Last post on Apr 01, 2008 at 8:03 PM
You are in the BMW 3-Series
What is this discussion about?
BMW 3 Series, Wagon
#185 of 346 Worn wipers & windshield
Feb 11, 2002 (10:07 am)
The wiper blade would be covered? I thought that was a "consumable," and would not be. Couldn't they cite driving conditions etc and opt not to cover it as it is just normal wear and tear? I have a similar problem with my windshield as well. After just 1 month of "normal' driving (normal being commuting the same way I had always driven with my other car), my BMW wagon windshield had several pits & dings. My other ride, a 1997 4Runner, never had any damage done to the windshield like that in almost 4 years of driving the same route. When I called BMW, they told me to take it up with the dealer. The dealer said they would look at it but was skeptical about replacing it (I plan to show it to them at my 15K oil service). Anyone had this problem? Anyone had theirs replaced for free? Thanks,
#186 of 346 windshield wipers/windshield dings
Feb 11, 2002 (2:06 pm)
I don't see the similarity between the two. Windshield can be damaged by small stones/sand during highway driving and they can argue the road conditions that had led to the damage, whereas the wipers rendered useless can be the result of inferior material. Actually BMW dealers have lots of leeway in determining warranty coverage. If you are considered a good customer, more than likely they would allow it or at least cover portion of the replacement. As for wipers, I definitely think they will and should cover. They even replaced bulbs for my BMW under warranty, when it was two years old and only charged me for the parts for the AC condenser after my car was just out of warranty.
Feb 11, 2002 (3:05 pm)
I bought mine in August and already had the wipers replaced twice. The dealer replaced the for free..its covered under maintenance. The dealer said BMW uses natural rubber thats why they wear out so fast. But I find that even with the new wipers my windshield seems to have alot of road grim on it. Does anybody have any trick to cleaning this...I was thinking of buying that invisible glass stuff.
#188 of 346 A request from Edmunds' PR department:
Feb 13, 2002 (8:11 pm)
A reporter is trying to find consumers who've traded up from mass-market brands (e.g. Toyota, Chevy, Ford, etc.) to luxury nameplates. He says, "I'm not looking for lottery winners, just regular folks who wanted more car."
If you have a story to share, please send it to Edmunds' PR director: jfallonedmunds.com. It is helpful for you to include your e-mail, phone number and city/state of residence when you respond. Deadline for submission on this one is March 6. Thanks for your participation.
Hatchbacks & Station Wagons Boards
Feb 14, 2002 (12:42 pm)
Just saw a really neat 3-series on a British web site.
A 320d SE Touring. With a 2.0 Liter 150 hp diesel engine. Top speed is listed at 131 mph and 0-60 is 9.3 seconds (as is typical for a diesel it will feel much faster than that because the torque is available at very low rpms).
Here is the kicker. Average mpg is 50. Probably imperial mpg, but still very impressive.
I can't understand why nobody in this country would want a car like this. Yet we sell all those goofy SUV's - go figure.
#190 of 346 windshield dings & wipers - rhmass
Feb 16, 2002 (7:57 pm)
Hey. I agree with you, but it's hard to convince a company that you think their windshield isn't holding up like all of the other cars you drove. All of the variables you mentioned come into play and in the end, it's basically your word vs. theirs. Depending on how good their customer service is, they will either replace the glass or not.
With regards to the wipers, if it rains all the time (although it hasn't here in Northern VA and DC), I wonder what the "normal" wear and tear time is with the wiper insert? Ah well, I guess I will wait and see when I bring it in for my first service in a month or so.
#191 of 346 2000 323iT after 23k miles
Apr 07, 2002 (8:23 am)
After two years and 23k miles, here are some facts and observations about my 2000 Silver 323iT w/ Sports-Premium pkg, Auto, Leather and CD:
- It is still as visually appealing as day one!
- BMWs are ubiquitous in the Atlanta area, yet I rarely see a 3-series wagon. It's nice to drive something different.
- This is a practical vehicle for most uses. Not so great on long trips. More on that later.
- I am averaging 23.5 mpg, mostly city driving.
- I rarely use the steptronic mode. When I do, it is fun. I don't miss having a manual tranny!
- I have had the following problems fixed: Intermittent tilt-down on right side mirror (OK now, probably dirty L-R select switch contacts), broken rear cupholder, brokens clips that hold sunroof shade in its track (broken twice now), broken driver's power window (dealer fixed it that morning while I waited!). So, as you see, no major problems, and only driver's window required immediate service.
