A little background….. This is my wife's car. When we got married almost 40 years ago she had a 240Z and I had an MGB. We like cars. In the first eight years of marriage we had four kids. The sports cars became station wagons, vans and Toyotas. After getting the kids raised and out of college without any student loans; and after retiring five years ago from a 36 year career we got back into cars and added traveling. Lots of travel
In 2011 we did a three week trip to Europe hitting seven countries and 12 cities in 21 days using the Euro Rail. Great trip. Home for a month and I hit a mobile scooter that was dropped on the freeway in front of me totaling our 2006 530I. Because we just got back from Europe I opted to do a short trip to Munich and did an ED on a 2012 535I M-Sport. It was a weekend trip that included a trip to the Nauschwanstein Castle with my brother and his wife who live in Switzerland. This gave me a taste of what an ED could be and was on the bucket list.
Last summer I convinced my wife (didn't take much) that she needed a new car. She had a '07 Mini Cooper S. We first looked at the M235I but quickly focused in on the M2 that would be out in several months. My research also showed that the M2 was going to be damn hard to get in the first year. Living in Northern Los Angeles I have a ton of BMW dealers around Southern California. In September of last year I visited and call numerous dealers in So Cal. The answer was the same; no list, long list, special list (repeat customers) or $5,000 or more over MSRP. When I mentioned I wanted to do an ED it was met with an even cooler reception. I get it; it is a supply and demand thing and a profit thing.
In October I decided to reach out by email to dealer's internet sales departments. I elected to contact only BMW dealers that were on the 2015 (most current at the time) "Center of Excellence" list. There are only 32 dealers each year that are awarded this honor. I figured these dealers may have a better chance of getting addition allocations of M cars. I sent out about 15 emails introducing myself and letting them know I wanted to do a ED on an M2 as soon as they are released. The response was underwhelming. Most told me they had no information on the M2 yet and others told me they weren't making list for the car. A few also mentioned that there would be a hefty mark up on the car for the first year.
However, one BMW got back to me within an hour of the email and said they would look into it. The next day they contacted me and said they would take a $1000 deposit and I would be the first on their list. They would sell me the M2 for ED MSRP. The dealer was El Paso BMW. The SA was Ismael Rodriguez and the Internet Sales Manager is Jorge Salas. OUTSTANDING quality sales personnel. And, El Paso is just a mere two states away and only 850 miles. Easy pick up!
In February El Paso BMW got their first allocation and began the paperwork for our ED. Unfortunately, BMW NA would not allow the launch car to be delivered in Munich. I understood. El Paso BMW told me I could take delivery of the M2 in El Paso or wait for the second allocation which they believed would be in June. I let my wife make the decision and she opted to wait for the second one and pick it up in Munich. Great call on her part.
In May they got their second allocation for an M2 and the paperwork began. Email, some phone calls and FedEx made this an easy purchase despite the distance.
The M2 my wife built was a LBB 6-Speed with Executive Package. The nearly ten month journey to pick up the M2 and begin our European Delivery was near. The first day the dealer could offer us to do the ED was July 12. Sounded good to us!
After nearly missing our connecting flight to Munich we arrived Monday morning in Munich. Tuesday morning, July 12, we got to the Welt at 8 AM and signed in for our 10:20 AM delivery. We completed the paperwork and were informed that customs had not yet delivered our paper work or plates. They expected them about noon. Not an issue for us as we weren't going to hit the road until the next day. They offered to do the delivery early and we politely declined. We wanted to enjoy the experience, and boy did we. Food, drink and great things to see. We were in no rush. I found a spot where I could watch the elevator that they use to bring the cars up from the storage area. I was able to get photos of our M2 being brought up. Then the delivery. The delivery specialist was great; knowledgeable, polite, informative, patient and personable. We spent over an hour having fun with the delivery. I took a ton of photos.
We did the factory tour at 11:45, ate (again) in the lounge and enjoyed the sites of the Welt. We picked up our free key ring at the Welt gift store and had the ED date engraved on it. Nice. I did the same thing for the 535 ED. We had visited the museum in 2011 and I had also visited again when I took delivery of the 535, so we skipped it this time. Even skipping the museum we didn't leave the Welt until after 5 PM. They were kind enough to let us park the M2 in their vast underground parking lot that night. And, as long as it was just sitting there so clean, and it was going to get driven for over 1200 miles in the next week, I waxed it. Yes sir... I bought my can of wax, an applicator and two polishing towels and went to town. I love waxing cars. Waxing a new car is really a treat for me. Odd, I know. I also installed a dash camera for the trip.
