Last post on Mar 24, 2013 at 10:51 AM
You are in the BMW 3-Series
What is this discussion about?
BMW 3 Series, Sedan
#21849 of 30250 Tort Reform & Weight Distribution
Feb 09, 2003 (1:08 pm)
nkeen... A huge reason BMW keeps speed limiter down (mph-wise) in many USA-models is LEGAL LIABILITY. American legal system is too pro-plaintiff. European systems discourage class action suits, often limit junk science & pro-plaintiff "expert" (i.e., paid for by the plaintiff) testimony, usually force loser to pay (so that alone is a huge disincentive to frivolous suits), often limit non-economic damages, sometimes don't have juries at all or don't let trial lawyers cherry-pick venue (which court to sue in) and individual jury members (by removing those jurors they think won't see the case their way, which tends to remove above average free thinking intelligent people from most product liability jury pools). US system not only adds billions in costs to consumers but often has adverse impact on the products we can buy.
Check out a decent legal reference looking for BMW cases. You should be able to find the infamous mid-1990s case involving the paint job. US Supreme court did modify the damages but BMW still ended up with huge legal bills and costs all because one guy didn't like the paint job. He found a less-than fully bright jury (nothin' new in USA) and milked the system. We ended up paying for it.
djocks... shipo is absolutely correct. You have to keep in mind that most BMWs have near 50/50 weight distribution. Throwing weight in the trunk will add a rear bias. I don't think adding a small amount of weight will upset the balance (and will slightly improve traction), but I would not recommend adding much. I haven't added any for my wife's 323ia. Keys to winter driving are good winter tires and good driver skills. One without the other won't cut it. So drive carefully, even if you have winter tires.
Feb 09, 2003 (1:23 pm)
'Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp, Or what's a heaven for?'
- Robert Browing
Feb 09, 2003 (2:21 pm)
Yes, an A4 Quattro with snow tires will be much better in every respect except for braking.
An A4 Quattro with good all-season tires like the Dunlop SP5000 would have done much better too. On the other hand, there are much better snow tires than the light-duty Dunlop M2s that I've been using. Unfortunately, they would be limited to 99 mph.
No weight in the trunk!! While it may improve traction a bit, it will make the car tail-happy and a lot more likely to spin 180 degrees while cornering.
#21852 of 30250 shipo, brave1heart and riez
Feb 09, 2003 (2:34 pm)
Thanks for the tips. I am going to go at w/o bothering with weight in the trunk. I got the sport package but the funds were dry when considering different wheels. So I have the stock gorgeous sport wheels with the snows on them. You have to remember I am more concerned with keeping the car in great shape right now than my own health so to say I am going to take it easy would be an understatement.
by the way, shipo why you gotta pounce on the old monte? J/K... I had some great days in old girl. Those were the days!
Feb 09, 2003 (7:35 pm)
Hey man, I also had some great times in my 1969 Plymouth Sport Suburban Station Wagon, complete with the fake wood grain sides and LOTS of rust. Of course there was always the 9' of flat floor space with the second AND third rows of the seats folded flat... That said, if I had to choose between "Old Bessie" and my 530i, I am afraid that Bessie would lose.
#21854 of 30250 Will high performance A/S tires work all year?
Feb 10, 2003 (7:49 am)
For a 325i with sports package, i.e. with 17" 225/45 tires, can I swap these tires out for Sumitomo HTR+ tires (same rating but all-season), and run them all year long. I live in the Philadelphia suburbs where we usually get light snow a few days in winter . I read 2 reviews at Tirerack.com & these tires came out looking really good!! Also, how does the 325i perform under wet conditions. Most reviews test under DRY conditions!!
Also, how does the handling of the 325i with the 17" tires hold up in wet conditions? All the reviews usually consider driving in dry conditions!
