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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

I have been in the market for a new (used) car for a few months now. I previously was planning on buying a 2006 330XI, however, I have realized after a few months of searching that I will not be able to afford one as I had a 20K budget. :cry:

I live in CT so I am planning to buy a vehicle with AWD as I'm not a very confident driver in the snow.

My next options after the '06 330XI, will be either the E46 or an older X5 (2003/2204) with less than 70K miles preferably.

I now have a 15K budget (since I'm thinking of an older car) so I was hoping for ideas on what will be the best option for a purchase.

I have read through the WIKI and a lot of the threads and I really wish I could get an E46 with ZHP, but I know it would be more expensive than 15K :)

My other car option to consider would be an Infiniti G35X although I would really prefer the Bimmer.

Please let me know your thoughts.

Thanks very much for your time,

--Kathy
 

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Coconut Pete's paella!
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X5 <-----------------------------------------------------------------> 3 Series

The two cars you are thinking about are at the completely opposite ends of the spectrum. You are considering an SUV vs. a small sports coupe/sedan. I'm not sure what advice I can give you until you decide which direction you want to go in. I love the X5 too and I want an 04' but the reason I don't have it yet is because I'm not giving up the E46 to get it.....

You mentioned that AWD is a requirement for you - don't stress the ZHP - they never came w/ AWD.
 

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Yankee
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Winter is a GREAT time to enjoy the 3 series AWD - I can go through snow drifts that leave everyone else stuck. :eek: Make sure you invest in some decent snow tires. Enjoy your time test driving everything ~ That's part of the fun of looking/deciding on a vehicle. :) Good Luck.
 

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Radar Specialist
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Alrighty, I can give my input on the X5 as I have one...

That thing is like a TANK, I mean it's freaking tough. Since I have a 4.4i the power is there all the time and delivers when you need it. The handling is superb for an suv and if you cruise at 100/110 it doesn't feel like it. The space in the X5 is good, a lot of trunk space, fold down seats, etc. Still susceptible to cooling problems just like an E46.

Like Pete stated, both bimmers are on the opposite sides. If you need something bigger get the X5, if you prefer a small car get an E46.

Just to let you know, with a good set of winter tires you can go through anything (besides lava of course :p )
 

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I have to agree with the above, the only thing that the X5 and 3 series AWD have in common is the fact that they are both AWD. For me, I would go with the AWD 3 series because I think it would be a lot more fun to drive no matter how the conditions are. Also, I am more of a car guy then an SUV guy.
 

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X5 <-----------------------------------------------------------------> 3 Series

The two cars you are thinking about are at the completely opposite ends of the spectrum. You are considering an SUV vs. a small sports coupe/sedan. I'm not sure what advice I can give you until you decide which direction you want to go in. I love the X5 too and I want an 04' but the reason I don't have it yet is because I'm not giving up the E46 to get it.....

You mentioned that AWD is a requirement for you - don't stress the ZHP - they never came w/ AWD.
agreed 110%, figure out what you want and needs are, then do some searching, do you really need a SUV?, if your looking for space that you'll only use once or twice a year, not worth it in my opinion. the x5 might be a tank (probably drinks gas like one too) doesnt mean its any safer,. if it was me, i would look at a wagon before X5 or X3 (just my opinion).
dont forget cars, will out perform the SUV and they look better too:thumbup:.

if you can afford to buy status go ahead but if your on a budget try to be practical, you dont want to hate your rid after spending the money.
 

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Alrighty, I can give my input on the X5 as I have one...

That thing is like a TANK, I mean it's freaking tough. Since I have a 4.4i the power is there all the time and delivers when you need it. The handling is superb for an suv and if you cruise at 100/110 it doesn't feel like it. The space in the X5 is good, a lot of trunk space, fold down seats, etc. Still susceptible to cooling problems just like an E46.

Like Pete stated, both bimmers are on the opposite sides. If you need something bigger get the X5, if you prefer a small car get an E46.

Just to let you know, with a good set of winter tires you can go through anything (besides lava of course :p )
small car?
 

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The Boss of Nobody
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XiT anyone?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Hello Everybody,

You guys and gals all rock!!!! Your feedback has been extremely helpful and insightful.

