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2001 vs. 2002 weight/acceleration

1448 Views 18 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  bob wilson
After looking up the stats, the 2001 3-series weigh, on average, 100+ pounds more than the 2002 models. Yet, BMW listed them at the same 0-60 time. I think they're just lazy.
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You know what they say. There are lies, damn lies, and statistics. 2001 or 2002 are damn fast.
A hundred pounds isn't a whole lot of weight in the scheme of things (about 3%, or roughly the difference between a car with a full tank of gas and a car with an empty tank), but every little bit makes a difference I guess. It's pretty rare for a car to lose weight in this stage of the design's life; usually the weight creeps up as the design ages. Where did the weight go?

Based on your claims (roughly):

(2001 330Ci) 3385/225 = 15.0 lbs/HP
(2002 330Ci) 3285/225 = 14.6 lbs/HP

Not a huge difference there, but still measurable. Just a guess, but I think you would be able to feel a difference in the twisties more than anywhere else.


according to BMW now though, which is why I mention it:

~150 lbs. = .5 seconds faster/slower 0-60.
i.e. The 330Ci/i weighs 150 lbs. lighter than the 330xi; 330Ci/i @ 6.4 seconds, 330xi @ 6.9 seconds.

just an observation.
I'm not very familiar with the xi to be honest. Is the gearing any different than the other cars you mentioned?

(Putting on flame-retardant suit) Also, isn't the drivetrain on an AWD vehicle less efficient in getting power to the wheels? I know they can launch better due to better traction if you put the clutch through hell, but I'm talking about the percentage of power that actually makes it from the engine to the wheels. Could this be another factor, or is the difference in efficiency negligible?

I know... I'm reaching, but being a cluebie I can't come up with any better ideas. I'm just looking for some other variables that might be out there other than the weight difference.

Another variable could be the marketing department. I would probably suspect that more than anything else! ;)

What do 'independent' tests look like? Do they show the same discrepancy?


there are tons of debates over which is faster, xi or Ci/i, but, regardless, the other variables aren't existent between the 2001 and 2002 models. So a 2001 330xi should still be slower than a 2002 330xi (and the same for i/Ci) based on the stats.

as far as other sources regarding Ci/i/xi, the xi has been tested at 5.8, compared to the Ci/i's best between 6.1-6.4 (from several magazines). The AWD creates better launches but adds more weight and is less efficient, YET it has a higher final drive ratio, making it quicker off hte line as well.
take this for what you will and decide which is faster, it's almost impossible to tell which cancels out/outweighs which part.
Not that two ticks matter, but has the 330ci doing 0-60 in 5.9 seconds. I have seen at least two other sources with the same claim... but of course testing conditions, testing methods (corrected?), the car itself, and the DRIVER are all variables that work against eachother.

I have never put much weight on 0-60 times myself... personally I have always found 1/4 mile times to be much more telling of straight-line acceleration. :dunno:

Question for Sonet.

I, like you did, went without the headlamp washers on my 330ci this time around. My current 330i squirts water all over the hood when they are activated.

I was concerned that the washer trim does give the headlights a little more definition when looking dead-on.

Well, status 150. Too late to get the CWP. I did get heated seats though. In retrospect, I would get the washers just for the look (detail) and deactivate them later if they were troublesome.

What do you think?

The heated seats are good... Wish I'd gotten them... The headlight washers are just annoying.
Anyone know the reasons for the weight difference? Where did they take it from?

Or was this based on a change in base features??

RChoudry said:
What do you think?
I assumed that my car would come without the washers because I didn't order PP. However, I have read in more than one place that there is a law in the US that requires xenon headlights to have a self-cleaning mechanism. This law may be outdated, but it made me question whether or not my car will come equipped with the washers.

Personally I don't think I would ever use them anyway because of the mess they make. The water/solution has no planned escape route like the ones pointed at the windshield... the solution will end up on the hood, the bumper, and possibly even on the side of the car. What a mess! I'd rather get out and clean them myself.

I do think the washers make the car look a little better up front, but aesthetics played a secondary role in my decision to buy this car anyway. :D


SONET, I see what you're saying, but that site also lists the 330Ci convertible as going 0-60 in 5.9 seconds as well, when it's 400 lbs. heavier than the 330Ci coupe. regardless, my original problem was w/ BMWNA because they were, i feel, inconsistant with their test results, probably due to marketing techniques.

I checked with BMW NA regarding the lights and washers. They say that only a self-leveling mechanism is required by law, not self-cleaning.

Level 151 today!

Anyone knows the reason for the weight difference between 2001-2002?
Sonet, to echo RChoudry, I know many-a-car with HIDs and no cleaners. =)

Even the self-leveling devices aren't required as noted by Acura's decision not to use them.
I've heard about self-leveling is required by law in (Europe) but not in NA. Because those Acura TL, CL. (May be IS-300) don't have self leveling mechanism in their xenon.
FrancisK said:
I've heard about self-leveling is required by law in (Europe) but not in NA. Because those Acura TL, CL. (May be IS-300) don't have self leveling mechanism in their xenon.
The IS300 is indeed self-leveling. But yes the Acuras are missing that feature.
danpop said:
Anyone knows the reason for the weight difference between 2001-2002?
I've read that one factor is the new use of aluminum control arms.
Interestingly the European sites showed faster 0-100KPH times for the 2002 over the 2001 with the time differences being up to .5 seconds depending on models. I wondered at the time if this was because the SMG was available in Europe but not the US. Could just be the weight issue and BMWNA and BMWCA simply used last years numbers.
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