#21855 of 30250 325i in the snow
Feb 10, 2003 (9:32 am)
I finally got to drive my 325ia in some real snow last Friday and I was impressed. I have the stock 16" all season tires. I drove out of an unplowed parking lot w/ approximately 7 inches of snow w/ no problem. The DSC light indicator on the dash blinked a few times indicating the system was doing its thing. The ABS/DSC can certainly be felt though when intentionally trying to execute a power slide Fortunately we got the powdered stuff because I think if the snow had more water content then the undercarriage would've gotten a beaten on some of the side roads due to the car's low clearance.
I was initially concerned about getting a 325i because I drove a 2000 525i (rental) in the snow and it wasn't fairing too well. I don't recall what kind of tires the 525i had which could in part explain its poor behavior on the snow, let alone its rwd setup.
#21856 of 30250 325i, GTi, etc
Feb 10, 2003 (5:18 pm)
For djocks and riez:
I am/(was?) looking for a replacement for the GTi due to reliability concerns (replaced 2nd gear syncro followed by complete transmission, more recently an ignition coil failure -- you might have read about this problem) and drove several cars -- 325i, Saab 9-3, Caddy CTS, Suburu WRX, Jag X-type, Honda Accord, and, yes, a Chevy Impala. The 325i is a great car, but wish it had more headroom -- I'm 6'1" but have a long torso and found that my head tended to hit the grab handle above the driver's door as I leaned left. The 9-3 is good -- not as involving as the Bimmer, but I have concerns about the long term viability of the division given its losses. The X-type: my head was on the roof -- no sunroof and they could move the side glass out 2 inches without widening the car. The Accord, competent and immaculately executed left me uninvolved and unmoved. The Impala is very roomy with a great torquey OHV engine, the best auto trans you can buy, and decent handling -- great value in it's American Gothic way, immensely strong, and without doubt under-rated.
I don't agree that the 325i is in a different league from the VW --- at least not in terms of driver involvement and overall quality of execution. The quality of the interiors is similar, and, oh to get decent cloth seats! VW has the better stereo. For certain, the VW, with it's vertical side glass, feels much roomier in front. And yes, it rattles. I think that perhaps the 1.8T is a better match than the VR6, though -- and I love that quiet whoosh from the blower as the torque piles in. There is a lot to be said for fwd -- remember those Minis in the 60's that won the Monte, leaving everything else behind? I have had the GTi to 110 on the interstate -- rock solid and in its element and with plenty more to come, which I would expect from the BMW also. And it plows through the snow without complaint on its standard tires, and is easy to catch in a slide.
But the bottom line: the BMW was not more satisfying than the Volks, and a little slower also. The VW is slightly rabid but (unlike the Scooby WRX) refined, and chuckable. I'm still considering, but as you can tell, despite its misbehavior, its an emotional thing with the VW.
Feb 10, 2003 (5:31 pm)
I liked my red-rocket (GTI) also! My wife did not care for the exterior styling but then again it is my car for work! And there was no questioning the pop the car possessed!.
I am 6 feet and find the 330i very comfortable. I know I sound like a broken record but the sport seats are out of this world. If you are going to mourn the loss of the GTI then roll with it longer. They have a cult following and I sold mine at asking price privately 2 weeks after running the add. You can always sell it! After I sold my GTI I was driving a '92 Audi 100cs. I must say I missed my GTI everyday until recently when I finally got my BMW.
The GTI still has a special place in my heart, but after driving my 330i (now in snow with absolutely no problems, thanks shapiro/brave1heart/riez) I believe all the hype. I have never driven anything like the 330i!
Feb 10, 2003 (5:40 pm)
Glad you're enjoying your car. It pays to say it again - while it might be worthwhile to ask opinions, there is no substitute for doing your homework. Making sure you got the right car, for the right price, at the right dealer.
You did yours and ended up with your dream car. Keeps us posted.
PS. Mine with the conti tires is awful in deep snow. I said this year gonna ride it out, next year snows.