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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well, after all this time, I guess I can finally consider myself a true BMW enthusiast. I finally took delivery of "Twilight" on Feb 3 at the Performance Center in SC. And I just returned from that trip (combined with a Disney vacation) this weekend. So... I'd like to officially say "HELLO!"

Twilight is a 2003 330i with pretty much everything except PDC. Most importantly, Twilight may be the only Tourmaline Violet 3 series in the US. While the color is available in Canada, it is not listed for US sales. A little persistence and asking the right questions, and for the cost of regular metallic paint, I can now claim to have a "unique" car.

Oh... and myself: I'm Eric, a long-time VW owner and enthusiast. Love going to car club events as well as my other interests such as anime, pc and console gaming, biking and camping, sci-fi and fantasy. And music. Sometimes a goof, but always a kid-at-heart.

Here are some pictures in the delivery bay at the Performance Center. You can see how much the color varies by the light:











The Performance Center delivery was completely worth it. My day consisted of a 2-3 hour orientation of the car, then about 2 hours on the center's test tracks performing skidpad and slalom exorcises. This was followed by lunch at their great cafeteria and then an unforgettable ride in an M5 with the driving instructor around an autocross course and something called the "Swedish Guitar"! After that we got to tour the plant and see the Zentrum museum.

From that terrific experience we drove south to Florida to spend some time at the House of Mouse, stopping in Savannah GA to visit friends. Finally, our 2-week vacation was coming to an end, and it was time to head back to frigid Massachusetts. We took the Amtrak Autotrain from Florida to Washington DC. Unfortunately, Amtrak managed to bruise poor Twilight on the way, doing a touch of damage to her passenger sideskirt. Fortunately, they will reimburse me 100% of the cost to fix. It's just a shame this happened to a car with less then 650 miles on it.

Driving home from DC on Saturday was a blast. We just managed to outrun the storm that hammered the area. By the time we got home 7 hours later, DC and Baltimore were already under several inches of snow. The snow didn't catch us in MA until Monday morning. Luckily I had already ordered my snow tires and wheels, and they were ready at the local tire shop. By mid morning, I was cruising around in the snow with little trouble.

Other than the snow tires and wheels (16" AT Italia Type 5), the only other thing I've gotten for her is the universal garage door remote, which I still haven't installed. So far, with the bad weather and still within the break-in period, I haven't really had a chance to see what she can do. However, I have noticed she likes chastising me every time I approach 80 MPH! All I need now is some nice warm, dry weather.

Well, thanks for listening to me ramble. I'm sure you all will help me along with my obsession... though I don't know if that's a good thing or not. See you around.
 

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Congratulations on the car!

Post some interior pics when you can.

In regards to the "bruise": How extensive is it and will your custom color pose any challenges when repairing?
 

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Pretty...

Congrats!
 

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It's beautiful. The best thing is - it only gets better! Sorry to hear about the bruise. It sucks that it happened so soon.
 

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I know a thing or two...
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OBS3SSION said:

Here are some pictures in the delivery bay at the Performance Center. You can see how much the color varies by the light:



What a beautiful car. The color is amazing!!
 

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I'm a Mac
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Nice color--congrats!

I hope when you get a chance you'll more details regarding your "little persistence and asking the right questions" sp that others here might also be successful in ordering otherwise unavailable colors for the same cost as normal metallic!!
 

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Revelation 10:7
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Excellent! Car looks awesome and I am sure it was a blast at Spartanburg. Hate it about the damage, but at least you know the expense is covered.
 

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Nice looking car!

When you get a chance, please let us know how you got the Tourmaline Violet for the price of regular metallic.

My wife has her heart set on a Toledo Blue 330cic. I'm really hoping either she will change her color choice or we'll find a way to skip the $1800 color upcharge.
 

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Color blind photographer
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Beautiful car and, like you say, a very unique color. The PC experience sure sounded like fun. Enjoy the new ride.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Thanks guys for the comments. As far as getting TV for a color, here's what happened:

I first "discovered" the color on e46fanatics when a Canadian member posted pictures of his new 3 series. I thought the car looked cool, and showed the pictures to my wife. Her jaw dropped and she said something like "that's the color we're getting!" Luckily, I agreed... and the quest for TV began.

My first thought was to buy a Canadian spec BMW, and "import" it into the US. However, this would have posed several problems, including a different feature/option sheet for Canadian cars than we get. Not to mention I would have needed a Canadian address to buy the car. I went so far as to contact a couple Canadian dealerships... but in the end found this wasn't really an option I wanted to pursue further.

I did a ton of web surfing and saw that indeed TV was the only extra color you could get in Canada that wasn't available in the US. I found the BMW Individual website, but TV wasn't listed there. Finally, I came upon a post somewhere that said you should be able to get a Canadian color at no extra charge. This got my hopes up, and I decided to take that info and run with it.

I was speaking with 4 different local dealerships about my upcoming order of a 3 series. I told each of them about wanting TV, and pretty much got the same answer: it would cost $1800-2400 for a custom color. I told them it wasn't an Individual color, but was available in Canada. I asked them to look into it anyway.

A few weeks later, only one of the dealerships got back to me with an answer. He had contacted someone in BMWNA and was quite shocked to find out that I could indeed order TV at no extra cost. (Only the metallic paint charge.) So, the order was places, the eternity of waiting passed, and now I'm driving a beautiful Tourmaline Violet 330... which just happens to be covered in salt and winter goop at the moment. :cry:

So, I guess in the end I was able to get TV because it is a regular production color. After touring the Spartanburg plant, I can only guess that Munich has the same paint system... where they prepaint the cars and store them until a car of that color is needed. I must have just gotten a painted shell that would normally have gone to Canada or elsewhere.

My guess is that you can get any color at no extra charge... as long as that color is available somewhere else in the world as a standard color on that model. So no, I wouldn't expect you to be able to get a Laguna Seca Blue 330 or 325.
 

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A sudden sense of liberty
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Very nice. Would you mind posting some more pics when you get the chance? I dig that color.
 

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Ex-Dictator
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Congrats on your new car !

Welcome to the Tourmaline Club :angel:


PS: Violett Drivers Unite :D
 

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The Original Dr. Phil
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Alex Baumann said:
Congrats on your new car !

Welcome to the Tourmaline Club :angel:


PS: Violett Drivers Unite :D
I was wondering when you would check in :confused:

How do you like my new signature ;)
 

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The Original Dr. Phil
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Congrats Eric!

The color looks great on a 330i SP. :bigpimp: Nice pictures, too. :thumbup:

The PC delivery sounds great. All instructor drives I've had have been unforgettable. You totally lucked out with the storm, you could have been stuck in DC for days. I just took my 330i out of the garage today for the first time since Saturday.
 

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:thumbup: Congrats on your new baby! Tourmaline is a gorgeous color; your persistence definitely paid off.

It's too bad that the Auto Train damaged your car. This is the first instance I've heard of that happening, and I know several C5 guys whose cars' undertrays never even scraped the pavement on the Auto Train. It's good to know that Amtrak is covering the repair.
 
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