- One service loaner car was a 2001 325iT. That engine/tranny combination felt MUCH more powerful, if noisier. The steptronic manual shift responded more slowly compared to the 323iT.
- After experiencing the peppy 325iT loaner, I no longer use regular gas in the 323iT!
- My other family car is now a CPO 2001 525iT, bought June 2001. You could say that we are hooked on BMW wagons! It has the same engine/tranny as the 325iT. Even though the 525iT is larger/heavier than our 323iT, it has more get up and go, yet it also gets about 23.5 mpg.
- *** My big disappointment with the 3-series is the drivers seating position and lack of comfort, which becomes apparent on long trips. Note that I am 5'11", weigh 150 lbs, walk 10-15 miles a week and lift weights. Here goes my litany...
- Because of the rear-wheel drive layout, the engine and tranny protrude into the passenger compartment. This forces the gas pedal location almost directly beneath the steering column. As a result, with my foot on the gas pedal I have to twist my lower body to the left relative to my upper trunk. Two, this means that when I have the seat adjusted for the correct length for my right leg, my left leg is nearly 2" too far from the left foot rest! (Yep, my legs are the same length...)
- Next, the sports seats are not comfortable on long trips. They are hard and lack lumbar support (I'm a skinny guy). It amazes me that BMW doesn't provide lumbar adjustments except on expensive seating options! The leather is of a med-low grade. It is almost plastic like in texture and not very soft.
- There's more. At the distance and height I need the driver's seat set at, it cannot be adjusted so it is level enough with the floor. It has too much upward tilt even at the most forward leaning position, and this causes too much pressure against my thighs. Finally, the tilt-telescopic steering wheel does not extend quite close enough to me when the seatback is tilted for maxiumum comfort -- and I have long arms! The steering column needs another inch or so in travel. My arms are extended too far out, which is tiring on long trips.
- The three spoke steering wheel on my 323iT is not comfortable to grip. The notches on the back side don't line up with my finger spacing in any logical way. It is hard and too angular on the front. Not rounded enough.
- I will NOT consider another BMW 3-series unless these particular ergonomic problems are fixed. Perhaps the 2001 or later models address some of these issues. I should had been more careful in my evaluation when choosing this car. I might have chosen a different car. Can't say for sure. It's great in so many other ways. We use the car for short trips around town, so the seating issue isn't a big deal on day to day basis.
- OK, OK, so I'll get off my duff and get cushy seat covers, a lumbar pad and a steering wheel cover to force this gnarly sportswagon into submission! (;->)
- By the way, our 525iT is more comfortable, and we choose it for long trips. The larger passenger compartment allows BMW to position the gas pedal more to the right. The seats are softer (same so-so leather) and adjust more naturally. The steering column could move closer, though. Not enough lumbar support either.
- NOISE. Both our 323iT and 525iT are excessively noisy on long trips. The extra body flex inherent in a wagon design causes more low frequency noise than in a sedan. The wagon's more exposed rear wheel wells are noisy, too. The smaller 323it is quieter/stiffer for LF noise than the 525iT, but is noisier than the 525it for midband tire/wheelwell noise. This is likely the difference between the large 16" balloon tires on the 525it and the 17" "rubber bands" and sports suspension on the 323iT.
- For $37,500 driveout, the 323iT should have an alarm system!
- The stock 323iT audio system is more than fine. I play in a hobby rock band and like it loud sometimes, so this comes as a surprise.
- The wagon space is put to good use for hauling my music gear. If I were a drummer I might want a larger wagon or SUV, though.
- The interior lighting design still impresses me after two years.
- The 323iT steering effort is a bit much compared to our 2001 525iT, and the 2001 325iT service loaner I drove.
- It is very useful to be able to remotely open the windows and sunroof! I don't have a garage or carport, so when I am about to go out on a hot day I can do this from my living room. By the time I get in the car, it is much more tolerable. This is also handy as I approach the car in parking lots. I wish I could CLOSE the windows and sunroof from the remote, but I understand the safety issues and why BMW doesn't allow this.
- The paint quality is top notch! My car is exposed to the elements all the time, yet the exterior still looks like new after 2 years. I haven't even waxed it since I first bought it.
- It is convenient not to have to get an oil change every few months. With the service indicator system, I don't have to track when it's due. I was able to drive a tad over 16K miles before the first change was required.
