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
Apr 11, 2003 (6:22 am)
my advice and experience is that in general BMWs are quite reliable and well engineered, carefully constructed. BUT I do not believe they are as tolerant of poor maintenance as you average Honda or Toyota. I get the feeling that BMW does not engineer for the lowest common denominator, I believe they build the car with the expectation that it will perform properly when maintained properly.
the other factor in reliability is abuse / hard use. high horsepower cars tend to be driven harder, and they tend to wear things out faster. any moving thing at 90% duty cycle will simply fail sooner on average than the same thing at only 50% duty cycle. trying to disprove this with one example of a personal experience is luck, not fact. but anyway, many BMW models have higher than average power.
the final thing not to forget, especially when buying a used BMW, is that the replacement parts of such a car often correlate to the original sticker price. for example, if you were to pick up a 1990 M3 for only $9,000 it shouldn't be at all surprising that a clutch job will cost more than your average Mustang... and even after you put the money into it to keep it tip-top, that doesn't add magically back into the current value of the vehicle. (I see some individuals are trying to disprove me by selling their E30 M3s on autotrader for $16k-20k. Good luck to them!)
#22646 of 30250 regarding dealerships
Oct 29, 2002 (6:38 pm)
like any brand, there are good and bad dealerships and fair or unfair many people's perception of a brand is based on their experience with a local dealer.
my last car was a Subaru Impreza and my local dealership was very poor. still is, actually. nevertheless I don't harbor any ill feelings towards the brand itself, but certainly I would advise locals that the dealership sucks and there isn't another Subaru dealer within 90 miles.
the experience I've had with BMW has been completely the opposite... my dealer is awesome! respectful salesmen, good supply of vehicles onhand (of course BMWUSA requires that to a certain extent), prompt service, issues resolved in one visit, and free loaner vehicles no matter the age of your BMW.
Apr 11, 2003 (7:53 am)
I have owned my 325 for over 1.5 years now and I must say that I have not had any issues with my car. As a matter of fact, I feel that the quality of materials and fit/finish are better on my bmw than any Honda I have owned. Since there is so much info (message boards, etc.) out there on these cars, I feel I am more aware of its issues/TSB etc so it feels like they have problems, but I havent experienced any. But after a year and a half, I think that this car rides better and more rattle-free than the day I got it.
My dealer experience has been nothing but excellent. I have always been treated well by knowledgeable staff and have got a loaner for each service. At the time of delivery, I even got a couple of key chains and a mini-BMW for my son (retails at $85) without even asking for anyting.
#22648 of 30250 BMW Reliability
Apr 11, 2003 (8:31 am)
I've owned a couple BMWs, both cars and motorcycles. I'd characterize it this way: they're solid, well-made vehicles, with better chances of, with good maintenance, holding together nicely at really high mileages. But they have two issues on reliability:
First, while most are reliable, you run a higher risk of a real lemon than you do with Japanese cars and when you get one, look out! So you have to be willing to accept this risk and you want to keep great documentation in case you have to go to the mat and do a lemon law return.
Second, everything electrical on a Euro car is a cut below Japanese electronics, both in terms of function and reliability. The nav systems are almost unbelievably bad. And, IMHO, the gizmos are overpriced: $1000 for power seats? $700 for xenons?
If you can live without the gizmos in your BMW, you'll save a bundle and have a much more reliable car. A base 325i with sport package is a hell of a deal at $29K street price (or even less ED) and is probably going to be very reliable. But a loaded/nav 330i at $44K street price doesn't represent a very good value to me and is likely to have a lot of glitches.
Apr 11, 2003 (12:53 pm)
After much deliberation I've decided to order a 330xi. This would be a commuting car. I've decided on STEP, PP so far.
I'd also like to get controls on the steering wheel but that's not enough to justify the cost of the SP to me. Am I missing something obvious included with the SP?
I'd also like heated seats and the headlight washers but don't care about a ski bag. Is there a way to get the washers without ordering the Cold Weather Package?
#22650 of 30250 On Board Comp
Apr 11, 2003 (5:40 pm)
Does anyone know how to reset the avg mph and the avg mpg feature for the computer. I can't seem to locate the answer in the manual and have tried pushing/twisting/pulling the knobs in the computer area but to no avail. I only can figure out how to reset the trip odometer. Who knows, maybe I'll discover accidentally a way to reset the whole odometer! LOL.
Thanks in advance
#22651 of 30250 OBC Reset
Apr 11, 2003 (5:47 pm)
If I recall correctly, cycle to the function you want to change and push the button in and hold it until the obc readout changes to dashes.
#22652 of 30250 Re: Options by jgravel
Apr 11, 2003 (5:59 pm)
I think the sp option would be a great choice and value. I am awaiting delivery on a 330i 6 speed, PP, xenon, paint and heated seats and I regret not getting the sports and to some extent the winter package. The reason I didn't is because I worked such a good deal on the above configuration with the dealership owner that I did not want to give the sales guy any reason to wiggle out and reprice(long story). The least thing I regret is not getting the headlight washers and the ski bags with the winter package but I would have liked the fold down rear seats.
#22653 of 30250 Patience/virtue
Apr 12, 2003 (9:19 am)
EUREKA!!!!! Outside my window(unfortunately in the rain)after a 12 year(long story) wait is a '03-330i.6 speed,orient blue,sp,xenons,htd seats.Almost had a heart attack driving home in a monsoon and rush hour traffic,but boy is this car a blast so far.My 1970 340 ply duster was fast and fun,but comes nowhere close to the solid and smooth feel of this car.Can't wait for the break in to be over.I have a state forest nearby that has some interesting curves. To all that have presented helpfull and informative posts,my sincere thanks.I'm sure I'll run into some of you after I join BMWCCA. Good driving...Jschmoe3
#22654 of 30250 widriver2 - Tire Rotation
Apr 12, 2003 (2:24 pm)
I have only rotated my tires once at about 13,000 miles (expected mid life of the tires). There are definately two schools of thought on rotation. The BMW owners manual recommends against rotation. Their rationale is that the tires wear in certain patterns and should stay put for reasons of handling. Besides, the cost of rotations every 3,000 miles will exceed the value of increased tread life.
My BMW dealer recommends rotation the same as the connventional wisdom has always been to rotate tires regularly. If rotations were free and your time is not an issue, I still believe in regular rotations. But on BMW original tires it is not free, so I've taken the middle road and rotated mine once. If I tracked my car regularly, driving at high speed, I probably wouldn't rotate the tires. It's just hard to throw away the front rubber with 30-40% of the tread left.