up window option on the next generation 3 series, I am DONE
I didn't know it at the time, but my first car in high school, a 1976 Mercury Comet, seemed to have everything an enthusiast could want:

1) Rear wheel drive
2) Manual trans ("3 on the tree")
3) Manual steering
4) Manual brakes
5) Inline 6 cylinder (200 CID, 105HP)
6) Mechanical clutch

Who knew???
namelessman commented:
March 2, 2017, 5:24 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by LMK5 View Post
I didn't know it at the time, but my first car in high school, a 1976 Mercury Comet, seemed to have everything an enthusiast could want:

1) Rear wheel drive
2) Manual trans ("3 on the tree")
3) Manual steering
4) Manual brakes
5) Inline 6 cylinder (200 CID, 105HP)
6) Mechanical clutch

Who knew???
How was the driving experience of that Comet compared to your F30? My guess is that Comet was more contact sports than driving.
LMK5 commented:
March 2, 2017, 8:17 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by namelessman View Post
How was the driving experience of that Comet compared to your F30? My guess is that Comet was more contact sports than driving.
Definitely a "connected" experience. Stopping on a steep rise and then getting the car engaged in first gear with that shaky clutch and low power motor was an exercise in driving precision and outright guts. Definitely not for the faint of heart.

Back then, you got to know your car because you were always fixing something. I'd dive into the Chilton manual and learn all about the car, and make my own repairs. If I didn't I couldn't have a car because my family never could've afforded the repair bills.

The car was very easy to work on as the inline six left plenty of room under the hood. I remember I came out to the car one cold winter morning and found a large crack in the dash right down the center, exposing the orange fill. Another time I started the car and the starter gear decided to remain engaged to the flywheel. I lifted the clutch and off I went, powered a ways by just the starter motor, with the added attraction of smoke rising from the steering column. Another time I was trying to get out of a snowed-in parking spot, using the manual trans. to rock the car back and forth. This took a while, and when I looked behind me I saw a big cloud of purple smoke. The next week the car was in the shop getting the engine rebuilt. On yet another occasion I was driving on the NY Thruway towards Albany in winter and my oil light came on. I pulled off the road and discovered that the oil sending unit had cracked, and oil was spurting out. Not to worry. I went to the box full of tools and spare parts in the trunk, pulled out an old oil drain plug, and voila!, the sucker fit. Added a quart of oil and back on the road to SUNY Utica I went.

They just don't make 'em like they used to...and thank God for that.