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Discussion Starter #1
I'm sure this gets asked once a week.
Anyone got a good old thread with buyer's advice?

Are these good cars? Or are they a rolling disaster?

How do these compare to E46? I am a huge fan of E46.
Buy for $6k, invest $3k of parts, and you're good for a while.
Are these on par with E46 (little issues, but nothing insane)

Any truth to the following:
"Avoid 06-08 for kinks to be worked out. Best years are 09-12"

Any pitfalls to avoid?
Avoid buying from a flipper dealer lot (Wholesale car did not meet CPO criteria?)

Manual is required.
He prefers a non-turbo.
Good places to find one?
 

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I'm sure this gets asked once a week.
Anyone got a good old thread with buyer's advice?

Are these good cars? Or are they a rolling disaster?

How do these compare to E46? I am a huge fan of E46.
Buy for $6k, invest $3k of parts, and you're good for a while.
Are these on par with E46 (little issues, but nothing insane)

Any truth to the following:
"Avoid 06-08 for kinks to be worked out. Best years are 09-12"

Any pitfalls to avoid?
Avoid buying from a flipper dealer lot (Wholesale car did not meet CPO criteria?)

Manual is required.
He prefers a non-turbo.
Good places to find one?
E9X's are great cars. Probably the most reliable newer BMW model.
(We're only talking about the 328i here since your friend wants non-turbo).

My friend has an E46 manual. I drove it for a day.
It's a great car as well. Good hydraulic clutch for a DD.
You asked how they compare?
Well, the E9X is a more modern and better performing version of the E46.
A lot more tech available and everything is computer controlled.

I would buy an 08+ to avoid all the kinks as many may have suggested.

Try to find one at a BMW dealer or a reputable used car dealer.
A PPI is a must if your friend cannot do one himself.

Overall the E9x 328i is a solid performing car with the typical BMW water pump, coils and etc.. of course.

One last thing. A manual is a good option, but most manual cars are driven in a spirited manner. Just a heads up.
 

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i own both e46 and e93 (and a F25). i love them both and as stated e9x is a more modern e46. old school versus more modern tech.

i've always owned a straight 6, both with and without turbo. imo, all others are anemic. but that's just my preferences. i like the power of M54, N54 and N55 engines.

and manuals are a true driver's car, though my DCT 335is is pretty sweet and incredibly fast.
 

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One thing though....if you live in a warmish locale, make E93 your first choice! Your friend will quickly become addicted to top down op, but there is danger in that: Many E93 pilots are are do dedicated to the open air that they drive that way well into Winter, often needing face masks to prevent frostbite.

Beware, EconoBox. E93 is not for the weak minded. No! Your friend must have self discipline, and a powerful will.


 

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Heated seats solves all <70° weather problems. And the wind deflector deleted need for facial protection.

We're Folsom proud here and love driving in Fog City on occasion, top down of course.

Look for us tomorrow as it's going to be 106° here and we need some relief and SF food :)
 

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And for OP, buy used from an owner and one that has service records and is enthusiast owned and cared for.

My 08 E93 at 112k needed $3000 p&l work. It was like new again after that.

It all depends on what your buddy wants to buy. How many miles on it and just E90?

My E93 2008 was very trouble free as for BMWs. Walnut blast is a must, usual gasket stuff, charge pipe, and it loved rear tires. Torque equals wear.

Manual of course. Row your own gears for the thrills.
 

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Pedant and Curmudgeon
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...
... Walnut blast is a must, usual gasket stuff, charge pipe, and it loved rear tires. ...
Since the OP is looking at an N52 (non-turbo, non-di) your statement about walnut blast is rubbish.

I put 145K on my '01 330xi, and it certainly wasn't trouble free. It used a lot of oil (M54 was notorious for that), cooling system was crap, suspension complete redo at 120K, other niggly stuff.

Traded it for my '10 335d (not the car for the timid wanting a trouble-free owners experience btw) because the transfer case was going out. If you get an E9x with few electronics, it will probably be more reliable than an E46.
 

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How do these compare to E46? I am a huge fan of E46.
Buy for $6k, invest $3k of parts, and you're good for a while.
Are these on par with E46 (little issues, but nothing insane)

Any truth to the following:
"Avoid 06-08 for kinks to be worked out. Best years are 09-12"


Some E9x are more than 10 years old. While whatever problems they were shipped from the factory with have (hopefully) been fixed now, there are any number of brand-new problems that are possible, just because of the age of the car.

I liked the E46. I kept waiting for BMW to build an E46 ZHP Touring -- which they never did. (And BMW has apparently given up on wagons and SUVs with manual transmissions now.)