The next morning we picked up the M2 and headed for Sturrgart. It was a 2 hour drive and 135 miles. Easy drive despite some heavy rain and some construction on the autobahn. One recommendation, stay away from the second rest stop out of Munich. I was shocked at how filthy it was. From that point on we only used Shell gas stations for any pit stops.
We went to the Mercedes-Benz Plant in Kundencenter Sindelfingen. This is just outside Sturrgart. The tour was poor. Really poor.
The next morning we drove 16 miles to the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart. We have been to the Porsche museum in Stuttgart and the BMW Museum. The Mercedes museum is absolutely amazing. The personal audio units are perfect. The displays are great. And the history is well documented. After 5 hours we had not seen it all but had sensory overload and it was time to leave.
We took off for the Nürburgring. This was an easy 3 ¼ hour drive about 200 miles. The ring didn't open up for tourist drives until 5:30 PM and was only open until 7:30 PM. It is a beautiful area and so green I quickly realized where it got its nick name from; Green Hell. It was raining as we arrived and purchased our tickets but stopped about a half an hour before we drove it. The track was fairly dry when we drove it. And we did drive it, not race it. We stayed to the right and watched for other cars coming up on us. An Audi RS8, an E92 M3 and what I believe was an E30 M3 pasted us so fast it was startling. Even knowing they were coming it was wild getting your doors blown off as these cars passed. The E30 was very close as he passed us. I have no doubt that if I had bought ten passed I could have gotten to know the track. I could have increased my speed. And, evidentially, I would have lost control of the M2 and crashed. Still, I felt the same way as when we stood in the Coliseum in Rome in 2011. I just couldn't believe I was driving on a piece of history I had heard about for so long, seen pictures of and watched countless YouTube videos of.
We spent the night in Nurburg at the Dorint Am Nürburgring Hocheifel. I spent the extra money and got a room with a balcony overlooking the Grand Prix track. That night as the sun set we watched several Porsches, BMWs and Mercedes racing around the track. And, the first thing in the morning they were back at it. Very very cool and worth the money.
Next we headed to Strasbourg, France. I had originally planned on staying in Nancy France but Trinitony suggested staying in Strasbourg France. In doing so he said we would drive through Mosel Valley and Alsace. That was a great suggestion. The drive from Nurgurg to Strasbourg was by far the more beautiful drive of the trip. Thanks for that Trinitony. It was only a 175 miles drive and I wish it had been further with that scenery.
From Strasbourg we headed to Switzerland and spent two days with my brother and his wife. I should have stayed longer. Poor scheduling on my part. On Sunday we drove up to Schilthorn and took three gondola rides to get to the restaurant at the top. About 10,000 feet in elevation and the restaurant turns rotating every 45 minutes. A breath taking view.
The last day was the longest drive; 390 miles. We went to the Neuschwanstein Castle then off to Munich.
One of the best calls I made was to stay at the Hilton Hotel at the Munich airport. It is directly across the street from the drop off and the airport. We got in about 8 PM and there was a parking spot open at the Log in Out. I parked the M2 and spent an hour or so squaring things away. I had gone by the gas station by the airport on the way to the drop off and put a gallon of gas in the car. I looked at the car wash and just couldn't do it. No way could I have an auto car wash our new car. I did use their sponge to knock off the bugs and once at the Log In I touched it up some more. It looked pretty good.
Parking is damn tight over there. I like parking away from other cars and could do it at times. Other times you were so tight it was scary. My brother let me park it in his garage while we visited him; very nice. I'll removed the dash cam and once I get the car back I'll hardwire it in. The OBC showed the MPG as being 25.7. By the pump I calculated 25.1 MPG. This is not that bad. My 535 was further off before I adjusted it. Once the M2 is home I'll work on that. The one feature that was great on the drive was the speed limit being displayed on by the odometer. The speed limit signs are poorly posted at best.
At the end of the trip we had put 1,242 miles on the car. My wife drove about 80 per cent of it. It is her car after all. They delivered the car fully gassed up and we gassed up three times not counting the last time in Munich that I put just a gallon in. The total cost for gas was $221.25; the average MPG was 25.1; and the average cost of a gallon of gas was $6.50. I used Shell V-Power 100.
To all those who posted on this forum, thank you. There is a wealth of knowledge here that I took full advantage of.
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