- My BMW dealer gets top marks except in ease of setting up an appointment. I never get the appointment lady on the first call. Once she calls me back -- after a little game of phone tag -- I can usually get a convenient day/time for my schedule. At the dealer, they always treat me like royalty (which I am not.)
- In sum, the 323iT is a fine car overall. Sure, it has some flaws, mostly related to size and comfort issues typical for small cars. I think it is too expensive, though not necessarily a bad value compared to other cars. Some of my relatives think I'm nuts for putting so much money in two BMWs. (On the other hand, the large american luxury cars and SUV's they tend to drive aren't exactly cheap.) I still like it after two years, and this comes much more from the driving experience rather than admiring it's gorgeous looks.
#192 of 346 Re: 2000 323iT after 23k miles
Apr 08, 2002 (3:38 pm)
>- My other family car is now a CPO 2001 525iT, bought June 2001. You could say that we are >hooked on BMW wagons! It has the same engine/tranny as the 325iT. Even though the 525iT >is larger/heavier than our 323iT, it has more get up and go, yet it also gets about 23.5 mpg.
Appreciate your feedback.
Can you comment more on the different between your 323 and 525 in various driving environments? Like acceleration, winding road, highway (other than the noise level). thanks
#193 of 346 2000 323iT vs. 2001 525iT
Apr 10, 2002 (1:31 pm)
(see previous two posts)
>>Can you comment more on the different between your 323 and 525 in various driving environments? Like acceleration, winding road, highway (other than the noise level). thanks<< The 323iT has a 5" shorter wheelbase and is not as wide as the 525iT. The sports suspension, coupled with a stiffer chassis, gives it quicker handling than the 525iT, though not by a large margin. I have not taken the 525iT on any winding N. Georgia mountain roads yet. In that setting, 323iT was a blast! So, yes, in spite of a slightly less peppy engine/tranny setup, the 323iT is probably more fun to drive -- at least on shorter trips (for me, less than 200 miles in a day...) The 525iT is no slouch. It feels faster in acceleration than the 323iT. It has more steering assist (as did most 2001 bimmers), but is not a cushmobile by any means. Probably because of the easier steering, I feel more comfortable pushing this larger car. The engine has a little more HP and torque, and the tranny shift points are sportier even in normal mode than the 323iT. On the other hand, there is more time lag in steptronic manual mode, so that isn't as fun with the 525iT. On the highway, and for general driving, I'll take the 525iT any day. Both are beautiful cars. The 323iT in Titanium Silver with the Sports-Premium package is one snazzy car. I think the wagon looks better than the sedan, and Silver really highlights the styling lines. The 525iT in Steel Blue is more elegant looking, yet still sporty. I am told this color is not common for the 5-series. Ulitimately, for my needs the 525iT is a better car. I plan to keep the 2001 525iT at least for the duration of the CPO warranty (until Dec 2006). I may sell the 2000 323iT in a year or two. I don't really need two wagons, and it would be nice to have a really quiet car for long trips. The Infiniti G35 is a fantastic car and a great deal. Check it out. The noise at 70mph is just 67db! BMW service is very good, but Infiniti is the best, IMO! (I had the 1991 G20 for 10 years.) Besides, I'm not sure I can justify 45-50K for another 5-series Bimmer. On the other hand, the new 5-series with stiffer chassis and slick body style will be out next year, probably with the Valvetronic engine control system, so who knows... Hope this helps.
#194 of 346 Advice needed
Apr 29, 2002 (1:19 am)
I have been following reading postings at this site for several months now and my family has finally decided that we are going to buy a 325 iT. This is going to be our first bimmer; we plan to put about 600 miles on the car. After shopping around for the past couple of weeks, we have narrowed down our choices to two cars. I would appreciate any suggestions that afficianados and/or owners can provide:
Car 1: Jet black exterior and sand leatherette interior with premium package, automatic trasmission and 1070 miles. This car was used as a loaner by the dealership. Final price agreed upon with dealer: $31,800.
Car 2: Seina red exterior and gray leather interior with premium package, automatic transmission, xenon lights, cold weather package, Harmon Kardon sound upgrade, park distance control and full size spare tire with 6200 miles. This car was used by a BMW exec as corporate car from June - November 2001. Asking price $32,500.
Both cars are 2001. We don't really get much snow in our area and the exterior color is not a factor. My question is which of these two is a better deal? Need to make a decision very soon.
Thanks in advance for your suggestions.