Caveat emptor. There is no such thing as a free lunch. There is no such thing as a cheap BMW. etc. etc. etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
He wants non-turbo, so he wants the 328i or 328xi, correct?
 

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Traded our 2003 325ic a few weeks ago for a 2009 e93. Worlds of difference. Got the e93 for $17k with 35k miles on it, lowest mileage I saw and it was local. Biggest benefits were Bluetooth, nav, Heated seats and steering wheel, hard top cabriolet and the seats were miles ahead of the e46. And 17 inch rims as well, which I've upgraded to 18s. And the 335i engine is much better than the 325ic for sure. All in all, much better car imho.
 

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One thing though....if you live in a warmish locale, make E93 your first choice! Your friend will quickly become addicted to top down op, but there is danger in that: Many E93 pilots are are do dedicated to the open air that they drive that way well into Winter, often needing face masks to prevent frostbite.



Beware, EconoBox. E93 is not for the weak minded. No! Your friend must have self discipline, and a powerful will.







I own a '07 328xi and a FBO + PS2 '11 335i xDrive. Despite being born, raised, and still residing in the birthplace of the 'Rust-Belt,' (aka: Northeast Pennsylvania), where owning a house 1850' above sea-level and owning an E93 is indicative of extreme wealth, extreme impracticality, or exhibiting extreme 'idiot-savant' nouveau-riche indulgences without the 'savant' part...
Without CALWATERBOY DUE's permission, I am an avid, self-appointed acolyte of this BMW Demi-God! Before my first BMW vehicle purchase, before my first post on any BMW forum, I followed CAL's individual's keystrokes till my eyes bled. Only fdriller9 is held in such high regard.
Last March, I was about to purchase a mint FBO 2011 E93 W/LSD, when my wife of 38 years threatened me with the "D" word if I bought a RWD convertible. As for being weak-minded, maybe...but I got my 335i & still can pee standing up!

Mike


Sent from my iPhone using Bimmerfest mobile app
 

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True true. Nothing feels better than having a car that you share with your mechanic half the time ;)


Bitter is an ugly color on you.

My N54 gave me many excellent miles with minimal to usual maintenance.

It's called maintenance folks. That ****-happy grin comes with parts that wear.

The weak and timid lease new BMWs. Then real owners buy them and enjoy them.

On my 8th BMW now so yeah, I understand and know how to own and drive one. And I currently have 3 in my stable. Love each and every one of them.


Sent from my iPhone using Bimmerfest mobile app
 

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The 2009, 2010, 2011 cars are coming down a lot in price recently. Seem to be some great used deals around. My preference has always been to buy from a one or two owner car, privately. Never bought from a used car dealer and probably never will.

What year was the automatic shut-off and start-up (for fuel economy) introduced?
 

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Is that simply because newer cars have fewer miles on them?
No. As a new model "ages", the factory gets better building them, and folds in little upgrades to meke them better. Notice that every year following '06 - the start of the E9x - gets better scores.

The black badness in cooling system for the E46 is evident in that chart.
 

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My 09 LCI 328i has had way fewer issues than our 02 330i ....... they both drive great ...... I'm expecting the 125,000 miles 09 to out live the 175,000 miles 02 .....
 

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Bitter is an ugly color on you.

My N54 gave me many excellent miles with minimal to usual maintenance.

It's called maintenance folks. That ****-happy grin comes with parts that wear.

The weak and timid lease new BMWs. Then real owners buy them and enjoy them.

On my 8th BMW now so yeah, I understand and know how to own and drive one. And I currently have 3 in my stable. Love each and every one of them.


Sent from my iPhone using Bimmerfest mobile app
I'm half joking, but also half serious. People gotta brighten up jeez.
However, the N54 335i does have a lot more potential problems than a 328i.
You have to admit. I'm not saying that every 335i out there will have problems.
In fact, I have a friend who has minimal problems with his 09 335i. 98K on it.
However, my cousin who bought her 07 335i new spent more time repairing it than driving it.
Her HPFP went out twice. Charge pipe leaked at 70k. Then to top it off she spent 1k on injectors. Oh yeah and the water pump of course. But that's on all BMW's.
Then finally the wastegate started to rattle.
Sold it at 120K.
She basically had every problem a 335i can have.
What I'm trying to get at is, there is a lot more to go wrong on a 335i than a 328i.
You cannot argue with that.
However, the 335i is a great performing car with room for tuning and mods.
No arguments there.
Like I said. I was half joking and half serious. Go easy on the sodium. ;)
 
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