I have now decided to go with the E46 over the X5 :), for loads of reasons, but mainly for all the points you identified. I really don't need the space so I'll be better off with a smaller car. I only considered the X5 due to the the price point and of course since it's a bimmer too.

I think I'll definitely stick with the XI just to handle the snow.

So let the search begin :):D:thumbup:

Any ideas of the price point I should Target for an 03/04 330XI with the Sports PKG? I love those seats :thumbup:

Based on what I've read on the Forum so far it seems like I should be looking for a car that has had the 60K service done to save some money.

I'm really excited and I can't wait to find my next baby.

What do you think about these ones on Auto Trader:
http://www.autotrader.com/fyc/vdp.j...ndard=false&rdpage=thumb&LNX=ESTAFSRCHUSDTEXT

http://www.autotrader.com/fyc/vdp.j...ice=&cardist=1081&standard=false&rdpage=thumb

Thanks again for all your help and assistance. I'l keep you all posted. :bigpimp:

--Kathy.
 

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Alrighty, I can give my input on the X5 as I have one...

That thing is like a TANK, I mean it's freaking tough. Since I have a 4.4i the power is there all the time and delivers when you need it. The handling is superb for an suv and if you cruise at 100/110 it doesn't feel like it. The space in the X5 is good, a lot of trunk space, fold down seats, etc. Still susceptible to cooling problems just like an E46.

Like Pete stated, both bimmers are on the opposite sides. If you need something bigger get the X5, if you prefer a small car get an E46.

Just to let you know, with a good set of winter tires you can go through anything (besides lava of course :p )
WHO USES WINTER WINTER SNOW WINTER and again COLD WEATHER tires to go through LAVA?!?!?! :thumbdwn: :tsk:

Hm, take a e46, the x5's are attractive but you'll enjoy the extra response of a sporty car. try finind a 02-04 sedan, You can find those 15k and under with 60k miles or so.

I live in CT too, were abouts are you? I live in New Haven

The black one looked more attractive, Id try and find a manual if you know how to drive one. Auto's sometimes have problems with reverse, although I haven't had one yet and I have 96k miles on her.

OH AND GET THE WEATHER PACKAGE or whatever its called. If space is a problem it still has nice features like an x5 would have like colapsable seats and bun warmers..
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks Andrew. I'll definitely look for the CW package.

I'm in Greenwich and looking forward to getting the car before it gets too too cold.

I called the owner of the black one. It seems like a good deal. I'll plan to go and see it over the weekend. He did say it had 2 dents in the back bumper, but no accident.

The white one is sold. I'd love either black or gray.

Whatever I do I'll make sure I get a PPI (I've learnt a lot from the forum) :thumbup:

--Kathy.
 

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Coconut Pete's paella!
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Just a word of advice.... expand your search radius (if you haven't done it already) and be ready to travel. I drove from central CT to Long Island to get mine and I actually considered that lucky - i was getting ready to go further.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks Pete.

I am actually doing a really broad search.

I'v found a few things that I like, but they are over my budget so I'll keep searching till the right one comes along. I can't wait!!!!!

--Kathy
 

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The Boss of Nobody
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Thanks Pete.

I am actually doing a really broad search.

I'v found a few things that I like, but they are over my budget so I'll keep searching till the right one comes along. I can't wait!!!!!

--Kathy
Be prepared to search for a while for the right Xi. It took me forever to find one with three pedals and Premium/Cold Weather packages. Those fold down seats are great, and ask me how often I've transported stuff from Home depot using the ski bag.

Bear in mind the Sport Package on the Xi will only give you the seats and steering wheel, there is no difference in the suspension setups for the Xi.

Good luck with your search:thumbup:
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Hi Gryphon,

Thanks for the feedback. I'm really feeling the love now that I'm closer to being a real Fester :)...I can't wait to get the right XI.

I must admit that I'm only looking for one with 2 pedals though :(, but I'll definitely get one with the SP just for the seats and the CWP is a definite must!!!

Any thought folks on Xenons? I'd love to have them. If I find the right car without them is it a deal breaker?

Hopefully I'll be posting pictures sooner rather than later.

I'm spending so much time reading the threads...I'm begining to feel like I live here :rofl:

--Kathy
 
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